By Sarah Watson
A Peterborough Women’s eight won a gold medal at the World Rowing Masters Regatta last week, which took place over the 1000 metre course on lake Bled in Slovenia. Over the four day event, more than 10 categories were entered by Peterborough club members, the majority finishing in the top 5, out of the 8 crews in each heat. However the club’s leading ladies were Sarah Sheldrick, Kate Read, Emma Richardson, Hayley Marsters, Anita Carter, Gemma Singleton, Gail Parker, Tina Allen and cox Hannah Parker, who faced tough competition from across the world in the women’s Masters A eight event. After a blistering start, the Peterborough crew dominated the race throughout, crossing the finishing line over 2 boat lengths ahead of the Norwegian crew in second place.
The dedication from over the months had paid off for the ladies, two of which (Sheldrick and Read) were only novices less than a month ago, before winning at the Peterborough Summer Regatta in August. Despite their lack of experience, with the help and support from their coach Ian Palmer and boatman Steve Taylor, the ladies were able to grow and succeed in the sport, and achieved something that they wouldn’t have believed possible a year ago.
There were also 2 other women’s eights competing at the event; Hannah Parker coxed both the B eight of Sarah Sheldrick, Kate Read, Emma Richardson, Hayley Marsters, Gail Parker, Gemma Singleton, Carole Hook, Tina Allen and the C eight of Elizabeth Pulford, Anita Carter, Sally Horrocks, Jo Canton, Gail Parker, Hayley Marsters, Carole Hook, Tina Allen (GBR – Peterborough, Leicester, Lincoln comb.) to a fourth place finish, both eights finishing 3 seconds behind third position. Marsters also finished 4th in the Masters D coxless four when she joined other British rowers to form a composite crew, and Hook also joined with a British rower from Mortlake in the Masters B double, and finished 6th.
Club member Tim Ellis, representing the Royal Air Force, came third with a Time of 4:00.45 , only 4 seconds away from another British sculler in first. He beat this time the following day when he came third in the men’s C event, with a time of 3:56.40, less than 10 seconds off a medal. The following day he was joined by fellow Peterborough club member Jack Ward, where they achieved 6th place in the Men’s E double event. Ward also competed in single scull events, finishing 5th in both the D and E categories.
Another 5th place was by Sarah Sheldrick, Kate Read, Emma Richardson, Gemma Singleton and cox Hannah Parker in the Women’s A coxed four event. Anita Carter and Joan Heath competed in both the Women’s D and E double scull events, finishing 4th in the E category and 6th in the D category.
By Sarah Watson