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Jersey rowers strike gold at British Offshore Championships

Jersey rowers strike gold at British Offshore Championships

Monday 27 June 2022

Jersey rowers strike gold at British Offshore Championships

Monday 27 June 2022


Jersey Rowing Club struck gold at the British Rowing Offshore Championships at Saundersfoot in Wales this weekend.

The JRC finished on top of the medals table with three golds, one silver, two bronze and one silver in the Beach Sprint Finals, which were held the following day.

In difficult conditions in Friday’s heats and Saturday’s finals, Jersey rowers performed consistently well.

Taking gold first was Des Nevitt, who was competing in the men’s doubles with Charles Cousins, who rowed for Team GB at the London and Rio Olympics. The pair covered the windy and choppy 4 km in 21:04:20.

Said Nevitt afterwards: “Charles and I had a strong start in Saturday’s final, even with force four winds, gusting five. 

Des Nevitt Charles Cousins Jersey Rowing Club.jpg

Pictured: Gold-medal-winning men's doubles crew Des Nevitt and Charles Cousins.

“We had only rowed together four times before Friday’s heats and we were happy to qualify first against very experienced ex-world champion Peter Berg and his partner. We then won the next-day final comfortably. 

“Charles and I wanted to challenge ourselves with strong competition to see how we compared, and to prep ourselves for the rest of the year, heading towards the World Championships in October. 

“A lot of positives came out from the weekend and the challenge for us from now till the Worlds will be training together, as I live in Jersey and Charles lives near Cardiff.”

Jersey’s men’s and women’s masters’ quad crews showed that age is no barrier by taking gold, silver and bronze.

John Searson, Giles Adu, Paul Le Gros and Mark Hill, coxed by Tim Rogers, won the men’s masters in 22:38:10.

Mick Mayo, Rob Cassin, Lee Wells and Rick Rouille, coxed by Ian Blandin, took silver, finishing less than a minute behind in 23:31:90.

Mens quad Jersey Rowing Club.jpg

Pictured: Jersey Rowing Club's men's masters gold medalists Paul Le Gros, John Searson, Mark Hill, Giles Adu and cox Tim Rogers.

Paul Bradbury, Carl Clinton, Alan Butel and Bob Salkeld, coxed by Anne Thomson, narrowing missed out on bronze despite being hit by the third-placed boat at a buoy, which spun the Jersey crew around. 

Fighting back, they finished just five seconds off the podium.

Searson said of Saturday’s final: “Conditions were very challenging with squally winds and three-foot waves on the exposed downwind leg.  

“These conditions tipped the balance of power away from the river rowers to coastal rowers and the Jersey crews, who have trained in these conditions.

“Mick Mayo’s JRC masters’ crew pushed us all the way around the course and we only managed to break away from their challenge on the final upwind leg of the course where the power of our heavier crew came into play.”

In the women’s masters, Rosemary Satchwell, Anna Tredant, Sue Clinton and Frankie Le Quelenec, coxed by Tim Rogers, took gold in 26:03:40.

Not far behind, Alison Smithurst, Tina Tidy, Christine du Heaume and Helene Monpetit, coxed by Sue Cubbon, were bronze medalists after 28:32:00 of rowing.

Sue Clinton, captain of the gold-winning women’s master’s crew said: ‘Our cox, Tim Rogers, pushed us hard all the way and the girls just kept responding. 

“It was a superb team effort and having the constant commentary from Tim, warning of waves of the next turn, kept us motivated all the way.”

Paul Coutanche took bronze in the men’s singles final in 26:32:00.

Saturday wasn’t the only day of medals for Jersey. On Sunday, in the British Beach Sprint Finals, Carey Olsen-sponsored Nevitt and Laima Pačekajutė teamed up to take silver in the mixed pairs, only narrowing losing out to Cousins and gold-medal-winning Olympian and world-number-one-ranked Helen Glover.

Pačekajutė said: “We went in with minimal expectations and that settled us to do the best we could. 

“We smashed the qualifiers and set the fastest time. We then rowed well in the semi-finals to get to the finals and finished with the silver medal, which we are very happy with. 

“A big thanks to Carey Olsen, among others, for helping us to get here.”

JRC Vice-Captain Briggs, who led the Jersey team, said: “Jersey Rowing Club have had the largest contingent here at the British Championships, and have backed that up by topping the medal table and having by far the most vociferous support too!

Quad_Highvern.jpg

Pictured: the Highvern women's quad of Connie Huelin, Sarah Earles and Abbi and Emma Syvret, with cox Susan Huelin, practising in Wales.

“Everyone here has trained incredibly hard and, regardless of medals or otherwise, should be very proud of their achievements this weekend.  

“The club is going from strength to strength and I am sure we'll see many of these athletes back at future international events, and I know we would all like to thank those who travelled with us just to provide support and assistance. 

“The wider club community has made the event a huge success, with long-standing helper Gerald Howe travelling all the way here to boat handle on his 68th birthday!  

“It's been a fantastic team to be a part of, and we look forward to our next major club outing.”

The JRC trip to Saundersfoot was supported by Jersey Sport. The club would also like to thank Ian Blandin, Carl Clinton, Rick Rouille and everyone who supported the rowers before and over the weekend, especially getting in and out of their boats for the beach sprints.

Pictured top: Women's masters gold medalists Frankie Le Quelenec, Sue Clinton, Anna Tredant, Rosemary Satchwell and cox Tim Rogers.

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