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The Ron Needs Challenge Cup

C8+ | Championship Eights
Sponsored by: the Colgan Foundation

This trophy was originally given to the regatta in 1988 by the Sports Council and named the Sports Council Cup. The Cup was renamed the Ron Needs Trophy in 2015 to mark the huge input into women’s rowing made by Ron. Ron attended the regatta to present it. Sadly Ron passed away in April 2016.

Annamarie Phelps said: “Ron never stopped thinking about how he could better support his athletes and his immense generosity with his expertise, time and resources made him a key part of the success of women’s rowing at a time when support for women’s rowing was very limited. He was a coach and mentor 24/7, always willing to listen and gently guide. I will always remember him taking great delight in contrasting my (poor) sculling technique to that of Thomas Lange, the great German sculler, in between outings at Longridge.

Paul Thompson, formerly GB Rowing chief coach for women and lightweights, said: “He never lost his drive, steely determination or sense of humour that helped him coach medal-winning crews through decades of coaching. Rowing was in his blood, even the week before last he was giving me advice on the crews preparing for Rio. Ron has been a significant figure in GB Rowing’s success in lightweights and women’s crews over many decades. He will be immensely missed by many in the rowing fraternity.”

Known as the Elite Eights until 2018

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