The Scullers’ Head Saturday 3rd December 2011

Six members of the Senior Boys’ Squad signed up to take on the annual challenge on the Thames of sculling the famous 4¼ mile Boat Race course in reverse from Mortlake to Putney.

With over 500 single scullers taking part, it is the largest sculling race in the world and quite a spectacle as they head up the river to marshal for the start.

As new entries our intrepid six had low start positions, a big disadvantage on a falling tide, but which led to them overtaking over 25 other scullers between them, rising a total of 1 627 places, an average of 271 places per sculler!

Top placing went to Nicolo Forcellini in 52nd place, 3rd in J18. Next, just 10 sec behind  from a start position 260 places lower was Ben Maxwell in 68th place and 2nd in Im3, having risen a spectacular 403 places from his start position. Both scullers had to compromise their courses to pass other scullers, Nicolo being pushed so far out of the tide along Chiswick Eyot that he overlapped the sculler in front for two minutes before finally forcing his way past. He then put four lengths on him in the following minute once back in the tide. Will Anslow-Wilson and Lars Koenig both had a good scull with just 3 seconds separating them, in that order, followed by Josh Rogers a further 12 sec back but with an even lower start position, as had Chris Ash, a further 25 sec behind who lost most of it through going it alone along the infamous Fulham flats then moving even closer to Middlesex along the Fulham Wall! Even so, Chris still finished in the top half of the field.

All had their tales to tell, not least Josh who failed to make the weight as a lightweight, blaming a large slice of Lars’ 16th birthday cake that he had eaten the previous day! The general feeling was that having completed the course in a single, the Schools’ Head in an eight would be a doddle, particularly as it is slightly shorter.

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