Bumper entry defies rain at Henley T&V

Despite several torrential downpours, Henley hosted another successful Town & Visitors’ Regatta on Saturday (2nd August). The event had a record entry with 266 crews from over 40 clubs competing in 139 races throughout the day.

The record number of entries included over 50 local crews from Leander Club, Henley Rowing Club and Upper Thames Rowing Club.

Upper Thames enjoyed plenty of success winning both senior and intermediate 1 eights and also the intermediate 1 coxless pairs. 

Sam Barnes won the novice single sculls, in one of the last races of the day, saying afterwards: “Having achieved my dream of winning at Henley Royal Regatta, I decided to try something different and go back to basics in my single. Henley T&V was a great opportunity to have some fun and do something outside my comfort zone – sculling in a single!”

Henley RC won 12 races in all with most of those in the women’s and junior events. Their impressive number of wins earned them the ‘Sutherland Challenge Cup’ which was presented to the club by Diane Sutherland at the end of the event. 

On receiving the cup, Henley’s Junior Women’s Coach and Club Trustee, Chris Boothroyd said: “It was a real pleasure to see the club finish our 175th anniversary season with 12 wins and the Victor Ludorum trophy. Our nine wins from the senior and junior women’s squads was a real show of talent following our successes at all of the major head races and regattas this season. Our junior boys had a great day with three wins across the events and it was impressive to see their triumphant win in the IM3 eights event.”

There were also several entries from Bled Rowing Club in Slovenia, celebrating the twinning between Bled and Henley established in 2013. 

Regatta President John Friend said: “I was lucky enough to be part of the civic delegation that went to Bled to mark the twinning last year. They were extremely welcoming, and it was a pleasure to be able to welcome them to Henley for the T&V Regatta.”

For the second year, primary events were offered for newcomers to the sport with the RAF winning the coxed fours while Weyfarers took the mixed quads. 

The RAF RC men’s captain said: “It was great to have a chance to race on the Henley course in our first proper regatta and we were really surprised to win!

“In our last race, I wasn’t sure how we were going to cope after we got completely soaked in a torrential shower on the way to the start. It was so bad that our cox had to try to bail some of the water out before we started! Despite all the water in the boat, we managed to win that race too. It was a great day and I’m really looking forward to coming back next year.”

Full results are available at www.henleytownregatta.org.uk.

By James Lee
Photos by Tim Hodges – www.timhodges.co.uk