Kingston rowers finish season strong, will represent Canada this summer

The Canadian Women’s Eight, with Wolfe Island native Kristina Walker (third from left in black jumpsuit), won the Remenham Challenge Cup at the 2023 Henley Royal Regatta. Photo by Mauricie Summers.

Throughout the month of June, rowers affiliated with the Kingston Rowing Club and the Queen’s University Rowing Club competed in Regattas and World Cup Championships as part of Rowing Canada Aviron (RCA).

Local rower Jenny Casson, with her teammate Jill Moffatt secured an impressive victory at the Canadian Lightweight Women’s Double on Friday, Jun. 2, 2023, the final day of the 2023 Henley Royal Regatta, which saw the duo lay claim to the prestigious Stonor Challenge Trophy.

According to RCA, the Stonor Challenge, unlike their usual lightweight double category, is an open elite weight event at Henley, allowing lightweight doubles like Moffatt and Casson to compete against heavyweight counterparts. In the final, the Canadian duo demonstrated their exceptional skill and determination, triumphing over the British double from Twickenham Rowing Club and Leander Club by a remarkable margin of over two lengths, despite the disparities in weight categories.

The Canadian Women’s Eight, with Wolfe Island native Kristina Walker, dominated the Remenham Challenge Cup, triumphing over the formidable Leander Club crew in front of an enthusiastic crowd along the renowned riverbank. As a tribute to the late local rower Ric Tull, the Canadian Women’s Eight proudly wore the blue and orange club colours of the Maple Bay Rowing Club. According to the release, tight from the first stroke, they displayed an exceptional level of synchronization, delivering a convincing win and adding their chapter to Canada’s success story at Henley.

Earlier in the afternoon, the Canadian Men’s Eight with KCVI grad Will Crothers and Queen’s grad Gavin Stone lost to the Oxford Brookes University and Leander Club in the Grand Challenge Cup final. According to RCA, in their sole race of the week, the British crew seized an early lead over the Canadian team and maintained their advantage until the end. Nonetheless, the Canadian Men’s Eight will quickly shift their focus to World Cup III the following week, determined to continue towards their goals towards the World Championships and beyond.

For more details see: Women’s Eight, Women’s Double win Henley Royal trophies

Local rowers also represented Canada in Lake Varese, Italy for the World Cup II which ran June 16 to 18, 2023. There, Cassidy Deane and Kristina Walker won bronze with their teammates in a thrilling Women’s Eight final. Notably, the Canadian Women’s Eight crew accomplished this feat after all eight rowers had already competed in the Women’s Four A and B finals earlier in the day, RCA noted. Deane placed fifth in the A final in the women’s four with Walker placing seventh (first in the B final) in the Women’s Four.

At the same competition, the Canadian Men’s Eight, with three-time Olympian Will Crothers and Queen’s grad Gavin Stone, placed fifth after leading the race for 1,500 meters. The strong team of Kingston’s Jenny Casson and partner Jill Moffatt placed fifth in the Lightweight Women’s Double.

Four of the five rowers competing for Canada from the Kingston Rowing Club represented on the world stage last year as well. Rowing Canada named Cassidy Deane, Kristina Walker, Jennifer Casson, and Will Crothers to their contingent for the 2022 World Rowing Championships, which took place in Racice, Czech Republic.

For more details see: Thrilling Racing and Valuable Experience at World Cup II, Setting Sights on Henley

Last week, RCA announced the selection of 60 talented emerging rowers who will proudly represent the Canadian National Teams in upcoming international competitions. These include the World Rowing Under 23 Championships, the World Rowing Under 19 Championships, and the CanAmMex international regatta.

Four Queen’s athletes and one coach were named to Canada’s Next Gen Team:

  • Women’s Eight – Claire Elliston
  • Men’s Pair – Bob Bryden
  • Men’s Double – Andrew Hubbard
  • Lightweight Men’s Quad – Lucas Celia
  • Coach, Women’s Eight – Katie Bruggeling

Read more about these upcoming competitions, taking place throughout the summer, on the RCA website.

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