Last weekend was an important weekend but not just because it was the Queen’s Jubilee, it was the Seniors’ and Masters’ National Championship in sprints, at the National Watersport Centre in Nottingham.
We had 27 paddlers representing Reading Canoe Club with 88 entries, more than any other clubs at this event!
Conditions were less than ideal, even though the tail wind seemed like a great addition to the races to start with; it soon turned out to be making things rather tricky. There were so many capsizes during the weekend, the rescue boats didn’t know where to go first.
Saturday afternoon they even had to cancel the junior D class races due to the gusty wind!
Our Masters were performing outstandingly at their National Championship, they were getting medals faster than we could count:
Kev Smith achieved Silver in his K1 on 200, 500 and 1000m and took Gold medal in his K2 with Jan Raciborski.
Edgar Boehm took Gold in his 500m K1 (O44) and Silver in his 1000m K1.
Edgar and Laurence teamed up for the O34s K2 and won their race on 500m.
Laurence Plant raced in the O34 category and won every single race he did! 200, 500 and 1000m K1s, all gold !
I also got a in my 500m K1 just simply for paddling down the course, all by myself. it was… character building.
We also had a few Seniors representing us: Georgia F, Alex T, Miklos Jr and our new recruit, Joe Richards who transferred over to us from Norwich.
Our only C1 paddler, Anna was busy too, she was getting medals in every race she did and even won the 5k C1 race in those horrible conditions.
Massive well done to all our juniors for their determination and resilience paddling in those horrible conditions; they did so well tackling the massive waves!
Hanna Nagy smashed the Intermediate Girls category by coming 1st and Ruth Shephard came in 3rd in the same race, 500m K1.
Alice Beeson won her K2 race in Girls D with her partner Poppy from Richmond CC, she also came 2nd in K1 on 500m and 3rd on 200m.
Our Girls Cs and Ds put on a flawless performance in their K4 race and took the win. Well done Tilla, Isabelle, Alice and Charlotte, you made it look so easy even when conditions were so bad.
Hanna was also in a K4 with paddlers from other clubs and came 2nd.
Tilla did very well in her K1 races too in Girls C, she won her K1 1000m and came 3rd on 500m. Charlotte also did very well in Girls C and was flexing her muscles so much, she even snapped her paddle!
Marcell Nagy and Tyler Kinder raced hard in Boys D: Tyler came 2nd on 500 K1 and Marcell was 3rd. The two boys also came 3rd in their K2 on 1000m.
We had strong performances from Annabel Hutchinson in Girls B and from James Nelson in Boys B; James even joined in with the Men’s Open 5km race at the end of the day on Saturday, in horrificly windy conditions.
Little Bean was our only Lightning paddler this time and he tackled his races with great determination. He came 4th in the K2 race and won the K4 Rocket race with paddlers from other clubs.
It certainly was a very successful and windy weekend. Well done to all our paddlers.
May half term, Reading Canoe Club was delighted to run the annual Taster Sessions as part of the Children’s Festival. These give children between the ages of 9 to 16 the opportunity to try out kayaking – both in flatwater marathon boats and also in slalom boats.
We were pleased to welcome well over 80 children to the club to sample our sport. A very big thank you to all those who helped at them this year – we couldn’t have done it without you.
Big thanks to our lead coaches Seumas, Emily and Balint, our land helpers Kerstin, Nicola, Lisa B and Viktoria and all our support coaches – Trevor, Keith, Timi, Oli, Aidan, Tia, Tilla, Marcell, Hanna, Bob, Charlotte and Alice.
I really want to say a huge thank you to everyone who travelled to Peterborough for the Short Course Nationals!!! It was amazing to see so many Reading vests on the water and even more Reading people on the bank, volunteering and supporting. Results wise we all had a fantastic day with an almost uncountable number of podiums.
With 10 juniors racing, we had more juniors on the water than any other club (jointly with Falcon) which is a massive achievement and a credit to all of you.
Our senior and Veteran paddlers – six of them – had a slightly smaller representation but my they delivered! Every single one of them stood on the podium at the end of the day!!!
Special congratualtions to our National Champions this year:
2022 must have been the sunniest DW to have taken place – a recompense perhaps for the two years that the event has had to be cancelled.
It was great to see some Reading CC members competing, and with great results. Congratulations to Duncan for coming 3rd in K1, Damon White for 3rd in C1, plus Peter Skinner paddling K2 in junior/vet with Marc (LTC) – they came 1st.
Alex Lane completed the course K2 with her mum, as did Nick King with Ruth, who is partially sighted, so Nick was navigating from the back.
Great success for the paddlers and their dedicated support crews.
The 2022 sprint season was off to a smashing start with the April Nottingham regatta, despite the windy conditions on Saturday. Reading Canoe Club had the most entries out of all the clubs – 33 RCC competitors with a total of 98 entries.
There were so many great results achieved by our paddlers that I am only going to highlight the top three A final results:
Harry and his K2 partner Gabriel (FOX) came 2nd in Boys U18/16 K2 500m.
Finlay also came second with his K4 on 500m in Boys U18/16.
Oli was on fire in Boys U14, he was 3rd in K1 200m, 2nd in K1 500m, 3rd with Marcell on K2 1000m.
Our U14 Boys (Oli, Marcell, Bob and Tom from ROY) also won the K4 500m event.
The girls were doing a fantastic job too. In the U16 Girls, Annabel came 3rd in K1 200m, 2nd in K1 500m and 2nd in K1 1000m. She also came 3rd in U18/16 Girls with her K2 partner Mollie (DEV).
Annabel and Mollie also did a K4 with our Georgia B and her K2 partner Iona (ESK) and they came 2nd in U18/16 Girls.
Our younger girls were working hard too: Alice & Charlotte came 2nd in K2 500m in U14 Girls and Hanna was 3rd in the same race with her K2 partner, Daisie (DEV).
It wasn’t just the juniors who were getting great results, our Masters were making us proud too:
Balint and Julian came 3rd in K2 500m in Men D+Masters C/D
In Men B+Masters A/B, Edgar was 3rd in K1 1000m and Laurence was also 3rd in K1 500m.
Laurence and Edgar won their K2 500m race.
It was lovely to see coach Freddie race too. He was delighted to join Edgar, Laurence and Jeremy in a K4 on 1000m and they won their race.
Our only C1 paddler, Anna, came 2nd in 500m and 1st on 5000m; she also won the 500m C2 with her partner.
We had a fantastic weekend. Congratulations to the whole team but especially to Oli, Jacob and Charlotte for their promotions.
Saturday, in late January, the club played host to 60 junior paddlers taking part in a Junior Development Squad training day. These juniors came from over 12 clubs, 13 paddlers from Reading Canoe Club itself.
It was specifically a crew day, with two K4 sessions (getting 15 K4s together, from all over the country, was quite some task). The first session focused on skill development in same-ability crews; the second mixed up crews, both gender and ability, and practised wash-hanging skills.
It was terrific to have RCC’s 2019 Junior World Champion sprinter, Dan Atkins, there to give a talk about motivation.
A thoroughly enjoyable and productive day for juniors, tailored to have minimal impact on club activities. Big shout out to the club for supporting this event and allowing it to take place there.
RCC slalom paddlers headed up to Stafford and Stone canoe club for the winter mini-series. Despite the chilly weather, Peter, Emily, George, Andy N and Craig all enjoyed an excellent competition.
A handicap system meant everyone was in with a chance of the overall win. With well over a hundred competitors on the day, George took top spot among the Reading paddlers coming in an impressive 15th overall. Well done to all. There’s a picture below of Emily twisting and turning. No capsizing here!
The youthful Nigel, one of our longest-standing coaches, turned 60 last year, during the pandemic, so the party that had been carefully planned had to be rapidly shelved. However, it wasn’t forgotten and over just a year, plus two months, we sprung him a big surprise.
Nigel isn’t one for surprises, but he dealt with it well considering. At least it was better that the planned rescue session he thought he was running – a ruse to get him down to the club on a Saturday afternoon.
Erika, Brian and the troop of helpers had planned some crazy silly team games on the water – Death Match, Tug of War, canoe relay, race circuits, charioteers … they packed those games in, sank a few boats and laughed their way through. All rewarded with a slap-up barbecue and lots of birthday cakes.
Nigel was presented with the latest Garmin watch and heart rate monitor as a present from all at the club – he’d been eyeing it up for a while.
Happy Birthday Nigel. Sorry for the surprise, but we hope you enjoyed your party nonetheless!