Henley Royal Regatta

St Edward’s again presented to the world a strong and competitive VIII that produced its very best for the regatta. Guided to their peak performance by coach Jonny Singfield, the crew was Karl Rieger, Jamie Johnstone, Charlie Gosling (capt), Charlie Smith, Felix Obholzer, David Willcox, Rupert Singfield, Hugh Reilly and Sam Shuker (cox).

After a towpath bicycle collision on the day of the Schools’ Head back in March, Jonny has had his knee rebuilt but continued coaching from wheelchair to crutches to a delicate hobble come Henley, with his right hand man, Hugo Marsh (Teddies cox for the previous three years), in close support as driver and bankside coach at Henley.

Day 1 at HRR confidently despatched King’s Chester, leading to an encounter on Day 2 with Hampton, a selected crew, who had been 4 seconds quicker at the National Schools’ Regatta only a month earlier. An early lead by Teddies was swallowed up by mid-way but the past few weeks had added speed, endurance and confidence to the VIII and they were able to stay with Hampton until pulling away in the last thirty strokes. Their reward was a race against regatta favourites, Eton. Looking at the crew in isolation, observers saw a pacey, high quality crew but against Eton this counted not enough. The crew kept pressing Eton to maintain a high rate until the very last stages of the race. Finished but not bowed, the crew can be proud of their year and their Henley. All of which can be viewed for posterity at the regatta’s dedicated YouTube channel – I particularly commend Thursday’s race for Teddies at its best.

Along the way, the VIII retained its sixth position at the SHoRR, won IM2 eights at Nottingham City and Reading Regattas and reached the A final at the new format Nationals Schools’ Regatta. All bar the cox, Sam Shuker, are leavers and Jonny has the unenviable task of building the 2017 eight from scratch. All the evidence suggests that although it will be a new VIII, the majority of our opposition will still rather be racing a different school!

We wish the leavers all the very best as exam results and university prospects unfold over the coming weeks.

 

John Wiggins

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