Anster Regatta 2017

A beachful of skiffs from St Andrews; Boatie Blest; Newburgh; Eastern; The FOCCRs; Royal West; North Berwick; Portsoy; and Brunillidh (Helmsdale) descended on Anstruther last weekend for the St Ayles Rowing Club’s Regatta on Saturday 6th May. After days and days of North Easterlies blowing large swells into the Firth of Forth, the weather remained consistent and gave visiting rowers a glimpse of coastal rowing conditions we enjoy in the East.

Racing was held outside the Harbour in a straight West to East transect from the Billowness back to Anster Harbour. The first race was the Men’s Open, with Eastern leading the field by 10 seconds, followed by North Berwick, and Helmsdale. The Women’s Open followed however deteriorating conditions led to the race being postponed. Time for Plan B!

A second coxes briefing relayed Plan B; a 2 skiff chase course within the Harbour which involved racing around the outside of a set of buoys. Races were now fast – all recorded less than 3 minutes – and it tested the Coxswain’s skills manoeuvring around the buoys as every marginal gain counted. The fastest time of the day came from Boatie’s Mixed 40+ who got round in 2:03!

Races were now fully in view of the beach, and the support for each skiffs was felt as they raced past the beach. With changes to the racing schedule, the Women’s Open was conducted at lunchtime; the top three places were dominated by Firth of Forth clubs, with Anster 1st, Eastern 2nd, and North Berwick 3rd. Sadly we ran out of time to hold the ‘Andy’ race, but it was clear to see the spirit of Andy was visible in the mixed club crews racing.

Table: Results

Men’s Open Women’s Open Mix 60 Women’s 50 Mix 40
1 Eastern 3.54 1 Anster 2.21 1 N Berwick 2.25 1 Anster 2.32 1 Port Seton 2.03
2 N Berwick 4.04 2 Eastern 2.25 2 FOCCRs 2.27 2 Port Seton 2.36 2 N Berwick 2.11
3 Helmsdale 4.16 3 N Berwick 2.28 3 Anster 2.28 3=Eastern, 2.40  N Berwick 3= Eastern, 2.18
Mix Open Mix 50 Men’s Decades Mix Novice Mix Decades
1 Port Seton 2.09 1 Anster 2.15 1 N Berwick 2.13 1 Port Seton 2.23 1 Port Seton 2.16
2 Eastern 2.15 2 Port Seton 2.19 2 Newburgh 2.14 2 Portsoy 2.34 2 N Berwick 2.23
3 Anster 2.18 3= Eastern, 2.21

St Andrews

3 Helmsdale 2.16 3 Newburgh 2.38 3 Eastern 2.27

After the races clubs then put their effort into winning the “trophy worth tugging for” (unknown, 2017) in the beach Tug O’War. Tough contests were fought, but Helmsdale showed their brawn to win with ease.

At Prize-giving medals were spread out amongst all the clubs, and shortly after the party started!

On behalf of St Ayles Rowing Club, we’d like to thank everyone who supported us on the day and the clubs who came from so far and near. It’s the rowers that make regattas fun and special – we look to more friendly-competitive encounters over the 2017 regatta season!

St Ayles Rowing Club (website)

St Ayles Rowing Club (Facebook)

Allan Robertson’s amazing photos (Flickr)

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