16 August 1999


Marlow Rowing club followed up last weeks Victor Ludorum trophy at Maidenhead regatta by taking the over all top club spot at this weekends Oxford City Regatta for the second successive year.
Marlow dominated the Oxford regatta on a glorious sunny day with 8 wins. The superb 1000-meter course gives some of the countries best club crews a chance to race on the historic Thames stretch past the Oxford College boat houses.
In the men's top coxless fours event, a tough and fast Marlow/ Windsor Boys composite crew saw off Walton RC. An aggressive approach to steering by Walton failed to rattle the Marlow crew of Neil McCulloch, Tom Kean, Nathan White and Ben Smyth who came home a length up.
In the Coxed Fours event Marlow again came out on top in one of the best races of the day. James Fraser, Tom Kean, Richard Aplin, Miles Sharpe and cox Ashley Dean were down for most of the race. Marlow then turned on their considerable power in the final 250 meters and rowed through a despairing Oxford City crew in the last 20 strokes for an exhilarating win.
Aplin and Fraser went on to show their class in the top coxless pairs event, they dominated the field in the heats before disposing of Ross RC by an easily verdict in the final.
Marlow picked up a fine win in the Senior Three Eights event. The heats saw an easy win over Bath University. In the final the Marlow crew of cox Anita Springham, James Reid, Ross Muir, Richard Garrod, Darren Skuse, Ed Green, Garath Downing, Richard Bracey and Simon Huntley knew they had to get out of the blocks quickly against a much bigger Curlew/Globe RC crew. Marlow's blistering start saw them push out to a half length lead before an early push took them out to clear water, from there they moved away for a comfortable win.
The men's Senior Three Quads event was an all Marlow final, in which the Marlow/Windsor boys composite of Chris Mannerings, Adam Hunter, Ian McCaig and Ed baker triumphed over the senior Marlow crew by just over a length. Mannerings capped an excellent day by coming home with his second win in the junior single sculls beating Good also of Marlow in the final.
The final men's win came from Max Lowe and Mike Westcott came in the Men's Novice Double Sculls. This was a first win in sculling for these two former members of the clubs rowing squad.
The only women's win on the day came in the women's Senior Three Coxed Fours. Catrin Williams-Jones, Anita Springham, Anne Fairburn, Caroline Hillaby and cox Fay Beanland overcame crews from Ross, Falcon and Barnes Bridge Rowing clubs to take the trophy. In the final they pulled clear of their opposition form Barnes Bridge throughout the race to come home comfortable winners.
On Sunday Marlow athletes moved on to Abingdon Regatta, a 500 meter sprint event which effectively brings an end to the regatta season. Again in glorious sunshine the Marlow athletes turned in strong performances over the fast down stream course.
Marlow crews won all three of the senior Eights events. The men's crews won the Senior Three Eight's first deposing of Curlew/Globe who they had beaten the previous day at Oxford and then hanging on to defeat local rivals Maidenhead in the final. The Marlow crew of Nathan Kidley, John Marsh, Garath Downing, Nick Hoare, Simon Huntley, Richard Garrod, Ross Muir, stroke James Reid and cox Lizzy Walne took ¾ of a length lead off the start, but lost some of that was lost with some interesting steering. A good competitive race went Marlow's way after the umpire decided the crews though overlapping blades had failed to make contact with one another. 99abgdn_vic_ludorum_small
The Senior Two title also went Marlow's way with coach Sean Farrelly putting out a slightly changed line up. Ed Green, Darren Skuse and Richard Bracey came into the crew with Ashley Dean taking over coxing duties. In the final they faced Curlews top crew, a tall and experienced unit who have been racing together at senior two level for most of this season. The lighter Marlow crew took a narrow lead off the start and an early push took them to a ¼ of a length lead, with both crews at 38 strokes per minute. Curlew pushed hard but Marlow had the better rhythm and kept their cool to pull away as they crossed the line for an excellent win and the fastest time of the day.
In the Women's Eights final Marlow again made the Curlew clubs day go sour by beating their women's crew in the first round. The Marlow crew again coxed by Dean contained Tamsin Knill, Fay Beanland, Rachel, Bemrose, Nicole Skinner, Suzie Thompson, Elaine Caldwell, Andrea Hoskins and Claire Sherfield. In the other semi final Eton Excelsior had seen off an over confident Henley RC. The final was a close run affair with the lighter but technically neater Marlow crew holding off Eton's early efforts, before pulling away to win an exciting race by half a length.
The season also drew to a close for one of the clubs most successful athlete of 1999 James Walker. At Stourport regatta he took both the Elite men's and Elite mixed double sculls titles with T Dorrell and Debbie Bright respectively.
This has been a great month for Walker who along with Dorrell , M Baker of Leander and T Kelly of Exeter, took gold at this years National Championships The crew followed this with second place for Wales at the Home Countries Internationals and finally two bronze medals at the Commonwealth Regatta in Canada two weeks ago. Walker has turned in some excellent performances for the Marlow club in the last couple of years and is a talented and determined athlete. This season he has grabbed his chance to excel on the international stage and his two medals in Canada represent a major achievement. Walker now has the chance for a well-earned rest before the new winter season kicks off at the end of September.

SEAN FARRELLY 01628 531 946

9 August 1999

Marlow win Maidenhead Victor Ludorum

On Saturday Marlow RC let their hair down at Maidenhead Regatta. The annual event is a chance for the clubs athletes to take part in one of the most social and enjoyable of the post Henley regattas. Also at stake is the Wilkinson Sword, Victor Ludorum trophy for the most successful club at the regatta. The Marlow club was defending the trophy and was determined to keep their hands on the sword, by entering over 30 crews.
99maidenhead_vic_ludorum_smallOn an excellent day for fast racing, Marlow R C athletes won 14 events. The Maidenhead course is 500 metres upstream towards the historic Brunel Railway Bridge. The event is a sprint in rowing terms lasting around 1 ½ minutes. Though short in terms of distance, these type of events are a real test of the athletes technique and physical conditioning. 500 metre racing is all about keeping maximum power on at a high intensity, one mistake and your race is usually over.
Marlow's first win of the day came during the lunch interval when the mixed crew won the Invitation Eights event. Despite, Richard Aplin one of the Club's top athletes crabbing the first stroke of the start, the crew got their act back together to row through Henley RC to win by over a length. Men's wins followed for the Senior 1 Coxed Four of Miles Sharpe, Neil McCulloch, Mike Jennings, Mark Ruinet with cox Elaine Caldwell they overcame a Maidenhead/ Oxford Brooks composite by a length. Mike then won his second trophy of the day in the Senior 1 Coxless event this time a Marlow /Henley/ British Police composite crew including Ian Pressling, and Andy Rollo, saw off the challenge of National Westminster Bank RC, Henley and Staines RC to win the final by a clear length. The men's Senior Three coxed fours also went Marlow's way. The experienced Richard Aplin stroked the boat, which included Nick Hoare, with juniors Chris Mannerings, and Karl Craig. Coxswain Claire Sherfield did an excellent job on the day as they swept past their opposition winning all three rounds and the final with some ease. For Mannerings and Craig this was their novice win in a sweep oared boat, though both are experienced scullers. The only men's eights win of the day for Marlow came from the Senior Three Eight coxed by Anna Parsons the crew was stroked by McGill University student James Reid backed up by Ross Muir, Richard Garrod, Darran Skuse, Andrew Trigg-Hodge, Garath Downing, Richard Bracey and Mick Chamberlin. Marlow stormed off the start against an experienced crew from Quintin RC of London and continued to move away throughout the race drawing not just cheers but applause from spectators for their performance. In the men's sculling events Marlow produced several outstanding performances.
There was an anticipated win for Andy Barron who recently made his international debut for the Great Britain junior team and former junior international Ed Bedingfield. They won the Senior 1 Double Sculls by an easily verdict. Damian Weber of Claires Court School/Marlow RC had two excellent wins, in the Junior Sculls against fellow Marlow junior, Good and the Senior Three sculls in which he showed a clean pair of sculls to eight senior athletes. One of the most satisfying wins of the day was that of Roland Baker. He took the Novice single sculls event coming back to sculling, having been out of a boat for over a year following the debilitating effects of Glandular fever. The Marlow junior has been back in a boat for only a couple of weeks yet he sculled with real guts and determination to come through four rounds against senior opposition. The final was his toughest race in which he held off Hammond or Ardingly RC to win by just over a length.
In the womens' events, cox Alayne Wilson did her usual excellent job of steering her crew to victory in the womens' Senior 1 coxed fours event. Jo Chesney with Sam Buckles, Julie McCulloch and recent arrival at the club Anne Fairbairn, saw off good quality club opposition from Burway RC and Staines RC. Anne Fairbairn won her second trophy of the day in the senior 3 coxed fours with Anita Springham, Caroline Hillerby, Catrin Williams-Jones and cox Barbara McKee. The win was particularly satisfying for Barbara and Catrin as they are both former Maidenhead members and the Marlow crew beat the local Maidenhead crew in the final. Marlow really had an unfair advantage. They had 6 people in their crew as Barbara McKee is currently expecting her first baby. Perhaps the most expected win of the day was reserved for the Marlow womens' eight coxed by Alayne Wilson and stroked by Kristel Osborn. The crew included National Championship medallists Emma Stallwood, Liz Sparg, Lee Armstrong, Sam Buckles and Julie McCulloch, they were ably supported by Louise Foers and Caroline Hillerby. The women's final win came from Liz Sparg in the women's novice sculls. Liz is a recent arrival at the club from South Africa. In the past couple of months she has won a silver medal at the National Championships and a number of trophies at domestic regattas. A couple of weeks ago she got into a single sculling boat for the first time, and this weekend had her first win. She came through several rounds before winning the final by some 2 lengths from Twentyman of Barnes Bridge RC in London.

Sean Farrelly 01628 531 946

17 July 1999


On a fine sun drenched day by the Thames, Marlow crews prospered in taking three victories at Molesey Regatta.
Molesey is one of the great domestic sprint events of the summer season. This was the 132 nd year of the regatta and the silver embossed medals are much coveted. The races are two abreast down stream over an 850 metre course.
In the Senior Two Mens Coxed Fours, Marlow put out a new combination of stroke Ed Green, Mark Billingham Andrew Trigg-Hodge, Philip Rhoofthooft and cox Anna Parsons. In the first round they saw off an experienced crew from Curlew RC in London by 2½ lengths. Marlow having powered off the start simply pushed away. In the final Twickenham RC had come through to face Marlow, having seen off Burway and Thames RC. Again in the final the Marlow crew was quicker out of the blocks and came away with the victory by over a length. The Marlow crew possesses a good deal of power in the form of Trigg-Hodge and Green and abundant experience in the form of Rhoofthooft and Billingham.
In the Senior Four event the Marlow crew of James Reid, Garath Downing , Richard Bracey, Ross Muir and cox Sash Sutthakorn had a long day's racing in an event that attracted 9 crews. In the final they just lost out to a polished 1st and 3rd Trinity College Cambridge crew who pushed through Marlow in the last minute of the race. The same combination also reached the semi finals of the Senior Three event before losing out narrowly to the eventual winner, Molesey.
Marlow's other wins were from the junior girls. Helen Brewer won the J13 single sculls over the 850 meter course beating Bligh for Lady Eleanor Hollis School in the final. Helen then paired up with Great Marlow School pupil Rebecca Skinner to win the J15 double sculls event. In the first round they saw off local opposition from Molesey before beating a strong Weybridge ladies combination in the final.
All the athletes had an excellent day and showed how competitive Marlow crews are throughout the clubs ranks.
Marlow next domestic event will be Henley Town and Visitors regatta, which takes place next week.

Sean Farrelly 01628 531 946

21 June 1999


The men's senior 1 coxless fours final, at Marlow regatta, was an all Marlow affair this year. Marlow's two top crews contested the final having overcome top crews from across the country. The final was very close run, with the heavyweight combination's extra power seeing them through against lighter opposition.
The winning combination, was stroked by Richard Aplin with James Fraser, Chris Collerton and Andy Knee-Robinson. Chris Collerton, the crew's coach was forced to step in when regular crew member Mark Ruinet was taken ill. In the final they were pushed hard over the first part of the course before they stretched away to win by just over a length. Marlow's time of 4 min 57 seconds was just outside the fastest of the day and shows that both crews are on course to perform well at Henley Royal Regatta this year. The second four of Ian Pressling, Mark Lewis, Neil McCulloch and Tom Kean coached by Paul Franklin will be confident of progressing through Henley Qualifiers on Friday. The crew are a quick, experienced and gutsy combination whose hard work throughout the winter is now beginning to pay off.
Marlow Men's Eight has prequalified for The Thames Cup at Henley this year. This is the first time since 1996 that Marlow has been represented in this event. The crew has come on well over the past month and should be competitive when the regatta begins in earnest on Wednesday the 30th of June. The crew is cox Paul Shipman, Stroke Andy Kervell, New Zealander Steve Wills, Nick Smith, Ian Packer, Chris Richards, Simon Huntley, Miles Sharpe, and the elder statesman in the crew bow man Mark Billingham.
Junior coach Russell Peacock is delighted that his two top quads have both qualified for their event and the strength of the junior squad is illustrated by the possibility of a third crew also getting in via the qualifying process.
In the women's invitation eight's event Marlow will have a large presence in two crews representing Great Britain. Cath Bishop, Lisa Eyre, Gillian Lindsey and Sarah Winkless will represent Marlow in one boat and Alex Beever, Helen Raine and Sue Walker will fly the Marlow flag in the second Great Britain combination. The two Great Britain crews will be taking on National squad crews from the USA and Holland.
The clubs other prequalifying boat is the coxed four which was a semifinalists in the Britannia Cup last year. This is the crew that won the coxless event at Marlow Regatta at the weekend and which will again compete in the Britannia cup this year with cox Ashley Dean.
Club captain Paul Cox is delighted with what is already a record number of crews competing at Henley this year and with prospect of more coming through the qualifiers on Friday. Qualifying races begin at 4.50 PM and continue throughout the evening.

Sean Farrelly 01628 531 946