09:00AM, Monday 27 April 2020
Rowers from Great Marlow School joined more than 100 competitors for the virtual Bewl Head event earlier this month.
The annual Bewl Head race day, which attracts teams from clubs and schools across the south of England, had to be called off because of the coronavirus. But enterprising organisers got a little creative and managed to drum up support from the rowing community for a virtual event.
For three hours on April 5, rowers had the chance to compete on rowing machines in various races and send in their times. Those times were then aggregated to give an average time for the competing crews. Great Marlow School competed against a number of clubs, including the Tideway Scullers and Bewl Head RC.
Junior coach at Bewl Head, Wendy Morten, explained: “We decided to run a virtual Bewl Head for the whole club, friends and families as a way of holding the rowing community together.
“The three hours allowed for families to share rowing machines. The response from members and other local clubs was fantastic so we created a bit more competition and a wider community feel.
“The times for those doing it were aggregated for a crew time and the averaging worked really well and meant everyone was involved. Fancy dress was encouraged with photo opportunities and virtual tea and cake afterwards. No prizes though, instead a great sense of achievement and community.”
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