American crews had a good run after Tea on Thursday: despite the grumbling about waiting around all day at a regatta that can stretch languorously onto the long British summer twilight, the later start times did favor the US Crews today. Perhaps it helps with the time difference and jet lag; the Redwood Scullers quad started their 8 pm (!) race at a very reasonable Noon, Pacific Time. Mercifully, that was the last fixture of the day and, happily Redwood won it going away.
Who Moved On After Tea Time(US crews):
Riverside (Thames M8+); California and Yale (Island W8+); Stocovz & Pienaar (Goblets M2-); Tabea Schendekehl, row-over (Princess Royal W1x)
Who Went Out After Tea Time (US crews):
California B (Prince Albert M4+)
Video Highlights - Thursday
Meatwagon Rolls On
Riverside Boat Club's A crew in the Thames Cup is the flagship of the 3 boat Stripes fellt here at Henley, and they moved with a victory agains Nonesuch, the alumni Boat Club of Bristol University.
"The regatta is going great," said head coach Andy McLaughlin "We're really thrilled to be bringing three eights from Riverside here. We'd been planning to come summer 2020. That quickly disintegrated, but so there's been a lot of positive energy building towards this and we're super excited to see how far we can go."
On the Friday they will race Thames: "They've won the last four or five, so it should be fun," he said.
Collegiate Big Guns Get Going
The Yale and Cal Women's eights have been waiting to get going, and neither took much time to establish a winning verdict off the start.
"It's great to be back here," said Claire Dirks, Yale's stroke seat and captain. "We waited all day in a row in the evening. But, you know, it was a great first race and we're looking forward to moving on. We were looking just to have a good start and really set the time we wanted to and we did that today."
Yale will face Washington after the Tea Interval on the Friday.
Like Yale, Cal had spent the first round waiting to race by virtue of earning a bye, so we asked 7 seat Issy Cassidy how it felt to finally get down to racing:
"I think it's pretty exciting. We had two of our crews race earlier today, so watching them go down, of course, just made us all even more excited to get going."
"We've been working on our start. That's what we really wanted accomplished today, and we were really happy with that. Hopefully, we can take it to them tomorrow."
Cal goes against Oxford Brookes "A" Friday, after Tea.
Back to It in the PE Friday
Wilson High School will be back in action for a PE quarter-final, against King's College School. This after the novelty of a rest day mid-regatta-one of the first-ever in yet another "Henley is Now 6 Days" reminder-and Wilson Coach Joe McMullin mentioned on Wednesday that he was glad to get his boys a rest after two solid days-and wins-to start the week.
In one of those coincidences that seem somehow common at Henley, Wilson is making its first-ever appearance just as the most famous rowing alum of the school makes his first debut as a Henley Steward: Aquil Abdullah.
Abdullah, the last American to win the Diamonds here in the single, and a 2004 US Olympian, rowed at Wilson in a different era, and seeing the school here, competing as the National and Stotesbury Champions means a lot to him:
"They're just as inspirational to me as maybe I am to them, Abdullah says. "It's been a real delight to watch these young men come over and participate in their first Henley Regatta and with such poise in tough conditions-the headwind-and really just show a tremendous amount of maturity. I'm excited to see how how far they can make it."
"For me to have come from a program where we had basically all used boats to now see a program where we are charging towards making it to the next round of the PE Cup. It's just really been a great joy."
Wilson's race for that next round starts at 4:04 BST today.
Blazer of the Day
The original Hampton School "curtains" blazer:
Made of the school's aged curtains and given to the 1985 and 1986 crew that won what fans of British Schoolboy rowing call the Triple: the Head of the River, the National Schools Regatta, and the PE Cup at Henley, all in a single year.
Since they ran out fabric--at least until recently when the new curtains became old enough for a new batch--this is a very rare look indeed.
Notes from the Course
Brackets Busted: Anyone laying big money on who might win the Women's Single now have all their predictions out the window, as both Magdalena Lobnig of Austria and now Olympic Champ Emma Twigg (NZL) have withdrawn--and, in a note from the future here, 5 hours ahead, Molly Harding of Molesey Boat Club (a U23 winner) withdrew on Friday morning, so the event is wide open. Who will be the Loyola Chicago of this year's Princess Royal Challenge Cup?
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