Trafford Rowing Club participated in the British Rowing Junior Championships in Nottingham.
The event which was held last weekend is the highlight of the junior rowing calendar and attracts all the best crews in the country.
Trafford entered four crews, the J14 girls double of Michie G and Olivia B, the J15 girls quad of Lottie K, Olivia S, Ellen H and Cara L coxed by Michie G, the J16 girls single of Rebekah C and the J16 double of Albert W and his partner from Warrington Rowing Club George W.
On Friday Michie and Olivia battled to an amazing 9th place out of nearly 70 competitors.
On Saturday the aim for the other crews was to finish in the top 12 in the time trial to qualify for the main finals on the Sunday. Conditions on the Saturday were incredibly challenging with a strong head wind and the Holme Pierrepont lake looking closer to rough sea conditions than the usually calm Bridgewater canal that the club is used to training in.
Unfortunately Albert W and George W didn’t qualify for the Sunday finals but as the conditions improved finished first in the D final rueing the weather conditions from earlier in the day.
Rebekah C qualified an incredible 5th in her time trial and the J15 quad 6th in theirs.
The conditions improved on the Sunday with both Rebekah and the quad successfully coming through the semifinals to get to their respective A finals – meaning they were in the top 6 crews in the country!
Rebekah had her final first and set off brilliantly, she was in second place half way through the 2000m course, unfortunately she couldn’t hang on but came an incredible 5th place.
That left the J15 girls quad up against their nemesis from the NorthWest Circuit Trentham (based in Stoke) and the likes of Henley and Marlow rowing club. To put it in context Trafford have a squad of 5 able to compete at national level, one of whom was on holiday, and Henley and Marlow have 10x that number.
The crew battled through the first 1500m of the 2000m course and were 5th, then over the next 2 minutes they gradually reeled 4th place and then with just a couple of metres to go overtook Marlow rowing club to get an incredible bronze medal.
The results were an incredible achievement for such a small club based at Walton Park and practicing on the Bridgewater Canal and shows the commitment of the juniors and coach Leon Langmead, who won his first national level medal as a coach, over the last 12 months.
Leon Langmead said, “we want to build Trafford Rowing Club to be a force to be reckoned with over the next few years and hopefully this will inspire the next generation of rowers into the club.”
“Rowing has a reputation as an elitist sport but it is accessible to all and Trafford have shown that without the resources available to other clubs we can be competitive at the highest level. We are looking to build the squad over the next few years and have a rowstart course available over summer for children aged 12 – 16. “
We still have spaces left on our courses over summer – have a look here for more information.