So, we finally managed it! After years of discussion and months of hard work we put on the first ever MKRC Regatta on Saturday 22nd May 2010. Helped by the glorious weather, this was a real success and enjoyed by everyone, competitors, organisers and spectators. This was the culmination of a big effort by many,many people – I’m not going to go into a big long list here but really have to say a big thank-you to Tim who was the driving force behind this.
Caldecotte Lake proved to be a wonderful venue for regatta racing, with the entire course visible from just about anywhere on the lake shore. Angling the racing lines across the lake gave us a 600m course, with the start line by the road bridge (useful vantage point for watching the start) and finish line just down from the club house.
As this was our first ever event, we ran it as an invitation only private match. This limited us to three other clubs; wanting to get clubs of similar size as ourselves, we invited Northampton, Oundle Town and Isle of Ely. Unfortunately, because of what seems to have been an utter foul up in internal communications, Isle of Ely told us on the Thursday before the Regatta that they we withdrawing. Having just two days notice to find a replacement was always going to be difficult, so we just had to scratch their entries. As well as a significant financial loss this caused a lot of problems with race scheduling and led to a staccato start to racing.
Despite this setback, everything went incredibly well. I’m not going to list out all the races and how all our crews did – there were so many of each (we wound up with around 80 races) – just pick out some of my highlights. Please feel free to add to these – that’s what the comments box is all about…..
So, my highlights of the day
John Cunningham – not only getting to race again but in the boat named after him. Not sure his grin could have got any wider even though we lost in both the MK Vet 8+ and the composite 8+ with Oundle. Well deserved John and great to see.
Jeff Pearce – started the club 15 years ago and this was a proud moment for him
Womens’ Novice 4+ – doubt they will remain Novice for long the way they went about winning this category; all the more pleasing as three of the crew were from last year’s learn to row intake
The only capsize of the day – a Northampton sculler who self-rescued – and then rolled over completely and capsized the other side!
Steph, who lived up to her Miss Chatterbox award by providing a really, really, really good commentary (you need to listen to the interview on BBC 3 Counties Radio).
The MKRC crew who were the only crew all day to get a warning (for failing to follow the circulation pattern)!
My most enjoyable race of the day (OK, I lost in all four, but it was all fun), sculling in a double with my younger daughter, Jo. First time we’d ever been in a double together, so losing by one length wasn’t too shabby at all.
I’m sure there’s loads more – please do chip in so we can build up more of a record of what was a really brilliant first ever MKRC regatta. On the feedback we’ve had so far, we’re now starting to think about next year’s event already, so watch this space
We’ve made the local papers too – see the MK Citizen article
The results from the day are now available here MKRC Regatta 2010 Results