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Record number of crews to compete at major rowing event in Inverness

By Will Clark

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A RECORD number of crews will be competing at the Inverness Fours/Quads and Small Boats Head which starts tomorrow.

Winning ladies' quad crew: Sarah Brennan, Hazel Smith, Katie Van Exan, Hazel Geddes. Picture: Donald Cameron.
Winning ladies' quad crew: Sarah Brennan, Hazel Smith, Katie Van Exan, Hazel Geddes. Picture: Donald Cameron.

The event which takes place on Saturday and Sunday will see 553 crews of fours, quads and small boats competing on the Caledonian Canal.

A record number of crews representing clubs, schools and universities from all over Scotland will be travelling to Inverness to compete in this highly significant event in the Scottish rowing calendar with several Inverness crews racing in each division on both days of the regatta.

The event returns to action this year following its cancellation in 2020 due to the impact of the pandemic.

Inverness Rowing Club honorary president Roy Sinclair says the number of entries this year is outstanding, considering it was cancelled last year due to Covid-19.

“This is the largest head event in Scotland and challenges with some of the events in England for size and number of competitors,” said Sinclair.

“People are trying to get back to normality as much as they can.

“There are still Covid cases and we are being cautious about taking care of people.

“Visitors will be asked not to come into the clubhouse but different facilities will be available.

“We hope the weather conditions will be reasonable for rowing, it will be cool, but not unreasonable for this time of year.

“The weather could be helpful for certain stretches of the canal.

The event is being sponsored by Highland Campervans whose spokesman Steve Bunn says they are pleased that they have helped such a prestigious event return to the Inverness sports calendar.

He said: “We are delighted to sponsor and support Inverness Rowing Club in the first local competitive rowing regatta in Inverness for almost two years since lockdown and the reopening of the canal on completion of the Inverness West Link project.”

The club received support from Scottish Canals, Caley Marina and Gael Force Marine in assisting to make the event possible.

Crews will race over the 4500 metre course from Dochgarroch to the finish line beside the rowing club boathouse close to Tomnahurich Bridge.

Racing tomorrow starts at 11.15am and 11.30am for crews in division 1 and at 2.45pm and 3pm for crews in division 2. On Sunday, division 1 starts at 10.45am and 11.15am with division 2 at 2.15pm and 2.45pm.

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