Julian Scrivener was on form with two victories as Upton won four events at Stourport Regatta. He faced regular rival Duncan Gwilliam from the home club in the masters E single sculls and won by just one foot after fighting back in a close finish. Joined by wife Tabitha in the mixed double sculls, Scrivener led throughout to beat a Stourport combination by one-and-three-quarter lengths. Upton double scull Linda Scott and Jo Hammett had a comfortable win over Evesham in the women’s masters E/F event. A men’s masters D coxless fours could not overcome an experienced combination from Pengwern, Shrewsbury.
At the sprint regatta the following day, Sally Miles and Debbie Thompson brought a fourth win in the women’s masters A/B double sculls. They dispatched Worcester in the semis and made it 2-1 in meetings with Liverpool Victoria by winning the final by four lengths. The Scriveners raced again in the mixed masters D double sculls but lost to Derwent by only one foot. James Oliver was in the masters A single sculls and masters A/B double sculls with Chris Evanson but despite strong rows lost to crews from Monmouth and Birmingham respectively.
Upton were well represented at Llandaff Regatta in Cardiff. They started strongly on the 1,000-metre course on the first day with Andrew Scott, in his first regatta in the masters F/G singles, beating his Ross opponent easily and then seeing off Evesham in the final by two lengths. Linda Scott, Pippa Riddle, Trish Scorer and Jo Hammett won their final over Gloucester in the women’s masters C/E quad, clearly extending their handicap of 14 seconds. James Oliver won the masters A/B single sculls, overcoming a two-second handicap to beat Bristol Ariel by three lengths. Hammett and Scott convincingly won their masters E/F doubles final with a handicap of 11 seconds in their favour over Llandaff. In the mixed masters B doubles, Sally Miles and Oliver lost to Gloucester by two-and-a-half lengths. The women’s masters B doubles saw Miles and Debbie Thompson beat Gloucester easily to reach the final against Bristol Ariel only for one of the latter’s blades to get caught in the weeds though they recovered to complete the course.
The 500m course the next day saw some strong rows from the junior squad. Archie Tyrell and Callum Dimmock lost their J15 singles heats to Monmouth with the former’s strong opponent winning the final. The new pairing of Taylor Mitchell, in his first regatta, and Dimmock lost their J15 doubles race to Llandaff. With no mixed categories, Tyrell and Daisy Haynes raced in the open J16 doubles and lost to two boys from Ross. Eleven-year-old Hugh Edney had his first J12 singles race and lost by only three lengths to older opposition from Cardiff and Vale Schools Rowing Academy. Willow Haynes, in the girls’ J12 singles, rowed her first contest against Ross and missed out by only half-a-length. The J16 double of Daisy Haynes and Annie Darwant lost their semi-final by one length to Avon County. Upton’s mixed masters B double of Stuart Edney and Thompson won their semi over Cardiff City by two lengths but fell in the final to City of Bristol by three lengths. Oliver and Chris Evanson had a two-second handicap against them in the masters A/B doubles and went down by two lengths to Bristol Ariel. Oliver lost his masters A 1x to Monmouth by two lengths. Miles and Thompson started badly in the women’s masters B/C doubles against Hereford and did not recover in defeat.
Upton won medals at the British Masters Championships in Nottingham. Julian and Tabitha Scrivener narrowly missed out on the championship mixed masters C doubles final. Stuart Edney and Debbie Thompson got through to the championship mixed masters A/B doubles final on appeal after being hit by a boat but failed to make the medals. In the non-championship women’s masters D-F pairs, Maggie Jamison and Liz Elston finished first by five seconds ahead of Star Club, Putney Town, Bradford and Dart Totnes.
The championship women’s masters F double of Jo Hammett and Linda Scott narrowly missed out the final by just over a second. The championship mixed masters C quad of the Scriveners, Edney and Thompson claimed silver behind Strathclyde but ahead of Bradford and Derwent. In the championship women’s masters E quads, Scott, Pippa Riddle, Trish Scorer and Hammett did not qualify for their final. The Scriveners claimed another silver in the championship mixed masters D doubles behind Exeter but ahead of Hexham/Talkin Tarn, Lakeland, Bradford and Bewl Bridge.
The women’s pair of Jamison and Elston started the next day off well with second place in the championship masters F pairs sandwiched between two crews from Weybridge. Upton men’s double of Lance Hollis and Chris Horne took third place in their non-championship masters D-F. The most exciting race for Upton was by the women’s E quad of Scott, Riddle, Scorer and Hammett in the non-championship women’s masters D-F, winning by 0.19 seconds from Broxbourne. Hammett and Scott were second in the women’s D-F non-championship event behind North Staffs but ahead of Trentham, Twickenham and Sudbury.
With the prospect of some dry weather after a very wet winter Upton RC was joined by Birmingham RC and a crew member from Bewdley RC, for the St George’s Day Row. The members of Birmingham RC, normally restricted to a 500m course, were looking forward to their long row on the first leg of the event down to, Tewksbury and back.
Six Upton Rowing Club crews secured two victories at Worcester Regatta. Olly Tomlinson and Janine Longbotham won the women’s masters C/D doubles in only their second regatta. There was a seven-second handicap against them which they overcame by about 500 metres of the 800m course. With about 100m left Tomlinson had an equipment failure and rowed without her seat to cross in a dramatic finish half-a-length ahead of Bewdley. Two crews tackled the Harry and Meghan mixed doubles with new pairing Sally Miles and James Oliver off to a bad start against Ross, having to wait at the start for an 18-second handicap. They closed the gap but lost by one length. In the final the mixed double of Stuart Edney and Debbie Thompson overcame the 18-second handicap and crossed four lengths ahead of Ross. Oliver performed well in a men’s single sculls semi-final against the eventual champion from Birmingham University to lose by just two lengths. Miles and Thompson raced in the women’s masters B double sculls final, missing out to a strong Gloucester crew by two-and-a-half lengths. Chris Horne and Lance Hollis shone in the men’s masters D/E double sculls but lost by two lengths to Worcester who then won the final.
At Nottingham Masters and Club Regatta in windy conditions, three Upton women’s crews competed on the multi-lane course ahead of the National Championships next month. The masters F pair of Maggie Jameson and Liz Killick finished a close second to York City. Upton’s F double of Linda Scott and Jo Hammett raced in two events but without any wins. The E quad of Hammett, Trish Scorer, Pippa Riddle and Scott took on Eton Excelsior and Star though again without success.
Julian and Tabitha Scrivener raced at Monmouth, overtaking Dart-Totnes at around 800m to win easily over the 1,500m course. Despite a good row, Archie Tyrell lost to City of Swansea in the J15 single sculls. Club captain Oliver fell to Sam Bannister of Cardiff University in the men’s single sculls. Miles and Thompson had three strong races against Bristol Ariel, Staines and Cardiff Met University in the women’s doubles heats to make the final. They then lost to a double from the Welsh Rowing Start Programme representing Cardiff University. Both crews raced in their masters categories with a convincing A singles win for Oliver over Reading. Miles and Thompson lost by a length having given a four-second handicap to Hereford in the women’s B/C doubles.