WYE rowing star Violet Holbrow-Brooksbank will go for gold on the Paris Olympic lake tomorrow morning (Sat, August 5) after her GB girls' four won their heat at the World Rowing U19 Championships.
The Monmouth Comprehensive and Ross Rowing Club graduate has been rewarded for a brilliant season of national success with her Wycliffe squad with a place in the GB junior team this week.
The 17-year-old, who made her international bow racing for Wales last year in the Home Countries Regatta at London’s Docklands, is joined by Martha Shepherd from Hinksey Sculling School, Henley RC’s Rhiannon Luke - daughter of Olympic medallist Miriam Luke and Welsh GB cap Dave Luke – and Madeleine Greenstock of Surbiton High School.
In their opening heat, they overhauled early pacesetters Spain in the second 500m and then raced clear to finish nearly 2L up on second-placed Australia, with Spain another length back in third followed by Canada and China.
That put them straight into the final, alongside the other heat winners Italy, with the rest forced to fight it out in the second chance repechages for the four other places.
It’s been an incredible year for the teenager, who helped her Wycliffe Rowing squad win the championship girls’ 8s in the national Schools Head in London in March, and also won the U17 junior Sculling Head quadruple sculls and Junior Sculling Regatta U17 doubles before going on to help win the Henley Women’s Regatta junior girls’ quad sculls in June.
And the world championship final is being live-screened at 11.05am tomorrow (Sat, Aug 5) on the World Rowing website.
Meanwhile, Monmouth Rowing club are also paying tribute to a late club stalwart tomorrow, when the boathouse is officially named “The John Hartland Boathouse”.
John, who was also the rowing master at Monmouth School, was club chairman and regatta secretary, as well as Wales team manager.
The 1979 West of England Challenge Vase-winning crew he coached of his son Nick Hartland, Jim Kelly, Robin Williams and Mike Partridge, will be reuniting for the unveiling of a memorial board at a BBQ in the clubhouse from noon.
The event will also see a ‘bon voyage’ to club member Eric Froggatt, who is off to circumnavigate the globe in the Clipper Round The world Race race, which will take a full year.
Members and former members are invited to attend the unveiling.