Lyme Regis gig regatta proves to be a huge success

Action from the Lyme Regis Regatta

Action from the Lyme Regis Regatta - Credit: Archant

It was the turn of Lyme Regis Gig Club to play host to the next round on the gig racing calendar.

In a complete contrast to last year, this year`s event was held under a blue sky with very little wind.

An almost calm sea afforded some great racing conditions, although, after the ladies and men’s supervets race had taken place, the increasing air temperatures together with little or no wind on the water, made the course considerably more demanding than usual!

From a safety perspective, a decision was made following this race to shorten the course.

Preceding this race was the junior event, which was held over a shorter course. A field of 10 boats entered this race. The Lyme crew in Tempest started well, settling in to the leading pack to eventually finish second behind Bridport gig Dagger (the crew comprising of some of the Lyme rowers).

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In the ladies’ and men’s super vets Lyme finished a most creditable fourth in each race.

In the ladies A race the Lyme boat Rebel, with a composite crew from the Newquay club, topped up with rowers from other clubs, took an early lead, but eventually came in 11th ahead of the Spirit of Langstone, the crew of which had travelled from Hayling Island in Hampshire. The race was won by Rogue (Ilfracombe) with Winspit (Swanage) taking second place and Tristan (Weymouth) third.

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The men’s A event saw Rebel (Lyme Regis) break free from a clustered pack at the start of the race. The crew was boosted by the presence of members of the Newquay contingent and rebel crossed the line first with Tristan (Weymouth) and Tempest (Lyme Regis) taking then minor places.

The ladies B were next off the blocks. Again with rowers from Newquay, declared as a composite crew, Rebel was quickly away from the line and pulling out an early lead. Staying within reach of them for most of the course were Pegasus (Brixham) and Tistan (Weymouth) who took second and third behind Rebel. The other Lyme boat, Tempest finished tenth, ahead of Keith Owen (Sidmouth) and Young Bristol (Bristol).

The ladies C race was won by Pegasus (Brixham) with the Lyme crew a most impressive fourth.

The men’s B race was won by Brixham with Weymouth second and the Lyme crew aboard Rebel, taking third place.

With the overall standings becoming clearer the men’s C race was held and this was won by Rogue (Ilfracombe) with Young Bristol (Bristol) second and Tempset (Lyme Regis) in third.

Testament to the fact that rowing is good for `all ages` was borne by the Sidmouth club who had rowing with the crew in Keith Owen a team member aged 87! The crew started last, but passed three boats over the course to finish 10th out of 14 crews.

With three races remaining the five contenders for the overall title were; Weymouth, Lyme, Brixham, Ilfracombe and Bridport.

In the ladies vets race Tristan (Weymouth) took the honours with Kerens (Torridge) and Dagger (Bridport) bagging the minor places.

The penultimate race was the men’s vets and all the days big five were amongst the contenders before the one, two three, finished as Ilfracombe, Lyme Regis and Brixham with the next three boats home; Weymouth, Portland and Bridport.

Fittingly, the last race, the mixed crews which included a composite crew from Newquay and others and they very much set the pace for this event. Hunting them down with every stoke were Swanage, Ilfracombe, Bristol and Weymouth. However, it was Swanage who took the lead over the composite crew, finishing first with Ilfracombe, Brixham and Weymouth crossing in this order.

That all left Weymouth as the day’s overall champions with Ilfracombe taking second place and the hosts club third.

The Lyme Regis Gig Club would like to thank all of their sponsors for their support and all the harbour users; the fishermen, sailors, powerboaters, etc, for being so supportive throughout the day .

Thanks must also go to harbourmaster Grahame Foreshaw and his team for all their help.

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