Quintin Head 2015 – W.J18 Preview

While having a pretty small number of entries, W.J18 eights looks like it could be pretty hard fought this year. As in the J18 eight preview, I will go through each school entry and suggest how they’ll fare this weekend:

Canford School

Canford girl’s squad haven’t really produced any results of note recently, and finding much information on them at all has proved difficult. Of course, a paucity of information can prove useful, and an underdog status can, perversely, make it easier to surprise the more established rowing schools. However, without any information on the crew, it is impossible to suggest where they’ll place – but it seems unlikely that they’ll be fighting for the top spot with schools such as LEH and St George’s.

Kingston GS/Molesey 

Composites are always exciting, as they can produce some very quick boats that the other competitors just don’t see coming. Last year, KGS fielded a very good WJ4+ at School’s Head, that won a silver medal, and a CHG2- that won at National School’s. This year, they have a talented rower in the form of Issy Dodds, who finished a promising 42nd at GB Early ID trials; if they can replicate their small boat success of last year, then this could be a successful eight indeed, particularly with the addition of Molesey, who have some strong rowers in the form of the Slabbert twins – although whether they are in America or not at the moment remains to be seen… In any case, this is a boat that has a lot of potential, and should be looking for a high finish – depending on the personnel involved.

Lady Eleanor Holles School 

LEH are a strong and consistent club in the world of J18 women’s rowing. They finished fifth in the CHG8+ final at National School’s last year, and have since put in some strong performances at Pair’s Head and finished 2nd in W.J17.2- at Hampton Small Boats Head, as well as 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th in W.JSch.2-. This shows a great consistency throughout the squad – the five boats were separated only by nine seconds. LEH should certainly be pushing for the victory this Saturday, particularly given that their main competition, St George’s, appear to be entered in matched eights – on paper, this should be a comfortable LEH win. However, races on the Tideway are prone to having some interesting results, as steering plays such a huge part of racing (as well as buoy-avoiding) so this might not be the walkover that it should be. LEH should though enter this race with a great deal of confidence.

St George’s College 

St George’s are a well established rowing school in the women’s circuit, and this year they will again be looking to put in some good results – although they appear to be racing in matched eights at Quintin, so whether they can really challenge LEH remains to be seen. They came second in CHG8+ last year at National School’s, and won CHG4- in good style the following day. With the very talented Gannon sisters presumably featuring in these eights, they will be looking to have a good race and to get as close to the LEH boat as possible; they are certainly a squad that can go far when they move into first and second eights.

St Paul’s Girls School

After some average results at Pairs Head and Fours Head, and a disappointing one at Wallingford, it doesn’t appear that SPGS will feature very strongly this season; however, this is their home water, and with a good race I’m sure they can improve on their Wallingford showing and make a positive start on the road to School’s Head in March.

TOP THREE FINISHERS

1. LEH  2. KINGSTON GS/MOLESEY  3. ST GEORGE’S COLLEGE (Palmer)

 

Good luck to all crews!

Five Man

 

Five Man