Henley Royal Regatta draw

res4048-fawley-jm4xaWhile it may look like a forgone victory for Sir William Borlase School here this week, that’s not to say that this event at one of the most prestigious regattas in the world doesn’t have a group of well matched and competitive crews, both domestic and foreign. The first day will be most interesting in terms of seeing the speed of the American and German crews coming over, and it’s sure to deliver a spectacular start to the regatta.

Kingston RC vs. Y Quad Cities, USA

Kingston RC did very well to qualify for this event; I believe the first junior crew in the club’s history. However, they’ve rather drawn the short straw, coming up against the bronze medalists at the Youth Nationals in the United States. Kingston performed relatively well at Marlow, being 10th placed against some of the top junior crews, but their time was not so impressive, coming out with a time of 6:32 on a day where sub 6:20 was the name of the game for top crews in the strong tail-wind. Y Quad Cities, provided they’re on form, will take a lead and stick with it.

Verdict- 3+ lengths to Y Quad Cities

York City RC vs. The Windsor Boys’ School

There’s no doubt that Windsor Boys’ School were one of the great surprises of last year’s regatta, and their epic journey to Sunday was completely unforeseeable. This new unit hasn’t been quite as formidable as last years, but with GB trialist Harry Oliver in the mix they will certainly take a good lead over National fifth place semi-finalists: York City. You’ll be seeing Windsor Boys’ again on Thursday.

Verdict- 3+ lengths to Windsor Boys’ School

Norwich RC vs. Thames RC

This is one of the first evenly matched races of the event. These crews both performed well at National Schools’, coming 3rd and 4th respectively in different heats, but missing places in the final. Also note the presence of outstanding J16 sculler Alex Kelly, and well acquitted GB trialist Oscar Bird in the Thames boat. The times at that regatta suggest that both these crews sustain their speed well over a 2KM course, but don’t have the fastest of starts. This could make this a very difficult and close race for both crews, but Norwich school have produced consistently faster times than Thames, and as such I think they’ll come out ahead.

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