National Schools Regatta
Claires Court Boat Club had a large number of crews competing at the National Schools’ Regatta, held at Dorney Lake from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 May.
On the first day of competition, the school had three coxed quads competing in the J14 (Year 9) time trial as well as two coxed quads in the J15 (Year 10).
The J15s raced well in a field of 61 quads from across the country, but were unfortunate to miss qualification through to the finals later that day. However of the three crews entered in the J14, the A crew made it into the B Final where they came fifth, finishing the day ranked 11th in a field of over 50 crews from across the country. Tom Jost, Head of Rowing, was pleased with the crew’s efforts and said, “This is a very encouraging performance from a young squad”.
On Saturday, the school had two Championship Quads (Ch4x) and one school coxed four (Sch 4+) entered for the day’s racing. In the time trial, all crews made it through to the C/D Finals later in the day. The A quad were disappointed to miss the A/B Finals by less than a second. They made amends for this later in the day, winning the C Final convincingly. The coxed four raced really well in the C Final and managed to move up a few ranks from their time trial earlier in the day. Tom said, “This was a really encouraging day for these lads and they will have learnt a lot for the future.”
On Sunday, the final day of racing Alex competed in the Championship single event. Alex raced really well and made it through to the D Final. In the D Final he raced well and in a very tough field managed to move up the ranks from his time trial earlier in the day.
Sunday was also the day two CCBC J16 quads raced in a field of 26 quads from across the country. Both quads had storming time trials with the A crew coming away with second overall and the B quad ranking seventh, both making it through to the A/B Semi Final. The crews were drawn in the same semi-final and to make it to the final, both need to finish in the top three. Rising to the challenge in such a tight field, the B crew knew that to make the A Final they need to outdo the crew that beat them in the time trial. At half-way the boys were in fourth place but by stepping up a gear they managed to move themselves into a convincing qualification position. Tom Jost commented on the boys huge achievement saying, “This B crew, made up of Year 11s - Sam, Charlie, Nathan and James have put themselves up there with the top A crews in the country and by far and away as the top J16 B quad in Great Britain.”
The A crew of Jake, Leo, Alec and Joe also raced well and took control of the semi early on, putting them through to what was expected to be an exciting final.
The A Final was made up of a very strong field from Tideway Scullers, Henley, Clydesdale RC, Sir William Borlase and two crews from Claires Court. The crew from Henley were the winners of the other semi and had posted a fast time so Claires Court knew that they were up against it. Henley took the early lead and the Claires Court A crew tried to go with them. With 500m to go the boys found themselves with overlap but unfortunately for them Henley had one last gear and was able to hold them off. It was silver for the Claires Court top boat and the B crew did everything they could and came away with a very close sixth place. Tom summed up the day by saying, “To have two crews in the A Final is such a huge achievement for a setup of our size.”