THE Windsor Boys’ School have won two gold and two bronze medals at the National Schools’ Regatta on Dorney Lake.

Run over three days, the event forms one of the largest junior regattas for schools and clubs in Europe with thousands of competitors from across the United Kingdom taking part, and thousands more spectating.

The Windsor Boys’ School Boat Club, supported this year by Aston Bond Solicitors and LA Micro, turned out in force.

In the Championship Quad Scull event, the Windsor crew of Bryn Ellery, Tom Smith, Isaac Workman and Tom Shewell started as one of the favourites to take the win.

After a strong showing in the time trial they won the semi-final with a very polished performance.

In the final, along with very strong crews from Maidenhead and Leander, they managed to break free from the rest of the field. Windsor held onto the lead despite pressure from the chasing crews and crossed the line to win gold and the coveted Forest Cup, a feat last achieved by the Boys’ School in 1993.

The crew then split into two to contest the Championship Doubles for the Fox Tankard, currently held by Windsor.

In the time trial of 42 crews, the double of Smith and Ellery came home first, with Workman and Shewell no far behind.

The Windsor crews found themselves pitted against each other in the semi-finals. Smith and Ellery secured their place in the final, but Shewell and Workman missed out by the narrowest of margins.

In the final, Smith and Ellery lost no time in establishing a lead over the rest of the field. They maintained their power and rhythm over the 2,000m course to win the event and their second gold, and keep the Fox Tankard at Windsor.

About 60 of the club’s younger athletes drawn from Years 9-10 were the first to compete and found themselves contending with blustery conditions as well as the race itself.

The Year 9 students met the challenge admirably with three of their four quad sculls, and their octuple scull, earning a place amongst the last 12 crews in the A/B semi-finals.

Royal Borough Observer:

PHOTO: (l-r) The Windsor Boys School J14 quad: Joseph Gater, Tom Finnis, Matve Morozov, Ben Liddell and Matthew Wellington.

All sculled very competently, but it was the crew of Joseph Gater, Matthew Wellington, Tom Finnis, Matve Morozov and cox Ben Liddell who sculled with real determination and finesse to reach the final six.

Despite a relative lack of experience, the Windsor crew were undaunted and displayed the same grit as in earlier rounds, crossing the line in the bronze medal position. The omens were favourable for Windsor’s J15 A crew, who finished in second place out of 47 crews in the preliminary time trial.

True to form, after easing through the semi-finals, they progressed to the final.

However, conditions remained difficult and prevented the Windsor crew from settling into its rhythm. Gutted, they crossed the line in sixth place.

The same crew raced in the coxed four event and from the outset were keen to put the previous disappointment behind them.

Having finished amongst the leading pack in the time trial in the 22 boat contest, the boys in green and gold improved with every race. In the final they secured a well earned bronze medal, four seconds ahead of the fourth-placed crew.

Windsor were well represented in the Championship event.

Competing against 53 other opponents, several of whom boasted international pedigree, Sam Bodkin, 17, impressed favourably in the Single Sculls.

Battling his way into the final, Bodkin rowed a gutsy race in testing conditions to finish sixth overall.

He later teamed up with Luke Bartoletti in the Championship Coxless Pairs, the latter fresh back from injury.

The Windsor crew put in a brave performance but narrowly missed a place in the final against classy opposition.

Check out our new Observer sports Facebook page. Search Robert Observer Sport and like, follow and share the page today.