|TAKING THE HELM
A warning for all coaches driving launches out there, to occasionally divert your attention away from the crew, long enough to look out for large bits of debris in the water...
after all it would be tragic if your launch hit something, threw you into the water and your kill cord then came off your top rather than the engine, leaving the launch doing donuts on the Tideway, while everyone else at LRC laughs at you....
|HENLEY GETS RAUNCHY?
There's a "fashion shop" (well, actually a full on Ann Summers look-alike) in Henley called Tiger Lily.
All week during the regatta it apparently featured standard 'dummies' in the window, however, rumour has it that, on the Friday, these were replaced with live models displaying the wares (and most of their own wares too, I hear), giving the general impression of an Amsterdam brothel window, but with white lights instead of red.
Reader comments below..
"there were indeed two scantily clad models in the shop window on Friday when I walked past. Wouldn't have paid any money for them mind, since they must have at least 45"
"I can confirm that I saw the shop window dummies moving around. It was only about 10.30am in the morning so I don't think I was that drunk at the time"
"Re the underwear shop/brothel look a like, I can confirm its true. Was eating at the chinese all you can eat buffet lunch opposite it (completely empty, is there some reason I dont know about....) on Saturday lunch, and there were live models in underwear in the window. should have got a photo...Cars were slowing down and hooting even."
|REDGRAVE IN THUG SHOCKER
Big thanks to the person wearing an Army RC blazer who broke up a fight in the carpark behind Stewards on Saturday night. A member of the LRC Thames cup B crew was jumped by 4 blokes with only little cox Becca "Rambler" for company and had the shit kicked out of him. Result??
.. a BROKEN JAW, a lot of bruises and one very scared LRC coxwain.
Thankfully the Army RC guy saw them off as they were about to stick the boot in as he lay unconcious.
I've also heard that three of Molesey's winning quad ended up in hospital as well after getting stabbed with a corkscrew and bottled, but not after fighting back (dont mess with the black death). The random Neds ran off and jumped in a stolen car.
It's worrying that these Pikeys just seem to want to beat the crap out of what they see as toffs, though as the LRC member points out he's from Yorkshire and his dad was miner- so he doesn't really qualify there somehow.
There was also a bit of a Catfight on Henley Bridge on Saturday night - apparently it started with a trodden toe, which was followed up with a slap, then escalated when a druken boyfriend waded in, threw a punch, missed and fell over...
What is the world coming too...
|MORE HENLEY PICS
Your annual dose of Hello! magazine...
Random Rowing shots
(the last two links are hosted on Fortune City, which comes with lots of annoying pop-up ads, be careful not to click yes, if it tries to get you to install anything)
This year's HRR was an eventful one, both on and off the river.
With the GB squad playing musical seats due to illness and injury, the story of the week was poor Alex Partridge's replacement in the IV- by Ed Coode - and lets face it if anyone deserves the seat, Ed does.
Alex was seen in the competitors cafe the day after the announcement putting on a brave face and looking the picture of health despite his collapsed lung. Tom Stallard, now back in the 8, was also wandering around looking rather bemused by the whole thing.
Tom's younger brother was also rowing - in the UL visitors four with Tim Foster. Tim has recently re-released his book "four men in a boat" and with a launch party at the River and rowing museum was running round signing copies left right and centre (indeed it's rumoured that an unsigned copy is worth quite a lot of money if you can manage find one...)
On the river, there were several incidents of booms coming lose overnight - LRC's B Wyfold crew found one at 6am when they crunched into it in their boat, and several uprights and booms were missing on Sunday morning. The blustery weather conditions early in the week proved to be a problem for quite a lot of crews, swirly winds making water conditions difficult from the end of the island through to the enclosures and putting paid to less experienced crews on Berks who didn't know to keep tucked in tight to the booms.
Cambridge went to the other extreme in their final of the Visitors not just clipping the booms but managing to get their spoons on the wrong side of them - - so they had to stop and pull their blades in -- giving Oxford / Brookes the chance to move from level to 4 lengths up and the Brookes stroke man the opportunity to pick up his 4th medal in the event in five years.
Ian Lawson had a bit of crab trouble on Thursday and got beaten by Colin Smith - the stroke of this year's Oxford blue boat. Smith sculled well and got through to the final where he got mullered by Marcel Hacker. Hacker was being followed round all week by a film crew who are making a documentary about him.
The Harvard 7 which you'll all be aware of by now (pictures here), was the bizzare event of the week - jumping out of the bow seat of an 8 just after the start isn't the most intelligent thing to do - if 3, 5 or 7 don't get you, there's always the umpire - but it has been suggested to the slug that the real reason he jumped was because he was having his nuts nibbled.
You've got to admire the crimson's attempts to hold on with an empty seat in the boat, but I must say the post-finish-tantrum their seven man had was the most spectacular exhibition of toys out of the boat I have ever seen - fantastic.
Bar profits were down this year, as the weather kept spectators away or sent them home early, but it didn't stop the usual partying. The Barn bar was raided by 150 police on Friday night, looking for underage drinkers, they were not disappointed and Viva Las Vegas lost its late license on Saturday as a result.
One enterprising individual spotted two policemen standing by the river and couldn't resist the temptation, running up behind them, pushing them in and running away as fast as possible - unfortunately for him, his antics were spotted by a security guard who managed to catch him.
And finally, when regatta officials went down to the start tent on Sunday morning, to set it up for the day's racing, it was obvious that someone had been in it overnight.... the table was flat on the floor, a Mosman Rowing Club (Australia) tie was er... tied to it and beside the table was some "lubricant" in the form of lip-salve.
As there weren't exactly a lot of Mosman rowers competing in the event, they were quite easy to track down. After pleading ignorance, the regatta official told them not to worry, as the area is under video surveillance overnight, so the whole thing would be on tape.... ahem.
|THE FIRST RACE OF HENLEY GOES TO BUCKS
On the morning after qualifiers a few local triathletes, decided it would be good idead to swim the Henley course. The individuals in question used to row but "after 3 years of intensive coaching from Peter Haining, we switched over to triathlon."
As they didn't really want to get run over by any American eights training on the course they decided to do their swim very early in the morning 0430 hrs.
The time was about 44mins which considering there was a reasonable stream wasn't too bad. Berks was indeed leading comfortably at the Barrier, but had gone to the well a little to early and the more experienced swimming from Bucks started to come into play around the middle of the enclosures (as Berks started to tie up, badly !!) there was a furious dash for the line and you can see the results in the last photo below.. although there was some dispute on the finishing photo as to whether or not this was a 'televison line' or if there was a heavy stagger to be taken account of (awarding Berks the victory).
Click on the images for some views of the Henley reach like you've never seen it before
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|WELL I NEVER...
It's amazing what one can find in the Observer Sports section of a Sunday morning...
Click HERE to see..
|OH WHAT A LOVELY BUOY
Competitors at Richmond Regatta should hopefully have had less difficulty in distinguishing the course from the navigation channel this year, thanks to the joint investment by the Twickenham and Richmond regatta committees in the purchase of sixteen shiny new fluorescent pink marker buoys.
The Twickenham S4 8o were acutely aware of the edge of course markings, and had a particularly fine view of the Middlesex side of the buoys as they careered off the start, and down the navigation channel (rudder allegedly bent, apparently). The crew sportingly conceded afterwards that the umpire had not actually ‘promptly disqualified’ them, but had in fact given them ‘loads of time’ to return to the course, before the red flag came out.
Meanwhile, at the finish, Orion RC were obviously so distracted by the pretty buoys that they lost all concentration on their rowing, and managed to roll their coxed four right in front of the enclosure. (OK, there might have been a couple of canoeists somewhere in there as well.)
Safety Boat No.1 was promptly on the scene, and whisked the crew off to enjoy their very own personal wet t-shirt competition, with no obvious ill effects. Safety Boat No. 2 was left to recover the boat, and made much better progress after they decided to turn it the right way up again before trying to tow it. As they headed back to the boating area, with four alongside their boat such that their engine was amidships of the shell, rather than astern of it, at least one observer did wonder whether or not they had heard of the RYA Powerboat Handling award scheme…..
n.b. longterm Slug readers may realise that Orionaren't the first crew to capsize a IV at Richmond regatta - Thames managed it back in 2001.
|WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
The accompanying photograph was taken at the recent US IRAs in Camden, New Jersey.
The photographer reports he was made aware of its presence by a pack of drunk coaches yelling
"you gotta take a picture of the portajohn" at him.