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Cambridge based Rob Roy Boat Club savours Henley Royal Regatta success during latest Try Rowing event





Last week’s Henley Royal Regatta yielded further evidence of the platform that Rob Roy Boat Club provides its junior rowers.

Lily Martin, Levin Graf and Jamie Gare – all of whom honed their craft with Cambridge’s most successful non-university rowing club – secured trophies at the prestigious event on the River Thames.

Martin, who earned a scholarship at Wycliffe School, picked up her prize from a junior girls’ quadruple sculls contest, while there was also quadruple sculls success for Graf. The Great Britain Under-23 squad member is the son of Rob Roy head coach Stefan Graf.

Jamie Gare, Lily Martin and Levin Graf enjoyed success at the Henley Royal Regatta
Jamie Gare, Lily Martin and Levin Graf enjoyed success at the Henley Royal Regatta

Meanwhile, Jamie Gare, who joined Rob Roy as part of the World Class Start programme, collected silverware in the double sculls.

And Rob Roy are hoping that they have unearthed future Henley winners during their latest Try Rowing Boat Race Day – the club’s annual schools outreach programme, of which Martin is a former attendee. In fact, seven of this year’s Henley contingent – Eloise Cotrel, Lara Matthams, Martha Whiting, Prune Lestienne, Ben Tazir, Grace Church and trophy winner Martin – all came through the Rob Roy programme.

Year 8 pupils from Chesterton and Parkside Schools had been preparing for Thursday’s competition on the lake at Milton Country Park.

Eloise Cotrel, Lara Matthams, Martha Whiting and Prune Lestienne
Eloise Cotrel, Lara Matthams, Martha Whiting and Prune Lestienne

Honours in the rowing machine relay went the way of the Parkside pupils, but the Chesterton teams responded with a narrow victory out on the water on the River Cam.

“Try Rowing will be just the start of a medal-winning rowing career for some of the pupils, who might never have been able to try the sport without our programme,” said Rob Roy’s director of junior rowing Jo Burch.

“We have another two juniors this year who have been awarded sixth form rowing scholarships by major rowing schools across the country.

“We are so sad to see them leave us but we’re enormously proud that joining Rob Roy has created opportunities for them which they might never have had otherwise – and not just on the water. This can be where Olympic dreams begin.

The Chesterton and Parkside pupils
The Chesterton and Parkside pupils

“It is fabulous to see our busy juniors prepared to give up their time to coach the next generation of potential scullers. They are such brilliant role models.”

Andy Thornely, head of PE at Parkside and a former Rob Roy junior, added: “Pupils compete hard to be selected for Try Rowing – to be able to introduce them to a new sport which, for some of them, becomes a life-long passion, is a real privilege.”

Chesterton team: Adi Anbar, Evie Austin, Emma Brett, Amelia Crisp, Anya Gergely, Tasha Giles, Maya Hadzilacos, Maya Kwiatkowska, Anna Langford, Sophia Payne and Ella Pounds.

Parkside team: Christy Chan, Hartley Chirico, Santiago Fletcher, Sumaiya Guenez, Ryaan Imran, Akshadha Kaistha, Jaehu Moriarty, Louis Saba-Harrison, Willow Simms, Amelie Smith, Lola Wilkes Read and Violet Wood.



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