Picture This: The 2014 Head Of The River Fours

Pic 1
Three hours before the 9.45 start of the 2014 Head Fours. Those out for an early practice enjoyed this beautiful sunrise.

Tim Koch writes:

The 60th Head of the River Fours took place on the Mortlake to Putney course on the Thames on Saturday, 1 November. This was previewed by HTBS a few days previously and the results are here. Official duties prevented me from attempting any comprehensive coverage but I hope that the pictures that I managed to take while stationed at Hammersmith Bridge give some flavour of the race. Also, rowing journalist Mike Rowbottom gives a nice take on the event in his recent online article “Why rowers always make me feel not worthy”

Before

Pic 2
Some of Leander’s crews boating from the headquarters of British Rowing at 6 Lower Mall (next to Hammersmith Bridge).
Pic 3. Leander I, the Elite Quad that went off number '2' but finished number '1'. The photographer is Robert Treharne-Jones, the Leander Press Officer.
Leander I, the Elite Quad that went off number ‘2’ but finished number ‘1’. The photographer is Robert Treharne-Jones, the Leander Press Officer.
Pic 4
Crew 139, Great Marlow School I (Junior Coxless Quad) pass under Hammersmith Bridge on the way to the start.
Pic 5
Boating from Furnivall Sculling Club’s pontoon.
Passing the St Paul's School ramp.
Passing the St Paul’s School ramp.
Pic 7
Hammersmith Bridge is 40% of the distance if you are rowing from Putney to Mortlake.

During

Pic 8a

Pic 8b
(This and picture just above) The battle for ‘Head of the River’ is usually between the Elite Quads. At Hammersmith, Leander I (who went off second) have a convincing lead over Tideway Scullers I (who went off first). The boys in pink eventually won with a time of 17.54 while Scullers came 6th (behind Leander’s Lightweight Quad and its Coxless Four) with a time of 18.25.
Pic 9
Leander V, 4th place overall and winner of Elite Coxless Fours with a time of 18.10.
Pic 10
Isis II, 9th place overall and winner of Elite Coxed Fours with a time of 18.30.
Pic 11
Cambridge University I, 22nd place overall and 5th in Elite Coxed Fours, 22 seconds behind rivals Isis II (a.k.a. Oxford).
Pic 12
Cambridge University Women I who were 5th in Women’s Elite Coxed Fours in a time of 21.06. Oxford’s women came 1st and 2nd in the event in times 36 and 27 seconds faster.
Pic 13
Crews 277 (Cambridge 99 II) and 275 (Nephthys III, a.k.a Oxford Lightweights) find that the Thames Tideway is not wide enough for them (unlike the Cam and the Isis).

After

Pic 14a
Leander I, Head of the River (from bow): J Collins, J. Walton, C. Cousins, P. Lambert.
Pic 14b
Leander VIII who won Women’s Elite Quads and were the fastest women’s crew: P. Swann, V. Mayer-Laker, V. Thornley, J. Leyden.
Pic 15
Leander II, who came 2nd both overall and in Elite Quads: N. Middleton, J. Beaumont, S. Innes, A. Groom.
Pic 16
A probably very unhappy Tideway Scullers I, who dropped five places: M. Lawrence, A. Campbell, N. Marriott, S. Heap.
Pic 17
A much happier Isis II, who won Elite Coxed Fours beating both a Molesey and a Leander crew packed with Internationals: S. O’Connor, M. Disanto, J. Cook, C. Louloudis, W. Hakim (cox).
Pic 18
At Harrods. The end of a good day’s racing in ideal conditions.

History

Pic 19
I was in a boat for the race but (thankfully) it had an engine. However, there was a time when I did not have such assistance…
Pic 20
The 1987 Head of the River Fours with me at bow. I am not sure what the beard was about but it was a time when it was common for boats and blades to be made of wood and matching kit was regarded as something of an affectation.

Photographs © Tim Koch

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