Marathon Nationals – Final Results

The full results for the Marathon Nationals results can be found here (without promotions/demotions)
Due to a number of corrections to the provisional results, the club points have changed resulting in Reading winning the club title, with Nottingham a very close second in front of Wey in third.
Nottingham’s chair Pete Illett confirmed that although they were disappointed not to take the title this year, they wanted to thank Reading for a fantastic event and that this has only left the club even more motivated for next year.
We would also like to extend our thanks to Reading for hosting the 2021 event. We continue to look for a venue for 2022, so please reach out if your club is interested.

Potential BUCS championship for racing

British Canoeing are in discussions with BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) about setting up a championship event for canoe racing. They are interested in the opinions of students who do canoe racing.

If you’d be interested in a BUCS championship please fill in this survey. PLEASE NOTE – it’s very much written from a sprint perspective. If you’d like to see a marathon element please make that very clear in the survey!

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/Flatwater_Student

New Speed Series – pilot races

The MRC has been working with the SRC to pilot a new series of local “Speed Series” races. The aim of these races is to create a local and regional sprint and short-course marathon competition similar to the Hasler series, and with a focus on learning and fun.

Norwich CC trialled an event among club members on 25th April, which included 200m knock-out sprints, a relay event and a 3.6k tactical race with portages.

Details of the trial can be found here, with a summary of feedback received here.

The MRC and SRC are now in discussion with a couple of clubs to reopeat this trial during 2021, with a view to launching a series of races in 2022.

Please contact Dyson Pendle if your club is interested in running a trial event

Sanabria K4 Report from Paul Dimmock, Team Manager

The annual invitation to the K4 events in Valladolid and Sanabria by the Royal Spanish Canoe Federation again did not disappoint.  There was high quality racing, exceptional hospitality and national teams from Hungary, Czech Republic, Argentina, Denmark, Portugal, ourselves and – of course – the home nation, Spain.

The GB crews selected were:

Women

Anoushka Freeman (Royal Leamington Spa), Lizzie Polgreen (Falcon Oxford), Mags Dilai (Nottingham), Anna Railton (Falcon Oxford)

Men

Albert Hicks (Norwich), Lewis Kirton (Royal), Peter Wilkes (Foy), Tom Simmons (Bradford on Avon)

Friday K1

As a prelude to the main racing, there were K1 races on the Friday over a 3.8km course with two entries per nation per class.

Anoushka & Lizzie and Lewis & Peter raced in packed fields and all put up strong performances, finishing 6th, 9th and 6th and 12th respectively.  It definitely got everyone in the mood for some quality racing, as there was sense that this was only the aperitif to the main events that were yet to come.  There was a real sense of anticipation in the GB camp that evening.

Saturday Valladolid K4 5k  

It was a crowded start line and there some big names on the water.  With countries using this as a sharpener for the Euros next weekend, the start was predictably fast and, on a tight river with 40 plus boats, both the men’s and women’s teams had an uphill battle (literally up the washes) from the start.

Tom stroked a quality race, but realistically it was an impossible task once they got behind.  However, if the men were having a challenging day at the office finishing 8th, the Hungarians struggled as well – finishing a couple of places behind GB.  This meant both crews had a point to prove the following day in Sanabria.

As with the men, the women’s boat (stroked by Mags) also struggled with the early pace.  However, with quality stroking and determination, the GB crew pulled back to 2nd place.  Alas however, the early effort had emptied the tanks and they finished 5th.

Sunday Sanabria K4 5k

A new day a new venue.  At Sanabria it was the same format – 5k over two laps.  This time both crews adopted a fast start strategy and launched their respective boats to the very front of the race.  As Lewis said after the race “after 500m I dared to look over to our left and we were head to head with the Spanish and Danes!”.

It was the same for the women, when a world class start put them at the front of the race battling it out with the Spanish and Hungarians.  Both British crews now had the space to move as they wanted rather than, as yesterday, being pushed to the back in the dirty water. The GB men stayed in the leading group throughout until the penultimate turn buoy.  Here the pick-up in pace just proved too much, and team GB and the Portuguese had the painful task of sitting a couple of boat lengths behind the leading group.  The finishing order was Denmark, Spain, Czech Republic, Hungary, Portugal, GB.

After their blistering start the women settled into a strong cruise along with the other top nations.   Again, similar to the men, when the big efforts came for the turn buoys they just missed out.  They also had to contend with the wash from a launch carrying an excited TV camera crew, which made a return to the front group a step too far, leaving them finishing 4th behind Spain, Hungary, Denmark.

The combined results placed Team GB 4th in the medal table, with our crews always in the top 8 over the finish line.  This was a more than credible result for a development squad but, as is the way with high achieving athletes, they wanted more and are looking to return next year to improve.

As Team Manager there are always logistical challenges, changes to programmes, transportation issues etc, but these are all part of the job, so to speak. However, the reward is the privilege to work alongside athletes who give their all on the regatta course.  The K4 teams at the weekend gave absolutely 100%, so you may think they fulfilled their part of the team equation. However, what isn’t reflected in the results is the commitment they gave to supporting one another, and the ambassadorial role they played representing British Canoeing on and off the water.

Paul Dimmock

National Marathon Team Manager

GB paddlers bring home two medals from top quality German Nationals

Report by Team Manager, Brian Greenham

Results here

The German National Championship is an open event and part of the ICF World Series, attracting many of Europe’s top marathon racers. A young GB team of U17s and U23s was selected from the assessment race at Reading, to ‘race up’ in the junior and senior classes and gain international experience.

Continue reading “GB paddlers bring home two medals from top quality German Nationals”