Brookes Rowing continue their unbeaten season with successes at Henley

Monday, 03 July 2017

Brookes Rowing at Henley Regatta 2017

Brookes Rowing retained the prestigious Temple Challenge Cup in the finals of Henley Royal Regatta this weekend, becoming the first university club to do so in the history of the competition.

As the first men’s eight crew won the title at last year’s Regatta and was therefore ineligible to compete in the race, the second eights were entered and won over every other university’s top crews, beating the University of London in the final and the University of California, Berkley in the semi-finals.

The men’s first eights meanwhile won the Ladies Plate, beating the Great Britain U23 crew in the final in a time that was just outside of the course record.

Richard Spratley, Director of Rowing at Oxford Brookes University said: “This is the highest achievement ever at Henley Regatta by two Brookes boats fully confirming our status as one of the leading universities for rowing now worldwide.

“The first eights achievement in beating the Great Britain under 23 crew was a phenomenal achievement, who in turn had beaten top-class Ivy League USA crews from Brown and Dartmouth.

“The first eight beat the German number two national boat in the semi-final, and most importantly in the final, clocked 6mins 1 second, the fastest crew in the whole five day regatta - faster than the new world record holders Germany in Poznan last week who won the Grand Challenge cup over the top GBR boat in 6mins 7 secs.

“The Brookes second crew completely dominated top-class USA university second crews from California and Yale to record an historic back-to-back event win over the University of London number one crew - quite outstanding, I am thrilled almost beyond words, and extremely proud of our team.”

This latest successes for Brookes Rowing comes during an unbeaten season for the men. In May, Oxford Brookes became the number one rowing university in the UK after winning a record haul of medals at the BUCS Regatta 2017. The men’s squad later set more records at Ghent International in Belgium. In the eights event, the three entered crews swept the gold, silver and bronze medals in the category and broke the Ghent course record which has stood since 1990 with two of the crews.

At the beginning of June at the Metropolitan Regatta on Dorney Lake, Brookes Rowing came away with the top three placing in the Championship eights, taking home both the Championship title and the Academic pennant. The first boat included eight of last year’s Henley Temple Cup winners. 

Later in the month, the women’s squad gave a promising performance at the Henley Women’s Regatta. With four crews racing through to finals day, the club entered more crews than the majority of other clubs and universities, showing their strength in depth across the events.

On the same weekend, the men’s squad set a new national record at Marlow Regatta. The Ladies Plate crew won the final of the Championship eights with a time of 5:30.84, while the Temple crew set another all-time British student record of 5:34.26.

More information about Brookes Rowing can be found at brookesrowing.org.uk.