Wye scullers make championship finals
THE competition was intense at the UK’s National Schools’ Regatta on the London 2012 Olympic lake, as two Wye stars just missed out on medals at the weekend.
Ross RC products Yasmin Howe and Ella Bardsley-Taylor were racing in the championhsip girls’ quadruple sculls and single sculls respectively.
Yasmin’s Wycliffe quad scull raced home sixth in the opening 25-boat 2k time trial on Dorney Lake, finishing in six minutes 41 seconds.
That put them into one of the eight-boat semi-finals, where they went through half-way in second just behind Henley Royal champions Shiplake.
Maidenhead’s Claire’s Court squeezed past in the third quarter, but the Wycliffe boat had plenty in hand to take one of the four qualifying slots for the A final, finishing third 2.5L behind winners Shiplake, 1.75L behind Claire’s Court and 2L ahead of Warrington.
And they gave it everything in the final to make the podium, hitting the 500m mark in second behind Marlow.
Wycliffe found themselves fifth at half-way, but only 1/2L off second.
And they attacked again in the final quarter catching Oxford’s Headington right on the line for fourth, with that elusive podium spot just 3/4L out of reach, with Marlow in gold 2.5L up, Shiplake second and Claire’s Court third.
Hartpury College-based Ella, who placed seventh in the European U19 championships in the double sculls in Italy the week before, faced a giant 42-strong field in the girls’ championship singles.
She raced home fifth in the opening time-trial to make the semi-finals.
And determined to make the final she led the eight-boat qualifier through 500m before Irish powerhouse Ellie-Kate Hutchinson surged past to lead at half-way followed by Rob Roy’s Lara Grant.
Ella then held third through to the line to make it through just a length ahead of Marlow’s Isabel Kelland-Shorthose.
She bravely went out hard again in the final to reach 500m in second with Irish favourite Hutchinson back in fifth.
Ella was fourth at half-way and was only passed by the Irish sculler in the third quarter as the race came to the boil.
And Hutchinson’s stunning last 500m pulled her through to grab victory by just 0.14secs from Ella’s GB doubles partner Megan Knight, with the Hartpury sculler coming home fifth in the supercharged race.
All eyes now turn to Henley, for the Women’s Regatta in mid-June and Henley Royal at the end of the month.
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