Rowers move up to Head of the River

FOLLOWING local successes for St Neots Rowing Club at regional meets, the squad moved to the Thames for the Henley Head of the River Race. And the club were left celebrating after Junior sculler Sam Howell, 15, followed up his recent wins at St Neots and

FOLLOWING local successes for St Neots Rowing Club at regional meets, the squad moved to the Thames for the Henley Head of the River Race.

And the club were left celebrating after Junior sculler Sam Howell, 15, followed up his recent wins at St Neots and Bedford with victory in both the single and double scull events.

The gruelling upstream race is contested over 3000m but Howell tore through the field in the Junior 15 single scull event, winning by a massive 46 seconds from a field of 44 competitors.

In the double sculls Howell teamed up with James Fox of Peterborough and stepped up an age group to race in the Junior 16 event, making some tricky passes to win the race by a clear 40 seconds.


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The pair's time of 11.52 was the fastest of the day - even outpacing the Junior 18 event winners. Howell now prepares for his first attempt at gaining recognition with Great Britain at Junior trials this weekend.

Also racing in the Junior 15 sculls for the club was newcomer Alex Davis who claimed a creditable 15th position in his first major race.

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Club members Joanna Fitzsimons and Natalie Bream will also be taking part in the GB Trials and used the Henley event as a warm up.

In the single sculls Fitzsimons finished third in the Junior 18 event and Bream finished fifth in the Junior 16 event while the pair won the Junior 18 doubles event.

Also in the doubles events were Maddie Lemin and Rachael Crockford in the Junior category where they finished fourth while Lauren Thompson and Megan Conway managed a third place in the Junior 16 event.

New pairing Bethany Astell and Polly Hetherington performed well to clinch victory in the Junior 15 event.

St Neots Rowing Club head coach Martyn Rooney said: "It was a very successful day for the club, and for Sam [Howell] in particular.

"He has a lot of potential and travels for GB trials on Saturday - they are the first step on a very long road for national selection and we wish him well.

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