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Possunt qui posse videntur
Weybridge Silver Sculls, Saturday 17th October, 2020

Dear <<First Name>>, 

Organising an event on the scale of the Silver Sculls is never an easy task, but throw in a reluctance of some experienced members to assist and a bunch of enthusiastic new recruits and changing Covid regulations and you couldn't blame our small organising team for throwing up their hands and hiding under the duvet. But true to form they didn't and as we proved to anyone watching and participating yesterday the event was a huge success.
 
Obviously there have to be people at the top with the sheer grit to get the job done and we all know how tenacious Rachel, Anne and Claudine are when faced with a challenge. But there were so many others... I have counted 60 volunteers, in addition to the organising committee, plus all the umpires and those who just turned up and helped wherever they could. Thank you to all of you.
 
As many of you know I decided to make it my business to visit all operational sites and I heard only good things from visiting clubs and volunteers. Comments such as:

  • very well organised
  • thank you so much for putting it on, so grateful
  • gosh, the organisation with all the covid stuff must have been phenomenal
  • my first race; I'm really excited
  • always a good and well organised event
  • fabulous day
  • multiple sites seemed to work well
  • no aggro from anyone (except in Sunbury Lane as expected)
  • well done for doing it
  • really enjoyed it
  • so well marshalled

Just identifying, contacting and organising the new 'remote' sites was a work of genius and I think we have Rachel to thank for that. Whilst using the new sites wasn't perfect (some had tricky access or high pontoons, for example) it went well and all crews made the very best of it with humour and good grace, aided and abetted by our 'can-do' volunteers who set-to to assist as much as they could.
 
When looking at the results I was struck that nearly every club that entered went home with something to show for their efforts; in some cases it was a first race, in others a winner or runner-up medal or a personal best, or just a feeling of 'great to be back on the water'. It helped of course that the weather was superb; as good as I've ever seen it for the Sculls. Our own club put a marker down with 5 Weybridge wins (only 1 less than Walton and Tideway Scullers) and 13 in the top 5 placings.
 
In terms of the running of the event it has been noted at the highest level of the British Rowing Thames Regional Rowing Council and will no doubt go further up the chain. We knew we were a 'test' event for the UK and with help and cooperation from clubs and scullers I believe we achieved our aims of a safe and enjoyable event.
 
Again, thanks to all who made the event possible - before, during and after it.
 
Clive Capel
Captain, Weybridge Rowing Club

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