Henley: Semi Saturday

Sporting spirit being shown following a heat of the Diamond Jubilee Challenge Cup, the Junior Women’s Quad event. Marlow (in red, over 9 kg a girl heavier) had just defeated Headington School (in blue) by one length

8 July 2018

Tim Koch does not plan a lazy weekend.

Here is Rachel Quarrell’s article from The Daily Telegraph and Matthew Pinsent’s Day 4 Highlights are on the Regattas YouTube Channel. The Regatta’s press release is italicised below, the pictures and captions are mine.

In one of the shocks of the morning session, Leander Club’s ‘A’ quad were knocked out of the Prince of Wales Challenge Cup by a very impressive unit from A.A.S.R Skoll. Leander, who have won this event on five of the last six occasions, simply could not live with the pace and power of the Dutch, who led from the off and sculled away to set up a Sunday meeting with Edinburgh University and Nottingham Rowing Club. The last time Leander didn’t make the final of the Prince of Wales was in 2005. 

Perhaps the most sensational result of the day was the defeat of Leander and Molesey by the Australians by 3/4 length in the only heat of the three-entry Grand. The final will now be between Australia and Romania. Pictured here after the race is stroke, Will Satch and cox, Henry Fieldman.
Edinburgh University and Nottingham Rowing Club winning by 1 1/2 lengths over Rudern, Tennis und Hockey Club Bayer Leverkusen and Turnverein 1877 e.V. Essen-Kupferdreh.
More bad news for Leander, this time in the Ladies’. Oxford Brookes University and Edinburgh University were 3/4 length up on them at the finish.

Thames Rowing Club will be attempting to make it two in a row when they face N.S.R. Oslo on Sunday in the final of the Thames Challenge Cup. Under Ben Lewis, the club has been transformed into one of the leading domestic programs with a clear aim in mind – to dominate in club events at Henley Royal Regatta. Tomorrow, they face N.S.R. Oslo, the Norwegians who last made the final in 2016. This could be sensational. 

The mad and marvellous O’Donovans raced Prundeanu and Enache from Romania. It seems that the boys from Skibbereen were more worried about the booms that the fact that they totalled 146 kg while their opponents weighed in at a combined 188 kg.
Gary at bow, Paul at stroke.
The brothers won by 2 1/4 lengths, both quite composed at the end of the race. The Romanians display the traditional uncomprehending look of heavyweights that have just been thrashed by lightweights.

Much has been said about the power, precision and all-round poise of St Paul’s School. Bobby Thatcher’s unit have matured after a challenging exit on the Friday of Henley Royal Regatta last year but now the superlatives run free. To watch them in their semi-final this afternoon was a genuine honour – they dismantled a Radley College crew who have got faster since their silver medal at the National Schools’ Regatta. To be rating 25 through the enclosures on the Saturday takes something remarkable – and that’s exactly what St Paul’s have become. 

In the Fawley, Maidenhead beat Leander by 1 length.
Leander and the University of London finishing a length up on the University of Washington in a heat of the Remenham. The Americans led for much of the way.
Blazers.

Vicky Thornley’s troubled relationship with Henley Royal Regatta continued as the Olympic silver medallist was knocked out of the Princess Royal Challenge Cup by former HRR winner Madeleine Edmunds. Thornley, who lost out in the final of this competition last year to Thiele of Germany, never looked comfortable on the course and, despite grabbing an early lead, was overhauled by Australian sculler Edmunds in the middle of the course. 

Where’s Vicky? Madeleine Edmunds won by 3 3/4 lengths in the Princess Royal.
In a heat of the Visitors’, Leander beat Cambridge University and Leander by 2/3 length.
We all have our problems and Julian Hirst’s (standing second left) is that he has to fit his two Rolls Royce motor cars – plus a lunch table for ten – into the small space allocated to him in Butler’s Field Car Park. On the left is a 1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III Barker Sedanca de Ville. Only 19 were made, one of which was used by Goldfinger in the eponymous 1964 James Bond film. On the right is a 2007 Rolls Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe. Both cars have V12 engines – though this does not get them out of Henley any quicker on a Saturday evening.

The Australians had a superb afternoon session on the Saturday of Henley Royal Regatta, beating strong opposition in the Grand and Remenham Challenge Cups. The men, with a world championship-winning coxless four on board, beat Leander and Molesey Boat Club on their own turf, whilst their women’s eight dispatched the mighty Yale University. Both crews will now fancy their chances in Henley finals tomorrow. 

Yale, beaten by the Australians in the Remenham by 2 1/2 lengths.
In the always hotly contested Prince Albert, Imperial College beat the University of London by a length. UL had led for much of the way.
Wuethrich and Greves of Headington School and Wallingford on their way to the start for a heat of the Stonor. They eventually lost to Hodgkins-Bryne and Thornton of University of London and Nottingham RC.

The strength of Oxford Brookes’ rowing program was emphasised once again, as both of their crews progressed through to the final of the Ladies Challenge Plate for Intermediate Eights. Their top-ranked crew beat a development boat from Germany before a composite Brookes/Edinburgh outfit defeated Leander’s Plate entry. Coach, Henry Bailhache-Webb, is guaranteed to have his hands on some silverware tomorrow.

In a heat of the Diamonds, Tom Graves of the US (above), lost to Mahé Drysdale of New Zealand by 3 lengths.
If Drysdale wins on Sunday, he will equal the record of sixth victories in the Diamonds.

The big names in the smaller boats all made it safely through to set up some mouth-watering finals. Mahe Drysdale, gunning for a record-equalling sixth win in the Diamond Challenge Sculls, comfortably beat Tom Graves of the USA, whilst Kjetil Borch saw off the advances of former Team GB athlete Charlie Cousins. The Sinkovic brothers will face Watts and Widdicombe of Australia (in the Goblets) as they bid to win a Henley medal whilst one of the contests of the day will see the lightweights from Ireland take on the heavyweight GB pairing. If the Irish are in touch at the enclosures, we could be set for a cracking finish. 

The line-up for Finals Day.

During the tea interval, there was a row past of two eights entirely composed of Leander Olympic medallists from 1976 to the present day. Sixteen Olympic gold medals were represented, including Steve Redgrave, James Cracknell, Pete Reed and Steve Williams, while silver medallists included Vicky Thornley, Tim Crooks, Alex Partridge and Zoe de Toledo.

The Chairman was at stroke.
‘Which end goes in the water?’ Sir Steve tries to remember how it all works.
de Toledo, Redgrave, Cracknell, Flood.
The two crews were supposed to row side-by-side. Inevitably, the last few strokes ended up in a race.

Henley Past and Present:

The Carpenters Arms pub, Henley Bridge, 1812.
Regatta Headquarters, Henley Bridge, 2018.

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