ST NEOTS Rowing Club’s veteran rowers put in an outstanding performance to win the Head of the River Race on the Tideway course in London.

Rowing

ST NEOTS Rowing Club's veteran rowers put in an outstanding performance to win the Head of the River Race on the Tideway course in London.

The crew beat competition from more than 200 other boats to record the fastest time in their class in Saturday's race.

Graham Mailer, Clive Emmerson, Kevin Sadler and Mick Staddon covered the four-and-a-quarter mile course between Mortlake and Putney – the reverse University Boat Race course – in 21mins 42secs.

Coxed by Charmian Hardwicke in the Masters C category, the St Neots crew established a good rhythm from the start and won by a clear 15 seconds.

St Neots were also represented in the Women's Four, where the crew of Ali Brown, Mia Hartwell, Sam Lawrence and Robyn Staddon, coxed by Sarah Porteus, put in a competitive showing to ease over the line in 24mins 26secs.

Club captain Hartwell congratulated her team-mates for a memorable day's rowing.

“All in all it was a great day for St Neots, with the men on top form. It was the first time that the ladies had been to the Tideway so it was an experience in itself.”

Huntingdon Boat Club also sent a veteran four to participate, picking up a creditable 44th place overall in their category.

The crew of Jon Deacon, Trevor Scales, Iain Rickerby and Andy Wood flew the club's flag after triumphing in their own club qualification event, and crossed the line in 21mins 5secs.

Captain Iain Rickerby said: “Rowing on the University Boat Race course is always a challenge and the crew rose to that with a solid performance. We were faster than many crews that regularly row on the Thames.

“This result is a great indicator of progress for the crew, who have put in a lot of hours training in the short time we have been together and acts as a good base for the forthcoming head season, culminating in the eights Head of the River over the same course in April 2011.”