On the 20th of August, our lovely club from Plucks Gutter travelled up the A2 for The Danson Dashes. It was a very early start for us all, having to assemble our trailer for the 10 exciting races we had ahead of us. Special mention to Jon for taking the trailer, we’d be lost without you!
As we pulled into the grounds of Danson, we were pleased to see the beautiful facilities on offer throughout the day. The surroundings were picturesque and we were really looking forward to rowing on an almost straight course!
The very first race of the day, the open four event, saw our new boat, the Richard Dunning (kindly gifted to us by Sudbury Rowing Club last year), making its maiden voyage racing in an event under our colours and boy were we excited to get this beauty on the water! The crew of Jon, Lewis, Manny and Lewin, coxed by Sarah, valiantly battled the Gravesend home crew but a mechanical issue just off the start stymied their chances.
Shortly after, it was the ladies’ turn, racing in a coxed quad. The crew of Anneka, Michèle, Tsvetelina and Sarah, coxed by Manny fought another Gravesend crew, but was unable to qualify for the final. The crew, however, was inducted in the art of transferring a single 10 mm nut as well as a rigger jigger from one boat to the other, as the competitors’ boat had lost a rigger nut rowing to the start line, and the crew was happy to help them out. Foes only when the racing takes place!
Our wins of the day included Lewis Perry French in the under-18 single scull, a very promising young athlete that all of Spitfire are proud to call him our own. Lewin Hynes and club captain Manuel Marques powered through their semi and onto winning their final of the band B open double sculls by several boat lengths! A huge congratulations to the guys for winning their events and we hope many other Spitfire crews can follow suit in upcoming regattas.
It was the debut of Tsvetelina and Sarah racing in a double, and they did well fighting their semi-final, losing to the crew who ended up winning the overall event. We are sure we will be seeing more of these two in the future ?. Other highlights included the beautiful burgers and cakes that our clubmates inhaled after a day of racing.
Our last race of the day was the Mixed 4+, the second time going in our New Boat the Richard Dunning, rowed by Jon, George, Sarah F and Michele, and coxed by Manny. This crew did us proud, fighting till the very end and proving that Spitfire has got some exciting up and coming mixed crews.
We would like to thank Gravesend Rowing Club for lending us their boat for our ladies 4x+ and for the wonderfully organised regatta Danson Dashes (thanking their co-organisers, Erith Rowing Club, as well). It was certainly a highlight in our rowing calendars and we look forward to joining in on the next one in 2023!
Some photos of the event, courtesy of Tsvetelina: