Heineken Cup race report

Posted on Wed, 27 Mar, 2024

Congratulations to Emma, Sophia, Charlotte, Allison and Jo who took on the big Heineken Cup race through the canals of Amsterdam last weekend. Allison shares insight into their experience:

'Sophia's ‘save the date’ in November had us imagining a relaxing spa weekend somewhere warm but it turned out to be for something far more adventurous.  She had entered us into our first international rowing event, the highly competitive Heineken Roeivierkamp in Amsterdam, with over 3200 participants from all over the world rowing in 3 or 4 races over 2 days through a beautiful stretch of the Amstel River.  So many questions...How to find a boat? What about a cox? How to train for such an event?  Would the red flags on the Tideway ever abate? How many more ergs would we have to do? Many emails and anxious weeks later we sorted a boat and Emma kindly agreed to cox for us. Little did we know at the time what a treasure she would turn out to be!
Saturday, 16th March, and the big weekend had arrived. After a few more anxiety-inducing moments, including an unexpected bow-coxed shell that required Emma to lie in bow (which she embraced after a few calls back home), some missing nuts and bolts (quickly fixed by our fabulous host club Skoll) and a few exchanges lost in translation, we found ourselves at the start of the 2500m, immediately followed by the line-up for the 250m sprint.  Tired but happy with the first day's work we cycled off to see the sights of Amsterdam and enjoy the friendly welcome dinner for international crews hosted by KARZV De Hoop. An opportunity to make friends with other clubs for future away trips!  

Sunday, 17th March, was the day of the 5000m, a distance we were definitely more comfortable with. We made a good start, rowing strong and further encouraged by the rain holding off and the wind dropping. Then about a third of way in Emma announced in a calm but measured voice that the steering cable had broken but that we should keep calm and carry on. With the steering wire wrapped tightly around her bare hands, she drove us on, even passing a few crews along the way.   

It was an incredible experience—challenging but so much fun. We met and raced against some inspiring and highly accomplished Masters rowers and acquired a taste for competing internationally, so watch this space.'

Wow, what an adventure! Huge congratulations to Emma, Sophia, Charlotte, Allison and Jo and thanks for sharing this incredible account of your experience.

©2024  All rights reserved.     Company Number: 8900584     Registered Charity Number: 1161813
Sign up to newsletter

Stay up-to-date with the latest FRBC news, events and promotions