Shanklin had six rowers representing their school at the regional inter schools competition in Eastleigh, with some outstanding performances. All six rowers were representing Sandown Bay Academy and went into the competition with high expectations.
The first Shanklin rower to race was Joe Robertson, racing across four minutes. He had won in the year above his own in the previous Island competition and was very hopeful, but also knew that fellow school team mate, Elys Norman had come second nationally in 2012 and 2013. Joe hit it hard out of the starting blocks and took an immediate lead. Halfway into the race, he was over ten metres ahead and needed to hold on to his blistering pace. In the final minute, Elys was closing the gap, and with thirty seconds to go, it was neck and neck, and agonising finished saw Joe miss out by one metre! Extremely unlucky, but still and outstanding performance to take silver.
The next Shanklin rowers were Hannah Cusworth and Amber de Landro, racing across five minutes. Both were hoping to medal and knew they were capable of doing so. They raced in separate heats, with Amber racing very well in hers to win easily, with little competition to drive her on, she was a little off her personal best. Hannah had a tough heat, and rowed extremely well, giving nothing left at the end, to take second in her heat. In the final standings, Amber was placed third, with Hannah sixth, in a very competitive event.Shortly after this event was Luke Wedderkops race, also across five minutes. Luke, despite being a very good rower, has not been training on an ergo recently and his result was therefore all the more impressive! With a very powerful start, Luke raced into a leading position. He faced an excellent rower in his race, which he was fighting for the lead throughout the race with. In the final stages Luke could not quite match his rivals pace, and took an excellent and well deserved second place. The heat was however so fast in comparison to the others that Luke held onto second place. Even more impressive, considering his lack of preparation for the event!
Shanklin's final two rowers were in the Year 11 boys event, racing across six minutes. Matthew Miselbach and Joe Murray had finished 4th and 12th respectively at the National Indoors last year and were therefore confident they could medal at this competition. They were both in the same heat and faced some stiff competition from some other competitors. The race had an intense start, with Matt and Joe hitting it hard from the off. Matt started to drive on from the rest of the pack, with Joe fighting for second with a rower who rowed for Southampton ARC. By the midway point, Matt had unleashed a comfortable lead whilst Joe still had his eyes firmly set on second place. In the final stages, Matt powered to the finish with Joe still having to give everything in order to try and get hold of second. At the end of the race, Matt had won by forty metres, with Joe missing out on second by only four metres! Once again, and agonizing result, but not one to be sniffed at by any means.
These excellent results meant that Shanklin sent six rowers and returned with five medals, one gold, two silver and two bronze. This is an excellent result, especially when looking at the competition that they all faced. These results, once again, reflect the excellent training being put in by the rowers at the club, and were are indeed, seeing some great returns!
The next competition is the big one, the National Junior Indoor Rowing Championship (NJIRC) at Lea Valley Sports Centre in Enfield, London on the 21st of March, where all Shanklins juniors will be racing.