World and Olympic Champion Alex Gregory and former World U23 medallist Matt Tarrant won the men's pair at today's GB Rowing Team Winter Assessment in Boston, Lincolnshire.
Alan Campbell won the open men's single, with Frances Houghton taking the honours in the equivalent women's event. Peter Chambers and Imogen Walsh took the titles in the men's and women's lightweight men's singles respectively.
With the wind picking up through the morning the final 3km of the 5km time trial were raced into a cross-headwind which made conditions quite bumpy on the water.
Gregory, pleased to have won and clearly delighted at his recent pairing with Tarrant, said they had conserved energy in the first 2km - where conditions were calmer - to take on the final stretch.
"That final 3km was tough. That was survival. The last 500m was very scrappy. It was really hard. I'd have liked it all to stop a kilometre before the finish really" he joked.
Men's Chief Coach Jurgen Grobler had mixed and matched his open men's pairs for this event to add some new impetus.
"It's been really good to row with someone like Alex. I have really enjoyed it", said Tarrant. "I have learnt such a lot - not just in the boat but mannerisms outside of it, too".
Hardly a heart's beat separated the top two in the open men's single. Charles Cousins came home second to Campbell by just two tenths of a second. Peter Lambert from the 2013 World Championships quadruple scull medal boat was third.
Campbell said: "I was pretty surprised with that. I didn't expect it especially as Charles went off first. I am very pleased with that".
Cousins said before the results were known: ""It wasn't too bad. off the start the conditions were fairly calm and it was only in the last 2-3km that we had a bit of a head wind.
"So it's always tough when you are pacing it for a nice tail breeze and then in the last 2km it switches to a bit more of a headwind but I think you have just got to try and stay relaxed and keep it on the legs and that's what I tried to do. I tried to keep it strong and long in the headwind and maintain what I had already".
The closeness of the verdict was exactly the kind of result that the team's performance staff relished.
Sir David Tanner, the GB Rowing Team Performance Director said: "We've had a great day. We have had some really competitive racing of a high standard".
"At the end I had zero left. I have been working really, really hard and to see my name at the top of the results sheet is fantastic".
Heather Stanning, returning to competitive rowing in the past few weeks after a tour of duty in Afghanistan was 22nd and as expected off the race-pace.
It is two years since the last full December Assessment, with all the GB squad rowers involved, on this course. The events that year (2011) were won by Sophie Hosking (lightweight women's single), Richard Chambers (lightweight men's single), Alan Campbell (open men's single), Anna Watkins (open women's single) and the men's pair of Andrew Triggs Hodge and Alex Partridge.
RESULTS: Available at www.gbrowingteam.org.uk/trials
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(Top 10 only. For full results with clubs go to www.gbrowingteam.org.uk and look at the Trials section)
1. Alex Greogory/Matthew Tarrant (Leander/Oxford Brookes) 18:02.46
2. Mo Sbihi/Scott Durant (Molesey BC/Oxford Brookes) 18:05.49
3. Karl Hudspith/Constantine Louloudis (Oxford Univ BC) 18:09.33
4. Paul Bennett/George Nash (Uni of London/Molesey BC) 18:10.18
5. Nathaniel Reilly O'Donnell/Alan Sinclair (Uni of London/Leander) 18:14.23
6. Phil Congdon/Mason Durant (Molesey BC/Oxford Brookes) 18:19.72
7. Andrew Triggs Hodge/Oliver Cook (Molesey/Univ of London) 18:19.79
8. Tom Ransley/Dan Ritchie (Leander/Leander) 18:21.00
9. Pete Reed/James Foad (Leander/Molesey BC) 18:22.05
10. Will Satch/Matt Gotrel (Leander/Leander) 18:22.24
1. Alan Campbell (Tideway Scullers) 19:06.09
2. Charles Cousins (Leander) 19:06.29
3. Peter Lambert (Leander) 19:29.65
4. Matthew Langridge (Leander) 19:39.75
5. Jonny Walton (Leander) 19:41.72
6. John Collins (Leander) 19:59.31
7. Daniel Clift (Isle of Ely RC) 20:02.17
8. Christopher Revell (Caius) 20:20.95
9. Barnaby Stentiford (Leander-Durham Univ BC) 20:25.38
10. Leo Lundgren (Isle of Ely) 20:37.25
1. Frances Houghton (Leander) 20:58.78
2. Beth Rodford (Gloucester RC) 21:06.47
3. Vicky Thornley (Leander) 21:08.51
4. Katie Greves (Leander) 21:14.35
5. Victoria Meyer-Laker (Leander) 21:24.33
6. Louisa Reeve (Leander) 21:28.96
7. Tina Stiller (Tees RC) 21:30.55
8. Rachel Gamble-Flint (Leander) 21:34.88
9. Zoe Lee (Imperial/Kings College) 21:39.85
10. Helen Glover (Minerva Bath) 21:44.84
1. Peter Chambers (Oxford Brookes Univ) 19:25.79
2. Jamie Kirkwood (Leander) 19:28.25
3. Zak Lee Green (Agecroft) 19:32.56
4. Will Fletcher (Leander) 19:35.74
5. Chris Boddy (Leander) 19:37.04
6. Richard Chambers (Leander) 19:41.59
7. Sam Srimgeour (Imperial College BC) 20:01.36
8. Mark Aldred (London RC) 20:12.60
9. Jonathan Clegg (Leander) 20:13.74
10. Jamie Copus (Oxford Brookes Univ) 20:16:52
1. Imogen Walsh (London RC) 21:21.53
2. Kat Copeland (Tees RC) 21:36.95
3. Charlotte Taylor (Putney Town RC) 21:57.55
4. Elizabeth Polgreen (Wallingford RC) 22:06.08
5. Ellie Lewis (Agecroft RC) 22:16.42
6. Nicola Spencer (Nottingham RC) 22:31.04
7. Francesca Rawlins (Mortlake A&A) 22:36.83
8. Miriam Jones-Walters (Wallingford RC) 22:44.86
9. Jess Elikington (Exeter Univ) 22:50.86
10. Brianna Stubbs (Wallingford RC) 22:56.78
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THE SEASON AHEAD
GB Rowing Team Diary Dates for 2013/2014:
2nd Winter Assessment Trials (Boston, Lincs) – full squad
Para-rowing 2nd Ergo Assessment, Caversham
Para-rowing 3rd Assessment, Caversham
Women’s Head of the River, London
Men’s Head of the River, London
GB Rowing Team Para-Rowing Trials, Caversham
GB Rowing Team Senior Team Trials – Caversham
28 – 1 June
European Championships, Belgrade
World Cup II, Aiguebelette, France (includes para-rowing)
Henley Royal Regatta – TBC
World Cup III, Lucerne, Switzerland
World U23 Championships, Varese, Italy
World Junior Championships, Hamburg, Germany
World Youth Olympic Games, Nanjing, China
24 – 31
World Championships, Amsterdam
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