Devizes to Westminster 2017

Post date: 18-Apr-2017 12:42:01

So proud of team Fowey this year what great performances from both paddlers and support crews to give Fowey their best overall results this year. With 5 boats entered we achieved a 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th. We also managed to get two senior crews in the top 5, something that is not often achieved especially not by a club as small as ours, this is something that should be rewarded in its self.

Devizes to Westminster International Canoe Race (DW) is a 125 mile long race with 77 portages held annually over the Easter weekend. There is two ways of the completing this ultra-marathon; straight through or in stages. Senior crews in K2’s (doubles) have to complete the challenge in one go paddling straight through the night. Whereas senior K1 boats (singles) complete the race in stages over the 4 days of the Easter bank holiday weekend. Junior K2’s also have to complete the in stages but have an extra challenge of having to camp overnight after each days racing. The DW is a real challenge which requires much preparation and support throughout.

Fowey River Canoe Club entered five boats into this year’s race; 2 senior K2 boats, 2 junior K2 boats, and a senior K1.

Dan Palmer and Ryan Pearce were one of our senior crew boats this year who completed the race straight through with a fantastic time of 18 hours 17 minutes and 8 seconds, taking 3rd place. This was Dan’s first ever straight through race (despite a fantastic history of results in the junior event) so an amazing achievement for such a young paddler. An extra congratulations is needed for Ryan who this year completed his 8th DW race, allowing him to join the 1000 mile club, a fantastic achievement which requires lots of dedication and motivation.

Michael Southey and Harry Gilbert were our other senior crew boat who completed the race in 18 hours 54 minutes and 8 seconds, placing 5th. Well done boys! This was both Mike’s and Harry’s second straight through race and they managed to beat Harrys previous time by over an hour and a half despite the poor conditions this year.

Matthew Collinge and Tom Steer were our youngest paddlers to enter the race and completed the Junior 4 day stages race in a time of 17 hours 42 minutes and 24 seconds, taking 4th in this junior men event. An amazing result for an inexperienced crew. This was Matt’s first DW race and Tom’s second who beat his previous time by nearly 2 hours.

Alice Bray and Wey paddler Jemima Young were our other Junior K2, who completed the stages race in a time of 19 hours 36 minutes and 4 seconds, taking 1st place in the junior ladies race by nearly 2 hours. Such a fantastic result for a crew who have only paddled together a couple of times previously.

Our final boat this year was Lena Kraus who entered into the senior ladies K1 race and completed the stages event with a time of 20 hours 15 minutes and 37 seconds, placing 2nd in this event. Well done Lena for improving your previous time by 1 and a half hours, fantastic work.

Not only did our Fowey paddlers receive some fantastic individual results, we also entered into the trans-class team trophy where the results for the clubs fastest senior double are, junior double and senior single are combined. Fowey won this trophy with by 8 hours a fantastic achievement by Matt, Tom, Ryan, Dan and Lena whose times were combined. Well done everyone.

Once again this would not be possible without the dedication of the whole club in supporting these paddlers throughout the races. Or without the support, dedication or guidance from our coach Brian Greenaway who we would all like to thank. Well done team Fowey!

Above - Fowey Paddlers at Westmister Bridge (from left to right; Lena Kraus, Alice Bray, Jemima Young, Dan Palmer, Ryan Pearce, Harry Gilbert, Tom Steer and Matt Collinge)

Below - Team Fowey 2017 at Westminster Bridge

Senior Crews finish (from left to right; Harry Gilbert, Michael Southey, Dan Palmer and Ryan Pearce)