Just a couple years into a campaign to bring the historically reticent (and even stodgy) event into the 21st century, the Henley Royal Regatta may now be the most easily viewable and trackable regattas anywhere. The coverage, a mix of drone footage, alongside footage, fixed cameras, solid and largely unfettered commentary, deeply informative daily roundups, and a blitz of race clips posting steadily throughout the week, gives a glimpse into the regatta that we see really nowhere else.
This is due in no small part to the innovative drone coverage. Henley Royal has inarguably taken the lead probably worldwide in making drone coverage a central part of regatta coverage ; they hired an Air Force pilot to do it, and have produced some of the best footage of rowing ever, particularly over a multi-day regatta.
Every race will feature some drone footage, weather permitting of course; the regatta will hew more or less to the drone-pilot "we'll fly when it's dry" standard.
What Time Does Everything Happen?
Henley tends to run very much on time, so you will want to know race time vs your local time so you don't miss any favorite races. To that end, this is the time in Henley-on-Thames right now:
If you are doing the math yourself, Henley is five hours ahead of (earlier than) Eastern Daylight Time.
Then you will want to check the timetable: Timetable of Racing; this link is updated daily so you can use it all week.
Read Our Who To Watch and When Tipsheet
Each evening as soon as possible after the draw for the next day is complete, row2k will post a Who to Watch and When feature that will have details of the best matchups the following day, with particular focus on US-centric races, complete with times and other viewing info.
Here is the first entry for 2017: HRR Wednesday: Who and When to Watch
The Main YouTube Feeds
The main YouTube feeds for each day are the meat and potatoes (or fish and chips, or Pimms and lemonade, or however you may have it) of the coverage; here are links to each day.
Facebook Live Broadcast of the Sunday Finals
For the first time this year, the regatta will do a Facebook Live stream of finals day, in addition to maintaining the full YouTube feed (i.e., the Facebook stream will be in addition to but not replace the YouTube streams)
Find the Sunday live feed on the official Facebook page, or use these links:
Find Replays, Highlights and More on the Official Henley YouTube Channel
The HRR will populate its YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/HenleyRoyalRegatta using a few different organizational approaches to make following along extremely easy, in most cases in chronological order within each playlist:
Replay clip of each race shortly after conclusion of the race (typically within 15-45')
Playlist by day
Playlist by event
Full replay of each day's racing
Links to live stream (per above)
Sir Matthew Pinsent's daily roundup of the racing; see below
The Daily Roundup
Every evening regatta Steward and four-time Olympic champion Sir Matthew Pinsent does an entertaining and informative video round-up of the day's best action; it often offers significant insight into the day's racing, including a refreshingly 'no (or at least few) punches pulled' approach overall.
For US audiences, this can be a great way to end an afternoon (or start a following pre-dawn morning) of race viewing; it is a great Cliff's Notes to the day, produced promptly and nicely done.
Results and Progression
We have these linked up in a bunch of places, but for your convenience:
The race format is a knock-out progression with advancement based on brackets, and it is helpful to know who each crew might face next, which you can see in the 2017 Draw: Henley Royal Regatta 2017 Draw
Know The Event Name of Your Crew
This is going to help no matter how you follow along; nearly all of the coverage will refer to the cup name, not the boat class; so instead of "high school boy's eight" you will need to find the Princess Elizabeth Cup, or even "the PE."
Learn A Bit About the Events
Beyond the PE, there are five more non-schoolboy eight events ranging from the Grand Challenge to the Temple, each denoting a slightly different (and sometimes debated) pedigree), and the cup names can be confusing to newbies; for example, the Ladies' Challenge Plate is not a women's event - that would be the Remenham Challenge Cup.
That is just the beginning; there are four coxless four events, five quadruple scull events, two coxed four events, and two each of the single, double, and pairs events (one men's and one women's event in each, making these events the most straightforward boat classes of the regatta).
Figure it all out here: Events at Henley Royal Regatta
Read the daily "Inside Lines" gossip sheet
The regatta also does a written roundup of each day's racing called Inside Lines; you can find it here: Inside Lines
Is it a Course Record?
If conditions get fast (which seems unlikely given the weather report, but you never know), check results against the Course records.
Follow along on social media and the Web; here are the HRR social feeds and links: