The Scullers Head, the largest single scull processional race in the world, is for the very first time offering para-rowing events. The 61st edition of the race, which is organised by Vesta Rowing Club, will be held on 29th November on the Championship Course from Mortlake to Putney.
Entries have now opened on BROE and organisers are hoping to attract enough LTA and TA entries to run these events, for both men and women.
“We’re not the first Tideway head race to offer para-rowing categories, but we hope to be the first to actually hold them – getting enough entries is critical to making this happen. Para-rowing is on the increase in the UK and while we have fantastic success at the GB level, we’d love to see more events available for club scullers,” said Vesta Rowing Club Chairman, Chris Harrison.
Previous winners of the event include Sir Steve Redgrave, Mahe Drysdale, Alan Campbell, Beth Rodford and Imogen Walsh. The GB Rowing Team’s Walsh, 2011 Scullers Head winner and 2013 Wingfield Sculls winner, said, “It’s such an iconic race, 500 odd boats giving it all they’ve got down the tideway. There aren’t many head races where you get to line up and test yourself against so many other scullers, and it’s part of what puts it on the bucket list of races for many rowers. It’s about line and position, about pacing yourself and knowing when to push, as well as how technically well you scull – it’s a true test of sculling the river. I only wish I got to race it more often!”
Race categories this year include all open and Masters categories, as well as events for Lightweights, J18s and Masters Novices along with LTA and TA. The race attracts over 500 entries, making it one of the largest single division sculling races in the world. Where exactly the para-rowing categories will be included in the much-heralded draw will be established depending on the entries received, and those interested should contact the organisers on firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss logistics. Final details will be included in the instructions to competitors, to be published in early November. Entries close on 15th November or when 550 paid entries have been received.
By Martha Walsh
This article originally appeared on the British Rowing website.