Despite the frustrating weather much of the country has faced lately, the Vesta Scullers' Head will still be running this Saturday. As the event was cancelled last year there should be some fresh results coming our way as scullers compete from University Stone Mortlake to Putney.
Twenty-one entries in the J18 category are almost entirely from clubs and schools on the Tideway; only 7 of the entries are from further afield. Nottingham County have been on a resurgence with their junior rowers lately, notably getting a silver in Champ Doubles at NSR and an A Final in Champ Coxless Fours with Chloe Wild and Jess Austin returning. There are a couple of GB representatives on show too, with Izzy Lack and Evelyna Davies rowing in the Single and Eight respectively at Coupe. The worlds representation comes from Alexandra Riddell-Webster from Godolphin & Latymer in the 4-, the first rower from G&L to ever make a junior worlds squad! Putney High School have three J18 entries: Alice Bridges, Lucia Wickham and Rosie Thoroughgood, and considering their 2nd place overall in Junior Quads at Fours Head, these girl’s should be looked out for. Another familiar name is Emma Kohlmayer from Westminster School, who impressively made the A-Final for Champ Singles at NSR proving that despite their small size, Westminster Women’s rowing could go places in the coming years.
More familiar faces in J17 as Putney High School, Godolphin & Latymer, and Tideway Scullers, however one club stands out amongst the rest – Sacred Heart High School. Only being founded in 2016, the club raced at Henley Women’s Regatta for the first-time last year, and operate out of Fulham Reach. It’s great to see them with their 3 entries and looking to move onwards! There are some quality scullers in J17 including Zoe Scheske from Tideway Scullers, who recently won Champ Doubles at Pairs Head with Izzy Lack, and managed both GB vs France and Coupe De La Jeunesse last year; definitely the sculler to beat. It’s also good to see plenty of entries from schools traditionally associated with their boys rowing: 2 entries from Shiplake, KCS and Westminster respectively bodes well for Junior Women’s rowing.
Another twenty-one J16 scullers are again almost entirely locals, with only Maidenhead’s 3, Hinksey’s 1 and Agecroft’s 1 not rowing on their home water. The J16 doubles at pairs head were won by Maidenhead’s Amelia Carpenter and Olivia Hall, and with Olivia racing she should be expected to put down a quick time. The other two Maidenhead scullers, Ametz Parcell-Arregi and Jasmine Stockdale, finished fourth at pairs head, but shouldn’t be counted out. Putney High School and St Pauls Girls bring some squad depth to the event, but both schools are yet to produce some exceptional results, but things will no doubt get exciting when the season moves more into crew boats. The Agecroft sculler wasn’t racing at the Head of the Lune with the rest of the squad last week, but must be eager to be willing to travel all the way down from Manchester – we could even see a surprise win here!