Totnes Roar on River Dart!

Held on the scenic River Dart, the 2014 Totnes & Bridgetown Royal Regatta took place on 21st-22nd June with a record entry of 90 races on Saturday and 101 races on Sunday.  

Fifteen clubs from the south west took part with rowers enjoying the warm conditions on the tidal river in the second regatta of the ten-event series run by the West of England Amateur Rowing Association (WEARA). The series culminates on 13 September with the South Coast Rowing Championships. 

Saturday’s racing took place over a sprint course of 500m with non-championship events, whilst championship (WEARA) events were held on the Sunday over a longer course of 1000m. 

The atmosphere throughout the weekend was fantastic, with a covered grandstand located near the finish line producing an enormous Totnes Roar! Racing was competitive, with less than a canvas length between crews in several races.

One such was the men’s senior A fours (equivalent to IM1) where Exeter ARC only just won over Plymouth ARC, reversing the result of the opening series event at Plymouth Regatta in early June -and leaving both Exeter and Plymouth tied at the top of the senior A fours championship.

David Ord from the Exeter crew said afterwards, “It was a good battle with Plymouth – we were half a length up at halfway but couldn’t shake them off. It was just an awesome day.”

There was a large junior entry with the women’s J16 quad race final one of the most closely fought with hosts Dart Totnes just clinching victory over Bideford, winners at the Plymouth Regatta. 

With the racing done, Dart Totnes emerged the overall winners, just in front of Exeter, with Greenbank Falmouth in third place.

Pete Atkinson, who organised the racing over the weekend, said: “It was a tough turnaround with entries closing nine days before the regatta.”

The WEARA regatta series moves to Wimbleball on Saturday 28 June. Find out more here: www.weara.co.uk/events.

Full results from the Totnes & Bridgetown Royal Regatta here: http://darttotnes.co.uk/totnesregatta.php.

By Luke Reiser

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