National Schools’ Regatta 2017 – Girls Second Eights

As junior girls’ rowing has grown in popularity over the last few years, this year has seen a big increase in the number of competitive girls second eights entered for National Schools Regatta. With these three crews taking the top three places in girls first eights at Schools Head, with times faster than every other J18 eight not from their own clubs, this is almost certainly the highest standard of girls second eights ever seen at NSR, and should be quite competitive.

 

Henley RC

Despite only having a first eight last year, Henley’s second eight this year has been exceptional- with a tight 5th place finish in junior eights at WEHORR they’ve proven that despite being a second eight, they would most likely be capable of producing a strong result in girls champ eights. However since head season, Headington have been creeping up on them, with their margins being reduced to just 5 seconds at Wallingford. If the changes to Henley’s second eight as shown on the draw remain true, then they may not have the depth to hold their lead on Headington, as two girls in their crew have been bumped up to the first eight. Despite this, just like in Champ eights I’d expect it to be a close battle between Henley and Headington for the win.

 

Headington

Headington’s track record in consistently producing the fastest junior girls’ eight in the country needs no introduction, but with the steady growth of this category in itself, we have only seen clubs fielding second crews in more recent years. HSOBC didn’t enter a second eight at last year’s National Schools Regatta, but this year they look to have much better depth in the squad and this crew have been racing all season. Their results have been decent but, in contrast to their respective A crews, HSOBC have been somewhat in the shadows of a strong second eight from Henley RC. Back at Reading Head, they were a good 19 seconds behind them, however, solid improvements in the run up to WEHORR led to this margin being reduced to only half of that. Recently at Wallingford Regatta, HSOBC finished 5 seconds behind Henley, and with similar conditions forecast it will take a lot for Headington to turn this result around.
LEH

LEH’s second eight have had a less successful season than the other two crews in this category, finishing a decent margin behind the other two crews at WEHORR and Schools Head. LEH also appear to have entered a top eight and second coxed four, followed by this eight. Losing the top four girls in this crew will most likely make competing with Henley and Headington tough, but as LEH’s second eight hasn’t raced for a few months, they may still be able to produce an unexpected result on Saturday.

 

Prediction:

  1. Henley
  2. Headington
  3. LEH
Pairs Matrix