Schools’ Head 2017 – WJ16 4+
Schools Head of the River is one of the biggest events of the year and the first major national one. It will be interesting to see which crews prove to be the top sweepers at this stage as we end the head season. This division is missing many of the big names who usually dominate the WJ16 categories but scattered in amongst the entries are crews from tideway clubs who have experience on this stretch of river which will certainly give them an edge in this race. The conditions are notoriously unpredictable on this course and that will be likely to help separate off the top crews as those will be the ones who will adapt best to whatever is thrown at them.
Godolphin School have had some very good races recently and were able to win the WJ16 eights at Hammersmith head. They also raced at WEHORR where they put in a strong race making them likely competitors for the top place in this division. They know the course very well which will certainly help them to get a fast time and with two crews entered one of them should place very highly.
Yarm School seem to be very strong at sculling so it will be interesting to see how that translates into the four. They were able to race in this four at Head of the Trent but as time only. This race would’ve have probably set them up quite well for this event.
Kings School Worcester are relatively new to racing in this division but seem to be going from strength to strength and are able to dominate at smaller regional events. It will be interesting to see how they compare to the crews who have experience of rowing on this stretch of river as it will be quite different to what they are used to.
Stratford-Upon-Avon BC – the course will be unfamiliar for these girls but they have been placing very highly for quite a while in this four with a win at Wycliffe small boats head in the WJ16 4+ division so should be able to get quite a good time.
Recently both Putney high school and Lady E Holles raced at Hampton head placing 4th and 5th. I cannot tell whether these will be the same crews as the ones entered for schools head of the river but Putney will have experience rowing the course which might help them to get ahead of the less experienced crews.
Surbiton High School always seem to be able to do quite well but don’t seem to have recently have had any great results. It will be interesting to see how they do on Thursday.
Idroscalo Club ASD – Italy have a crew entered in this division. As they are Italian it is very difficult to find out how they compare to the other crews in this division and therefore it will be interesting to see how they do in comparison.
From looking at the crews entered it looks as though Godolphin School should do very well with at least one of their fours but there are likely to be some crews which have been working in preparation for this event for a while and will place very highly. The conditions of the Thames will be likely to affect the race outcome drastically meaning that crews who often row this bit of river will be able to adapt better to whatever the boats have to face on Thursday.
Good luck to all crews racing!