Van Gelderen of Windsor Boys School looks most likely to come away with gold after finishing second at the recent GB/France match trials. J Forward from Nottingham and Union has also produced some good times and looks competitive in this event. The maidenhead duo of Overturf and Hughs look like they will battle it out for a place on the podium too. The single sculls is always a reliable event for up-sets though- so definitely an event to watch.
The double from Globe will surely finish top in this event after representing GB in this boat last week. At the Junior Sculling Regatta it was Lea who took a very convincing win so I would expect these boys to also make the top 3. Henley- Swinburn will look to reverse the result at the Scullery and close the 13 second gap.
The boys from Kings School Canterbury seem to be front runners having competed at the GB/France match and won NSR. However, I wouldn’t over look Aberdeen Schools, who consistently produce very competitive pairs. The Tideway Scullers pair is made up of half their quad which suggests that, should they be able to apply themselves in sweep too, then they will also be very quick. I would expect Walton to come second after finishing 3rdat NSR earlier in the season.
As always, the boys quads will no doubt produce some very fast times this weekend and even more so with Henley and Claires Court pushing each other on, as they have done all season. The final could be very close, with Henley taking gold at NSR but Claires Court being victorious over them by 6 seconds at the recent GB trials. Clydesdale were also impressive at NSR as they finished 4thbut they have returned to BRJC in a composit with George Watsons which could be the difference in getting on the podium this time around.
Aberdeen Schools have a changed crew from their NSR gold-medal winning boat- what looks to be their J15s- but I would still expect them to be pushing for a medal. The crew from Walton came second at GB trials in the coxless four so, should they be able to adapt to carrying a cox, will make it onto the podium. It is also a changed crew from the Henley boys who got 5that NSR but I would expect them to still impress come Saturday. This Chester-le-street crew got a silver medal at JIRR so are also in contention for the podium.
Phoebe Muir from Exeter will most likely take the win in Nottingham should she remain injury-free, as last weekend she was forced to pull out of the GB/France match. Her main competition will come from Saffron Weaver of Wycliffe who in fact stood in for Muir last weekend. Another sculler looking to make the podium will be Jasmine Brankin of Nottinghamshire County RA as she won Gb trials in February, where lots of these girls raced. Not to be over-looked are the two entries from Marlow who also featured in the gold-medal winning quad in France last week. Other names who will be pushing for the A final include; Mavra of TSS and Henry of Leicester.
The Marlow double will be very competitive as long as they are not too fatigued from their race in the quad. These girls have had a brilliant season and will look to top it off with not just a medal in the quad, but the double too. They will be chased down by Sir William Perkins who took the win at the Junior Sculling Regatta but Reading will not make it easy for them, as they took the silver at the same regatta. Without this event featuring at NSR and such vast entries, the door is open for some smaller clubs to step up to the plate.
Glasgow Academy ‘Miller’ will arrive at Holme Pierrepoint as favourites, after a 6thplace finish at NSR and rowing for a club that is traditionally very successful in the pair. Great Marlow School will push for second after producing a time just 5 seconds slower than these girls at NSR. The other Scottish boat (Maltby) will look to make it a Glasgow ‘1,2’ as at NSR they were a mere 0.3 seconds behind Great Marlow School. The Walton and Sir William Perkins crews both featured in the NSR C final which suggests it could be very tight between the two.
It is difficult to see the gold medal go to anyone other than Henley or Marlow, who are very closely matched boats. The Henley girls were victorious at National Schools Regatta and even their ‘B’ boat made the A final, showing great strength in depth. Their season also included breaking their own record at Henley Women’s Regatta whilst taking the win. However, if anyone were to push Henley it would be the crew from Marlow who recently won the GB/France match and beat the Henley girls when qualifying for the event. The third, of only three returning clubs from National Schools is Liverpool Victoria. They were a little off the pace at Eton Dorney but the experience gained could prove advantageous for the girls. The rest of the field seems fairly open and could provide some tight races.
The girls from Lea are fresh from their trip across the English Channel and returned from their inaugural GB representation with a gold medal. Therefore, they are expected to take top spot this coming weekend but Stratford-upon-Avon could push them to the finish, as at NSR, they were just 15 seconds apart. The Henley girls also recently put out a good performance at GB trials which could be a boost for them this Saturday. A lack of consistency throughout all rowing events as to whether the four is coxed or coxless could open the door for some surprise results.
Thanks to Jemima- for her help particularly with the singles.