Henley Royal: On to the weekend – Friday Night Report – Henley Royal Regatta coverage
It’s hard not to attract attention at an international event when you’re an eight flying the colors of the United States, so it’s no surprise that the debut of the American women’s eight that formed after the World Cup world of Poznan were a draw. They looked sharp, and not just because of their new kit and the fact that they now field Filippi shells, with the US national team logo on the foredeck.
Their experience – seven crew members rowed in Tokyo – was eye-opening, as they saw an U23 team from Leander. Next up will be the semi-finals, where the national team’s four eights meet, as scheduled by The Draw, on Saturday. For the American women, it will be a bit of a Groundhog Day, as the GB eight they run also originates in part from the Leander Club, in combination with Imperial College London.
USA Women’s Eight, coxswain Coral Kasden
Nice race ahead, indeed.
Who came after tea time (US crews):
United States National Team (Remenham W8+); Dartmouth (ladies plate M8+); Washington (Visitors M4-); California “A” (Prince Albert M4+); Scullers Redwood (Diamond Jubilee JW4x)
Who went out after tea time (US teams)
Washington (Remenham W8+); California (island W8+); Riverside (Thames M8+); Stocovz & Pienaar (Tumblers M2-)
Video Highlights – Friday
Different script, same result for Redwood
The evening race belongs to the women of Redwood Scullers. After their first victory on Thursday, Caroline Phipps said at rank 2k that “our goal is to get ahead at the start because in a one-on-one race it can be really demoralizing to fall behind at the start” .
In their opening race they were able to do it, but on Friday they were the trailing crew and a well-trained quad of Tideway Scullers School GB junior teams. Still, the Redwood Scullers look anything but demoralized and – flipping the scrip, they stubbornly held Tideway at half a length until they finally unleashed a move that put them in the lead, but only narrowly , to the last marker. On the progress board, Redwood had a slim but clear advantage and took the win.
It was, assistant coach Theresa Hashiguchi, Redwood’s closest race all year, and launch attendees felt they might have just seen a race worthy of being the finals, rather that “only” a quarter-final.
Redwood runs with a medical sub here, and the women who have jumped are top caliber: Meena Baher, who joined the club to be in an U23 doubles with Hailey Mead after winning this year’s youth singles title with Los Gatos, is no ordinary submarine. In turn, it was no ordinary day at Henley for Baher: before helping Redwood to their spectacular victory, she opened the day by taking part in Stonor’s double, lining up against the senior internationals taking part in the double Ukraine/Poland, Olena Buriak and Agnieszka Kobus-Zawojska. The Internationals prevailed in the morning, but Baher clearly helped his new formation in the quad in the evening.
And Dartmouth makes it three
With Dartmouth winning their evening Ladies Plate match, there will now be three American men’s colleges in the semi-finals, guaranteeing at least one “American interest” final on Sunday – and the tantalizing possibility of an all-American final. .
(We won’t even mention the more tantalizing possibility created by the results and the form Cal and Yale have shown here, but it starts with a “re” and ends with “match”)
Dartmouth, a selected crew, started their first run when they won against a Dutch crew of Njord & Maastricht SS.
“I think they did a good job,” head coach Wyatt Allen said. “I think there was a lot of nerves. It’s been a few weeks since they’ve lined up against anyone else and then to do it on this course I think it was nerve-wracking for the guys. , so I’m happy with the way they performed: focused on controlling what they can control and rowing at their fastest speeds.”
“It’s always interesting here because you don’t know anything about your competitors most of the time. So we thought they would be fast and they were, so that was a good guess.”
Washington continued in the Vistors, rowing what coach Mike Callahan called the “F1 Racing” rowing event – the eight being drag races and the four being cox, he said with a smile , “NASCAR”.
Four visitors from Washington
His argument was that the coxless four requires real finesse to row both straight and fast:
“It’s a very sophisticated boat to row,” he said, “and there are a lot of ways to change the dynamics, plus of course here you have the booms and the barriers and the wind and the current. So it really tests all your skills and I loved F1: you have a lot of skills to drive it.”
“I think the direction was outstanding by Mattijs [Holler]: we put the bar forward on this course. We had a few flurries that kind of took him to the side, but he corrected, and even the ref at the end praised him for his line. So I hope we can continue. I think we’re changing stations tonight, but we’ll see if the wind plays with us. He seems to do a bit of everything, so I think it comes down to the dynamic: we kind of test everyone’s skills.”
The skill level is pretty high in the Husky crew, who have all rowed in the V8 this year, and the hit – Jack Walkey – might be a freshman (or “Gruntie” in UW program parlance) but last summer in the same headquarters for the Canadian U23 team.
Race, but go out
The Washington Women saw their remaining three crews exit, but when you consider it was their Varsity Eight and Pair that lost to the Australian National Team crews fresh out of a World Cup, and their 2nd Varsity that lost to an almost intact Yale Varsity that looks sharp here, the Huskies were definitely there to take it to the next level.
Beating a national eight team is a tough task for any varsity, even the super-charged Washington team, with its 4 U23 medalists and their Italian Olympian, but it was the fun feature of the varsity teams taking part in the grand opening of the Remenham Cup with its annual draw. national teams.
This year, Washington was the only university to compete against the best female crews in the world – with the island event now optional, it’s where other American schools have chosen to race.
This allowed Washington coach Yaz Farooq to round up almost his entire NCAA team and keep his highly experienced varsity together.
“The foreign tour rule only allows you to bring a team every four years,” Farooq said. “So I felt like I wanted to bring as many people as possible because it’s a magical experience. We come every four years, you know, that’s our plan, and so every person that comes [to UW] knows they have a chance to go to Henley.”
“My first time was in 2015. I came here with Stanford and I had heard how great it was. I mean when I ran it was not an opportunity [to race here with women] and so finally I did. And not only the rowers said it was the experience of a lifetime, but certainly all the parents too.”
“If you think about it, all the parents get your kids out of the boat tents and if they have the stewards enclosure badge? That’s pretty cool: it’s a unique environment where they can be part of the sending the team out on the water and I think that’s, I think that makes it even more special.”
Farooq spoke about his entries and how the regatta has changed:
“Our varsity eight is in Remenham, and we’re the only US team that is, and then everyone, including our 2V is on the island. There were 40 or 42 entries on the island, so I mean I think what’s cool is that the regatta is trying to even out the experience for the women they added the women’s eight first and then I think the quad and the doubles so they keep adding.”
Now Saturday is approaching and, as one manager remarked, “it’s going to be a big game” – but that’s what we’re here for, isn’t it: to see the remaining crews make great jumps to make the day of the final at Henley.