Reading Small Boats Head 2015 – J16 Sculling Events (1x, 2x)

The J16 sculling events are fairly well attended at Reading Small Boats, with a large entry in the single scull. It promises to be an exciting contest, and it will be intriguing who asserts themselves at the forefront of their respective squads.

J16 1x

At the forefront of this large event, Windsor Boys‘ Ellery should be standing out. He’s probably Windsor’s best J16 currently, and a superb performance at NSR last year in the single cemented this position. He won a fine bronze medal behind Maidenhead’s Victor Kleshnev and Abingdon’s Thompson. Ellery should really lead the pack here. He heads up a very strong group of scullers, and I’m expecting them to do very well tomorrow. However, Henley – Turnell should be right on Ellery’s tail. Turnell raced the single last weekend at Wallingford LDS, and despite being a long way behind the winner from Maidenhead, he did well to finish third. I think he’ll pose a significant challenge to Ellery, and I wouldn’t be surprised if these boys finish in quick succession. There are a host of other Windsor Boys and Henley rowers who will surely populate the top of this event. However, there are a few other entries that could pose a challenge: Pangbourne – Digby will see Tom Digby’s brother Ed take to the water. Tom was certainly the physically strongest junior in the country last year, and his brother looks to have the same physical strength. If he can hone his technique and efficiency, he’ll be a force to be reckoned with. There should be some proficient St Paul’s School athletes here as well, particularly Alex Langstone-Bolt, who is one of the top J16s currently in the SPS squad. Whether he has enough experience in a small boat is what will determine whether he could have a shot at winning this event. Star and Arrow are also always fairly good at this level, so expect Pizura to make an appearance here.

I’m expecting Windsor Boys – Ellery to take the win here, with Henley – Turnell in second. In third will be another Henley or Windsor Boys sculler.

Five Man

J16 2x

Henley and Falcon have entered two crews a piece into this event with the fifth and final entrant being from St Paul’s.
‘Jones’ from Henley raced at Wallingford LDS last weekend in the single, coming fourth behind two very strong Maidenhead scullers and a fellow Henley boy, Turnell, with whom I imagine he may be racing the double. The racing will have done them good and will stand them in good stead for this Saturday. Henley had a strong J154+ last year, winning a bronze medal at NSR in the event, which both Turnell and Jones were part of, and I believe that the other Henley double constitutes the remaining members of that crew.
Both Falcon crews raced in doubles, and combined in a quad, at NSR last year, but with only one of the doubles qualifying for semi finals, in which they came last, I do not expect them to be the front-runners. It is a long time since NSR, however, and a lot can change over a summer.
From what I can see, ‘Morgan’ was in the St Paul’s J152nd8+ last year, and so it’s not likely that the SPS crew represents the best of their current J16 squad. This doesn’t mean they won’t be fast though; such is the standard of rowing at the Tideway based school.

I think the win will go to one of the Henley crews, beyond that, however, nothing is clear.

Good luck to all crews.