ROWERS from 33 clubs will be launching out in 302 boats on the Wye this weekend for the annual Monmouth Regatta, which dates back some 90 years to the early 1930s.

Saturday’s 1500m event will see 170 crews and singles compete in 123 races from 9.30am to 4.30pm.

And Sunday’s 700m sprint has 135 boats entered, with 90 races between 10am and 3.45pm.

Clubs hoping to make a splash include the likes of Nottingham RC, World Class Start centre Bath University, Hartpury University, Dart Totnes, Wimbleball, Staines, City of Bristol and local rivals Hereford and Ross.

Welsh interest is provided by Aberystwyth, Swansea and Cardiff universities, Penarth and Llandaff.

And defending home waters will be the three school clubs, Monmouth School RC, Monmouth School for Girls and Monmouth Comprehensive.

A highlight of the weekend will be the two Blue Riband 8s events on Saturday afternoon.

The Phil Mathew Claret Jug, named after Monmouth RC’s former chairman and regatta commenntator, sees a straight final between City of Bristol and Warwick University at 3.17pm.

And the Alec Woods Ladies Plate women’s 8s, named after the club’s former president, has four boats entered, with Llan- daff racing Warwick at 2.13pm followed straight afterwards by Bath University facing City of Bristol, with the final around 4pm.

Entry to the riverside is free with refreshments and drinks available.

Monmouth RC are grateful to their regatta sponsors, including – Abbie Carpets, Monnow Eyecare, Haberdashers’ Monmouth Schools, Pol Roger Portfolio, Hancocks of Monmouth Butchers, Brunel Insurance, Kingstone Brewery, Monmouth MOT Centre, 5 Acres Hire, Towergate Insurance, Tod Security & Fire, Kilsby Williams, Monmouth Chiropractic Clinic, Paul Jarrold Tyres, Monmouth Canoe Hire and Blaentrothy Cottages.