Wraysbury BDA Race hosted by Wraysbury Dragon Boat Club

About the race

The morning session comprised 200m races with crews competing in two heats, their aggregate times deciding which crews raced each other in the final round.

In 200m racing the start is crucial and Henley Dragons have spent a lot of time developing this skill.

In their first heat Henley were drawn against Worcester, after making a flying start Henley pressed home their advantage and enjoyed a winning margin of 4 seconds.

In the second heat, Henley raced Cambridgeshire Royals, and converted a great start into a 2-second victory. Henley’s aggregate times placed them in the minor final, racing for third place overall against hosts and local rivals Wraysbury.

In their battle against Wraysbury, Henley once again made a flying start and after 21 strokes were three seats up on their rivals. As expected Wraysbury battled hard all the way to the finish line but were never able to head Henley who took third place by less than a tenth of a second.

Winners of the major final and taking first place overall was Typhoon, beating Amathus into second place. On this day over 200m, these two teams were in a league of their own.

The second part of the day comprised a 5000m pursuit with the slowest crew in the 200m race starting 20 seconds before the next slowest crew and so on down to Wraysbury, Henley, Amathus and Typhoon. This time Amathus pipped Typhoon by just one tenth of a second while Wraysbury turned the tables on Henley who finished fourth fastest.

Combing the results of both races, Typhoon and Amathus shared top spot with Henley and Wraysbury sharing third place. The points gained from this event move Henley four places up the league table and further progress is expected if they can show similar form in the upcoming races.

A few words from our coach

Just wanted to send a quick (ish) message to you all for yesterday. To achieve the times that we did in the 200 not only surprised me but all the BDA officials and coaches of some of the top clubs.

We had 7 new Henley paddlers in our boat and a brand new drummer! The supporters were awesome and definitely squeezed an extra few power strokes out of me! Rob from Bristol was also bloody awesome in the helm and made a huge difference.
Our 200 times were all within a second of each other which is exactly what I want to see as a coach. It shows we are consistent throughout and focused. Our starts were the most impressive part and to take 3 seats off Wraysburys strongest team at the transition is a sign of what we can do.
The 5ks taught me a lot about what we as a club need to do in training… In the first 500 we took 2 seconds off Wraysbury and were catching them convincingly. Those guys are machines at long distance so that alone is impressive.
We did then reach the 1.5km mark and we really started to drop. When Amathus came along side we stayed with them for a long way and followed the race plan which meant we really caught up Rage.
For me with 7 new paddlers, it showed potential, we now need to turn that into talent and consistency. We are building and have the 200s sorted. Next, we smash the 500s whilst also working on stamina.
If you want that feeling of winning a major final then we train and sweat as a team. We wear our new kit with pride and carry on being the humble and polite team that we are currently known for.
Last year we had a very very special team who went on to win most of the big trophies. The team yesterday have already beaten that squads best 200 so just think about that!
We train to race so let’s go race and put a few teams in the Prems back in their box 😉

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