A number of ERC crews were in action today in heats and semi-finals at the Canadian Henley Regatta.
James and Gregor Allan started their bid for the Junior Mens 2x title in the heats today. After finishing third last year, the duo aims to improve on that performance at this years regatta. The twin bothers were up against stiff competition from the word go and had to concede the first place in the heat to (relatively) local competition from the Burnaby Lake Rowing Club. The Edmonton crew went out fast and hard but could not match the speed of the west coast competition today. None-the-less James and Gregor qualified for the semi-finals with a strong second place finish.
Ole Tietz raced the heats in the Senior Lightweight Mens 1x and secured a solid first place finish to qualify for the semi-final tomorrow. The conditions on the course had turned into a stiff head-wind by this point and which lead to long and tiering racing. Conserving energy was the order of the day for most scullers in the field.
Yet another sibling doubles combination, Isabelle and Aline Belzil, were in action in the Junior Womens 2x competition. The dynamic duo has had a great season so far, after making waves at the CSSRA (schoolboy) regatta in June and bringing home BC Championship gold in July. The two girls are looking to add to their hardware collection and started their campaign well by romping towards the finish line many length ahead of the competition. The Belzil sister were pleased with their placing, but are confident that they can raise the level further for the semi-finals.
After qualifying for the semifinals yesterday, Colin Findlay and John Carr were up against some very experienced crews from the University of Western Ontario in the U23 Mens 2x. The double put in a spirited effort during their second ever performance on the Henley course but missed out on a place in tomorrows final.
Both Michael Hohnstein and Cody Anderson raced in the semi-finals of the Junior Mens 1x. Michael and Cody were not intimidated by the competition and took the race to the leading Junior scullers in North America. Both racers put in a great effort and pushed their opposition to the maximum, but had to concede the qualifying spots in the end. During the de-brief Michael was particularly pleased with his sprint to the finish-line, hitting a rate of 42 and beating a number of other singles in the last few meters. What the other crews were rating is not known.
Quinn Brandly raced the semifinal in the U23 Lightweight Mens 1x having overcome temporary lapses in boat speed in the heats. The competition in this event is especially tough this year and Quinn missed out on a spot in the final after a very hard race. He later remarked that he was quite happy to have pushed to top couple of scullers for the first 1000m. Quinn is looking forward to a number of finals tomorrow and welcomes the chance of extended recovery.
Isabelle Belzil faced stern competition when she went out to race in the semi-finals for the Junior Womens 1x. Isabelle came very close to qualifying for the final by finishing in third. She gave the top scullers a run for their money in a close fought race. Isabelle expressed that she was happy with the race; similar to Quinn, she has qualified for aHenley final in the Womens Eight tomorrow and will welcome the extra rest to prepare.
Competing for the ERC in the heats were Colin Findlay in the U23 Mens 1x, Steve Payne and Aaron Hartley in the Senior Mens 2x, Caitlyn Couturier and Kendra Hartley as well as Theora Gray and Rebecca Carrick in the U23 Womens 2x. All crews raced well to represent the club at this regatta, but missed out on qualifying spots to more experienced and stronger crews.
Three ERC crews will be competing for Henley Gold tomorrow. The Senior Lightweight Mens 2x of Ole Tietz and Quinn Brandly will race at 4:01 (local time), the Senior Womens 8+ of Andrea Labereque, Amanda Cinnamon, Leanne Leder, Jess Phillips, Mallory Turner, Kendra Hartley, Aline Belzil, Isabelle Belzil and cox Roland Dennett will race 5:51 and the Senior Lightweight Mens 4- of Ole Tietz, Till Tietz, Kris Butler and Quinn Brandly will race at 6:21. The Edmonton Rowing Club competed in 4 Henley finals at the 2013 Canadian Henley Regatta – the crews and coaches hope that we will be able to eclipse that number this year.
Well done to all those who raced today and good luck to all those racing tomorrow,