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Posted: November 9, 2016

A strong Scottish contingent joined rowers from across the country who descended on Boston in Lincolnshire at the weekend for the first GB Rowing Team winter assessment of the 2016-17 season.

Following a 2km ergometer test at the Princess Royal Sports Arena on Saturday the Senior and Under 23 athletes set out the following day onto the River Witham in single sculls and coxless pairs to race the 5km time-trial course and put down an early season marker to the watching Chief Coaches.

Athletes representing the Edinburgh University Boat Club enjoyed a successful weekend with Matthew Curtis and Gavin Horsburgh from this year's world championship winning Under 23 lightweight quad scull topping the Under 23 lightweight rankings on the water and finishing 5th and 8th overall respectively.

18-year-old Josh Armstrong, who with Horsburgh won gold in the junior men's quad scull at the World Rowing Junior Championships in 2015, was the fastest Under 23 openweight sculler and 7th overall in his first trial as a senior athlete.

Alex Rankin, who has twice represented Great Britain at junior worlds, was the top performing Under 20 lightweight women's sculler, 2nd in the Under 23 category and 8th overall, one place behind fellow Edinburgh University student and two-time Great Britain Under 23 internationalist Maddie Arlett.

India Somerside rowed with Rankin for both Glasgow Schools Rowing Club and Great Britain in 2016 however at these trials she was paired with Jenny Stevenson.  The Edinburgh University Under 23 duo finished 2nd in the women's openweight coxless pair behind a crew from Cambridge University.

In the men's pair event Leander Club's Callum McBrierty from Edinburgh, current world champion in the coxed pair, finished 3rd overall with partner James Rudkin (Newcastle University).  Melissa Wilson from Edinburgh, representing Cambridge University, was 4th overall in the women's openweight single scull.

Other notable performances from Scottish based athletes included Clydesdale Amateur Rowing Club's Jack Burns (5th overall - men's openweight single scull) and Aberdeen University Boat Club's Fiona Bell (5th Under 23 - women's openweight single scull).

For a full report from the GB Rowing Team 1st assessment please see: