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  • Writer's pictureRyan Demaine

Women's Head, Schools Head and The Junior Scullers Head 2022

Women’s Head of the River

This Saturday was an exciting return to the Tideway for the first Women’s Head in 4 years. After being cancelled for weather in 2019 then for covid in 2020/21, this race was a great chance to see the calibre of women's rowing in the UK with crews from schools, universities and clubs all being able to compete against each other along the 6.8km course.

The First Eight was the only crew racing this event due to injuries and substitutions and was set off 17th surrounded by club and university crews. The crew rowed well bearing in mind the conditions that they were faced with from Hammersmith Bridge. Overall they placed 2nd in the Junior event and 23rd overall.

Schools Head of the River

School Head was the second race of what is a busy week for the club. Held along the same stretch of the Tideway as Women's Head albeit 300m shorter it was another opportunity to build on Saturday’s performance this time with a cohort of 3 crews- First Eight, J16 Eight and J18 Quad.

After all the crews arrived and went out for a pre-race row to become more familiar with the conditions it was race time. The First Eight was set off first out of our crews and put in a big push managing to overtake three crews to overall take 2nd place by 1 second. For the J16 Eight, it was their first race of the week, they executed a skilled race and also ranked 2nd in their respective event. The JW18 coxless quad had a stong performance stearing a tricky course.

Junior Sculling Head

Wednesday brought about the third and final race of the week with the Junior Sculling Head. We had the biggest entry of the week yet with two J18 Quads, a J16 Quad, two J15 Quads, two J14 Octos and quads respectively. This event is held at the 2012 Olympic Course of Dorney Lake across 3600m which is split into two timed runs up and down the lake.

Our first race of the day was for the J18 coxless quads. The First Quad managed to produce a confident performance after a busy week placing 3rd, the next senior Quad also raced well and placed 28th in what was a competitive event.

Next up was the J16 Quad and again another strong race was put down on the track securing them 3rd place. To end off the morning it was time for the J15 coxed quads to race. Both crews raced very well and managed the worsening conditions well with the top J15 quad walking away with a Gold after their dominant performance.

After the lunchtime break, it was time for the J14s to arrive and hit the track for many of their first times on Dorney Lake. At this point in the afternoon, the weather was in full force making for some variable and tricky conditions to row in. After some delays the start of the J14 events was the coxed quads who secured 4th and 28th respectively, both delivering confident race plans. To end the day we had the two octos coming down the track who placed a respective 5th and 11th after rowing two strong races overall making a good end to a busy week.

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