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ASRA at the World Rowing Junior Championships 2018

At the 2018 World Rowing Junior Championships in Racice in the Czech Republic on the 10th to the 12th August, after a long and unbelievably arduous selection process going right back to November of last year, Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association’s Robert Powell and Miles Beeson were finally selected to represent Great Britain in Junior Men’s Coxless Pairs, an event in which 21 leading rowing nations from across the globe had entered crews.

Having come a comfortable fourth in their heat, Robert and Miles were then unfortunate enough to progress into the faster of the A/B semi-finals, where they were denied an A Final place by the three eventual medallists, Rumania, Germany & Croatia.Despite their disappointment at missing out on the A Final, they then went on to produce a commanding performance in the B Final against Argentina, Belarus, Serbia, Turkey and the Netherlands, leading the field out from the first 500 metres and fighting off a grandstand challenge from Argentina in the last 100 metres of the race.

Miles and Robert once again did ASRA and Scotland proud and they carry our best wishes with them as they leave us now to take up sports scholarships at Yale and Princeton Universities respectively.

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BRJC and Home Countries International

At the 2018 British Rowing Junior Championships, held from the 20th to the 22nd July at the English National Rowing Centre , Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham, ASRA’s J15 gold medal winning Eight from the London Schools’ Head - in the absence of a J15 Eights event – split up to test their mettle this time around against the best of British in two fours events.

Scott Lewis , Michel Dearsley, William Bricknell & Gregor Charles, coxed by Stephany Low , stepped up an age range and fought their way through to a brilliant bronze in Men’s Junior 16 Coxed Fours, only being bettered on this occasion by older, seasoned outfits from Chester-le-Street and Walton Rowing Clubs, whilst their crewmates, Oscar Forbes, Ashley Geddes, Archie Innes & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Balance, powered their way to a magnificent silver in Men’s J15 Coxed Quadruple Sculls, losing by less than a length in the end to Tideway Scullers’ School in one of the most exciting finals of the day.

Meanwhile, on Saturday in Cork, Southern Ireland, their senior teammates were rowing for Scotland in the 2018 Home Countries International Regatta, where ASRA’s Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison together with Sarah Johnston & Heather Gordon from Inverness Rowing Club put in an exceptional row in the Women’s Junior Coxless Fours event to record Scotland’s only Junior gold and one of only five wins overall for the Scottish team. ASRA’s Xander Beeson, Chris Bardas, Theo Scott & Sam Kelso also did club and country proud and were unlucky to lose by a canvas to England in a tantalisingly close race for the Men’s Junior Coxless Fours title.

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Henley Women's Regatta

On the 22nd June our ASRA Senior Girls travelled down to the prestigious 3-day Henley Women’s Regatta on the Thames in order to enter the lists again after a gap of three years in the Girls’ Champion Coxed Fours event for the Groton Cup. 18 clubs including all the usual household names from the length and breadth of England and three crews from the USA took part in the event this year.

ASRA’s Abigail Topp, Ellie Andrew, Megan Lewis & Megan Hewison, coxed by Will Cooper had not had the best of preparations for this regatta due to heavy exam commitments and illness, but put up a good performance to come 7th out of 18 in the Time Trials on Saturday and then made short work of the girls from Maidstone Invicta in the first round in order to progress to the last eight on Sunday morning. The USA Scholastic Junior Champions from Lower Merion High School, Pennsylvania, proved however to be a much tougher proposition, and having slipped in the second 500 metres to a three length deficit, our girls’ heroic challenges in the last 500 metres were just not enough in the end to secure a place in the semi-final.

This crew is eligible to compete in this event again in 2019 and there is little doubt that, given sufficient commitment, they are eminently capable of emulating ASRA’s Christie Duff, Emily Geddes, Holly Reid & Morven Shaw ,who brought the Groton Cup back to Aberdeen in 2012, despite having been eliminated in the quarter final of the event in 2011.

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Scottish National Rowing Championships 2018

From the Scottish National Rowing Championships at Strathclyde Park, Motherwell, from the 8th – 10th June, ASRA athletes brought home 6 gold medals, 4 silver medals and a bronze.

Gold Medals:

  • Men’s Junior Coxed Fours: Sam Kelso, Mile Beeson, Robert Powell & Theo Stott, coxed by Skye Ballance
  • Women’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison
  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Sam Kelso & Theo Stott
  • Men’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs: Chris Bardas & Xander Beeson
  • Men’s J15 Quadruple Sculls: Oscar Forbes, Michel Dearsley, Scott Lewis & Archie Innes, coxed by Skye Ballance
  • Men’s Open Novice Eight: Harris Macdonald, Ashley Geddes, Scott Lewis, William Bricknell, Michel Dearsley, Archie Innes, Oscar Forbes & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Balance

Silver Medals:

  • Men’s Junior 15 Quadruple Sculls: Asley Geddes, Gregor Charles, Maisie Aspinall & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Steph Low
  • Men’s Junior 15 Doubles: Ashley Geddes & Archie Innes
  • Men’s Junior 14 Double: Joe Ritchie & Will Cooper
  • Men’s Open Eights: Sam Kelso, Miles Beeson, Xander Beeson, Chris Bardas, Danny Skinner, Theo Stott, Seth Turner & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Skye Ballance

Bronze Medal:

  • Women’s J14 Single Sculls: Maisie Aspinall

Other Noteworthy results:

  • Robert Powell and Miles Beeson won the Men’s Junior & Senior Coxless Pairs time trial on the Friday evening but were unable to take part in the final due to illness.
  • Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Will Cooper were 2nd in the Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours
  • Joe Ritchie, Harris Pearce, Alex Fowler & Will Cooper, coxed by Steph Low were 2nd in Men’s Junior 14 Quadruple Sculls
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National Schools Regatta, Dorney Lake, Eton 2018

Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association athletes have just returned from Dorney Lake, Eton – the 2012 Olympic rowing venue – after competing in the 2018 National Schools’ Regatta. Over 5000 competitors from all over the UK took part in the three-day event and ASRA equalled the club’s 2012 triumph at this regatta by coming home once more with 2 outstanding gold medals.

ASRA’s J18 duo - Miles Beeson and Robert Powell - ranked 3rd in the latest GB junior trials and looking increasingly likely to be selected for the Junior World’s - reigned supreme from the outset in the Championship Coxless Pairs event for the Nick Bevan Cup. First in their time trial in a field of 35 and first in their semi-final, they dominated the final from the start to win in the end by over 3 seconds from the Enniskillen Royal pair from Northern Ireland in second place and Walton Rowing Club in third.

Nat Schools Champ Pair

Our Junior 16 foursome – Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Hannah Watson – with their brilliant record of golds at this regatta in 2016 and 2017 – were not to be outshone by their older clubmates. In the Junior 16 Coxed Fours event for the Arundel Cup, they provided one of the most exciting finishes of the day as they raced neck and neck with St Georges College from the 200 metres mark to beat them into second place in the end by a breath-taking 0.87 seconds. Emanuel College took third place.

Nat Schools J16 4

Our J15 victors from the Schools ‘Head Race on the Tideway in March – Harris MacDonald, Ashley Geddes, Scott Lewis, William Bricknell, Archie Innes, Michel Dearsley, Oscar Forbes & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Balance - were naturally a little disappointed in the final of Junior 15 First Eights for the Founders Cup when they were beaten in the end into bronze by more experienced squads from St. Pauls’ and Westminster, particularly since they had come first in the time trial for the event and a good second in their semi-final.

Nat Schools J15 8

Improving performances from our Non-Championship J18 Eight, our J18 Girls Four and our J16Pair saw them reach the A Finals in their highly competitive events.

 

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Castle Semple Regatta 2018

At the Castle Semple Regatta, Lochwinnoch, on Saturday 12th May, ASRA’s athletes won 9 gold medals and came second in 4 further events in this, the last multi-lane regatta in Scotland before they move on to challenge the cream of English rowing at the National Schools Regatta on Dorney Lake, Eton, in a fortnight’s time.

Gold medals were won in...

    • Men’s Junior Coxless J18 Pairs: Miles Beeson & Robert Powell
    • Women’s Junior 13 Single Sculls: Zoe Beeson
    • Men’s J16 Single Sculls: Jakub Zbikowski
    • Men’s Novice Coxed Fours: Michel Dearsley, William Bricknell, Ashley Geddes, Harris Macdonald, coxed by Hannah Watson
    • Men’s Junior 14 Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Will Cooper, Harris Pearce, Ben Milne & Joe Ritchie, coxed by Hannah Watson
    • Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Seth Turner, Theo Stott, Sam Kelso, Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Michael McCrory
    • Women’s Open & Women’s J18 Single Sculls: Megan Hewison
    • Men’s Open Eights: Harris Macdonald, Ashley Geddes, Connor Kennedy, William Bricknell, Michel Dearsley, Oscar Forbes, Gregor Charles & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Ballance

Congratulations go also to our runners up in Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs, Men’s Novice Coxed Fours, Women’s Junior 14 Doubles & Men’s J13 Single Sculls.

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Strathclyde Park Regatta 2018

On Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th April, newly returned from their Easter Camp in Regensburg on the Danube, athletes from the Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association (ASRA) put in strong performances at Scotland’s National Rowing Centre, Motherwell, to win a total of 9 golds and 6 silvers in this, the first multi-lane rowing event of the 2018 season.

Saturday Winners

  • Women’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Abigail Topp (Kemnay), Ellie Andrew (Mackie), Laura Barraclough (Cults) & Megan Hewison (Ellon) coxed by Will Cooper (Albyn)
  • Men’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs: Chris Bardas (Harlaw) & Xander Beeson (Albyn)
  • Men’s Restricted 1 Pairs: Miles Beeson (Albyn) & Robert Powell (Albyn)
  • Men’s Novice Eights: Harris Macdonald (Albyn), Michel Dearsley(Cults), Scott Lewis (Mearns), William Bricknel (Grammar)l, Archie Innes (Harlaw), Ashley Geddes (Grammar), Oscar Forbes (Albyn) & Matthew Hughson (Grammar), coxed by Skye Balance ( Cults)
  • Men’s Restricted 2 Fours: Seth Turner (Cults), Chris Bardas (Harlaw), Xander Beeson (Albyn) & Jakub Zbikowski (Harlaw), coxed by Hannah Watson(RGU)
  • Men’s Junior 18 Pairs: Miles Beeson (Albyn) & Robert Powell (Albyn)

Sunday Winners

  • Men’s J14 Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Joe Ritchie(Grammar), Alex Fowler (Albyn), Harris Pearce (Portlethen) & Will Cooper (Albyn), coxed by Hannah Watson (RGU)
  • Women’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Abigail Topp (Kemnay) & Megan Hewison (Ellon)
  • Men’s Restricted 2 Eights: Sam Kelso (Albyn), Conrad Forbes (Albyn), Robert Powell(Albyn), Miles Beeson(Albyn), Daniel Skinner (Banchory), Theo Stott (Harlaw), Josh Berrie (Ellon) & Aidan Graham (Cults), coxed by Michael McCrory (Grammar)

Noteworthy silver medals went to ASRA athletes in Restricted 1 Coxed Fours, Junior 16 Coxless Pairs, Mens’ Novice Coxed Quadruple Sculls, Women’s Junior 14 Double Sculls, Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours & Men’s Novice Coxed Fours.

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Schools' Head of the River Race

On Monday 12 March, crews from the Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association competed in the prestigious Schools' Head of the River Race., which takes place annually over a 6.8 kilometre stretch of the Thames from Mortlake to Putney. In both the Men's Junior Championship J15 Eights and the Men's Junior 16 Coxed Fours categories, ASRA put in superlative performances and struck gold on the Tideway for the first time in the club's history. In doing so, ASRA's J15 Eight, with their time of 17.54, set up a new course record for their age group and came in only eleven seconds behind the winners of the Junior 16 Eights.

  • Men's Junior 15 Championship Eights Gold Medallists: Matthew Hughson, Archie Innes, Oscar Forbes, Michel Dearsley, William Bricknell, Scott Lewis, Ashley Geddes and Harris Macdonald, coxed by Skye Ballance

  • Men's Junior 16 Coxed Fours Gold Medallists: Jakub Zbikowski, Xander Beeson, Chris Bardas & Seth Turner, coxed by Hannah Watson

ASRA's girls came in 5th in the highly competitive Women's Junior 18 Coxed Fours category and our senior boys came in respectable 14th in Men's Junior 18 Championship Eights.

On Tuesday 13th March at the Scullery Regatta on Dorney Lake, Eton, our J15 crew swapped sweep blades for sculling ones and Matthew Hughson, Archie Innes, Ashley Geddes & Oscar Forbes, coxed by Skye Ballance took bronze in a massive field of 62, with their teammates coming in 7th.

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Aberdeen Eights Head of the River

rowing 2715 exp

At the Aberdeen Eights Head of the River on Saturday17th February, ASRA’s Junior 18 squad continued the fine form it had shown at the Inverness heads by winning both divisions at a canter against opposition from all three local clubs – Aberdeen University, Robert Gordon University and Aberdeen Boat Club – as well as sizeable entries from Inverness Rowing Club and St Andrews University. Second on both occasions were members of ASRA’s highly promising Junior 15 squad.

Winners in Division 1

  • Men’s R2 Eights: Sam Kelso, Conrad Forbes, Seth Turner, Theo Stott, Danny Skinner, Jakub Zbikowski, Josh Berrie & Aidan Graham, coxed by Michael McCrory
  • Men’s J15 Eights: Harris MacDonald, Ashley Geddes, Scott Lewis, William Bricknell, Michael Dersley, Oscar Forbes,Archie innes & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Balance

Winners in Divison 2

  • Men’s Open Eights: Sam Kelso, Conrad Forbes, Alexander Beeson, Chris Bardas, Danny Skinner, Theo Stott, Josh Berrie & Aidan Graham, coxed by Michael McCrory
  • Men’s Novice Eights: Harris MacDonald, Ashley Geddes, Scott Lewis, Michael Dearsley, Gregor Charles, Oscar Forbes, Archie Innes & Matthew Hughson, coxed by Skye Balance

Meanwhile down in Boston, Lincolnshire, at the GB Junior Long Distance Trials, ASRA athletes were taking important steps towards selection for GB teams at either this years’ Junior World Rowing Champs or the Coupe de la Jeunesse. Miles Beeson & Robert Powell, gold Medallists the Coupe in 2017 in the GB eight, came a brilliant third in their coxless pair in a field of 39 and Megan Hewison, in a scratch pairing with a partner from the Isle of Wight, came third in the equivalent junior women’s event.

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Inverness Eights and Small Boats Head

At the 2018 Inverness Eights and Small Boats Head on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th February 37 athletes from the Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association braved the bitterly cold winter weather to rack up 11 splendid category wins over the two days of competition.

(All times over 4.5 kilometre course on the Caledonian Canal)

Sat Division 1

  • Men's Junior 18 Eights: Aidan Graham, Josh Berrie, Theo Stott, Danny Skinner, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell, Conrad Forbes, Sam Kelso, cox Michael McCrory (14.51.3) (Fastest time overall in Div 1)
  • Men's Junior 14 Double Sculls: Will Cooper & Joe Ritchie (19.26.2)


Sat Division 2

  • Women's Novice Double Sculls: Megan Lewis & Ellie Andrew (20.29.9)
  • Women's R2 Single Sculls: Megan Hewison (19.51.4)
  • Women's Junior 16 Single Sculls: Abigail Topp (20.38.5)
  • Men's Junior 14 Single Sculls: Joe Ritchie (21.31.7)

Sun Division 1

  • Men's Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Aidan Graham, Danny Skinner, Theo Stott, Sam Kelso cox Angus White
    (16.22.6)
  • Men's R2 Coxed Quads: Matthew Hughson, Oscar Forbes, Archie Innes, Ashley Geddes, cox Skye Balance (17.05.5)
  • Men's Novice Coxed Fours: Michel Dearsley, Scott Lewis, William Bricknell, Harris MacDonald, cox Joe Ritchie (17.23.8)
  • Women's Junior 18 Coxless Pairs; Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison (19.16.0)

Sun Division 2

  • Men's Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson (17.49.4)

On the 17th & 18th of February, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell & Megan Hewison are off down to the GB Junior Trials to see if they can emulate their exploits of last year in GB vests.

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Inverness Fours and Small Boats Heads

At the Inverness Fours and Small Boats Heads on the Caledonian Canal on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th November, crews from the Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association recorded a total of 11 category wins.

Saturday

Division 1

  • Men’s Novice Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Harris MacDonald, Scott Lewis, Connor Kennedy & Michel Dearsley, coxed by William Bricknell
  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Sam Kelso, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell & Theo Stott, coxed by Hannah Watson

Division 2

  • Men’s Novice Coxed Fours: Harris MacDonald, Wiiliam Bricknell, Scott Lewis & Michel Dearsley, coxed by Ben Milne
  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Fours: Conrad Forbes, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell & Theo Stott
  • Women’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours; Abigail Topp, Ellie Andrew, Megan Lewis & Megan Hewison, coxed by Hannah Watson

Sunday

Division 1

  • Men’s Junior 14 Coxed Quadruple Sculls:  Joe Ritchie, Alex Fowler, Angus White & Will Cooper, coxed by Jayros James
  • Men’s Junior 16 Coxed Fours: Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Connor Kennedy
  • Men’s Junior 18 Single Sculls; Robert Powell
  • Women’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison

Division 2

  • Men’s Junior 15 Double Sculls: Ashley Geddes & Archie Innes
  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Seth Turner & Jakub Zbikowski

Next weekend Miles Beeson, Robert Powell, Theo Stott and Abigail Topp will take part in the early ID selection trials for the GB Junior squad at Boston in Lincolnshire 

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Aberdeen Fours and Small Boats Head of the River Races

At the Aberdeen Fours and Small Boats Head of the River Races on the Dee on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th November, ASRA athletes recorded an impressive series of category wins against representative Junior and Senior crews from all over Scotland.

Saturday (Fours Heads)

Division 1

  • Men’s Open Coxless Fours (and fastest crew overall in Division 1) Conrad Forbes, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell & Theo Stott
  • Men’s Novice Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Matthew Hughson, Ashley Geddes, Archie Innes, Oscar Forbes, coxed by Connor Kennedy
  • Women’s Open Coxed Fours: Abigail Topp, Ellie Andrew, Megan Lewis & Megan Hewison, coxed by Skye Balance


Division 2

  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Danny Skinner, Josh Berrie, Conrad Forbes, Aidan Graham, coxed by Joe Ritchie
  • Men’s Junior 15 Coxed Fours: Michel Dearsley, William Bricknell, Scott Lewis, Harris MacDonald, coxed by Daniel Lynch

Sunday (Small Boats Heads)

Division 1

  • Men’s J15 Double Sculls: Ashley Geddes, Archie Innes
  • Men’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs: Seth Turner & Jakub Zbikowski
  • Men’s Novice Single Sculls: Matthew Hughson

Division 2

  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Zander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski
  • Open Junior 18 Octuple Sculls: Matthew Hughson, Ashley Geddes, Izzy McTamney, Zoe Beeson, Alex Fowler, Will Cooper, Connor Kennedy, Skye Balance coxed by Abigail Topp
  • Men’s Restricted 2 Single Sculls: Daniel Lynch
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ASRA at the SSRC Sweep Head

On Saturday 30th September at the Scottish Schools’ Rowing Council Head Races over a 4 kilometre course on the Forth & Clyde Canal between Banknock and Auchinstarry, 32 members of the Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association entered the lists against the best of Scotland’s U18 sweep rowers to win the Scottish Junior Club Champions’ Cup for the 8th year in succession.

Division winners were....

Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours & Fastest Crew overall: Theo Stott (Harlaw Academy), Robert Powell, Miles Beeson & Conrad Forbes (all Albyn School) and cox Michael McCrory (Aberdeen Grammar School)

Men’s Junior 16 Coxed Fours & Second Place overall: Jakub Zbikowski (Harlaw Academy)), Xander Beeson (Albyn School), Chris Bardas (Harlaw Academy), Seth Turner (Cults Academy) and cox Hannah Watson (Watson’s College FP)

Men’s Junior 15 Coxed Fours: Harris MacDonald (Albyn School), William Bricknell (Aberdeen Grammar School), Scott Lewis (Mearns Academy) & Michel Dearsley (Cults Academy) and cox Skye Ballance (Cults Academy)

Men’s Junior 14 Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Will Cooper Alex Fowler , Ben Milne (all Albyn School) & Joe Ritchie ( Aberdeen Grammar School)) and coxed by Cheyanne Taylor (Bridge of Don Academy)

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ASRA Inter-Schools

At the annual ASRA Inter-Schools Regatta on 26 August the school-tie headbands and war paint were once again in evidence as ancient tribal rivalries were re-joined.

In a series of exciting races - sometimes for the closeness of the result and sometimes for the way our coxes seemed to home in on jetties or hapless ABC novices – the eventual winners of the Elliott Cup were pupils of The Albyn School. 

The winners of the Inter-Schools Trophy for those who have attended Learn-To-Row courses over the summer were pupils from Cults Academy

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Aberdeen Sprint Regatta

On Saturday 19 August, ASRA athletes joined in the fun of the Aberdeen Sprint Regatta.

Competing against two other ASRA crews, the winners of the Open Novice Coxed Quadruple Sculls were the crew of Archie Innes, William Bricknell, Connor Kennedy and Harris Pearce, coxed by Skye Ballance.

In a straight final between two ASRA crews, Seth Turner and Sam Kelso triumphed in the Open Restricted 1 Double Sculls.

In the Women’s Novice Coxed Four, ASRA’s Skye Ballance, Steph Low, Meg Lewis and Iona Adams, coxed by Cheyanne Taylor won an exciting semi-final against one Aberdeen Boat Club crew before succumbing to a second ABC crew in the final.

In Open Restricted 2 Single Sculls, our best placed athlete was the runner up Theo Stott. Theo had beaten Sam Kelso in the semi-final but lost to ABC’s Thomas Little who had already despatched Josh Berrie and Seth Turner en-route to victory.

ASRA athletes flooded the Open Novice Single Sculls with a field of 13 and provided what was arguably the most entertaining series of racing of the day. The deserving victor was Oscar Forbes who held on for tight “canvas” wins in his semi-final against Scott Lewis and in the final against Michel Dearsley. Well done to all who took part in these races – a couple of whom had literally only been out in a single one or two times but were up for the challenge of taking part.

The ASRA crew of Skye Ballance, Steph Low, Iona Adams and Cheyanne Taylor were runners up in the Women’s Coxed Quadruple Sculls.

Sam Kelso and Conrad Forbes steered an interesting line, but a straighter one than their opponents Seth Turner and Theo Stott to win the closest race of the day; 2 feet the winning margin in Open Restricted 2 Pairs.

The winners of a six crew field in Open Junior 14 Double Sculls were Ashley Geddes and Archie Innes.

Not to be outdone by our Novice Men, a total of nine entries were made in Women’s Novice Single Sculls from ASRA, ABC and Inverness. Skye Ballance sculled her socks off to win her three races and the gold medal. Again, well done to all our entrants in this event.

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ASRA at the HIR and the Coupe de la Jeunesse

At this year’s Home International Regatta, hosted by England on the 22nd July at Strathclyde Park, Abigail (15) and Megan (16) , as the Scottish select in  Women’s Junior Pairs , and Seth Turner (15),  Conrad Forbes (17) Theo Stott (17) and Aidan  Graham (16), with cox Emily Murdoch, in Men’s Junior Coxed Fours, did ASRA proud as always , but found the going predictably hard against opposition in almost every case one or two years above their own age level. It was of course a particularly savage reality check for Abigail, Megan, Seth and Aidan, who had medalled so outstandingly in J16 events at the British Junior Rowing Championships at Nottingham just a week earlier.

There is however consolation in the fact that all of this year’s Scottish caps are eligible to do it all again in 2018 and we have every reason to believe that some, if not all of them, given their present level of commitment, can equal, if not surpass, ASRA’s HIR successes of the past.   

Just a week later, at the annual Coupe de la Jeunesse Regatta, held this year in Hazewinkel, Belgium, on the 29th and 30th July, in which 13 European nations took part, our ASRA boys - not to be outdone by the girls’ J16 GB v France success -  won  yet another gold medal in a GB vest  - this time at J18 level. Miles Beeson and Robert Powell, having taken bronze in the “A” final of Men’s Junior Eights on the Saturday, snatched gold in a time of 5.56.78 in the same event the following day, pushing Switzerland with a time of 5.57.37 into second place and Saturday’s gold medallists, the Czech Republic, into third. The last time a Coupe medal went to an ASRA rower was back in 2000 in Switzerland , when David McNeill won bronze in the Pairs event.

 

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British Rowing Junior Championships 2017

At the British Rowing Junior Championships on the 14th, 15th and 16th July, at the English National Water Sports Centre, Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham, 6 ASRA crews reached the A Finals of the 7 events entered and three of them made it to the medal podium.

Pride of place must go this year to our J16 Girls’ Pair – Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison - , who, having won gold in the GB v France Match at London’s Docklands the previous weekend, trounced all-comers to strike a brilliant gold once again in the Women’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs event.

 

Just one hour later they joined club mates – Ellie Andrew, Megan Lewis & cox Emily Murdoch – to win silver in the final of Women’s Junior 16 Coxed Fours.

Not to be outdone, our Junior 16 boys – Aidan Graham, Sam Kelso, Daniel Lynch and Daniel Skinner, coxed by Laura Barraclough - took a hard-fought silver in the final of the Men’s Junior 16 Coxed Fours, with their J15 clubmates – Seth Turner, Christos Bardas, Alexander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Skye Ballance - just missing out on bronze in the same event.

ASRA’s J14 B crew - William Bricknall, Scott Lewis, Oscar Forbes & Ben Milne, coxed by Skye Ballance - came 6th in the final of the Men’s Junior 14 Coxed Quadruple Sculls event - from an original entry of 28 crews - and our ASRA development Eight (Sam Kelso (16), Christos Bardas (15), Theo Stott (17), Daniel Skinner(16), Daniel Lynch (16), Seth Turner(15), Aidan Graham (16) & Conrad Forbes (17), coxed by Emily Murdoch) came a highly respectable 5th in the final of Men’s Junior 18 Eights.

Next weekend at the annual Home Countries International Regatta, hosted this year by England at Strathclyde Park, Motherwell, Abigail Topp and Megan Hewison have been chosen to represent Scotland in the Women’s Junior Pairs and the Women’s Junior Eights events and Seth Turner, Conrad Forbes, Theo Stott & Aidan Graham, coxed by Emily Murdoch, will represent Scotland in the Mens’ Junior Coxed Fours event.

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Scottish Championships

At the Scottish Rowing Championships held at the Scottish National Rowing Centre, Strathclyde Park, Motherwell from Friday 9th to Sunday 11 June, ASRA crews won 8 gold and 5 silver medals. A magnificent achievement given the lack of opposition in ASRA’s preferred sweep events and the gusting side winds at the start which made attachment a nightmare for less experienced crews.

Gold

  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Conrad Forbes, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell & Theo Stott, coxed by Emily Murdoch
  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxless Pairs: Miles Beeson & Robert Powell
  • Men’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs: Seth Turner & Aidan Graham
  • Women’s Junior 16 Coxless Pairs; Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison
  • Men’s J15 Double Sculls : Seth Turner & Jakub Zbikowski
  • Men’s J14 Double Sculls: Harris MacDonald & Matthew Hughson
  • Wylie Cup (First year of Rowing): Michel Dearsley, Scott Lewis, Josh Berrie & Ben Milne, coxed by Stephany Low
  • Men’s Open Novice Eights: Jan Barraclough, Josh Berrie, Xander Beeson, Oscar Forbes, Matthew Hughson, Ashley Geddes, Archie Innes & Connor Kennedy, coxed by Ben Milne

Silver

  • Men’s Junior 18 Coxed Fours: Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson & Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Harris MacDonald
  • Women’s J16 Double Sculls: Abigail Topp & Megan Hewison
  • Men’s J15 Coxed Quadruple Sculls: Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Xander Beeson & Jakub Zbiikowski, coxed by Laura Barraclough
  • Men’s J14 Double Sculls: Ashley Geddes & Archie Innes
  • Men’s J13 Single Sculls: Ben Milne

Many thanks to the many parents who helped out either at the Champs in one capacity or another or with transport in getting us there and back. We cannot do it without you.

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Learn to Row

ASRA Holiday Learn to Row Program - Summer 2017

We invite applications for the following Learn to Row courses.

LTR 1: 3rd - 7th July 09.00 – 13.00

LTR 2: 10th - 14th July 13.00 – 17:00

LTR 3: 17th – 21st July 09:00 – 13:00

These LTR weeks cost £50 per person, but are heavily subsidised by ASRA and there is an expectation that if your son / daughter wishes to continue rowing after the LTR week, then this will be done with ASRA.

The ASRA boathouse is situated on South Esplanade West, Torry.

Your child will need a snack and a water bottle each day. As rowing is a demanding sport it is important to keep energy levels topped up and to remain hydrated throughout.

You will need basic outdoor PE kit to take part. It is important to pack enough kit for two separate outdoor sessions a day and a light waterproof in the event of rain. A change of socks is important as they can get wet whilst getting in and out of the boats. Obviously, the weather can be very varied, so please pack accordingly.

Noted below is an outline of the programme for the week. Days are split into two sessions with a break in between for a snack and rest:

The coaches involved are qualified Scottish Rowing Coaches who are insured and fully disclosed. Application forms may be downloaded <Click here>. Places are however limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Those participants who wish to continue rowing after their LTR program are encouraged to attend the ASRA transition week which will take place between the 7th & 11th August 13:00 – 17:00, the transition week is included in the LTR cost.

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National Schools Regatta, Dorney Lake

Mariner’s Cup Win for Aberdeen

Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association have just returned from Dorney Lake – the 2012 Olympic rowing venue – after competing in the 2017 National Schools Regatta. In the premier junior regatta of the UK season, with over 5000 competitors, ASRA returned with an excellent haul of a gold medal and two bronze medals.

On Friday 26. May, ASRA boys Seth Turner, Chris Bardas, Alexander Beeson and Jakub Zbikowski, coxed by Michael McCrory grabbed an impressive bronze medal in the Junior 15 Coxed Quadruple Sculls. After a time trial and semi- finals, the field of 44 crews was reduced six. In the final, a length down from the winners, Henley Rowing Club, the boys had a tremendous tussle with two other crews; eventually finishing a metre behind 2nd place and the same ahead of 4th place.

On Saturday 27.May, the same crew of Seth, Chris, Alexander, Jakub and Michael (cox) entered their preferred event, the Junior 15 Coxed Fours. After progressing smoothly through the opening rounds, the final developed into an attritional battle between ASRA and Walton Rowing Club. The ASRA boys pushed their bows in front after the first 250m of the 2000m race and steadily opened this up to a lead of one boat length. Every time Walton managed to lift their rating and claw back some of the difference, the ASRA crew managed to find a little extra and open the lead back up again, eventually crossing the line in first place to win the prestigious Mariner’s Cup for Aberdeen.

On the same day, ASRA Junior 17 boys Conrad Forbes, Miles Beeson, Robert Powell and Theo Stott, also coxed by Michael McCrory, were entered in First Coxed Fours event. After progressing into the A Final the race started well for the ASRA boys and they were in a tight battle with two other crews. However, St George’s College and Tideway Scullers pushed ahead after 1000m, with the former winning a very tight race for gold; and with ASRA unable to respond to the quickening pace, the boys were left in a comfortable bronze medal position.

In other events ASRA crews gained very respectable results. The crew of Harris MacDonald, Scott Lewis, William Bricknell, Ashley Geddes, Archie Innes, Michel Dearsley, Matthew Hughson and Oscar Forbes, coxed by Ben Milne, came 5th in the A Final of Junior 14 Coxed Octuple Sculls. The crew of Abigail Topp, Ellie Andrew, Meg Lewis and Megan Hewison, coxed by Emily Murdoch reached the semi-finals of the Junior 16 Girls Coxed Fours and the crew of Aidan Graham, Danny Skinner, Daniel Lynch and Sam Kelso reached the semi-finals of the Junior 16 Coxless Fours.

Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association will now be training for the Scottish Rowing Championships on the 9th – 11th June at Strathclyde Park, Motherwell.

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