We do like it rough at NB ! The sun shone and the wind certainly blew.
White horses and big side waves to the Craig, a nice bit of clapotis then settle in for a breather in the good water round the back...and steel your selves for the wall of wind and final sprint for home.
More than one club commented that this is what coastal rowing is all about and our experience of these conditions certainly paid off.
Some great wins for us in the Mens 40 plus, Mixed 60s, ladies 50s , Mixed open, a 1 and 2 in the Mixed Over 45s and end epic battle in the Mens Open coming from behind to take a last gasp win beating Coigach by a second.
Thanks to all the clubs for making a fantastic day and and to everyone here who put massive time and effort making it a success.
Another trip to the West Coast for NBRC took us to Largs, home of the famous Nardini Ice Cream parlour and a very fine spot for rowing indeed.
No wind was bad news for the many sailors that were on the water, but great news for us rowers to enjoy fast rowing in flat conditions.
Our hosts, Firth of Clyde Coastal Rowing club were having their second regatta, which was well attended by local clubs from the West Coast, and a couple of interlopers (ourselves and Anstruther) making the day trip over from the East Coast.
The racing was a mixture of 2k races around a single buoy turn and 500m straight line sprints. The 2K races take about 12 minutes, our mixed open crew held off Anstruther and the local boats to get our first win under the belt. Next up was our men’s crew, who won their heat, but that wasn’t enough to get a medal as the next heat went faster and first prize went to Royal West. Our ladies knew they’d have to row well to get ahead of Anstruther but it wasn’t to be and we were pushed into second place by the Queens of Fife.
After lunch was a series of 500m sprints and NBRC came into its own, to be fair we’ve been doing this for 5 or 6 years now and most of the clubs were in their first year of racing, but it’s a race so we went our hardest! We took all but one of the sprints, which was great for us, but the races were all hard fought and we were blowing hard at the finish. The one sprint that eluded us was the juniors, but we put in a mixed crew including a couple of 13 year olds (Gregor and Kirsty) along with Heather (aged 15) and the experienced old head of Cameron (aged 18) and they made us all proud with their neat rowing style and they pushed the local crew all the way.
After all that we felt fish and chips at the famous Nardinis was well deserved.
Many thanks to Firth of Clyde Coastal Rowing Club for a great regatta.
The sun, remembering for once that it really should have its hat on in August, dazzled a hard core of North Berwick rowers who had made the trip up to the Big Orange (widely known as Newburgh) for a day of racing on the Tay.
The course was just over a kilometre with 3 turns – the first a sharp bend around a pink buoy, the second around a small grassy islet which promptly disappeared as the tide rolled in and a moored up boat which seemed to be hit a little more than its owners probably liked. A speed demon on a jetski provided safety cover and spectator hydration in equal measure and was joined at one stage by a great raft of fellow jetski-enthusiasts doing their best Hawaii Five-O impression and lending a wonderfully Californian feel to proceedings.
In addition to NB there were representatives from Broughty Ferry and Wormit rowing clubs which meant that along with the hosts most races had 4 boats starting in randomly allocated lanes.
Conditions were testing with the wind blowing West to East and a much stronger tide flowing East to West. The first race of the day was the 40+ mixed and it was evident from the outset that the tide and lane draw were going to have a big effect on the results. The starting hooter blared and the crews all leapt in action, pulling with around 100% of their might but not making much progress against the racing tide. Eventually headway was made and it was apparent that, like so many of these races, the first boat to the turn was very difficult to beat.
Competition from Newburgh and Broughty Ferry was fierce and Wormit, although left behind in the earlier races, rallied towards the end and picked up some good points for their club score.
In the first 2 categories NB suffered from less favourable lanes and stiff competition to finish third in each but the brutish chaps of the 40+ gave the baying supporters satisfaction with a convincing win. No doubt the sweat dripping from Dave’s noble scalp inspired the 40+ women to repeat the exercise. This performance was double excellent in that Tracy and Ann who made up 50% of the crew are relatively new to the club (and subsequently competed in the novice/fresher category) and having turned 3rd at the first buoy the crew showed their mettle by overhauling both the Broughty and Newburgh crews before the final turn.
Our under 19 squad of Cameron, Euan, Saskia and Gregor put in a strong shift but were ultimately pushed into second by a strong set of Newburgh lads, before our Novices pulled their way to another victory.
The winning streak continued with the Louise, Claire M, Issy and Sheena beating all-comers in a hotly contested Women’s Open. An exciting feature of the day’s races was their rich “incident” content and none more so than this one.
The organisers decided to reverse the course for the Men’s Open, to appease the clockwise gods and reflect the changing conditions. The previous outer lane advantage disappeared with the lanes closest to the bank benefitting from slacker water but once again it was the first skiff to the turn that proved to be unassailable. In this case Broughty shot from the start line like a startled walrus and got there first. A clashing of oars between North Berwick and Newburgh gave them the chance they needed to take a comfortable lead and despite a spirited performance from NB in closing much of the distance, Broughty won through to the line leaving the NB boys a disconsolate second.
Fortunately their demons were exorcised and exercised in the Decades race with a strong North Berwick crew representing respectively Teens (Euan), 20s (Ben), 30s (Ian) and 50s (Medium) romping away to win by decent margin with excellent tactical coxing from Phil.
Much clapping and hooting was to be heard at the awards ceremony in the evening sunshine where it became apparent that almost every NB rower had come away with a medal. This strong combined effort meant we tied with the hosts for most club points – a great testament to all the hard work and training that everyone puts in. A fantastic day was had by all and thanks to Newburgh Rowing Club for a really enjoyable and challenging regatta, warm welcome and delightful cakes.
The west coast is notoriously rainy throughout the year. At NBRC we prepare ourselves for whatever the elements throw at us. However, 20 of our members were pleasantly surprised when arriving at Greenock on the 9th August for the Royal West regatta, to be bathed in warm sunshine with only a slight hint of a breeze. The majestic backdrop of the Lomond Hills and the little town of Helensburgh across the Clyde provided a magnificent setting. Conditions were indeed perfect after the atrocious monsoon-type weather of last year's event. It was a great start to the day. We thought that it couldn't get any better but of course it did!
Crews from Anstruther, Firth of Clyde, Troon, Carrick, Royal West and amazingly enough Bristol attended. Hats off to Bristol - a reasonably new club - for making the 8-hour journey to Inverclyde.
The course was a 2000m triangular course (750 x 750 x 500) with a floating start. Sandy, and Saskia made excellent baton runners. In these types of races, every second counts and the 20m dash from the starter to SJB was crucial. The process was repeated at the end of the race with a taxing sprint from the boat back to the starter.
In the first race of the day, our open women's crew were narrowly beaten into second place by a competent Anstruther crew. In the next race, the open men also took second place to Anstruther after an extremely hard-fought race.
In all, NBRC won gold in 5 out of nine races. Our 40+ mixed crew performed brilliantly with the best time of the day in 11 minutes and 10 seconds. Well done Jo, Clive, Medium and Sheena and cox Issy for a great race. The 40+ men's crew also took home gold in a remarkable time of 11 minutes and 14 seconds. It was gold too for the 55+ women, the 55+ men AND 55+ mixed crews (a time of 11.28) who proved their stamina and prowess in keenly contested events.
As well as achieving the fastest time of the day, NBRC won the regatta on points beating our main rivals Anstruther.
Our coxes too should be given some praise. A special thanks to Dave, Clive, Phil, Issy and Jacque for their cajoling and encouragement.
Our sincere thanks too to Adam and his team for their organisational skills and to the safety boat crew and caterers who worked so hard to make the day possible. Lastly, a massive thanks to whoever provided such exceptional weather. It made all the difference.
Saturday 1st August saw a small group of NBRC members head along the coast to Musselburgh to take part in Eskmuthe Rowing Club's second skiff regatta. Other clubs present were Port Seton, Row Porty and some representatives of Amble Rowing Club who were using one of Eskmuthe's boats.
The racing kicked off in the early afternoon. The course was a race out for 500m to a line of buoys and then back again to the beach with each club having their own lane for the duration of the racing. Whilst the start of the races was fairly sheltered, by the time the boats got out to the buoys the cross wind became an important factor, making for some interesting buoy turns! The first race, the mixed open, was won by Port Seton in Boatie Lodge with Skiff John B coming in second. Port Seton won again in the mixed women's race with Skiff John B coming in third. Special mention has to go to Norma and Sheena who rowed in consecutive races. The third race, the mixed men, saw North Berwick get their first and only win of the afternoon by 0.9 of a second from Port Seton. The heavens opened during the course of the Decades race, which was won by Port Seton with Skiff John B coming in second. The weather had really deteriorated by this point so everyone decamped to the warmth of the yacht club in the hope that conditions would improve. Eventually it was decided that one more race would go ahead, the pick and mix. Following the pattern of the afternoon, the race was won by Boatie Lodge with one rower from Port Seton and Amble and two from North Berwick.
Following the racing there was a tug of war competition with teams of four men and three women from each of the various clubs. Despite our best efforts North Berwick were beaten in the final by Row Porty.
Everyone from Eskmuthe Rowing Club was very friendly and welcoming, especially the three young girls who manned the refreshments stall and were fantastic at selling their produce. Add to that a few beautiful medals made from left over wood from the building of Eskmuthe's new boat, Steedie Falconer, and I can safely say a great afternoon was had by all.
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