After a year of qualifying races around the country, 32 clubs from all the regions raced at the Hasler Finals at Norwich last weekend.
The Banbury team was 52 strong – slightly depleted in the run-up due to illness, but still one of the bigger teams there. Particularly impressive, as it’s not exactly local to us – indeed many camped for the weekend, which was very chilly. But no doubt helped with team-bonding!
Despite losing some of the possible podium paddlers, the club still finished 5th overall – a great achievement.
Individually, there was a gold medal for Zoe and Lee in Div 8 K2, silver (and promotion to Div 6) for Danny, and bronzes for Joe (Div 1 K1), Rob (Div 3 K1) and Josh (Div 6 K1 and promotion to Div 5).
There were big fields for most of the races, and the bouncy starts and tricky portages, with long runs definitely caught a few out.
As well as the divisional racing, the trophy for the U12s was decided, with double points awarded on the day. Lizzie and Catherine were our two Lightning paddlers, through their efforts on the day, and throughout the year – along with a few others, Banbury finished 3rd in that competition.
Next week it’s back to the short stuff, with the Warwick sprint regatta – always great fun to watch. Then, at the end of the month, we have our own Hasler race running from Banbury itself. After that – well it’s all about long distance racing through the winter. It never stops!