Ontario Athletes Bring Home Medals at Commonwealth Rowing Beach Sprints
Competition/ Dec 5

Ontario Athletes Bring Home Medals at Commonwealth Rowing Beach Sprints

Four Canadian athletes, all of whom are from Ontario, competed over the weekend at the 2022 Commonwealth Rowing Association Beach Sprint Championships in Walvis Bay, Namibia.

The three-day event took place from Dec. 2-4 and was the second Commonwealth Beach Sprints ever held, after the first event in Great Britain in 2018. The regatta was also the first of its kind to be hosted in Namibia and those in attendance were treated to exciting action between 13 Commonwealth nations in the CW1x, CM1x, and CMix2x categories.

Team Canada was comprised by coastal veterans Aubrey Oldham (Leander Boat Club) and Sarah Pidgen (Don Rowing Club) in the solos, as well as Lorne Thomas (Don Rowing Club) as one half of the mixed double. The other half of the mixed double Sandra Farwell was making her international debut in the discipline of Beach Sprints. The team, which would go on to earn three bronze medals, was managed by Michelle Boss.

Pidgen’s regatta was highlighted with a bronze medal in the women’s solo. After advancing to the semifinals, Pidgen was bested by Clare Jamison of England to qualify for the bronze medal final. She topped Isobel Powell of Wales by eight seconds in the final to earn the third-place finish in a time of 3:07.67. Oldham put in a strong regatta and advanced to the quarterfinals before he lost his matchup to eventual silver medalist Charles Cousins of England. His regatta wasn’t over however, as he subbed in for Thomas in the mixed double for Saturday’s action. Thomas competed in Friday’s races and helped the team qualify for the quarterfinals but sustained an injury in the process which prevented him from competing on Saturday.

The new team of Farwell and Oldham won their quarterfinal race but lost to the eventual gold medal winning pair of Laura Mackenzie and Sam Scrimgeour in the semifinals. They rebounded with a strong performance in the bronze medal final to best the Australian team of Elizabeth Newell and Morgan Hodgson by 15 seconds in a time of 2:39.72.

On Sunday, the team relay event was held with quarterfinals, semifinals and finals, and Canada ended their regatta with a share of third place in the relay with Wales.

For full results please visit 2022 Commonwealth Rowing Association Beach Sprint Championships.