Schools' Head is the culmination of the Head season, usually involving over 300 crews from the UK and even a few foreign teams. On 16th March, with most of the categories cancelled due to unfavourable weather, five Eton eights travelled to London to brave the Tideway.
While it was unfortunate that only one Junior Colts crew was allowed to race, they did incredibly well in their first major race to hold their own against other schools who have all had an extra year of serious training and racing.
The Colts As and Bs both won their events comfortably. The Colts As managed to successfully overturn Westminster who had beaten them only two weeks before at Hammersmith Head. Their time put them well ahead of a lot of School First and Second VIIIs which should make them excited for the upcoming regatta season. The Colts Bs were victorious in their category by over twenty seconds, giving them a very comfortable position at the top of the podium and Colts Cs did well to fend off a number of crews in the Colts B category.
Upper Boats couldn’t boat a 3rd VIII, but the 2nd VIII came 3rd in a competitive field and the First VIII came 2nd by the most agonising of margins (0.5 seconds). It was reassuring to know, however, that they did manage to break the record set by the outstanding St Pauls crew of last year (even if Shiplake did beat it by slightly more).
The cold weather, long waiting time sat still on the start line and the gruelling 17 minute race were all made worthwhile by the efforts of the PSG which provided everything anyone could possibly want to eat and drink after getting off the water. From sushi to doughnuts, burgers to pasta, and yazoos to sports drinks, the PSG had it all.
Due to the strength of Eton’s performance as a boat club, it was awarded the team trophy which was a perfect end to the Head Racing season and bodes very well for the summer.