Dover Rowing Club were in winning action in the 66th South Coast Championships held at Folkestone Rowing Club over a straight 2km course running from Princes Parade car park to Sandgate Castle. The event is the coming together of three divisions of coastal rowing, featuring 38 clubs from Kent to Cornwall. Conditions were generally good, with sections of the course becoming rough through the day.
The Men’s Open Junior / Senior Four crew of Cameron Mackintosh, Will Coleman, Sebastian Steele, Jasper Mallet was coxed by Ella Cook. The nature of the race timings had meant that Dover needed to deploy more coxes than normal and this was her first time coxing a race. Dover had a great start and were half a length up on Herne Bay within a few hundred metres. With Herne Bay’s bowman level with Mallet in the stroke seat, the crews charged down the course. As they passed the Club House, Herne Bay moved up the side of Dover’s boat but Dover reacted and regained their half a length lead. This effectively broke Herne Bay and allowed Dover to secure the win at the line.
In the Women’s Invitation Novice Fours, Dover’s crew of Janice Bradford, Nikki Leggatt, Holly Hannington, Emily Harvey coxed by Coleman had a strong start and were in the mix with the leading crews. The race developed into a battle between Dover and Eastbourne with Dover taking the lead through the middle 1000m. From the shore it appeared a tight race coming past the club house with Dover a little up. As the last 20 strokes were laid down Dover pulled clear by over a length.
The Boys U14 Quad Sculls featuring Oliver White, Henry Cox, Sonny Hart, Artie Everington-Nee and coxed by Maria West-Burrows, raced over a 1km course. There was a tight start with all crews starting well. Dover moved into second as the race progressed but were unable to close down the leaders, finishing as runners up in the event. The result showed the hard work that the young boys have been putting in.
Ella Cook was a late call up to row with Plymouth in the Girls U16 Quad Sculls and adjusting to a new crew was challenging. They came home second in the heat and fifth in the final.
The Boys U16 Quad Sculls of Josh Grassby, Ben Fagg, Bo Corby, Beau Everington-Nee coxed by Mallet raced in heat 1. The crew unfortunately ‘caught a crab’ which damaged the rigger during the race. Despite the impact of this damage they battled on and came home an impressive fifth. In heat 2, Dover’s Tom Gold rowed with a Southsea crew who just missed out on the final coming home in fourth.
In the Women’s Open Junior Fours heat 1, Freya Emmerson, Leggatt, Hannington, Harvey coxed by first time cox Beau Everington-Nee got a good start and moved into a qualifying place through the mid section of the race. As they passed the club house, they were comfortably second securing a finals place.
In heat 2, Marie Cockerell, Emma Mansell, West-Burrows, Emmeline McArdle coxed by Sara Scrivens struggled to break into the qualifying places. Mansell had been a late replacement due to illness in the regular crew. Despite fighting hard the crew came home in fifth.
The Woman’s Junior final came straight after the Novice win with Leggatt, Hannington and Harvey coming to shore to swap Emmerson into the boat before rowing to the start, with Coleman coxing. Although the less than ideal timing led to a greater challenge for the crew, they pushed hard through the first half of the race. They were unable to challenge at the finish, coming home sixth.
The Masters Open 40+ Fours of Jon Cook, Bradford, Heather Corby, Nick Bailey coxed by Coleman found their final challenging. Off the pace they had fallen to sixth place at the halfway point and could not improve their position at the line.
Dover’s excellent performance left them second in the regatta’s overall aggregate behind Southampton Coalporters.
The Club would like to thank Dover’s Jacky Silk, the Event Secretary, who had many late nights helping to organise the event with Folkestone RC and the SCC event committee and all the umpires and officials that made the event possible.