While live competition is back, many (if not all) of the Indoor Rowing competitions, including this past weekend’s top event – the British Rowing Indoor Championships (BRIC), have opted to remain virtual for the time being. A silver lining to the pandemic has been demonstrating how powerful digitally-enabled remote activity (in this case, erg competing) can be. While the frisson of crowd cheering, flywheels whirring, announcers commentating and throngs of competitors mingling is sacrificed, still the logistics and costs for getting to a competition venue miles away is removed.
BRIC continues to be the UK gold standard for inclusion and diversity with over 2 dozen events offered (not all had entries or UK entries). The online format also meant that adaptive and para competitors from a half dozen other countries were able to join in as well.
Invictus was the invincible in the indoor rowing circuit once again securing 9 wins and another 2 top UK finishes. With Invictus’ dominance of the format, I propose that the next indoor/online event, the clubs band together to form a virtual team to take on the Invictus team. Sort of like the Europeans banding together to take on the Yanks in the Ryder Cup. There are a few different ways that we could score such a head-to-head match up:
- Win Count – Invictus would have won this year’s BRIC against the clubs by a score of 9 wins to 6.
- Medal Points (5 for gold, 3 for silver, 1 for bronze) – Invictus would have won this format by a score of 49 to 37.
- Placing Points (ie. in a race of 7, then 7 points for 1st, 6 for 2nd all the way down) – The clubs would have won this match up by a core of 48 to 30 (primarily on the strength of their 7 competitors in the W PR3 2000m netting 28 points for the clubs).
Congratulations to all the top UK finishers. The high point was Paralympian Benjamin Pritchard provisionally breaking the World and British Records for the PR1 men’s 2000m and Rhys Davies of Aberporth doing the same for the PR3 500m (they get to be on the club team challenging Invictus!).
- M IAR3 4mins – Stuart Padley, Invictus
- M IAR4 1min – Chris Anslow, We Are Invictus
- M IAR4 4mins – Chris Anslow, We Are Invictus
- M IAR5 1min – Mark Perkins, We Are Invictus
- M IAR5 4mins – Mark Perkins, We Are Invictus
- W IAR5 1min – Ruth Freeman, We Are Invictus
- W IAR5 4mins – Ruth Freeman, We Are Invictus
- M IAR6 1min – Warren Jones, We Are Invictus (2 of 8)
- M IAR6 4mins – Warren Jones, We Are Invictus (2 of 9)
- M IAR6 500m – Rhys Davies, Aberporth
- W IAR6 1min – Sally Renard, We Are Invictus (2 of 4)
- W IAR6 4mins – Sally Renard, We Are Invictus (2 of 4)
- W IAR6 500m – Stacey Denyer, RAF Indoor Rowing Team
- M PR1 2000m – Ben Pritchard, Team GB (world record)
- W PR1 2000m – Mari Durward-Akhurst, Marlow
- M PR3 2000m – Ben Marsden, Marlow
- W PR3 2000m – Alice Mason, Peterborough
- W PR3 500m – Gaynor Martin, Fishguard and Goodwick Jemima
- SF G IAR5 2000m – Lily Gray, Guildford