Marlow Long Distance Sculls 2015 – J16 1x

J16 1x

Henley RC are going to be out in force on Saturday, and they have a strong squad coming off the back of a successful 2015 regatta season. Howe looks like the strongest candidate for the top spot in this competition, being part of the finalist coxed quad at National Schools’ Regatta. What sets him apart from the rest of his squad is his 9th place finish out of 42 boats at Reading Small Boats Head three weeks ago. That said, close behind him are two rivals and previous crew-mates from the boat club: Jones and Zolkwer. Jones was a mere 5 seconds behind him at Reading, and Zolkwer came out in 11th place with a 13 second margin from Howe. There’s going to be some fierce internal competition between the boats, which can only motivate them to produce faster times.

R.G.S High Wycombe are bringing a strong contingent to Marlow. All their competitors here are powerful and confident scullers, which they proved through their bronze medal finish in the 4x+ at NSR. Goodier and Shah-Ostrowski both qualified in J15 singles in Nottingham; an achievement that only these two have a claim to in this category. In light of that competition, Goodier seems to be the faster sculler, and out of these two, he should be coming out ahead. The other R.G.S High Wycombe competitor in the mix is Howlett, who won a gold medal in the double scull in his age group at NSR. It’s a difficult call between Howlett and Goodier, but I would say that the gold standard that Howlett has exhibited puts him a pip ahead his peers.

The slight wildcard here is Shiplake’s Sheppard. While his 2015 season was underwhelming in terms of his achievements as a part of his school’s J15 1st Eight, he’s hit the ground running with the start of the small boats season. His time at Wallingford Long Distance Sculls placed him at 9th of 32 in a strong J17 1x field at the race. He’ll be one to watch for a high placing, even if he can’t compete with the top sculling specialists in this event.

It’s worth mentioning the Marlow squad attending, consisting of Wilson, Daniell and Treasure. While I’m not expecting anything spectacular from these three, home-water advantage cannot be underestimated, and the club has a strong sculling tradition. I can see the faster of these boys mixing with the lower end of the Henley and High Wycombe squads.

Prediction- Henley’s Howe to win, although expect some close margins with his squad-mates and R.G.S High Wycombe’s Howlett and Goodier