Four Nottingham rowers feature at GB final trials


Saturday, 10 May 2014 16:31 Written by Administrator


Saturday 19th April saw four high performance scullers from Nottingham Rowing Club invited to race in the GB Team Final Trials. The regatta for men and women was held on the Redgrave Pinsent Rowing Lake at Caversham, over 2000M. 172 athletes attended from clubs countrywide.

The field comprised all the top athletes who have made the grade in the earlier Long Distance Trials from 2013. These always include former Olympic, Senior and U23 World Championships team members, so previous Gold Medallists were racing of course to prove themselves again.  Therefore the completion is intense, and GB Performance Director Sir David Tanner made sure to congratulate all contenders at the outset, for achieving the necessary quality to justify the invitation in its own right, whatever the outcome of the day might be.

Nikki Spencer, 26,  ranked 12th in the Lightweight Women’s category, and her  partner Yasmin Marks, 21, finished 9th U23, (overall ranking16th ).

In the Open Weight Women’s category, Laura Wheeler, 30, (who receives lottery funding and currently trains on the Thames) ranked 13th, while the youngest sculler Katie Bartlett, 20, finished 4th  U23, (overall ranking 17th). Katie  is sponsored by Insideland Ltd of Nottingham.

Conditions were very tough indeed, with a strong headwind and choppy waves requiring a high level of technical competence as well as sheer gritty determination in the athletes. From these results, GB Selectors next week will assess provisional crew formations for GB representation at the coming season’s international regattas, in the run up to the 2014 World Championships.  

For all these athletes the training continues, both at Holme Pierrepont here and at Caversham when called for. There are no guarantees of selection at this stage, and those that stay the course will find the process hotting up when they meet worldwide competitors at each Regatta they attend. Therefore the year-round coaching support, and modest financial backing available from Nottingham Rowing Club, plus commercial sponsorship, are essential to our athletes in their quest for Team Selection, and ultimately, possibly the medals podium.