HEXHAM rowers took top spots in two categories at the Berwick Long Distance Sculls on Sunday. 

Hexham Rowing Club’s Kevin Oates teamed up with Talkin Tarn’s Dave Hart to record the fastest time of the day over the 5km course, crossing the finish line in 21m 03.3s to win the open 2x event.

Catherine Bowman excelled in a composite crew, with Berwick’s Hilary Cairns, and they powered their way along the picturesque course on the River Tweed in 22m 41.2s to take the women’s doubles trophy.

Hexham’s open masters F 4x- crew came second in the strongly contested CEFH category, recording a time of 22m 18.4s. 

The crew of Rob Patterson, Graham Marples, John Young and Bruce Howorth were beaten only by a top quality crew from Tees Rowing Club, which won last summer’s British Masters National Championships.

Single sculler George Doody just missed out on the top spot in the open masters 1x GI category despite crossing the line with the fastest time of 26m 17.2s. 

The unfortunate Doody was beaten on the masters handicap system by an older competitor from Tyne ARC.

In their first ever outing together, Hexham’s open masters E 4x+ crew, coxed by Beverley Beattie, had no opposition in their category, as masters coxed quads have been a rarity in the Long Distance Sculling (LDS) series so far this year.

However, the crew of David Gold, Mark Styles, Jono Ewen and Neil Watson managed the choppy sections of the course well and came in with a time of 23m 55.1s, gaining a lot of race experience in the process.

The LDS series will move on to Wansbeck at the weekend. 

There is expected to be a big entry over a shorter 3.5k course. The event will be hosted by Cambois Rowing Club.

Two weeks ago, Hexham’s WJ15 girls Haley Hannant, Ciara Duncan, Lucy Thorpe, Toni-Louise Brown, coaxed by Owen Slipman, were successful at the Tyne Head event, at Tyne Amateur Rowing Club in Newcastle.