By Sarah Watson
Peterborough crews raced at Vesta Veterans’ Head of the River Race on Sunday, the day after the famous University Boat Race which took place over the same Championship course. This was the first time that the club has entered 4 eights into this event, demonstrating the increase in the number of members at the club; the club had to borrow two boats to meet the demand!
The victorious veteran from Peterborough was Steve Cranfield who joined scullers from Leicester, Star and Upper Thames Rowing Club to win the Masters coxless quad event. In a field of 9, they achieved the top spot easily, 25 seconds faster than Furnivall Sculling Club in second. Out of the 211 eights and quads that competed, they finished 20th overall.
The Masters E eight of Alasdair Ryder, Graham Barks, Ian Palmer, Jim Burt, Pete Dolby, Ian Davis, Steve Tuck, Jack Ward and cox Tracey Pearce (neé Rushton-Thorpe) finished 32nd overall despite starting at 68. They came 4th in their event out of 28 entries with a time of 20 minutes, only 7 seconds from the top 3.
The Women’s Masters C crew of Helen Wallace, Caroline Calver, Bridge Lloyd, Helen Griffiths, Hayley Shipton, Jeni Barnacle, Emma Richardson, Sarah Sheldrick and cox Serena Ward came 8th out of 16 in their category. They were in a tough field, just a few seconds separating each position. However they did very well to come 139th overall, as they started at 140.
The Women’s Masters B crew of Hayley Marsters, Jo Canton, Gemma Singleton, Gail Parker, Tina Allen, Carole Hook, Kate Read, Ilektra Apostolidou and cox Hannah Parker came 146th overall, just a few seconds behind the Masters C crew. They did well coming 5th in a tough field.
James Baille, Tim Jeffries-Harris, Kenny Low, Steve Ackerman, Neil Elder, Neil Beckingham, Joe Smith, George Nash and cox John Canton raced in the Masters Novice eight. For some of the crew, this was their first time on the tideway. On actual time, they came 5th of 13, but this became 7th of 13 after age handicap adjustments. They had a good race as they overtook one crew and were not overtaken during the race. They were only 11 seconds off being in the top 5.