Sunday, 01 August 2021

Thursday at Henley Royal Regatta

Mixed fortunes and a nail-biting end to the day's racing for Leander Club. All the results, breaking news, interviews, colour and video you need to keep up with the action are here... (Updated 7.37pm)

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For live results as they happen, bookmark our Henley Royal Regatta Live Results page. Keep reading this page for all the colour, reaction and news relating to Thursday's Regatta racing.
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7.47pm: This concludes our Henley Royal Regatta coverage for tonight. Thanks for reading, retweeting and interacting with us throughout the day. Join us again tomorrow for more excitement from the river.

7.35pm: In the final race of the day - the rescheduled Visitors' heat from 2.40pm, Leander Club were narrowly defeated by 2/3 of a length by a strong Cambridge University crew. In a nail biting finale to the day's racing, the Leander Crew led at the Barrier and Fawley but were pipped in the final moments of the race.

Tom Wilkinson, who is celebrating his 28th birthday today, and lives in Market Place Henley told us: "It was a good race and we got off well from the start, but we had an illness this morning which is why it was delayed. Tom Marshall was ill with a fever so we had this new guy in. They won by two thirds of a length, which is close, as anything within a length you're in with a sniff."

7.25pm: Leander Club have been victorious in their Fawley heat against York City Rowing Club in an easy win of 7.08.

Crew member Harry Leask, 17, lives on the Fair Mile. He told us: "The race was really good. We had a strong start. They were quite close to us at the beginning but we dealt with that and moved away. It was good and we raced really well. We will try to keep going the way we are and hopefully we'll end up winning on Sunday."

7.18pm: You wait ages for a Leander race, and then two come along at once. We're at the final two races of the day and both of them have Leander crews front and centre. In the Fawley they're taking on York City Rowing Club, and immediately after this the 2.30pm Visitors' race delayed due to illness will be run. Watch this space for results and reaction as soon as we have it...

6.47pm: The Maidenhead Rowing Club crew including Henley College student Harry Hoxley has been victorious in their heat in the Fawley Challenge Cup against Star Club. They won by three and three quarter lengths in a time of 7.21.

Harry, 18, from Maidenhead, said: "It was sheer pain from start to finish. I think we could have gone a bit faster but overall we are pleased. For the first 500 metres it was quite stressful as they kept up with us for quite a long time. We knew that would make a push at Fawley, we just had to hold their push. And then we took it up at the end." Harry believes the crew has a chance to win if they get past Leander Club, assuming they win in their heat, due to take place later this evening. "Winning is a possibility," he said.

6.47pm: Henley College student Harry Hoxley is currently on the water in the Fawley Challenge Cup heat against Star Club. Watch this space...

6.34pm: Following Henley Rowing Club's defeat in the Britannia we've spoken to crewman Mark Roberts, 27, from Greys Road, appearing at his ninth Henley Regatta. He said: "We started off quite well but unfortunately we came against a stronger crew. They led away from the start and just carried on. We did our best but we were outgunned. We didn't have a shocking row, we performed to our best, but it wasn't good enough."

6.34pm: Leander Club's David Read has been defeated in an exciting and fast paced race with Bulgarian G.P. Bozhilov in the Diamonds. The Nacional Sport Akademi rower won in 8.09, by 3 3/4 lengths. Speaking to us afterwards, David, 28, of Leaver Road, Henley said: "I planned to go my fastest from start to finish and not do anything silly. I settled into a good rhythm and held him to half a length for the first half, then a head wind hit and he's a bit bigger than stronger and he managed to pull away. I am quite pleased because he is very good, he won a bronze medal at the World Cup last weekend."

6.26pm: Disappointment for Henley Rowing Club who have been defeated in their race in the Britannia Challenge Cup by Taurus Boat Club 'B'. The Oxford old boys were victorious by 4 3/4 lengths, and completed the course in a time of 7.34.

5.56pm: News editor Phil Simms has just spoken to The Oratory School's Caleb Stevens as he came in from the water. Caleb 16, from Binfield Heath, said: "We knew they were going to be hard to beat, and so we had to go really hard off from the start. We managed to hold onto them for most of the race, but we just ran out of energy. We went as hard as we could for as long as we could, but we are pleased that we got into Henley as we are one of only five Oratory crews to get past the first round, the first in four years." He paid tribute to the coaching of Adam Moffat and Olympic Bronze medal winner Alex Partridge, for helping them get so far.

5.38pm: We're back refreshed from afternoon tea, and first up to the water are the local Oratory School crew from the Princess Elizabeth. After an assured defeat of The King's School, Canterbury yesterday, hopes were high for The Oratory, but sadly it wasn't to be. The Poelchau Oberschule, Berlin, beat them by three and a half lengths, finishing in a time dead on seven minutes.

Next local clubs in action are Henley Rowing Club's sole crew - taking on Taurus Boat Club B in the Britannia at 6.15pm, followed by two Leander crews, who will take on the last two races of the day, the Fawley and then the Visitors' Challenge Cup heat scheduled earlier this afternoon, which was postponed due to illness. Stay with us for all the results and reaction.

4.24pm: We're about to break for afternoon tea, but before we head off we've had a chance to talk to Justin Sutherland, captain of Upper Thames following the Thames Challenge Cup result. He told us: "It went very well and we did a very fast time to half way which is encouraging for later on. We have got some difficult crews to beat in this event, but we gave a very solid performance."

Upper Thames 'A's victory is a rare success for a local crew today, and their assured performance against Kingston makes them strongly tipped to make the final, although ideally they want to avoid Molesey Boat Club in the next draw.

4.09pm: Victory for Upper Thames Rowing Club A in the Thames Challenge Cup! They beat Kingston R.C. A by four and a half lengths. Reaction to follow.


4.06pm: Further to Leander B's defeat to California, Henley Standard news editor Phil Simms spoke to the crew's Rob Johnston. He said: "We had a pretty decent start, we held them for about 500 metres and they weren't moving. Then they had a couple of reps higher than us, and that was it. Ben Board at bow finished the race with a back injury. Johnston added: "The injury happened in the last ten strokes, but I don't think that would have played any part in the result."

3.56pm: Leander B crew was disappointed against California Rowing Club in the Prince of Wales Challenge Cup. The American crew was about two lengths ahead by Fawley, and the Leander crew was unable to bring it back.

3.30pm: We're half way through the afternoon session at Henley Royal Regatta, and have Leander Club 'B' coming up in the Prince of Wales Challenge Cup shortly. Meanwhile, Turkish crew Say and Burusoglu (of Istanbul club Galatasaray - an area most known for its football team) are celebrating after an easy win against Oxford's Rogers and Leach in the Goblets Cup.

14.58pm: Leander's Visitors' race has apparently been postponed 'due to illness'. It's not clear yet which crew is affected. Either way, fingers crossed they feel better by half seven.

14.49pm: Leander's Visitors' crew was due to start at 3.10pm but their race has been postponed until the end of today's session, due at 7.30pm. As soon as we find out why they've been delayed we'll update here. Next local club we're cheering on is Leander Club B in the Prince of Wales Challenge Cup.

14.02pm: Back from lunch, and while the wind is up slightly and the sky looks like the heavens are about to open, there's lots of enthusiastic support on the banks. Coming up in the afternoon session includes two Leander Club crews and Henley Rowing Club's sole crew in this year's regatta, which will be apearing in the Britannia against Taurus Boat Club B. Stay with us for live results here and all the reactions from our reporters on the ground this afternoon.

12.51pm: Not directly rowing related, but somewhat of a Regatta service announcement. Pennsylvania-based rower John Omara has dropped his wallet in New News, Reading Road. Owner Pete Patel is keen to reunite the presumed rower with his belongings and is asking him to come in to collect it (there is photo ID included in there so anyone falsely assuming his identity will be quickly rumbled).

12.22pm: As we break for lunch after the excitement of the morning's racing, here are some stories which have gone live this morning on HenleyStandard.co.uk that might prove of interest to rowing fans:
Olympian and Leander club stalwart Mark Hunter announces retirement.

Video: Opening day of regatta 'one of the busiest in memory'.

Mixed fortunes for local crews on first day of regatta.

Urgent request for volunteers to help with regatta summer fireworks on Saturday night.

Rejoin us at 2pm for the afternoon session, when Leander Club takes to the water in the Visitors' and Prince of Wales Challenge Cups.

11.05am: Following Upper Thames' second win at the regatta against Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, reporter Dan Robinson caught up with the crew on the banks. They led throughout the Britannia Cup heat, building up an impressive three length lead by the three-quarter mile stage.

Coach Johnny Woodiss-Field said: ?The guys have been together for the last two years and all of a sudden it?s coming together practising our new starters, which our coaches have really helped us with.?

Olli Kolodseike, 25, of Reading Road, said: ?We didn?t know what to expect because no one in the UK has raced against a crew from Hong Kong.

?We got a good start and had a cruising speed. We did what we had to do, executed the plan and raced our race ? it all turned out well in the end.?

Kolodseike said he was ?excited? at what lies ahead for the crew and hopes he can celebrate his birthday on Saturday in style by reaching the latter stages.

The coxed four are one of two Upper Thames crews remaining after the eight won yesterday.

?Hopefully we can get to the weekend and get as far as possible. It?s the 50th year for Upper Thames and we still have two boats left so everyone is quite excited.?

10.33am: Disappointment for our first Leander Club rower on the water today. Commiserations to Chris Boddy in the Diamond Challenge Sculls, who was beaten by J H Graves from Craftsbury Sculling Center, USA, who finished in 8.24. Despite a level start, Graves built up a four length lead by Fawley, which he increased to a comfortable lead by the finish.

10.22am: Success for Upper Thames Rowing Club in the Britannia Challenge Cup. The coxed crew beat Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club by one and three quarter lengths in a time of 7.50. This is a great success for the Henley based rowing club, which has entered 50 rowers this year as part of celebrations of the club's fiftieth anniversary.

9.42am: Racing is under way, with spectators beginning to amass on the banks to cheer on the crews on the water. This morning the vagaries of the draw has seen Oxford Brookes A and B crew go against each other in the Temple Cup, while the Imperial College A and B crews are ead to head in the Prince Albert.

7.52am:Well it's a grey start to the day and there's rain in the air, although it hasn't started falling. Yet. As well as the continuation of the qualifiers for the Challenge cups which began yesterday, Thursday heralds the start of rowers' campaigns in the Goblets, Double Sculls, Britannia, Diamonds and Prince of Wales and - as ever - the Henley Standard team will be on hand to ensure you have all the results, breaking news, interviews, colour and video you need to keep up with the action.

Join us here for our live results feed, when racing begins at 9am. Our web team will be doing live updates on local crews' success through the day and into the evening on this site and via Twitter, while our journalists on the ground will be getting all the reaction from rowers and Regatta goers alike.

In the meantime:
* Watch our video highlights of yesterday (Wednesday) at Henley Royal Regatta .

* Relive yesterday as it happened in our liveblog .

* Get an insight into the conditions the crews are racing in, with our exclusive video tour of the course with racing commentator Robert Treharne Jones .

* Watch our exclusive video shadowing Leander Club Captain Debbie Flood for a day last week as she made her final preparations for her home .

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