The National Masters Rowing Championships Is, just as it says on the tin, the annual gathering of 'Masters' rowers from all over the country to compete on the 6 lane 2km rowing lake at Holme Pierrpoint, Nottingham. While 'Masters' are indeed rowers of more mature years it should be noted that in the world of rowing your are deemed to be a 'Master' from the tender age of 27 years!
These national races are then held as six lane side by side events over a 1,000m course, almost always into a headwind and on this particular day that wind was said to be circa 30mph and creating large hairy waves near the start. Conditions were so extreme that the whole event had to be stopped and cancelled mid-afternoon for safety reasons.
Masters are graded into age categories and our man Cuan was taking part in a coxed four for the 'F' category (over 60s). Fellow crew mates Tim, Troupy and Simon together with cox Karen made a conscious decision to shorten the strokes a little through the rough water and keep the stroke rate high. Almost never have they tried such a thing before but Boy did it work! They romped into an early lead and increased that lead through the race finishing just over a length ahead of their nearest rival.
Cuan and friends thus became National Champions in the field of 'old people's rowing' taking gold for Abingdon Rowing Club.