Invictus Games Indoor Rowing gets going at Here East

13th September 2014


13 September 2014

13:35 - And that's it from the rowing at Here East. The final medals have been handed out and the crowd are dispersing.

The next event at the venue is tomorrow's powerlifting, where I'm sure the atmosphere will be just as amazing!

13:10 - A great moment for British trio Cowan Botha, Scott Meenagh and Nick Beighton as they are presented their medals by Prince Harry with the crowd on their feet!

And Anna Kelton meets her second Olympic gold medallist of the day, as Dame Kelly hands her the sprint gold medal.

What an inspiration these competitors are – they are the mothers, fathers, husbands and wives who put their lives on the line, suffered life-changing injuries but refused to be beaten.

13:05 - Dame Kelly Holmes is here to present a gold medal to USA's Matthew Burke, who has used sport to battle against his struggles with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

12:55 - The final race has now finished, with Britain's Jordan Beecher picking up his second gold of the competition, edging out teammate Ray Lowrie.

All that remains now are the medal ceremonies, where these amazing athletes can lap up the applause from the crowd for one last time.

12:25 - The Danish supporters may be small in number, but it doesn't stop them from making themselves heard!

And they've got one of their boys to cheer on in Race 12 as Kasper Thomsen looks to emulate compatriot Jakob Panton-Kristiansen's medal-winning performance in the IR5 endurance race.

12:05 - We have royalty in the house as Invictus Games patron Prince Harry comes to soak in the atmosphere at Here East, but the action on the stage is so good no-one has noticed his arrival!

The Games are being organised with the support and backing of The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry and the Ministry of Defence.

11:45 - The medal ceremonies have the crowd on their feet from start to finish, cheering on each and every medallist.

These athletes are the embodiment of everything the Invictus Games stands for. They have been tested and challenged, but they have not been overcome.

And Britain's Anna Kelton was presented her gold medal by a man who knows a thing or two about rowing - four-time Olympic gold medallist Sir Matthew Pinsent.

Now the endurance events are finished we move on to the sprints. One minute of rowing as hard as you can and as far as you can.

11:20 - A big cheer for silver medallist Scott Meenagh as he appears on the big screen and he says he's already looking forward to socialising with his fellow competitors after the event.

“It's really good to come and compete here at the Invictus Games,” he said. “There's a great contrast in how far people are along the path to recovery, but it's great to all come together.

“I get on well with all of the people from the other countries as we've all been through the same hardships. I'm sure we'll all sit down for a drink later.”

But Scott still has the small matter of the one minute sprint to come before he can even think about relaxing!

11:05 - Anyone who has used a rowing machine at the gym will know just how hard it is to pace yourself over four minutes.

Plenty of athletes in Race Five with 'jelly legs' after unstrapping themselves from the machine and walking off the stage, and many of them will be back later to compete in the one minute sprint events.

As the competitors take their places for Race Six the USA's Rhoden Galloway dazzles the crowd with some rather fetching knee-high green socks.

10:45 - You can't miss the Dutch supporters in the crowd - dressed in orange and making a lot of noise for all of the competitors!

And their cheers certainly inspired Edwin Vermetten, who pushed Great Britain's Scott Meenagh all the way in Race Four, finishing just seven metres behind the Brit after four minutes of incredible effort.

The medics help Vermetten from the stage after the race, but the man from the Netherlands has enough energy in the tank to acknowledge the cheers.

10:35 - A phenomenal performance by Staff Sergeant Michael Kacer of the USA in Race Two sees him top the 1000m mark in the IR3 category - for athletes with upper limb impairments.

Kacer, who lost his left arm in a rocket attack while serving in Afghanistan, lets out a huge roar as he steps off his machine, but is pipped into second by France's Salami Abdou.

10:20 - In rowing, competitors from different disability categories, male and female, compete alongside each other with the aim of rowing as far as possible within the time frame.

In Race One Italian Bonaventura Bove lapped up the cheers of the crowd as he finished second behind Great Britain's Nick Beighton with 910m covered in four minutes.

10:05 - Welcome to day three of action at the Invictus Games, presented by Jaguar Land Rover!

The stage at Here East has been ripped up after yesterday's amazing Archery competition and has been replaced with 12 state of the art rowing machines.

Action here kicks off with the four minute endurance races, with no fewer than thirteen nations competing over the course of the session.