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P1020280Bewdley Rowing Club member James Martyn Smith has taken the ultimate prize in club rowing – a win at the prestigious Henley Regatta, rowing in an eight man crew for Oxford Brookes University. The Temple Challenge Cup for academic eights was last won by a British University eight years ago – again Brookes – including another Bewdley member, Dave Merchant. James started rowing 5 years ago by taking part in the clubs nationally known Pub and Club regatta.

He was selected last year to represent Great Britain at under-23 level, taking part in the coxed fours at the U23 World Rowing Championships in Linz, Austria.

Henley Masters Regatta

Men’s and women’s coxed fours reached the final in their categories, narrowly missing out on the top spot. The women Kim Martyn Smith, Jean Main, Jane Chiswell and Helen Hugo, coxed by Kat Carlyle, won heats against Ardingley and Eton Excelsior, eventually losing out to Barnes Bridge Ladies. The men Dave Merchant, John Hinton, Mike Parker and Nick Hinton, coxed by Jenny Merchant saw off Nottingham in their heat before meeting Upper Thames in the final.