The Men’s 1st VIII claimed the national title at the British Rowing Senior Championships- held this weekend at Holme Pierrepont. They won the final with three seconds to spare over local rivals Leander. Molesey finished in third place, with an unprecedented three further Brookes crews rounding off the top 6.
Despite this being the national championships, this is the first race for most clubs this season, and the result demonstrated the strength in depth built over the last few years by Head Coach Henry Bailhache-Webb. The 3rd VIII, the highest ranked all-student crew, claimed the university pennant over the 4th VIII- the only two crews in this category to make the final.
The Men’s squad had raced the day before, fielding six coxless fours which featured the same athletes featuring in Sunday’s eights races. With strong placings across the board, the four of Morgan Bolding, Rory Gibbs, Sam Nunn and Henry Swarbrick picked up a bronze medal against strong crews from Oxford and Cambridge Universities.
The women’s squad began the weekend with Alex Styles taking the win in the U23 LW2x category on Saturday, alongside partner Flo Pickles. They finished 4th in the Open Doubles final- making them the fastest crew in the event without senior international athletes.
On Sunday, they fielded four eights for the first time ever- the largest entry from any club, and finished 6th in the A final in addition to winning the B final. This is the first time the club has fielded four women’s eights in the event- showing how the women’s programme is developing year-on-year.
The squad return to Cholsey to continue preparations for the GB Rowing 1st Assessment, which takes place from 10-11 November.
Photos Courtesy of AllMarkOne and WEROW / Angus Thomas