Hampton Small Boats Head 2014- J15 1x & WJ15 1x Preview

J15 1x

Windsor Boys’ School have the strongest presence in the category. All four members of the quad who just missed out on a medal at National Schools’ are present, and they should be relatively strong and competent scullers. WBS-Hunter, Bodkin and Shewell should place relatively high, although they haven’t proven themselves in a scull yet.

Maidenhead are also putting two strong scullers out. MHD-Kleshnev won J15 1x at Wallingford Sculls, and I reckon he’s one of the main contenders for first place here. Also coming up behind him will be MHD-Marshall, who came second in the same event.

With a rather confusing results system at Kingston SBH it is hard to tell which Kingston RC sculler gained second place at that event, but if it is KRC-Joseph, he should be a strong competitor, especially over a shorter distance.

The other sculler who could challenge Kleshnev is KGS-Spurling of Kingston Grammar School. He won the J15 1x event by around 20 seconds over the 5km course at Kingston SBH. He’s a force to be reckoned with, and I would expect him to win, or at least come close second to Kleshnev.

It’s worth mentioning that Eton College BC haven’t yet raced their J15s, but considering the school’s history of producing top J15 athletes I would expect that one of their scullers will break the top 10. Hen-Turnell also came third in J15 1x at Henley Sculls, so may challenge for one of the top five places.

WJ15 1x

Lady Eleanor Holles will be out in force on Saturday and looking to win some medals on their home water. LEH-Jackson won a bronze medal at National Schools’ last year in their formidable J14G8x. On top of this, she has proven a degree of sculling prowess this year with a bronze position at Pangbourne Junior Sculls. LEH-Blackmore doubled up with her to win WJ15 2x at Upper Thames Autumn Head- proving themselves as the top two scullers in this squad. I predict that Jackson will take a top three placing, while Blackmore should stay ahead of all the other LEH girls.

LEA-Moody is the strongest candidate for first place in this event. She has taken to racing in WJ16 1x with great success; coming an impressive 6th of 20 in a competitive category at Wallingford Long Distance Sculls. Her time places her 15 seconds in front of the winner of WJ15 1x, and racing both J15 and J16 on Saturday, she’ll be looking to stay ahead in the former while challenging some of the most impressive scullers in the year above. Moody will most likely take the win here.

PHS-Coni is the other sculler coming into this event with a good sculling record. Although Bedford Autumn Small Boats Head is not known for featuring the most competitive crews in the country, Coni won by 11 seconds in a category of around 30 boats over the 2000 meter course. How she will fair over the longer course and in the presence of more competitive schools is hard to call, but she should achieve a top 5 placing at least.

LEA-Moody for the win.