This weekend saw the return of the racing community to the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham, with over 200 athletes from 42 clubs competing at the June Sprint Regatta.
For some of the club athletes it was their first taste of competitive sprint racing for nearly two years, with the regatta operating under new measures put in place to ensure a Covid safe event.
There was glorious weather on Saturday for the under 18 and under 16 events.
In the first final of the weekend Becky Pemble (Addlestone) took a commanding victory from lane 5 in the Girls K1 1000m, ahead of Elise Montagna (Royal) and Jessica Urquhart (Banbury).
Grace Anderson pictured (Norwich) claimed the Girls K1 500m, just seconds ahead of Pemble, with Amy Green (Worcester) taking third place.
In the Girls K1 200m Grace Anderson took her second victory in a tight finish ahead of Alexandra Armstrong (Scottish Performance Squad) and Amy Green.
The Girls K2 500m saw a commanding victory by the Scottish Performance Squad pairing of Alexandra and Kristina Armstrong, winning by over six seconds in a time of 1:54.98.
In the Boys U18 K1 1000m Zac Tarver (Elmbridge) took the spoils in a time of 3:52.70, just ahead of Xavier Hinves (Southampton), with Ben Cabrera (Fowey) third.
In one of the tightest races over the weekend Hinves pictured claimed the victory in the K1 500m in 1:55.40, just 0.2 seconds ahead of Tarver in second and Cabrera once again in third.
Tarver and Hinves also joined forces in the K2 500m to finish ahead of the Norwich pair Toby Booth and Ben Want.
After two third place finishes, Ben Cabrera claimed victory in the K1 200m, just 0.39 seconds ahead of Jonathan Pirmuhamedov (Chelmsford) in second and Ben Want third.
In the Boys U16 K1 1000m Gabriel Popham-Coveley (Falcon) took the victory in a time of 4:08.35, ahead of Harry Freeland (Reading) in second place.
Dylan O’Connor (Richmond) claimed the Boys K1 500m final with Popham-Coveley and Freeland in the podium places, second third respectively.
O’Connor also combined with Sam Cribbett (Royal Leamington Spa) to win the Boys K2 500m ahead of the Richmond duo Danny Mavra and Shirav Medepalli.
In the Boys K1 200m there was a local winner with Haydyn Cooke-Bayley (Nottingham) taking victory ahead of Dylan O’Connor and Gabriel Popham-Coveley.
In the Girls U16 events Greta Roeser (Wey) took a commanding victory K1 1000m, ahead of Isla Bethune (Elmbridge) and Annabel Hutchinson (Reading).
Roeser also combined with Wey team-mate Nerys Hall in the Girls K2 500m, with a ten second winning margin over Matilda Enoch (Nottingham) and Poppy Gilbert-Johns (Southampton).
Kristina Armstrong (Scottish Performance Squad) took the victory, crossing the line in first place in the Girls K1 500m, ahead of Greta Roeser in second and Isla Bethune in third place.
In the Girls K1 200m Kristina Armstrong recorded her third victory of the weekend, winning a commanding race in a time of 48.18 ahead of Iona Patrick (Scottish Performance Squad) and Nerys Hall (Wey).
The paracanoe athletes competed across both days of the regatta, as part of their preparations for the World Championship selection event in July and the major competitions later in the year.
On Saturday Emma Wiggs claimed victory in the Men KL1 + Women KL2/KL3 K1 200m, ahead of KL1 athlete Ian Marsden, and Llinos Owen (Royal Leamington Spa).
The following day Emma claimed her second win, this time in the Women’s VL2 + VL3 200m, in a time of 57.65, ahead of Jeanette Chippington and Beth Fisher.
In the Women’s KL1/KL2 K1 200m Charlotte Henshaw finished ahead of Emma Wiggs in second, with Jeanette Chippington (KL1) taking third place.
Hope Gordon pictured claimed victory in the Women’s KL3 K1 200m finishing ahead of Llinos Owen (Royal Leamington Spa) and Lindsay Thorpe (4AS).
Jack Eyers and Stuart Wood went head to head in the men’s VL3 200m, with Eyers taking victory by less than a second.
Jonny Young took victory over Jon Tarrant (Royal Leamington Spa) in the Men KL2/KL3 K1 200m, with KL2 paddler Dave Phillipson third across the line.
Jon Tarrant also won Saturday’s Men KL2/KL3 K1 200m race, ahead of Jon White (Exeter).
Laura Sugar, Hope Gordon Rob Oliver, Jonny Young and Dave Phillipson all competed in the heats of the men’s and women’s Open K1 200m, with Laura and Hope finishing fifth and eighth in the women’s A final, and Rob in seventh place in the men’s B final.
Sunday’s Open/Under 23 events commenced with Philip Miles pictured (Royal Leamington Spa) claiming victory in the Men’s U23 K1 1000m ahead of Finn Cadell (Scottish Performance Squad) and James Drage (Fowey).
The Men Open K1 1000m saw Solihull’s Tm Lusty take the spoils, just ahead of Chelmsford duo Dan Johnson and Matt Johnson in second and third.
Lusty then joined forces with Lewis Fletcher to win the Men’s Open/U23 K2 500m, ahead of Dan Atkins and Trevor Thomson.
In the Men’s Open K1 200m final Dan Atkins (Reading) powered through to take the victory, just 0.2 seconds ahead of Trevor Thomson (Ealing) in second, with Ben Gallacher (Scottish Performance Squad) third.
In the Women’s Open/U23 K1 500m Lucy Lee-Smith (Norwich) claimed victory ahead of Abi Burgess (Wey) and Anoushka Freeman (Richmond).
Freeman partnered with Florence Duffield (Norwich) to win the Women’s Open/U23 K2 500m, with Abi and Ellie Burgess (Bath) taking second place.
In the Women’s Open/U23 K1 200m it was Enya Dale pictured who took the spoils in a time of 42.93, with Lucy Lee-Smith (Norwich) in second place and Abi Burgess (Wey) third
The canoe events all took place on Sunday. In the Canoe Men Open/U23 C1 1000m Thomas Lambert (Lincoln) in lane 4 and Arthur Leech (Richmond) in lane 5 went head to head down the course, with Leech taking the victory by less than two seconds in a time of 4:06.50.
Thomas Lambert pictured had the upper hand and took the spoils in the Canoe Men Open/U23/18/16 C1 500m with Arthur Leech in second place.
In the Canoe Men Open/U23/18/16 C1 200m George Bell (Fladbury) took the win, finishing a second ahead of paracanoe athlete Jack Eyers in a Va’a, with Hou Lei (Nottingham) in third place.
The Canoe Girls U18/16 C1 500m and 200m finals featured five competitors from Nottingham Kayak Club, with Hannah Page pictured claiming two victories, finishing ahead of Ella Kendall.
In the Canoe Women Open/U23 C1 500m Beth Gill (Chelmsford) was victorious in a time of 2:14.40 ahead of Anna Palmer (Reading). Isabel Evans (Lincoln) crossed the line ahead of Sammy Sullivan (Wiltshire Youth) in the Canoe Women Open/U23 C1 200m.
One of the closest races over the weekend was in the Paddle-Ability K1 500m where Jacob Mansfield secured victory by just 0.15 seconds ahead of Jacob Hage. Mansfield claimed a double by crossing the line first in the K1 200m.
Jacob and Jacob competed in the races alongside Cassie Glaves and Daniel Warwick, all representing the Adventure Activities For All Abilities club based in Newark, and coached by Julie Gray.
The Masters events also took place on the Saturday. In the women’s events there was a hat-trick of victories for Suzanne de Bruijn (Norwich) in the K1 1000m, 500m and 200m, ahead of Catherine Drummond (Reading) and competing in the over 54 category Sally Alexander (Addlestone)
There was also a hat-trick of victories in the K1 1000m, 500m and 200m for James Mayers (Runcorn) in the Men’s Masters Over 34/44 events, with Shaune Walsh (Nottingham) taking second place in the 1000m and 500m events.
Neil Blackman (Royal Leamington Spa) claimed the Masters over 54 double in the K1 1000m and 500m. Richard Kent (Southampton) was second in both events, before taking victory in the over 54 K1 200m.
Munich 1972 Olympian Robin Avery was the oldest competitor at the regatta and competed in all three masters events in the over 64 category.
Coverage of the June Sprint Regatta is available on the Sprint Racing Committee YouTube Channel.
Further details and the official results can be found on the Sprint Racing Committee website.