Saturday 3 November 2018
“Leander Club sets the gold standard and is a shining example of how ambitious clubs can be.”
That was the view of Annamarie Phelps, former chair of British Rowing, who was guest speaker at the club’s annual dinner as Saturday, when a packed house celebrated the year’s success.
Phelps, herself a former world champion, paid tribute to the Leander athletes who had won five events at the Fours Head earlier in the day.
She also praised the club’s outreach programme, which started in the 1830s, when Leander sponsored many professional races, and has continued to the present day, with the club going out to local, non-rowing, state schools and drawing new young people into the sport.
Phelps’ presentation followed on from Vicky Thornley, the Leander captain, who was able to list all the club’s successful athletes at world championships and Henley Royal Regatta, where Leander recorded their 200th Henley win in the club’s 200th year.
“It’s been an amazingly successful year, and on behalf of the athletes I want to offer my thanks to the coaches, support staff and members” said Thornley.
Overseeing proceedings on the night was Mike Sweeney, taking charge for the first time in his role as the new Leander president.
Sweeney paid tribute to his predecessor, Jeremy ‘Rass’ Randall, and offered the club’s thanks for his 40 years of service to Leander as athlete, secretary, treasurer, chairman, and finally president.