Coastal rowing club take on tough opposition at regatta

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Arran Coastal Rowing Club, (ACRC) took part in the Royal West of Scotland Amateur Boat Club Regatta in Greenock, where they secured a well deserved third place overall, last Saturday.

Given the quality of the other participants – very strong and well established clubs such as St Ayles Anstruther, North Berwick, Firth of Clyde Coastal Rowing Club in Largs and the hosts – Arran knew it was going to be a challenging competition.

Over the course of the day there were 10 races in a variety of categories – open, 40+ and 50+ for women, men and mixed crews as well as one for juniors. The time trial format of the races was also new for ACRC. Each crew started the races at two minute intervals with a crew member collecting a baton at the starter’s cabin at the top of the beach, sprinting down the slipway and jumping into the skiff waiting at the beach. The skiff then had to be pushed off the beach by team members and turned by the crew to head for the first turning buoy of a triangular course of approximately 1500m. At the end of the race one crew member had to jump out of the skiff, sprint up the beach and return the baton to the starter’s cabin which stopped the clock. All very exciting for both rowers and spectators.

As always there was plenty of opportunity between the races to socialise with rowers from the other clubs, make new friends and catch up with old ones, exchange tips and tricks and enjoy the warm hospitality of the host club. ACRC was delighted to welcome four relatively new rowers to their first regatta, all of whom did extremely well and enjoyed the day.

Despite being a bit chilly and drizzly the 13 ACRC rowers – five ladies and eight men – and their supporting shoremaster were very pleased at the end of the day. Overall the ACRC team came in joint third with Largs, only beaten by Anstruther and North Berwick, who are among the top east coast clubs. One of Arran’s men’s crews was only beaten by one second and the 50+ women’s crew, made up with a North Berwick rower, won their race and secured some well deserved medals for the club. All in all an excellent result for ACRC, especially given the fact that they were unable to take part in the first race of the day due to the ferry limiting their arrival time.

The next regatta for ACRC is coming up soon, which is the Cumbrae Folk’n’Row Regatta on the weekend of August 12 and 13.

ACRC has grown significantly over the past 18 months and has a wide variety of members from all over the island with ages ranging from 20 to 70. If you would like to give coastal rowing a try then feel free to get in contact by email at

Stuart Turner

First place winners and bringing home the medals, the ACRC 50+ women’s rowers. No_B31regatta01

The winning Arran team in action. No_B31regatta02

Seabhag is launched from the shore. No_B31regatta03

Arran coastal skiff Seabhag with a mixed set of rowers. No_B31regatta04