Women's Henley 2016

Senior Women's coxed four

After months of erg training, ripped calluses, burst blisters and bruises; we finally had our four together just over a month to go (it took a while for us to sync our diaries!)

The senior women’s squad has grown this year and this crew is a real testament to that; with two ex-junior athletes, an Oxford University blue boat competitor, and a home grown Twickenham body in the boat, supplemented with the most dynamic cox you could find, we were ready...well as ready as you could be with just three weeks when the five of us could finally get in a boat together for Henley Women’s regatta. 

Our crew bonded pretty quickly over a love of Percy Pigs and general quirky behaviours. Our common love of all things carb related, meant a brilliant team carb loading session on the Thursday evening allowed us to focus on our race plan and discuss what motivational calls we would like to hear. We wish there was a saying like teams who eat together... but there isn’t and it would also not strictly be true. True commitment to the crew was shown by Jamie, our cox, who sat there devouring a single dough ball and bread stick in his determination to shred as much weight as possible before race day.

Despite a disgustingly early start, we still had to battle the traffic in order to rig our boat and prepare ourselves (mainly Millie) mentally for our time trial. A rather suave gentleman pushed us off the pontoon, and to our excitement, it was Sir Matthew Pincent! Having shown him what Twickenham were made of, we paddled to the start with a few warm up pieces ready for our cox to strip and start a new coxing trend #TheNakedCox (see our Instragram page for evidence @twickenhamrowing).

Ready for our time trial we paddled to the start prepared to throw the kitchen sink at the 1500m stretch ahead of us. Finishing with lungs filled with blood, barely able to breathe and lactic acid burning through our thighs, we knew we had done our best...all we could do now was wait for the results. 

We were elated to discover that we had qualified; rumour has it that tears were seen in our bow woman’s eyes. 

What felt like a short couple of hours, we were back on the water ready to fight our opposition, a Thames crew who had months of training together, but with a fraction of the Twickenham heart.

We had achieved our objective.

From here on in, ce cerra cerra. 
Once again we marshalled by our new best friend Matt (that is Sir Matthew to the rest of you) we were focussed and ready to race. Despite a strong start, the oppo broke away from us around the barrier. We stayed in touching distance throughout the course on what was one of the closest races of the day, but it was not quite enough. We finished just over 1/2 length clear of Thames and felt extremely proud of our efforts.

Finally Twickenham senior ladies are back on the map and ready to build on this performance next year!

Cox: Jamie Wooller
Bow: Millie Smallbone
2: Isabelle Evans
3: Meg Thyne
Stroke: Morwenna Frankson (Senior Women's VC)

Coach: Nick Fulton

Junior double (GB Start)

This is the first year that the Junior athletes on the Twickenham Start program have raced at Henley Women’s Regatta.  After a number of weeks working in the 2x it was something that Charley and Megan were looking forward to.  Twenty eight crews were entered which were reduced to sixteen via a qualifying time trial.  The TWK boat looked strong as it raced down the 1400m and proceeded to qualify.  In the first round they met the boat from Northwich which had got a silver medal in National Schools Regatta in May.  In the race the Northwich boat took off from the Start at rate 46 and didn’t look back, excuse the pun, getting their bow in front and then proceeding to increase their lead down the course.  This was a tough first round draw against the eventual finalists and the girls were disappointed not to get further through the competition.  

There are positives to draw from the race as in the few weeks since the National Schools Regatta, Megan and Charley have reduced the difference between them and the Northwich boat by seventeen seconds. This is even more impressive as Charley and Megan are both a year younger than their fellow competitors meaning that they can enter the WJ 2x next year.

Thanks must go to Adam and Henry who came along on Saturday to support the girls and to Putney Town RC for towing the boat to Henley.

Bow: Charley Parr
Stroke: Meghan Duthart

Coach: Dan Cooper