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.
Eighteen members of NBRC made the journey to Loch Broom for the Ullapool Regatta on the weekend of Friday 10th July.
Unusually there was a little rain this year (ahem!), but our spirits were not dampened, and as ever, we rowed, partied, celebrated, and all the things that make rowing fun.
The complete results can be found on the SCRA website, but to summarise (thanks to Elisa)-
•Our Ladies’ 50+ brought home the gold, winning by an impressive 22 second margin – the best win of the whole event!
•Our Men's 50+ made an epic comeback, going from last to third place after getting caught on the start line (a problem that affected quite a few clubs throughout the event)
•Our Men's Open team rowed the WHOLE 2 km without a rudder after it got tangled on the start line; despite rowing a good bit further than the course required them to, they finished in 6th out of 16 places, and did what was probably the best buoy turn of the regatta!
•The 40+ Men came 2nd out of 16. 50+ Men came 3rd. Mixed Open, 40+ Women and 50+ Mixed all came 4th. Mixed 40+ did a respectable 6th.
•Our juniors did very well too and were real ambassadors for NBRC, joining and being joined by other young rowers in under 19 and under 17 teams.
•We came 4th overall out of the 20 clubs competing! I think that qualifies as a resounding success!
Friday’s entertainment was an interesting mix of music, the highlight being a band “Hunter and the Bear”
Saturday was the Ceilidh, the usual fantastic epic.
Our thanks go to everyone at Ullapool for organising and hosting such a fine event.
A final quote from one of our rowers - “Well done to all the rowers that came to Ullapool, rowed, beat other teams, got beaten and were still able to enjoy it.”
It epitomises what Coastal Rowing is all about, and the spirit of our sport.
Taking time out from tending blistered bits of body to write up our report of an amazing weekend hosted by Islay Rowing Club. The mere fact of travelling by ferry lends an air of adventure to any expedition and this was no exception. We were treated to a most beautiful two hour cruise under blue skies from Kennacraig to Port Ellen in the south of Islay. Our accommodation for the next three days was “The Nest” a recently refurbished traditional Islay house which was just ideal. On Friday evening we made contact with our hosts in The Islay Hotel to run through the itinerary for the next couple of days. Racing was planned for Saturday and recreational rowing for Sunday, so an early night would have been a good idea!
Saturday dawned dampish( Hissing down with thunder and lightning!) but luckily the serious business of racing was planned for early evening so we took advantage of the time to stretch our legs on the path from Port Ellen to Ardbeg via Laphroaig and Lagavulin! It was amazing to stagger across so many famous names contained within so few square miles!
At 5 we donned our red gear and sallied forth to uphold the honour of NBRC. However, Islay Rowing Club had other plans and we put names in a hat to form teams taken from both clubs. This proved to be enormous fun and, as always, it was really interesting to see how other clubs set up their boats and to pick up tips from their style of rowing. We had ladies’, men’s and mixed racing in three of the five Islay skiffs: Lily Bheag, Bluebell and Bonnie Anne. Competition was fierce, and hugely enjoyed by all of us.
We rounded off the evening with a barbecue on the harbour side where huge amounts of Malteser cake were consumed by the author and friendships cemented.
To our utter delight, recreational rowing on Sunday seemed to involve rowing from one distillery to the next, sampling a range of Islay Malts as we went on our merry way!
Phil’s face was split from ear to ear by a huge cheesy grin which grew steadily wider as the day progressed! Against all the odds, we managed to row back to Port Ellen where the endless hospitality of our hosts saw us leaving the Islay Hotel each bearing a bottle of Islay Malt Whisky!
We had an unforgettable weekend and our thanks must go to Islay Rowing Club for their friendship and hospitality which epitomised the true spirit of Coastal Rowing.
Great day out at South Queensferry where the scenery and home baking are hard to beat Big up to the novice crew of Tracy, Mrs Medium, Ann and Clive who had to pull 16 stone of cox around and still win their race in a very competetive lineup. Placings for mixed , mens and ladies over 40 whilst our open ladies were a victim to some over zealous reading or lack of reading the rules by some of the younger clubs.
Order was restored by the imperious men's open crew romping home coxed by our delightful ladies captain putting the whippersnapper back in their box. There was a mix up race after but the author was stuffing his face with cake after a self imposed fast in the name of weight saving.
A Midsummer Night’s Row – By Alan B., Cameron, Clive, Elisa, Finlay R., Issy, Jo, Karen, Mel and Sheena
“Four oars will quickly steep themselves in night;
Four rowers will quickly dream away the time;
And then the skiff, like to a silver bow
New-bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.”
Those five lines set the scene for our Summer Solstice adventure on the 21st June 2015. At 3.30am ten not-too-awake NBRC members met at the Dinghy Park to prepare Skiff John B. and Blackadder for the club’s first ever Midsummer Night’s Row.
At exactly 4.00am the two boats left the sleepy shelter of North Berwick harbour and headed towards the Craig. A guillemot nearly joined Skiff John B.’s crew, but decided at the last second that it wasn’t up for this kind of morning exercise and took off without a glance back. On the “dark side” of the Craig, two enchanted crews watched the sun rise through a layer of clouds and felt the mystery of summer approaching.
The fearless journey of the Don Quixotes continued into the teeth of a building sea. The intrepid wanderers sought shelter in the lee of the Lamb and, after a fiery exchange of views with a lobster pot, the boats rafted and rode to a single anchor.
After feasting on Manna and honey wine (okay, coffee and cakes) our heroes were ushered by the winds back towards the safety of their homeland. After defeating a final tempest on rounding the Craig on the last leg of the journey, the expedition made it safely back to shore.
It was 6.00am, and the town was still sound asleep.
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