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ROWING: Bridport finish eighth
6:00pm Monday 26th August 2013 in Sport
BRIDPORT’S junior rowers have finished eighth in the Under-16 County Gig Championship.
The intrepid Bridport crew consisted of a mixture of Beam-inster and Colfox school pupils – Rex Fisher, Sam Weston, Jake Preston, William Aburrow, Anya Loudon and Hollie Kenway, with Chris Day coxing, for the event in Newquay.
Following defeat to Portland at the Bridport Regatta, and lack of training due to the poor weather, no one was sure what to expect from the event.
The weather forecast for the racing was terrible, predicting rain and wind all day.
It was touch and go if the event would go ahead but it did despite the wet weather, with the sea remaining relatively flat all day.
In their first event, Bridport were up against Looe and New-quay, where each race was a three-turn affair of approximately 1.2 miles.
Following a confused start, with teams not hearing the radio, Bridport juniors powered into a lead at the first buoy turn, which was a lead they never gave up on to see them reach the quarter-finals.
They next faced Cadgwith C, Looe again, and a strong, well-fancied team from Cotehele Quay on the Tamar River.
This time, Bridport made a good start and were again leading to the first buoy.
They held this lead to the end, holding off Cotehele Quay by half a boat length in a very hard-fought race.
Unfortunately for Bridport, they were then grouped with Caradon A, fastest qualifiers for the semi-final, and this year's eventual winners, Cadgwith A team, last year’s winners and hot favourites, and old rivals Cotehele Quay who were looking to overturn the last-eight defeat to Bridport.
It turned out to be a race too far for the inexperienced youngsters and they came in a close fourth, leaving them eighth overall in the tournament.
With close rivals, and fellow Dorset rowers Portland, coming home in 13th, it was a brilliant championship for Dorset.
Bridport were proud to be the highest finish team from outside Cornwall, the traditional heartland of gig rowing.
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