GB crews named for Henley Royal Regatta

As Britain’s leading rowers prepare to race in Munich for the second world cup of the season, starting today, GB Rowing has confirmed its entry for Henley Royal Regatta due to take place from July 1-5.

Henley Royal Regatta has long held a special place in the rowing calendar and this season GB Rowing will send a strong contingent, including the complete men’s open weight squad.

Andrew Triggs Hodge and Peter Reed will compete in the Silver Goblets for men’s pairs.  The duo were Olympic gold medallists last year in the men’s four.

Their entry will throw up an interesting rematch with the South African pair of Ramon di Clemente and Shaun Keeling who challenged them in the final of the last world cup in Banyoles.

Alan Campbell will race once more in the Diamond Sculls, an event in which he  battled with New Zealand’s world champion, Mahe Drysdale in 2006 and 2007.  This year the single sculler will not only face Drysdale once more but also double Olympic champion Olaf Tufte.

Olympic bronze medallists Stephen Rowbotham and Matt Wells will also race in a double and a GB men’s eight will contest The Grand. The make-up of the GB eight will include an interesting mix of newcomers to the squad this season with James Clarke, a 2007 world champion in the lightweight men’s four, having made the move into the open weight squad and likely to stroke the boat.

The 2009 GB men’s four of Alex Partridge, Ric Egington, Matt Langridge and Alex Gregory will race in The Stewards’ Challenge Cup.  They won their opening world cup race in Spain and will this weekend race at world cup level once more in Munich.

GB Rowing has entered a men’s quadruple scull in the Queen Mother Challenge Cup. The GB combination has been created by its World Class Start programme, sponsored by Siemens and backed by the lottery-fund. The quartet of Sam Townsend, Charles Cousins, Marcus Bateman and Bill Lucas have all emerged from this ground-breaking talent identification and development scheme.

The GB women’s eight will take part at Henley but in a combination that does not include Olivia Whitlam and Louisa Reeve who have already doubled up in the pair and eight at world cup level this season. The women’s eight has a large field and GB’s eight has made a promising start to the 2009 season under the coxing of Caroline O’Connor and with coaching from Miles Forbes Thomas.