Thames Valley Trial Head 2015- J16 & J17 Preview


It looks as if Maidenhead have a very good chance in this category: O‘Mahony has had a good season so far in the single, coming in 5th at Wallingford Long Distance Sculls (WLDS) and 2nd at Marlow LDS (MLDS). Sneller has also performed well, sculling to an 8th place at the Hampton Small Boats Head and coming a place in front and a place behind O’Mahony at WLDS and MLDS respectively. Kleshnev, however, seems to be their greatest hope of a win in this category as the young sculler was victorious in the J151x category at the HSBH, in a time that would have put him in 2nd place in the J16 event.

Other notable competitors are Abingdon’s Sudlow, who has achieved a 4th place at MLDS and a 7th place at Henley LDS (HLDS), in a very large field. Emanuel’s Wilson performed commendably at HSBH, coming in 6th.

I think Kleshnev will take the win, with the next four places being hotly contested.



Once again, Maidenhead appear to be the front-runners with the ‘Collins’ double having come 4th at HSBH in this category. Two places behind them however were Weybridge’s ‘Cook’ combination, who will be ones to watch on the Dorney stretch. The Weybridge crew will also be looking to emulate their good performance at the Pairs Head in October, where they placed 4th. The Thames’ ‘Storey’ crew, who have a legacy at TRC with Hugo Storey having rowed in last year’s Fawley quad, were 5th in the Pairs Head and so too will be looking for a good result at Eton Dorney come Sunday afternoon. Wallingford achieved bronze in the J152x event at the British Junior Rowing Championships last summer, and so at least one of their combinations may have a noteworthy turn of speed.

I believe the win will go to one of these four crews, but don’t expect that they will get it served to them on a plate; it only takes one person having a bad (or good) day to drastically change the performance of such a small boat, so there is all to play for.



If Cook isn’t successful in the double, I will be surprised if he doesn’t get a good result in this event; Weybridge have performed well in the quad so far this season, winning both HLDS and Weybridge Winter Head.

Sir William Borlase’s GS had a good J15 squad last summer, achieving 6th place in the J15CH8+ category and have proven that the transition into the J16 category hasn’t dampened their spirits by rowing to a 7th place at Wallingford Fours and Eights Head at the end of last year. Although we haven’t seen much of these boys with two blades each, SWB have a strong record in sculling, especially at the higher levels of schoolboy rowing, and so I expect that this crew will provide Weybridge with a decent challenge.

There are also two Maidenhead quads, which may be quick, considering the aforementioned prowess of the club’s J16 squad.



Maidenhead’s Hoxley is a clear favourite in this event, having sculled to a 5th place at HSBH. Emanuel’s Wilson, who is also competing in the J16 event, clocked a time at Hampton that would have placed him seven slots behind Hoxley, in 12th. Reading’s Iddon came in 20th at HLDS and, I’m sure, will have gained experience there, which will yield him a better result on Sunday.


Good luck to all competitors.