THE threat of Hurricane Bertha didn’t dampen the high-quality racing at Stourport Regatta and Sprint at the weekend.

More than 600 crews came to the town to take part in one of the biggest events of its kind in the country.

With 40 clubs in attendance, represented with crew members from as far as the US and Australia, racing was at the highest level of competitive rowing over the 1,000m course.

The weather conditions were generally kind to the rowers and spectators after just a few rain-soaked sessions, with competitors ranging from juniors aged 12 to masters, with many high-status crews taking part.

The big winners of the weekend were Worcester, Bristol, Loughborough, and London-based Quintin RC.

While Stourport had the most wins, Liverpool Victoria earned the Victor Ludorum title.

Home crew Shauna McClaren and Lydia Chance won the Women’s J15 category, and a fantastic performance by Bruce McClaren clinched the title J17 single scull category.

One of the weekend’s highlights was the 500m sprints challenge, called the Champion of the Severn, which saw men’s eights in action.

The event drew the biggest cheers from the spectators as Worcester RC sought revenge for their loss in the final against Stourport at the recent Bewdley Regatta.

Worcester, who had put in a huge effort over the first three quarters of the race, held off a late charge from Quintin in a very tight finish to seal a thoroughly deserved win in the final of the short 500m sprint.

Winning crews were received by Stephen Williams, Mayor of Stourport, and presented with a special edition pot, the traditional prize for a rowing event win.

Pete Lashford, Stourport Boat Club President, said: “Stourport regatta is considered to be among the best regattas in the country and this year was no exception.

“Racing has been exceptional, and the visiting clubs have made it a very special weekend for us and the town.”

Meanwhile, Bewley tasted success in the Women’s intermediate sculls, Women’s masters D single sculls, Women’s Masters A/B Coxed Fours and Open Intermediate Coxed Fours.