The rocks around Herm provided 25 boats with a challenging weekend of racing at the annual Sure Herm Rocks Rowing Regatta.
The three day event, which moved to September last year in a bid to avoid bad weather, started with the first race being cancelled due to rough seas and a deteriorating forecast. Rather than not take to the water, the boats, including three from Jersey, took part in an escorted flotilla across to Herm. Saturday’s Around Herm Race was the final Championship race of the season and saw boats follow a six kilometre course around the island.
All of the top placed crews sealed their season victories with no serious upsets to the championship order arising from the results although there were some surprise race placings from teams such as the novice ladies four Rude Health who put in a brilliant performance and came second.
Saturday also had its fair share of much anticipated slip-ups with the Siteweld Slumdogs managing to scrape their rudder off on the same rock two years running to much amusement within the club.
Sunday’s Trident Trophy handicap race, consisting of a 10km figure of eight around both Herm and Jethou, was won in style by ladies pair BTS Fillies with Jersey crew Boat 101 following close behind. The race sealed a Handicap Series victory for the Siteweld Slumdogs who managed to get a replacement rudder shipped across from Guernsey just in time. Conditions for the day were forecast to be difficult; however whilst the wind was certainly up, the sea was only a little more challenging with the water to the west side of Herm facing Guernsey beautifully calm. The regatta’s inevitable interaction with a rock was provided by Brooks Macdonald, who did not quite manage to negotiate clear passage through an intensely tidal section on the northwest of Herm where boats are pulled though and quick thinking is needed to avoid running aground.
‘The weekend wouldn’t have been the success it was if it wasn’t for the support of the guard boaters who turned out in force, and for Sure whose sponsorship ensures that we can lay on a great weekend of rowing and entertainment,’ said Guernsey Captain Tom Martel.
David Brown who came over with the Jersey Rowing Club said it had been an amazing weekend.
‘We have all come back to Jersey with huge smiles on our faces, excited to share our experiences with the poor people who were unable to get over. Conditions around Herm were awesome. That was coastal rowing. Next year will not come quick enough.’