As the last week in school coincided with Henley Royal regatta, which is cancelled this year, this provided a solution for us to hang the event on. Although we could not associate the event with Henley Royal, we can use many associated common attributes such as distances and landmarks. We have been in touch with Henley Royal and they like the event and are particularly pleased to see that we have exclusivity by incorporating running and ergo events in all categories of individual and crew events
The event has daily and championship categories that run throughout the week, with accumulated results over the 5 days for champ events.
The virtual event is really gathering pace now with some 30 schools and clubs entered for the 5 days of events.
We have Hudson, Termax, Crewroom and Allmark One donating prizes.
An interview is lined up with Rebecca Caroe of USA Rowing Chat https://rowing.chat/
Follow updates on Twitter https://twitter.com/HenleyVirtual
Some of the entrants
|STRATFORD UPON AVON
|ST PAULS GIRLS
Some General Knowledge On Henley Royal Regatta
Henley Royal Regatta is 2112m long because that was the longest straight that could be raced on that section of the Thames. Since then it has changed length a few times, but despite all international events being raced over 2000m (and the river itself widening) the Regatta has come back to its original distance.
You might think that an extra 112m isn’t going to make much difference, but the course also runs against the stream! Generally adding about a minute onto racing over a normal 2000m lake course.
On Wednesday the Championship crews will race this distance as a combined effort – 528m each. A good two minute blast to kick off the event.
Fawley Court is a beautiful country house sitting halfway along the Henley course, and has always been used as a distance landmark by racing crews.
The Junior Boys Quadruple Sculls event is named after this house – The Fawley Challenge Cup – and we are using it as our Thursday Championship distance. Challenging, but not exhausting.
The regatta start line is at the bottom end of Temple Island, so called for the stunning temple that sits on it. Crews sprinting off the start line will generally use the 207m “end of the island” as a mark to start stretching out their rhythm and looking for efficiency.
Friday will be an all out sprint for our Championship crews, with absolutely no efficiency in sight, only power!
Olympic Champion and winner of many Henley medals, Greg Searle spoke at our Annual Gala Dinner this year. Greg also commentates on the Henley races, and often refers to the middle part of the course as the “Badlands”. This is because while the course itself is dead straight, the banks are not, and through the middle section the spectators’ bank pulls away from the course. This is a quiet area for the racing crews and a lonely place if you’re already clear water down.
On Saturday the Championship crews will race this middle section as measured from the 637m “Barrier” to the 1609m “Mile Post” – 972m. And as a twist, crews are allowed a rolling start on this race. How they manage that on a single erg piece is up to them to work out…
Finals day. The top four crews of each Championship category will race the full Henley Royal Regatta course, and I assure they will feel that extra 112m.
In 2012, junior girls were allowed to race at Henley Royal Regatta for the first time ever in The Diamond Jubilee Challenge Cup Quadruple Sculls, and I am so excited to say that next year we will have Eights as well!
Some of you will have never been to Henley Royal Regatta, but I sincerely hope you all get to in the near future to enjoy a truly remarkable, world-class event. Some of you will go to spectate, and some of you will go to race… And maybe, one day, some of you will go to win.
* J15’s are allowed to race with the J16-18 in the Championship events.
Categories: Senior School Sport