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University of Surrey Boat Club duo Tom Fortnum and Aidan Thompson managed to secure fifth and sixth placed finishes in their respective categories at the trial event which took place in early November in Boston, Lincolnshire.

Athletes who wish to compete for GB this season must attend the trials which means the standard is as high as it gets, with the event format being a 2k ergo test on the Saturday followed by a 5k time trial on water on the Sunday.

Fortnum is one of the few students to learn to row at Surrey and go on to compete successfully at GB trials as he secured his position as fifth in Men’s U23 Lightweight.

Meanwhile, Thompson also produced an outstanding performance to achieve third spot overall on the ergo and 6th place overall on the water. This is an incredible achievement from a Surrey student who represented the University at EUSA in the summer following a Championship silver medal in the single at BUCS Regatta 2022.

Both athletes are now into the thick of the GB trialing system and have great prospects for the upcoming season.

On the same day, the Boat Club also organised their very own BUCS Indoors event at Surrey Sports Park to raise money for the club and to provide a platform for local Universities to compete on the national stage.

The event included the beginners competing over 1000m and the seniors getting into some 2000m racing with personal bests and close racing all round. Furthermore, the adaptive category saw Clara Ojiako earn a Championship silver medal in her first season on the programme.

The Boat Club would like to extend a thank you to everyone involved in the organisation of the event, especially Stag TV who expertly ran a live stream for the whole event on Facebook.

Additionally, the GB trials event in Boston was one of the other host locations for BUCS Indoors as part of the trialling process, which meant Thompson and Fortnum’s efforts on the ergo earned them a gold and bronze Championship BUCS medal respectively.

This all marks a brilliant start to the season for the Rowing Club and has set the momentum for the rest of the academic year.

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