Race Report

Henley Winter Series 2011 Race 3
13 February 2011

Good Evening All

I don't often look at facebook, but, as Em mysteriously went on to facebook this afternoon, I had a brief look at the news feeds when I picked up the laptop to do this report and from what I saw, Henley Winter Series 13th Feb 2011 a lot of our crew 'liked this'

So I'm putting the call out already to get a full boat for the next race on 13th March 2011, now I'm pretty sure I've already got 15 for the next Henley at here's why.

Today will now go down as another one of those days in the annuls of Secklow history. The crew all arrived bright and early and at 10a.m. the boat arrived. 15 paddlers, a drummer and helm set of at 10.45 to represent Secklow, as usual we were sent out first, as the target for everyone else to chase. With 15 paddlers and a strong headwind we would be paddling into after turning at Temple Island, this was going to be hard, but for the first time this winter we got to Temple Island without getting caught, in fact with Em's excellent calls and a new belief in the team, we turned to head back towards Henley and the power didn't drop. We were a good third of the way back to the bridge before we were overhauled by another crew and with clever manoeuvring from Em, we gained a bit of respite for a few strokes. But the fun and games starts just before the bridge. Em calls for a bit more reach as we are being caught, we go under Henley bridge still second but with the echo of Typhoons drum only feet behind, another call from Typhoons helm sees them start to overhaul us, but we were not going to let this happen and so starts a 750m race between the 2 boats, every time they dig to get past we dig further and hold them off, the boats get closer a slight clash of paddles, and a slip from Typhoons helm as he tries to hold a course, and they veer off slightly, and we take advantage and surge forward we now have clear water for the turn, turn? what turn?. At this point Em who's so caught up in the moment decides to go a bit ditzy and take us on a tour of parts of Henley we've not seen before (sorry Em). From 2nd to 5th in one turn but and with another team hunting us down in the home straight, we eventually finished 6th but it was a case of oh what could have been.

So here come the thank you's and well done's, firstly thanks to Typhoon who made us race like we've never raced at Henley before, thank you to Freya for drumming brilliantly with an empty bottle of Evian, and getting a blister on behalf of the team, thanks to Sally for towing the boat, finally thanks to Em, who is currently feeling like the goalkeeper who has made 10 brilliant saves to keep his team in the game and then lets the ball slip through his legs in the last minute, and the reason for this is that today all of you who paddled for Secklow were awesome!!

Anyway today we took the club to a new level, and with a full contingent of paddlers next time out I'm sure we can take another big step, hopefully in the right direction, eh, Em?

Cheers

Trotter


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