Ruined party and solidarity in Vichy

The French clubs had met in Vichy for a great rowing celebration on the occasion of the 2022 French Long Boat Championships. The weekend had started under the best auspices with two promising days of competition in sight. of the finals which were to be held this Sunday, June 5. This was without counting the hailstorm of incredible force which fell on the Vichyssois boat park around 10:30 p.m. Saturday evening.

Hecatomb on the boat park

While the last boats were just coming out of the water at the landing pontoon at the end of the day on Saturday, a first intense storm announced a restless night in the Allier. But nothing foreshadowed the violence of the second stormy episode which caused very heavy material damage within the rowing clubs present. At the beginning of the night, rowers, coaches and volunteers therefore rushed to the place of the competition to try to save what was still salvageable. Prepared as a precaution to withstand the dreaded gusts of wind, the majority of the carbon boats did not resist the hailstones.

When we woke up, the extent of the damage observed prompted the fairness committee and the organizers of these Championships to take the decision not to compete in theThe finals scheduled for this Sunday in Vichy. The long boat championships therefore ended prematurely on the shores of Lac d’Allier.

The titles of Champions of France awarded

Although no protocol ceremony was held, the results of these national championships were nevertheless endorsed according to the results of the last races contested, as provided for by the sporting regulations. For events which ended in a semi-final, the title of French Champion was acquired by the winning crew of the fastest of the two halves. The winner of the other semi-final was designated vice-champion of France. The rest of the classification was determined by the cumulative time of the two races, for places from 3rd to 12th. Same process for the directly qualifying series for the grand final.

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For the categories which had to go through third finals, the gold medal was played between the winners of the third thirds. The best time of these three crews pocketing it, while the second time won the silver and the third time completed the podium. The rest of the participants were decided on time for places ranging from 4th to 18th.

Some of the clubs were able to recover their medals directly. A meager consolation for the material damage suffered, but a deserved reward for the investment made by the rowers in training. A distinction that is all the more important for the athletes in the J18 categories, for whom these championships were the high point of the season.

Race results can be found online.

A boost of solidarity for the rest of the season

Like the cooperation between clubs when it came to saving the boats on Saturday evening, the big rowing family is united in the face of the events which affected a majority of the delegations present in Vichy. The gaze is already turning to the rest of the season and the deadlines which will soon arrive, starting with the Zone Championships on the weekend of June 11 and 12. It’s a safe bet that French rowing will once again be able to stick together and show mutual aid in order to support the disaster-stricken clubs. With this in mind, the FFAviron will put a shared file online to identify the needs and availability of each other.

The FFA sends all its support to the clubs present in Vichy to deal with these terrible incidents.

The Federation also wishes to thank the Club de l’Aviron de Vichy for the organization of these championships and the adaptation of its teams to these exceptional circumstances.

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