This is a fate which can befall anyone at the royal. Internationals have been known to lose their event at Henley and then win gold at the Olympics!

It is certainly a fate that has to be expected by low and medium perfomance clubs and sneaks up on high performance clubs when they are racing against internationals or a fractionally better high performance club.

The agony of defeat is absolute, even if expected and the only mitigating circumstances that can make it bearable, are the chance to get on with some drinking or playing games (see section on entertainment)

It is often said that the happiest losers are the majorly low performance clubs, as they barely expected to qualify and the stewards put their races on at times when they are unlikely to be seen by too many people (i.e. first thing in the morning), this ensures that they cannot be seen to make a mockery of rowing and can be in the bar (where they belong) as soon as it opens.

This caring attitude from the stewards, is appreciated by the hardened rowing fans who arrive for the start of racing as it limits the amount of polite clapping they have to do as the losing crew flails down the course. Usually the losing crew is so wrapped up in trying to get home, that they donít notice the lack of people watching...