The end of February saw the senior boys hop over the channel to Belgium and compete in the Brugge Boat Race whilst the J14 boys and J15 girls raced at Avon County Spring Head. Lots of new faces represented Pangbourne College with encouraging wins from the younger members of the boat club as well as the sixth form boys in Belgium testing themselves alongside international crews.
Avon County Spring Head
After learning how to row only 2 months ago, the J14 boys started their season on a high with a win as well as providing some competitive inter-squad results. Racing in two octuples, each boat also split into two coxed quads and had some close results – bow four (Shields) claiming bragging rights over stern four (Hyde) by a mere tenth of a second! Combining together to form the an octuple, the boys had a solid race and came second, beating Monmouth Comprehensive School by a huge 18 seconds! However it was Pearson and Hessian’s quads teaming up together that made the winning combination, coming 1st in J14 8x+. Congratulations to the 8 boys and Louis Winter who coxed them!
Not to be outdone, the J15 girls raced their coxed quad twice, winning both events! The girls first race of the day was a women’s novice event – open to all beginners including adults. Racing alongside crews who were older than them certainly did not phase the girls and they won the event by a whopping 1 minute and 31 seconds!! In the afternoon division, racing in their age category, the girls showed their endurance by winning once again and beating a strong crew from City of Bristol. Congratulations!
A big well done to both squads and thank you to all the parents and friends who came to support. Also to the proud coaches, Mrs Shindler, Mr Tao and Elko!
Brugge Boat Race
Leaving very early on Saturday morning, the sixth form boys timed their arrival into Belgium perfectly, with just some time spare to rig the 8 and get to the start line. No faffing here! After 5 hours of travelling and racing in student 8s, the boys stretched out their legs and took the event in style – winning it by over 2 minutes! Nice job!
Sunday’s racing saw the boys compete in different combinations and boats. For the morning division, the eight was split into a quad and coxless four. The quad, racing in open 4x, had an eventful row with some challenging overtaking and came third in a strong field with senior crews from Brugge and Ghent taking the higher positions. The 4- had a strong row in junior coxless fours and won the event by 27 seconds! After a quick rest and bite to eat, the boys were back again and this time raced in two junior doubles and a junior pair. The 15k of intense racing over the weekend took its toll but the boys still recorded solid performances in both of the events, coming in second (2x & 2-) and third (2x).
A positive weekend with all of the boats finishing in the top 3 in their category as well as being the highest placed British crew in every event entered. Thank you to Mr Woodcock and Alison for driving and a big well done to the 9 boys, representing Pangbourne College abroad.