Congratulations Nia!

8th April, 2019

Nia Haddon, one of our Juniors, has been selected for WAGS and Wales in the Junior Inter-regional races! She did her 1000m trial, in 4.401mins, on Avon County’s stretch Sunday afternoon and was selected as a J15 single sculler (15s and under).

We caught up with our latest success story earlier this week:

Silly question, but how are you feeling about this? Can you put it into words?
I’m really excited and a bit nervous about the next race.

Tell us what the trials were like?
There was a lot of waiting around (as always) and once the race started it felt like it was over really quickly, then the row back to Minerva was a bit of a drag.

Talk us through your row…
I thought that the race was a regatta start but as the person before me set off I realised that they were doing rolling starts, so I had a few frantic seconds trying to remember what Arnold had said about rolling starts and after that I stuck to my race plan; striding after 250m, keeping a 27/28 stroke rate for the middle 500m and then building up for the last 250m, I misjudged where the finish was so I heard the bell a few strokes before I was expecting to. Throughout the whole race I couldn’t tell if the girl after me, who was in my category, was gaining on me or not.

There’s been some research out last week about how girls are often reluctant to exercise… why do you love rowing so much?
I enjoy how competitive it is, with everyone pushing themselves to do the best they can but there is also a friendly community within the competitiveness, if it’s at the Club or chatting to rivals before and after races.

What is rowing at Minerva juniors like?
I’ve really enjoyed rowing with the Minerva Juniors the last 2 years, the coaches are great and I’ve made some good friends.

What are your plans for the future and rowing now then?
I’ll be competing on the regional team on 27th April, at Peterborough, at the Inter-Regional Regatta. I’d also like to take part in the schools national regatta. Other than that I’ll just be training and racing as much as possible and see what happens.

An explainer from Arnold Cooke:

The JIRR will be held at Peterborough on the 4-lane, 1000m course, on the 27th of April.
The country is divided into 12 regions and each region selects crews and scullers at J14, J15 and J16 for a variety of boat classes. First heats are effectively time trials: the fastest four make final A, the next fastest, final B, then C. Regions get 12 points for winning an A final, down the 1 point for coming 4th in the C final. The region with the higher overall score at the end of the event wins the JIRR!

We have had people selected from Minerva in the past. Our most successful individual was Tom Hope (who recently returned to us as a member), who came 5th sculling in Minerva colours, and the next year came 2nd having moved to Marlowe.

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