Press Releases 1999 - 3

29 November 1999

BISHOP TAKES NATIONAL TITLE AND RECORD

On Saturday , Cath Bishop of Marlow Rowing Club took the Perpetual British Indoor Rowing Championships for the second year running. With the title Cath also broke the British record, winning in 6 min 34.4 sec.
The indoor rowing championships is now a major event in the sporting calendar with many athletes from the none rowing world who have used rowing machines in sports clubs and gyms throughout the UK taking on the rowers over 2,000 meters.
2,000 meters, if you have ever tried it in a gym, is an excruciating distance to attempt flat out. It required both aerobic endurance and physical power to drive the flywheel of the machine along for between 6-8 minutes. While not giving quite the same feeling as racing in a rowing boat it does accurately reflect the physical qualities needed to race over the Olympic distance. This is an incredibly demanding event and one in which only the best athletes and the mentally resilient succeed.
Held in Reading on an annual basis, the British Championships are also a qualifying event for the World Championships held in Boston in February.
Cath knew she was in for tough opposition from her fellow rowing international and current British record holder Scot Katherine Grainger. Both had been recording comparable times in training and in the final on Sunday they were sat on adjacent machines on the front row of the grid.
Grainger led Bishops for the first 1,000 meters, the computer screens on the machines showing the relative positions on the athletes. Bishop was being urged on by her pairs partner Dot Blackie and squeezed into the lead just past half way. The two athletes were neck and neck with 500 meters to go, both right at the edge of their physical and mental endurance. 250 to go and Bishop puts the foot down for one last time and pulls away to beat the British record and take the title. Cath's finishing time is just one second outside the world record of Katrin Boron.
After the race Cath said " the atmosphere was fantastic.. its good to have a great side by side race. We have both been doing 1.34s in training" Cath's aim in a busy Olympic year will be to break the world record in Boston in February and retain her World Title.

SEAN FARRELLY 01628 531 946

29 November 1999

OXFORD BROOKS AND MARLOW SHARE HONOURS AT MARLOW LONG DISTANCE RACE

Oxford Brooks University and Marlow Rowing Club shared the honours at the annual Marlow Fours and Pairs head at the weekend. Brookes dominated the men's events with their top international oarsmen. Five out of the top 6 boats came from Oxford Brooks with only Marlow's top Quad getting into the top half dozen. The Marlow Quad of Paul Thomas, Mark Ruinet, Justin Hooker and Andy Barron will be pleased to have won their event on what was only their second outing together. Marlow's Junior Quad also won its event and will have been pleased to make the top 10. The Marlow coxless four, though losing out to Oxford Brooks, produced a solid performance and the four athletes Blaine Castle, Mike Jennings, Neil McCulloch and Hugo Reynolds later split into two pairs who also went well on the day finishing 2nd and 3rd in the Elite Pairs event.
There was also some good performances from the Marlow men's novice squad, who lost out to a more experienced Nottingham University crew.
Marlow women dominated their events and showed a clean pair of heels to some good club and university crews, including the Oxford University women's squad.
The fastest women's boat of the day was the Marlow Senior 3 quad of Sam Buckles, Liz Sparg, Catherine Jones and Kay Waddington which won in a time of 13min 11 sec.
Marlow also won the Senior 1 double sculls and the Elite Pairs. Indeed the Elite Pair of Emma Stallwood and Kristal Osborn saw off a number of the men's pairs including several from Marlow.
The event went off in bright sunshine, though the 3,500 meter event was made tougher by a stiff headwind along the entire course. Nearly 200 crews took part and provided the club and universities which took part with an excellent opportunity to look at the strengths and weaknesses of their squads.

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29 November 1999

MARLOW WOMEN TAKE FOURS HEAD TITLE

Marlow Rowing Club in composite with Queens Tower RC of London won the Open Coxless Fours division of the Fours Head of the River in London last Saturday. The boat was stroked by former World Champion Alex Beever of Marlow, with fellow Marlow Athlete and also former World Champion Sue Walker and Queens Tower athletes Alison Trickey and Fancesca Zeno
They were streets ahead of their opposition on the day and really showed their class to win in a time of………….. Marlow RC featured14 other crews, most of whom performed well in fairly testing conditions of the famous Chiswick to Putney 4¼ mile stretch. A head wind chopped up the water from Barnes to Hammersmith, which was followed by a stiff tailwind which tested the technique of the athletes. The next best performance was second, for the Women's Senior 3 coxed four. The crew will be a little disappointed to have finished second to Aurial Kensington RC by 6 seconds, especially as they had finished ahead of them the previous week. It is likely that the local club simply handled the conditions better on the day.
Overall the Marlow club had the largest club presence at the event and took the chance to blood many athletes new to the club this season.
Several former Club members had good days on the London Tideway. Steve Redgrave, in the company of Mathew Pinsent, won the Open Coxless fours title from Oxford Brooks University. At the other end of the event another former Marlow athlete and Great Marlow School Pupil, and now Salford University student, Richard Bracey stroked his crew from a start number of 459 to 209 and an excellent 6th in the Senior 3 Colleges Event.

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1 November 1999

MARLOW WOMEN DOMINATE WEEKEND ROWING EVENTS

Marlow's women's rowing squad had a storming weekend's racing, dominating both the local Henley Scullers Head and the Janousek Fours Head in London.
On the Saturday, on the historic Henley reach, Marlow's women won the top women's event, the double sculls. Caroline Hodgson with Jo Chesney at stroke beat Andrews and Carey for Tideway Scullers RC in London. The Marlow crew came home to win by two seconds over the 3,000 meter course. This was an exceptional win against the Scullers combination, which had won the prestigious Pairs Head in London just 2 weeks before. Chesney gives any combination a great rhythm and Hodgson is a strong, powerful athlete who has made real progresses a sculler over the past year. Both athletes love to race and in windy conditions their determination to win saw them home. Coaches Phil Tinsley and Garry Philips were delighted with the performance and a further win came from Sue Mitchell in the Senior 3 Single sculls, her second win in as many weeks. Excellent performances from the novice quad saw them take second behind Thames RC's first crew while Caroline Hillerby took second in the novice single sculls in deteriorating weather conditions.
Following their success on the Saturday the women's squad headed for London on the Sunday and the Janousek Fours Head. This is a 4K time trial attended by many of the top crews in London prior to the main Fours Head of the River Race, which takes place in 3 weeks time. On Sunday extra spice was added to the women's events by the presence of both the Cambridge and Oxford University squad crews.
On the day the event was dominated not by the traditional Oxbridge rivals or the top local clubs but by Marlow's women.
In the Elite Coxless Fours Marlow crushed their category rivals Auriol Kensington by a full minute. They also overtook and beat every womens' quad in the event. Quads should be much faster than fours but the Marlow crew of stroke Kristel Osborn, Jo Chesney, Caroline Hodgson and bow Emma Stallwood simply blew the opposition away. The best of Oxbridge was left in their wake. At the Fours Head in three weeks time this crew will seek to defend the Senior Two Quad pennant won last year. This victory will show many of their rivals that the Marlow crew will be exceptionally difficult to beat.
Equally impressive was Marlow Senior 3 Coxed four. Sam Buckles, Alex Bedingfield, Liz Sparg, Louise Foers and cox Alayne Wilson powered over the course to win their division in 14 minutes 01 seconds. They beat not just all the Senior 3 opponents but also the senior 2 crews from Oxbridge. This crew also goes into the Fours Head. Last year equipment failure, just short of the finish, arguably cost the crew victory; this year they are looking for the win.
Also in winning mood in London was Marlow veteran mens' four. They saw off some high quality opposition including Tideway Scullers crew featuring ex-England Rugby international Andy Ripley.
Nick Gill stroked the Marlow boat and was ably backed up by John Gill, Rob Robertson, Peter Bayfield and coxswain Elaine Caldwell.
This was an excellent weekend for the Marlow club with five quality wins against quality opposition showing the club to be one of the strongest in the country as the winter season unfurls.

SEAN FARRELLY 01628 531 946

26 October 1999

TOP CLASS PERFORMANCES AT MARLOW LONG DISTANCE EVENT

Marlow Long Distance Sculls took place on Saturday in bright autumn sunshine. The two and a half-mile event runs from Cookham bridge via Bourne End railway bridge and finishes at the Castle house opposite Marlow Rugby ground. The event for single scullers takes place against the stream of the river and on Saturday a light but gusting head wind added to the difficulty on the course.
The event was dominated by strong performances from two visiting athletes. In the Men's Elite competition M Hunter of the Leander club at Henley dominated the field. Going off first he powered away from the field to be the only athlete to crack 20 minutes, his winning time of 19.28 giving him the overall title ahead of Thomas of Marlow who came home in second place clear ahead of Duffy of City of Bristol. Hunter nearly had a disaster 10 yards from the finish when he hit a willow tree; luckily he was able to avoid any major branches and stayed in his boat to complete the course and take the title.
In the Women's Elite event the country's top sculler Miriam Batten of Thames RC dominated the field, finishing 38 seconds ahead of fellow international Marlow's Helen Raine. Battens 5th place overall showed her ability to compete with the best of the men. Raine took the Senior One class and 13th overall.
Marlow's women were in a dominant mood with Caroline Hodgson, a novice last year, underlining her progress to win the womens' Senior Two title. In the novice event Armstrong took the title with Buckles and Hillaby, all of Marlow, following her home.
Marlow's other wins came from Mark Ruinet in the Mens' Senior Three event, his 6th place overall, despite a heavy cold, illustrated his improvement in a sculling boat. Hugo Reynolds and Blaine Castle of Marlow took second and third in this class. Andy Barron of Marlow as expected took the Junior mens' title, though the majority of the junior events went the way of Henley RC's excellent junior squad. R Friend won J 16 just ahead of J Smith-Willis who won J15. K Holland also of Henley won the womens' junior event. On the veteran front Harris of London RC was the first home with an excellent 8 th overall to take the Veteran B (37-42) title. The outstanding veteran was Sean Morris of Wallingford 11th overall and Veteran E winner (55-60).
The day was excellently organised and with over 120 competitors from across the south of England taking part. Following on the success of last year's event, the Marlow Long Distance Sculls is regaining its past reputation for being a top class winter long distance event.
Marlow crews now begin 5 weeks of intense preparation for the prestigious Fours Head in London on the last weekend in November. Marlow crews have won 8 events over the last three years at the final and most important head race of 1999. The event attracts over 400 crews from throughout the United Kingdom and Europe. Marlow will be determined to bring further trophies home in the final Fours Head of the Millennium.

SEAN FARRELLY 01628 531 946