Golden glory for men’s team in national event

The gold medal winning Scarborough Mens Open team are, from left, Sam Woodward, Jack Anderson, Bob Hewitt and Guy Woodward
The gold medal winning Scarborough Mens Open team are, from left, Sam Woodward, Jack Anderson, Bob Hewitt and Guy Woodward
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Scarborough Amateur Rowing Club won five medals at the English Indoor Rowing Championships at the Manchester Velodrome.

The club had its largest contingent ever, as 44 competitors took part in the annual event.

The silver-medallists Ladies Open  team, are,  from left, Zoe Aldcroft, Donna Gibson, Bridget Marshall and Jo Purdy

The silver-medallists Ladies Open team, are, from left, Zoe Aldcroft, Donna Gibson, Bridget Marshall and Jo Purdy

These championships are well supported and the competition is getting fiercer each year.

For many of the club’s junior members, it was a first time experience in a major national sporting event.

Despite the inevitable pre-race nerves, once the races got under way it could be seen that they were all putting in maximum effort, and acquitted themselves very well indeed.

Matthew Metcalfe gained a bronze medal in the Men Junior 16 class, with a time of 6min 53.8sec, equalling his best time set during training.

The Scarborough Junior 16 team, who won the bronze medal at Manchester are, from left, Joe Marshall, Brad Miller, Ben Martin and Matthew Metcalfe

The Scarborough Junior 16 team, who won the bronze medal at Manchester are, from left, Joe Marshall, Brad Miller, Ben Martin and Matthew Metcalfe

Metcalfe rowed again with Joe Marshall, Brad Miller, and Ben Martin to win another bronze in the Men’s under-16 team event, with a time of 9min 24.2sec

Performance of the day, was by 16-year-old Zoe Aldcroft, with a 2000m time of 8min 4.7 secs, just missing out of the medals by three seconds, with fourth place in the Ladies J16 event.

Zoe later took part in the Ladies J16 team event, then finished off her third event of the day in the Ladies Open team event to win that elusive medal.

The last events of the day were the team races for the Ladies Open and the Men’s Open races.

Scarborough’s ladies crew of Jo Purdy, Donna Gibson, Bridget Marshall and Zoe Aldcroft won the silver medal covering the 3000 metre course in a time of 10 minutes 41 seconds, only six seconds behind the winning team from Northwich RC.

Concurrently, in the Men’s event, the Scarborough team, who were on the machine next to the ladies, consisting of Sam Woodward, Bob Hewitt, Guy Woodward and Jack Anderson put in a superb performance in their race.

Scarborough were in second place, just a few metres behind the Warrington RC team for most of the race as a result a combination of sheer effort, good teamwork and slick changeovers.

It then happened to fall on Jack Anderson as the last man, to go for gold, when he put in a spirited performance, resulting in Scarborough winning the race in 8min 36.5sec, by just one second from Warrington.

Needless to say, the rest of the Scarborough rowers had been close to the action, and had been encouraging their teams, and were ecstatic when they saw the final results come up on the machine’s performance monitor.

Not to be outdone by the club’s junior members, veteran rower Will Kitchener managed to gain a silver medal in the men’s heavyweight 60 to 69 class, in a time of 7min: 04.6sec.

Club coach Bob Hewitt, and the juniors coach Andy Purdy, were very pleased with these results.

Hewitt said: “The club’s winter training is paying off again and I am very pleased to see that since sea rowing finished last September, the junior membership has increased, including a large influx of girls. This is all very encouraging for the forthcoming rowing season.”

Purdy added: “I was amazed and very pleased to see the response to the notice in the clubhouse asking for competitors for this event.

“The club coaches and supporters were very proud of the young members’ appearance in club kit, their competiveness and sportsmanship and their support for each.

“All these aspects had been noted by the event’s race commentator during the day and was repeated by the event organisers to the club officials as they left the arena, so it was definitely all worthwhile in the end.”