National Schools’ Regatta 2015- J16 Girls Singles Preview

In no event can more places change within a race than in single sculls; competitors can go from 6th place to pole position in a dozen strokes and this makes for a very exciting spectacle. This Sunday’s J16G1x final promises to be one such spectacle, with 36 entries and only two semi finals, the quality of which will no doubt be very high.

I have picked out the seven scullers that I believe have the best chance of reaching the final. Unfortunately the scullers at the Junior Inter-regional Regatta (JIRR) were not named, and so there is a bit of speculation on my part regarding the results there.


Lizzie Lander [Christchurch]

Lizzie raced in the WJ181x category at the GB Junior trials in February in Boston and placed a creditable 36th on the Saturday. She is strong on the erg, having pulled in the low 7.20s for the March 2k assessment and if, as I believe she did (it was a Christchurch sculler), she won this event at the JIRR, I think she is definitely capable of equalling her silver in J15G1x last year!


Beth Willford-Duton [Northwich]

Beth competed in the WJ161x at the February trials and sculled well to a fourth place finish. A Northwich sculler took the bronze medal at JIRR, and it was quite probably her. In any case, she stands a good chance of reaching the final.


Lucy Glover [Warrington]

Glover is a name apparently linked with female rowing prowess! Lucy has had a very strong season so far, coming sixth on the Saturday of February trials and 5th in the B Final of the GB Junior Small Boats regatta in Nottingham in April. The latter event will have been a very useful experience for her, and she showed the week later at Wallingford Regatta that she was the one to beat by winning the WJ181x event.


Hope Cessford [Durham A.R.C]

Hope placed 8th in the WJ161x category at the February trials and I’m going to bet that it was her who won the B Final at the JIRR for Durham A.R.C. A place in the final is within her reach if she performs well on the day.


Hetty Palmer [Llandaff]

Hetty won the WJ161x event at Hampton Small Boats Head earlier this season, and so clearly has some good boat moving skills. She represented Wales at the Home Countries last summer, a fantastic experience for someone then very young for the competition. Hetty placed 4th in J15G1x last year and I won’t be surprised if she makes it to the final and tries to better that result.


Leila Bernstein [Globe]

Leila is strong on the erg, having pulled in the low 7.20s for the March GB Junior 2k assessment; this sort of power resource is something that can prove very useful in side-by-side racing! I believe Leila placed fourth in the recent JIRR, a result I think she could emulate or improve upon in several days time.


Abbie Bird [Maidenhead]

Abbie placed 29th in the WJ161x category at the February trials; a good placing in a very tough field. Moreover, she has proven herself a strong athlete on the erg, pulling a 7.18 2k in March as part of the trials system. It will be interesting to see if she can translate the power she has into boat speed this weekend.


My prediction:

1-L. Glover [Warrington]

2-L. Lander [Christchurch]

3-H.Palmer [Llandaff]


Good luck to all competitors!