Canadian women win Henley Royal

Canadian women competing at the Royal Henley Regatta in England celebrated Canada Day in winning style, taking the Remenham Challenge Cup final race.

Rowing as Western Rowing Club, Canada won over Germany’s top women’s eight (rowing under Dortmund Rowing Centre) by two boat lengths in a time of 7.27.

“It was definitely a race, but we were in control the whole time,” said national team veteran and 2008 Olympian Sarah Bonikowsky. “We broke away from the Germans with 750 metres to go, and held a lead.”

Athletes competing at Henley are Kerry Shaffer of Welland, Ont., Kate Goodfellow of Ottawa, Jennifer Martins of Toronto, Alyssa Weninger of Unity, Sask., Jody Schuurman of Vancouver, Lisa Roman of Langley, B.C., Rosie DeBoef of Victoria, B.C., Sarah Bonikowsky of Orangeville, Ont. and coxswain Eden Full of Calgary.

Also today, Kingston, Ontario’s Isolda Penney (Canada) easily beat Kaisa Pajusalu (Estonia) to win the Princess Royal Challenge Cup. Her finishing time was 9.47.

In men’s races, National Rowing Centre of Excellence, Australia, beat Canada’s men’s development quad (Victoria City Rowing Club) by a half length.

The Canadian crew is Matt Buie of St. Catharines, Jamie Abbass of Happy Valley – Goose Bay, NFLD, Mike Harowicz of Oakville, and Steve Van Knotsenburg of Beamsville.

Henley Regatta was first held in 1839 – long before national or international rowing federations were established. It has its own rules and is not subject to the jurisdiction either of the governing body of rowing in the U.K. (British Rowing) or of the International Rowing Federation (F.I.S.A.), but is officially recognized by both these bodies.

The length of the Henley-on-Thames course is 1 mile 550 yards, which is 112 metres longer than the standard international distance of 2,000 metres.

Full results are at