The ‘Slog on the Tyne’ was not quite all theirs

Pictured in their club colours are Andy Smith. Andy Thomson, Julie Hardisty, Clayton Hardisty, Janet Thompson, a race representative and'Bev Whithome
Pictured in their club colours are Andy Smith. Andy Thomson, Julie Hardisty, Clayton Hardisty, Janet Thompson, a race representative and'Bev Whithome

A group of St Andrews skiff rowers had to battle back from adversity when they travelled to the Great Tyne Row.

The 26km row, also known as the ‘slog on the Tyne’ certainly posed more than a few difficulties for the local crew.

Crewed by Andy Thompson, Janet Thompson, Bev Whithome, Andrew Smith, Julie Hardisty, Clayton Hardisty and towed by Andrew Rendle, the team arrived in high spirits.

The race was open to many different forms of rowing boats from sleek river racing craft to an ocean going transatlantic boat.

Approximately 50 boats took part with a staggered start.

The Sandbay Century set off with a group of St Ayles skiffs amongst others, coxed by Andy Thompson, and were just settling into a rhythm when the metal bracket attached to the rudder sheared off.

Not the best start, but St Andrews were determined to continue so steered using a paddle for the remaining 20kms.

This made for some interesting manoeuvring passing under bridges, other boats, car ferries, tankers and the occasional fisherman.

They finally arrived in Tynemouth a respectable two hours and 23 minutes later, third overall in their class.

Each year the organisers award the Harry Clasper prize to the boat that has achieved something extraordinary.

That honour went to St Andrews this year for not giving up despite losing the rudder.