Category Archives: Race Reports

9 Medals For Reading Canoe Club at Marathon Nationals

On the 22nd and 23rd August, the National Marathon kayak and canoe Championships took place in Norwich. This is a huge event for athletes within the sport, and is hosted by a different canoe club each year. People turn up to race in different age categories, all with a vision of winning their race and becoming National Champion for their age group.

This year, 11 members of Reading Canoe Club competed in this national event with some fantastic results.

In the Under-14 races, Fred Kemp and Stephanie Hutchinson were representing their club. Fred won a Silver in his K1 race, and Gold and National Champion in his K2 race with his partner William McCracken of Banbury Canoe Club, making them the fastest Under 14 K2 partnership in Britain.

Fred Kemp finishing in K1.
Fred Kemp approaching the finish line.

Similarly, in the Under 14 girls races, Stephanie came 2nd in both her K1 and her K2 race with Flossie Ball of Wiltshire Youth Club. It is an excellent achievement for Reading Canoe Club to have two of their juniors on the podium and more great results followed for the rest of Reading’s competitors.

Stephanie Hutchinson
Stephanie Hutchinson finishing.

Alex Lane finished the Under 23 Ladies K1 race in an impressive 3rd place, and promotion to division 3. She then went to to earn another bronze medal in the Senior Ladies K2 race with Nottingham paddler Katherine Burbeck.

Alex and Kat
Alex and Kat approach the portage.

One of the best performances of the weekend came from Brian Greenham, winning National Champion for the Over 64 Men’s race against some tough competition. Brian is a coach at Reading Canoe Club, and is a very inspirational figure for the juniors. Nigel Frankland, another brilliant coach at the club, partnered up with Brian and they competed in the Over 54 Men’s race in which they came 3rd after an exciting sprint finish.

Nigel and Brian
Nigel and Brian sprinting for the finish.

Also racing for Reading, Sam Newlands came 7th in Senior Men, which was his last race in the UK before heading back to New Zealand. Stefan Senk raced in the Over 34 category finishing 4th. Brian Greenham raced again, this time in the Over 49 category coming an impressive 6th.

In K2, Fred Kemp also raced up in the Under 16 category with Tim Dowden to finish a very impressive 4th. Imogen Collins partnered up with Emily Illinesi from Elmbridge to come 4th in Senior Ladies. In the Mixed K2 race Reading fielded 4 boats, highest placed where Radek and Alex, who came 7th. Having stormed through the field Ro and Brian had a swimming adventure at the bottom turn on the last lap, but they carried on to finish 25th.

Finishing 8th in the medal table out of 48 clubs, including one from Spain, was a great result for Reading Canoe Club.

Results: Final Results

Photos: Chris Worral (Flickr), Mike Rees-Clark (Facebook), Phil Caisley (Facebook), Olypics (Facebook)

6th out of 46 for Reading Canoe Club at Nottingham Interclubs September Regatta 2015

Sixth out of 46 clubs – now that’s not bad going for a team of just 20 paddlers, is it? But then all our competitors were pretty game and most seemed to have put a hand up for every race going – K4, K2 and K1, for all three distances. Perhaps, not quite, but nearly.

We had some great results, too – two firsts for Tony M in K1 and by a long way, and two more in K2 with Paul Ralph (naughty Paul – remember, always weigh your boat!), another for Nigel in his 500m K1 and 3rd in his K2 with Peter M. Vicki and Bethan scored a hard-fought 2nd place in their 1000m K2 and 3rd in their 200m K2 final. Dan S was 3rd in both his 200m and 1000m K1 finals – amazing when he hadn’t been on the water for 3 weeks! And more 3rd places for Stefan, Laslo and Evan. Erika had to jump into Anita’s K2 for 200m and they raced to 4th place.

Tony & Paul ahead of the field.
Beth & Vicki.
Beth & Vicki.

Perhaps the most exciting races to watch were the K4s – both Masters K4 were soooooooo close, on one we reckoned they lost by a mere 3.8cm. Gutting. And the Ladies K4 took an excellent 4th.

Masters A/B K4.
Masters A/B K4.
Ladies C/D K4.
Ladies C/D K4.

It was a great weekend … and yes, that was partly down to the weather. How is Vicki L ever going to believe that Nottingham’s National Water Centre is nearly always the coldest, windiest place in the UK when she’s just attended two consecutive regattas and both were sunny and calm! Unheard of.

The most enjoyable aspect of the weekend, however, was the number of paddlers from Reading we managed to get up there. That with the great weather meant we could all loiter on the steps, by the finish line, chatting and cheering on our paddlers. Loudly.

Loitering on the steps.

Roll on next year – let’s get an even bigger team up there and win back the MacGregor Cup!

Nottingham Regatta July 2015

Junior and Under 23 National Championship

Ah, this was the Regatta we had all been waiting for. Some of us, namely Steph and Fred, because it was the Juniors and U23 National Championship, and the rest of us because of the weather. Yes, for once a no-show for howling head winds; a little breezy and lots of sun Saturday, total calm Sunday.

That certainly seemed to play to our Junior paddlers’ strengths; they put on a phenomenal performance. Steph was Final 1 for both her K1 races, 4th in 500m and 5th in 200m, then on the Sunday got in a boat for the first time with Floss from Wiltshire and stormed to 2nd.

K2 partners Steph and Floss win second in the K2 final
K2 partners Steph and Floss win second in the K2 final

Fred, too, was on fiery form. Glad to have his usual K2 partner back in the boat, despite his knee injury, he and James swept the board, picking up a hat-trick of National Champions Gold for K2 1000m, 500m and 200m. And for K1 … Fred was National Champion for 200m, and Bronze for 500m. “What happened with the Bronze” was his middle brother’s only comment! Both the 200m performances were particularly strong with the field left well behind. It is his favourite distance after all.

Fred with K2 partner James after winning the 200m final
Fred with K2 partner James after winning the 200m final

Vicki Lucas bravely took to the course for the first time with very respectable results for all three of her K1 races. Sam Scowen was there, coming 4th in her 200m K1, Plus our other two Sams – Kirschstein and our borrowed Kiwi, Sam Newlands and Radek, too. RCC almost felt like we had a proper posse up there, especially when Immi turned up on Sunday to cheer everyone on! Radek and Sam’s K2 1000m was an impressive 3rd and, for the 5k race, they came 5th and 3rd respectively.

See you all up there for Interclubs on 5th/6th September with more of that no-wind-and-lots-of-sunshine!

June Nottingham Regatta Highlights

Now there’s windy and there’s super-windy. June 6th Nottingham Regatta – now that was diabolically windy, with white horses at 200m, so you can imagine what it was like at 1000m. Horrible.

With One Direction playing at Cardiff on 6th, Stephanie and team leader Erika were out of the picture for this one. Sabine stepped back into position. A small sprinkling of paddlers came up – good to have Sam K there, great to have you back on the water and what a storming win (1.43secs in front of the next boat) for you in the Under 23 Olympic Development Squad K4 they asked you stroke. Result!

Sam Newlands, our ‘borrowed’ Kiwi paddler, was up there dealing with the English weather. Terrific K2 race with another Kiwi, so close it required a photo finish and they were just edged into 2nd place by .04 of a second.

Sam Scowen completed our trio of Sams representing Reading and in her 500m K1 she came a tight third, while Duncan came a very respectable 2nd in his Men’s 200m sprint.

Sam Scowen waiting for her start at 200m
Sam Scowen waiting for her start at 200m

Laslo was up there for Sunday morning – impressive win in Master’s C K1 500m – easy. Surely time they put you up into Men’s B?

Fred in Boys C seemed to cope with the horrible wind at 1000m, pacing himself well to get into Final A for K1. A bit disappointed with his usual favourite – K1 200m. But he saved the best to last with his 500m K1 Final B on the Sunday. Explosive start (always), led the field, but by 200m had slipped to 6th. This time, however, he had left plenty in the tank and stormed through to a 1st place. That was soo exciting … but then I am his mum!

Hope to see many more of Reading Club members in July. And definitely at Interclubs in September. Remember you need to register by July 5th latest to be permitted to race in September. Ask Erika for details.

Fred in a K2 waiting to battle the waves at 1000m
Fred in a K2 waiting to battle the waves at 1000m

Thanks to Nikki Jacoby for the report.

Record breaking 1391 DW miles for RCC this Easter

What a year for Reading in the Devizes to Westminster race. Two podium spots in Senior Doubles and Vet-Junior. 50% of those crews being female. Go girls! Reading truly dominated the Senior Singles with 3 top ten places. We hold on to the Senior Singles team trophy 51:09:07 beating last year’s aggregate time by 7 hours 21 mins!

Results to be proud of. Brilliant achievement by paddlers and support crews. Certainly sets us up for a superb 2015 of racing – no pressure!

Senior Doubles: Alex Lane / Radek Zielski 18:00:36 3rd
3rd place overall in K2 class, 24 seconds behind 3 times winner James King and new partner Thomas Diaper. Any other year Alex and Radek would have had the mixed race easy but this year battled with Lizzie Broughton and Keith Moule (2nd and 7th @ World Marathon Championships 2014)

Senior Doubles: Nigel Frankland / Sam Watson – rtd
Unfortunately SanMigel Kayak and Crutches did not make it to Westminster.  Fantastic crew, fantastic effort. Unfinished business….

Vet-Junior: Amber Owen / James Treadgold 17:30:35 1st
Almost an hour and half in front of second vet Junior crew.  Who knows how far in front they would have been if they didn’t stop for a picnic at Marsh

Senior Singles: Dan Seaford 16:27:55 4th
Well if it was a 6 day race, Dan could have won, his performance improved as the days went on.  Given that this time last year Dan was waiting for surgery on his arms so he could paddle again, K1 4th, second vet was an excellent result

Senior Singles: Brian Greenham 17:06:20 7th
7th overall, 4th Vet and first Over 50, 2 hours 41 mins in front of 2nd Over 50. If have read records database correctly Brian now holds the Over 50 record k1, Vet -Junior and Senior k2 – a true legend

Senior Singles: Stefan Senk 17:34:52 8th
Outstanding performance for Stefan who has been marathon paddling less than a year. Watch out for him, he is still getting quicker!

Senior Singles: John Drummond 18:21:18 11th
First DW K1 performance for John, great effort and hats off to Cath for supporting with a toddler and 2nd baby in tow!

Senior Singles: Kat Burbeck 18:51:58 15th
OK, so Kat was paddling for Nottingham this year but we are pleased to have adopted her at Reading this winter and look forward to her being part of our team properly next year! 15th overall but first lady by nearly 4 hours!

Senior Singles: Simon Gallop rtd
Sadly DW beat Simon this year but I am sure he will be back to take his revenge next year and smash his 2014 time.

Alex Lane / Radek Zielski
DW Senior Doubles – 3rd overall
DW Senior Team - Winners
DW Senior Singles Team – Winners

Reading Canoe Club takes on the Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race

This Easter weekend, eight crews from Reading Canoe Club will tackle the tough Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race, paddling 125 miles and running over 77 portages, starting from Devizes and finishing at Westminster.

You can view the current race progress using competitors boat numbers on the Tracking website. The overall entries are listed here.

The Devizes to Westminster race is a 125 mile kayak and canoe race with 77 portages. Competitors either paddle straight through or take part in a four-day stage race.
The Devizes to Westminster race is a 125 mile kayak and canoe race with 77 portages. Competitors either paddle straight through or take part in a four-day stage race.

Continue reading Reading Canoe Club takes on the Devizes to Westminster Canoe Race

Regatta Report

The sprinters experienced a lovely weekend in Nottingham which ( as you all know) is very rare with gentle tail winds and a beautiful blue sky (well, at least on Sunday).

Of course, there was a bit of algae in the water but people were willing to overlook this fact as all other conditions were close to perfect.

All Reading paddlers did very well in this Regatta but as it was the Junior National Championships I have listed some of the best results below. Considering that we only had 5 juniors entering this Regatta we had some fantastic results. We also had a complete newcomer in this Regatta, Laszlo, who joined us on Sunday for the 500m coming second in his Final.

Fred & RIC crew K4 1000m U14 Gold
Fred, James & RIC crew K4 500m U14 Gold
Sam & Ed K2 1000m U18 Gold
Sam & Ed K2 500m U18 Gold
Sam/Ed/Magnus/Luke K4 1000 U18 Gold
Sam & Ed K2 200m U18 Silver
Hafsa & R. Blackman K2 500m U16 Bronze
Hafsa & R. Blackman K2 1000m U16 Bronze
Very good results:
Fred & James K2 1000m U14 4th
Fred & James K2 500m U14 5th
Hafsa Kabeer K1 1000m U16 6th
Hafsa & R. Blackman K2 200m U16 6th
Melissa & SOU crew K4 500m U16 6th
Hafsa Kabeer K1 500m U16 7th
Hafsa Kabeer K1 200m U16 1st B Final
Stephanie Hutchinson K1 200m U14 2nd B Final
Stephanie Hutchinson K1 500m U14 4th B Final
Fred Kemp K1 500m U16 3rd B Final
Fred Kemp K1 200m U16 4th B Final