Henley Women’s Regatta

Oxford Brookes Women claim the top prize in the Open Championship Eights at Henley Women’s Regatta.

After a powerful display in time trial and semi-final, the Oxford Brookes Women’s Championship VIII lined up against a talented Tideway Scullers Crew. In challenging conditions, on what was the original finals day for the Henley Royal Regatta, the Brookes crew made a flying start and continued to build their lead throughout the race to take a memorable victory. 

There were six returners from the previous weekends’ success at the BUCs Regatta in the crew. Autumn Mantell and Sophia Heath have had individual previous success in the event, however, it was the first victory by a full Brookes crew in the highest ranking event at the Regatta in recent memory. The crew of Autumn Mantell, Sophia Heath, Taylor Caudle, Harriet Ferguson, Issy Hawes, Esme Booth, Keira Allen, Beth Dutton, Maddie Gardner will now split into separate projects that will challenge for The Remenham Challenge Cup and the inaugural Island Challenge Cup.

Brookes had several other crews competing through the weekend of racing – the Academic VIII was looking to defend their previous victories from the last two years. After some prolific performances throughout the weekend, Brookes drew the favourites for the competition in the final. Brookes put on an honourable performance missing out on victory but with a crew containing several members new to Brookes this year, they will be looking to build on this experience for next season. 

Several other crews made the final day of racing. The Championship Pair lost out to Oxford University in a tight semi-final after a strong showing in their previous races. The Academic Coxless Four gained valuable racing experience after also reaching their semi-final. Belle Stevens and Jen Hoffman produced several great races to build on their success from the season racing in the Championship Single and Championship Lightweight Single respectively. 
Other crews racing included Tessa Mapplebeck and Sina Schafer in the Championship 2x, Charley Wedderburn in the Academic 1x and Maise Gordan & Chess Warham in the Academic 2x and Aisling Hayes in the Championship 1x.

The Brookes Women now rejoin the Men’s squad at Cholsey with a focus toward training in the build-up to Henley Royal Regatta in several weeks time. A huge thanks should be dedicated to the organising committee for holding such a successful regatta. It was great to see so many supporters back on the bank of the River Thames in Henley and we look forward to watching our crews attempting to emulate similar successes on the same stretch on August 8th-15th.

📸Courtesy of AllMarkOne