Wolfson College Boat Club, Oxford

Henley Head 1997

Wolfson made plans to do the Henley Head en masse on the 15th of February, entering all four Torpids eights plus the novice four which had missed out on Torpids. However, with a week to go the Wolfson captain could be seen pacing the bank of the Isis, begging any boatman he came across to get us there. Four eights and one four was just a little too much for one trailer, and all others were booked up. Finally “Boatman” Jim Ronaldson came to the rescue and did an extra trip on Thursday (in gale force winds). Things didn’t look promising weather wise (white tops could be seen on the Henley stretch on Thursday), but miraculously the weather cleared up on Saturday to give a gorgeous day. First off was the four, With Malc Finn, Paul Thirtle, Nils Pederssen and Nic Vassilopoulos and Renee Menezes coxing. Having only been training for two weeks, they weren’t really ready and didn’t row their best. However, they seemed to enjoy the experience, and were not too downhearted about the crabs. The eights division was the last to go, and Wolfson men’s and women’s first eights were racing against several crews around them in Torpids. The women’s first eight did well, finishing 5th out of 10, and the second eight finished last but only 10 seconds behind Somerville, who were in the first division. The men’s first eight had a good first competitive row, having a good race with Reading Uni and holding them for two minutes, but eventually finished with an average time 1:30 slower than Linacre, who were chasing them in Torpids. The men’s second eight, with two subs, made a rare foray outside Oxford and enjoyed the experience. The late afternoon spent on the riverbank in the sunshine drinking beer made it all worthwhile. Now, we just had to get the boats back again.

A big thank-you to Jim for getting us there and to Jon PDM for helping to take and return the eights.