Secklow Hundred put in a fine performance on the waters as the Henley Winter Series got under way last Sunday.
The team raced excellently to set the sixth fastest time of the day, leaving them in an excellent position to build in the forthcoming races.
The Henley Winter Season is made up of four long distance time trials over a course of roughly 7km for the ever popular dragon boats to compete against one-another
A squad of 21, including the five new faces of Frances Wenham, Vince Bangs, Dave Robinson and Jen Collinson, and a new drummer of Lauren Cannon, set off on the staggered start and immediately launched an attack on Pink Champaign, who had started before them
Quickly catching and passing them, the Secklow boat raced downstream towards Temple Island, with a strong Hurricanes crew hot on their heels.
They’d eventually lose out to them, but kept close on their tail.
After an efficient first turn at Temple island, Secklow fired up for the return leg upstream. This was the hardest part of the race with the crew tiring, requiring many calls from the helm.
As they passed through the bridge, the sound of mild alarm in the helm’s voice meant Secklow were getting caught by Wraysbury and Rafters crews.
David, at the helm, did brilliantly to keep Secklow ahead before the turn at the island, giving them the choice of lines around it and into the home straight.
But with the other two boats pulling alongside, Secklow dug deep and despite a paddle clash with Wraysbury, they powered through the line.
The final time was 35:59 and sixth place overall out of 11 crews.
Dan Shoesmith the club captain said: “The time was a solid start to the series, which we shall look to build on over the coming months.
“We beat the Worcesterboat, which is a fantastic achievement, and were less than a minute off Thames and Henley crews.
“Mark Welsh (coach) and I are very proud of the effort.”
Secklow Hundred are always looking for new members to join the club.
If you want to give it a try, go along to Caldecotte lake on Sundays at 10am or visit www.secklow.com for more information.