Mossbourne Academy rowers impress at British Championships

Rowers from Mossbourne Academy

Rowers from Mossbourne Academy - Credit: Archant

Hackney’s finest young rowers caused more than a ripple last weekend after competing for the first time at the senior British Championships in Nottingham.

Six members of Mossbourne Community Academy put their school on the map as a nationally recognised rowing club with impressive displays in their respective categories.

The field at the National Water Sports Centre was packed with former Olympians but the Mossbourne squad, who row out of London Regatta Centre, showed no signs of being ‘oar-struck’ by the step up in age group, as Elias Kassell-Raymond and Sam Nunn finished fourth overall in the Under-19s boys doubles – a vast improvement from the 25th place achieved in the British Junior Championships a year ago.

Academy director Jack Kliber told the Gazette: “This improvement and level of achievement is especially impressive when you consider that they only started in 2013 after being talent identified by London Youth Rowing. This is surely a testament to the level of coaching and support the boys are receiving from Mossbourne Academy.”

In the Under-19s girls’ doubles, Jucha Willers-Moore and Kesiah Roe also finished fourth in a field that included London 2012 gold medallists Sophie Hoskings and Katherine Copeland, improving from 13th at the British Junior Championships last season.

Kliber added: “At this competition there were countless Olympic medallists on show, as well as crews from both Oxford and Cambridge University proving that what Mossbourne are achieving on the water is nothing to be taken lightly.

“The importance of the British Championships cannot be understated as it is the first event of the winter rowing season taking place after the mid-season break, so for Mossbourne to be here and thriving in their categories is nothing short of miraculous considering where the rowing programme was when it started in 2010.”

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Mossbourne’s rowers are committed to 16 training sessions a week, divided evenly between being on the water and inside the gym on rowing machines. The level of commitment has certainly paid off, with all four rowers having trials at national level.

Roe and Kassell-Raymond are trialling for the GB junior team in the upcoming months, while Willers-Moore and Nunn will be up against some of the finest rowers from the British Universities programmes for a place in the GB Under-23s team.

Academy head coach Matt Paul said: “It’s not rocket science when it comes to rowing at a high level. Once you have the basics down, it’s all about hard work. These are the four hardest-working young rowers I have ever seen and fine role models for anyone else in the school who is looking to row for Mossbourne.

“Despite the time commitment, the four of them are also achieving academically at an extremely high level – so much so that they are receiving international attention from colleges in America to become part of their programme as student athletes.”

With children as young as 12 having opportunities to row on water, Mossbourne is the perfect place for est London’s aspiring oarsmen and women to achieve success at national events and for Great Britain.

Its track record of proven academic success enabled 88 per cent of students to achieve five A*-Cs last year and one was granted a full-time scholarship at Stanford University, California.

The Rowing Academy currently has a squad of 14 sixth form students and approximately 40 additional pupils in years 7 to 11. Following fresh investment in new equipment, the club now hopes to produce a rower worthy of a place in the Boat Race, following a history of sending academics to both Oxford and Cambridge Universities.

There is an open evening for prospective year 9 and 12 students starting in September 2015 on November 25.

If you would like to learn more about following in the footsteps of these athletes, visit or call 020 8525 5200.

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