Technical issues threatened to put an end to Exmouth’s day of racing before it begun at Lyme Regis regatta on Saturday 13th August.
Exmouth Gig Club rowers were unfazed despite having to borrow different Gigs for each race, as they threw themselves into the mix in the choppy conditions.
Racing to the Southwest of the historic Cobb Harbour, Cornish Pilot Gigs from clubs in Devon, Dorset and Hampshire fought a headwind and each other as they competed to reach the 2 buoy turns, before sprinting back to the finish line.
One of the more exciting races saw the Exmouth Ladies Crew amidst a crowded jostling start line in a brand new Gig kindly loaned to them by Clifton Gig Club. The Exmouth Ladies were so accustomed to rowing their older heavier boat that they flew off the start line in the newer lighter Gig, only to be cut off by another crew and having to take evasive action to prevent striking them. The Ladies were not flustered by the hand they were dealt and made up some ground before yet more close contact at the first turn. The crew were encouraged by this performance and being right in the mix with other more experienced clubs around every leg of the course gave Coxswain Ben Atkinson lots of hope for future events. ‘Next year we will be racing in a brand new Gig which will no doubt see us in a more competitive position in close fought racing like this. The girls felt the benefit of a newer Gig today which will spur them on ahead of the arrival of our own new gig next spring.’
Word had got around the Gig Community about Exmouth Gig Club’s recent ‘One Family Foundation’ £25,000 award, which is funding the construction of their new gig. ‘Many clubs congratulated us at the Lyme Regis event and its partly thanks to them that we were successful winning the award, proving how generous the Gig Community can be’.
The Mixed category gave Exmouth’s Nic Price, Polly Williams and Ellie Richoux a thrilling race, finishing with 5 boats behind them in a crew put together on the day with 3 Men’s rowers from Swanage.