The Cheltenham College 1st VIII - Ben Pickles (U6, S), Stephen Abraham (OC, NH), Morgan Williams (U6, H), Kieran Connolly (U6, Xt), Oliver Goodrick-Clarke (U6, L), Harry Pratt (OC, H), Christian Morton (L6, L) and Luke Knudsen (5th, NH) qualified for Henley Royal Regatta last Friday with Isobel Salmond Smith (5th, A), becoming the first girl in the history of Cheltenham College to cox a crew at Henley Royal Regatta. The team, coached by Tristain Mayglothling, were drawn against Dulwich College for their race in the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup late on Wednesday afternoon. In glorious sunshine the eight-man crew and their female cox took an early lead in the race. Although they were unable to sustain their lead and lost to Dulwich by two lengths at the end of a gruelling race, the boys and Izzy have vowed to be back again next year.
Girls have been attending Cheltenham College since the 1970s, but this is the first time in almost 175 years that a girl has coxed the Henley crew. For Izzy, to maintain complete control over a boat of boisterous boys, many in the Sixth Form, requires a ruthlessness and unwavering commitment to the boat.
Rowing is a major sport at College with over 120 pupils, girls and boys, involved in the Boat Club. The goal for next year will be to have teams representing College at both Henley Regatta and Henley Women's Regatta.
Richard Jones, Head of Rowing, commented "The crew really gave it their all today. They have worked incredibly hard all season and deserved their place at the Henley Royal Regatta. We plan to be back next year at what is, without question, the premier rowing event in the British rowing calendar. Rowing is a major sport at College and we aim to qualify both boys' and girls' teams next year."
Congratulations to the team and their coaches on a great end to the season.