By Sarah Watson
Peterborough’s young scullers were close to a podium finish at the British Rowing Junior Championships at the weekend, 5 crews qualifying for the A final in their event, despite facing competition from the best junior crews in the country.
The event took place at the National Watersports Centre in Nottingham, where athletes raced over the 1500 time trial in the morning, followed by 2000 metre side-by-side races across 6 lanes. Despite the hot weather the Juniors had an excellent 3 days of racing, one crew just 2 seconds from medalling.
The crew just short of a medal was Daniel Armstrong, Tom Calver, Jack Wakefield-Lilley and Bert Papworth in the J16 coxless quad event. They finished 6th in their time trial then 3rd in their semi-final which qualified them to race in the A final against top athletes from around the country. Their final was a nail-biting race with just a couple of seconds separating each position. The boys took 4th place, just 2 seconds behind Marlow rowing club in bronze medal position.
Bert Papworth also qualified for the A final in his J15 single, where he finished in 5th position, just 4 seconds behind Rob Roy Boat club in 4th.
Another crew that raced in the A final was Joe Beesley, James Ryder, James Garfield, Hugo Carter and cox Adam Taylor in the J15 coxed quad event. Despite qualifying 9th in the time trials, they exceeded expectations by progressing through to the A final where they finished 5th overall, just 4 seconds behind Wallingford rowing club in 4th.
Harriet Drake-Lee also reached the A final in her Women’s J18 single where she placed 5th overall. Her club mate Charlotte Bolton was just a second short from joining her in the A final, but instead qualified for the B final where she finished in third place.
Ella Darrington had a similar result to Drake-lee, also finishing 5th in her A final in the women’s J16 singles event, less than a second behind Walbrook rowing club in 4th.
Darrington also competed in the Women’s J18 double alongside Scarlett Dewar from Agecroft rowing club, where they finished 4th in the B final, placing them 10th overall, which was a great result considering Darrington raced up an age group.
Another crew that raced in the B final was Grace Niklasson and Lydia Hilton who crossed the line in 6th position, just 3 seconds behind fifth.
There were also many Peterborough crews that reached the C finals in their event, Ellie Cooke won her C final in the Women’s J18 singles event, as Did Devonne Piccaver in the Women’s J16 singles. Alice Dovey finished 3rd in the women’s J15 singles C final, and the women’s J15 coxed quad of Erin Ansell-Crook, Lottie Tasker, Wiktoria Szubzda, Sophie Bicknell and cox Peggy Papworth finished 5th in their C final, just 1 second behind Queen Elizabeth High School in fourth.