Tim Koch writes:
Day two of Henley 2015 started under grey skies and with some drizzle before the sun came out and the breeze picked up. Unlike the day before, temperatures were comfortable for spectators and competitors alike. The Thursday highlights video is here.
Tyne A.R.C. and N.R.C. Oslo from Norway were involved in a tight fight in the Wyfold Challenge Cup for club fours. The Tyne crew were down by three-quarters of a length at the three-quarter mile mark but came through to win by just a third of a length.
An Antipodean battle in the same event saw the New Zealanders from Petone R.C. pull back a big, early deficit against Sydney R.C. to come through and win by a length.
Germany’s Ratsgymnasium Osnabruck were beaten by St Edwards’ School but might not have made it to the start line without the generosity of their opponents who gave them a substitute boat to replace the one that was held up in the strikes at Calais.
Westminster School are still on course for the triple crown having beaten Hampton School in Thursday’s second round of the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup. They are already National Schools’ and Schools’ Head winners and are seeking to add the ‘P.E.’ for the triple. They won by a length and a third during the post-lunch sessions in which the USA’s huge entry began to make its presence felt.
No fewer than 23 American crews were in action as a precursor to the next two days’ racing which will see some significant US rivalries on the Henley Reach.
The first heats of the Diamond Sculls started in this second day. In a race between L.A.J. Wells of the Army Rowing Club and W.H. Mackworth-Praed of Auriol Kensington Rowing Club, Wells won convincingly by three lengths. However, Mackworth-Praed (who sculled in the qualifying races to gain one of the ten available places in the twelve boat event) can probably claim two records for Henley 2015. At 42, he may be the oldest competitor and also he may be the only entrant using a wooden boat – a beautiful Carl Douglas.
As to Friday, the Regatta YouTube channel says that:
American viewers should look out especially for the 16.00 BST Ladies’ Challenge Plate for intermediate eights when the University of Washington “Huskies” take on Princeton for the first time in head-to-head river-based racing in almost a century.
The prize for the winner of this race is, of course, to race at Henley Royal Regatta on 4th of July. Speaking of history, here is a little compilation of how Henley changes – and also remains the same.
Let’s hope that Carl Douglas himself is not reading HTBS. His boats are not wooden; rather they are composite, with Kevlar on the inside and wood on the outside. But, as you say, they are indeed beautiful!
I always say that it’s what’s on the outside that counts.