Henley 2021: Picking Up Speed

Eyes on the prize. Boys from Pangbourne College study the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup. However, their chances of winning the trophy were denied to them on day one when they were defeated by Reading Blue Coat School.

13 August 2021

By Tim Koch

At Henley, Tim Koch changes ends at half-time.

On Thursday, Day 2 of Henley 2021, the official summary noted that:

There was… history for the Regatta… as two more women’s eights events made their first appearances. The morning session saw the inaugural race of the Wargrave Challenge Cup (club women’s eights)quickly followed by the Island Challenge Cup (student women’s eights). After the debut of the Junior Women’s eights on Wednesday, the three new women’s events this year have all begun.

Oxford Brookes University, Eton College and two Dutch crews Nereus and Triton flexed their form in the morning. Clashes, lost blades, disqualifications and upsets changed the temperature at the end of the afternoon session. For obvious reasons, it has been a hard decision for international crews to travel to the Regatta this year, especially from America with quarantine rules continually changing as they were planning in July, but those that have come mean business.

The results so far are on the regatta’s website and, as always, the best way to get informed about the previous day’s action is by watching Matthew Pinsent’s “Pick of the Day” on YouTube:

If it is true that a picture paints a thousand words, here are 22,000 of them.

At the finish

Thursday morning saw a few light showers and a slight lowering of the temperature after the warmth of Wednesday. It made spectating and rowing more comfortable.

From top to toe: Cambridge, Goldie, Leander.
These look like a variation on the Hampton School “curtains” blazer. The original garments were made from heavy old drapes that hung in the school’s Great Hall and were given to those boys who won the “Triple” in a single year: The Schools Head, the National Schools and Henley’s Princess Elizabeth.
A group combining the traditional English loves of boating, gardening and drinking.
I managed to find a good parking space for my Aston Martin DB11 (I had to get rid of the old DB5 because of trouble with the ejector seat). However, some may be sniffy about placing “partners” products in the Enclosure.
The deckchair look.
Getting the results old-school style.
These boys clearly enjoy being able to eat pizzas in the Stewards’ Enclosure but, presumably, it is something for this year only. To be fair, the fast food available cannot be taken out of the “food court” area on the Regatta Enclosure site and into the rest of Stewards.

At the start

In a heat of the Prince of Wales Challenge Cup (men’s quad sculls), it was going much as expected when Craftsbury Green Racing Project, USA, took an early lead over Hinksey Sculling School & Exeter University…
However, at the quarter mile, Craftsbury caught a crab and then clashed with Hinksey. The race stopped, but both were allowed to continue and Hinksey moved rapidly away as the Craftsbury bowman tried to recover his oar. Eventually, Craftsbury came back strongly but ran out of course and lost by three lengths.
There was another smashing time in the heat of the Thames between Agecroft and London. Less than a minute after the start, both crews converged slightly but, as Umpire Stanhope was warning Agecroft, blades clashed and the London stroke man lost his blade. Thus, Stanhope’s only option was to stop the race and disqualify Agecroft.
In Race 60, a heat of the Princess Royal, the women’s single sculls, Umpire Batten was late on the start. Not her fault, but perhaps the competitors should have awarded her a false start?
Of those in Race 60, Otto of Cologne (top) seems confident, while Mole of Leeds (below) does not appear so sure.
Otto and Mole at the end of the island.

At the Barrier, Reading University leads Lagan Scullers’ Club in a heat of the Prince of Wales.
Umpire Pinsent on the start.
Claires Court School go onto the start in a heat of the Diamond Jubilee (junior women’s quad sculls).
Wallingford, Claires Court’s opponents, in action.
Imperial College takes the first stroke in their heat of the Temple (student men’s eights).
Umpire Richard Phelps goes through the start procedure. He is well-known at the regatta for changing his blazer several times a day.
Part of Cork’s engine room gets into his stride in a heat of the Thames Cup (men’s club eights).
The end of racing for the day.

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