The National Schools Regatta

The National Schools Regatta

The National Schools Regatta is the largest regatta for juniors in Great Britain. Held annually in May the three day regatta offers events for junior rowers between J14 and J18.



The regatta was first raced in 1947 as the "Colts and Third Eights Regatta", when Desmond Hill the master-in-charge of rowing at St Edward's School, invited the third VIIIs of Shrewsbury, Bedford and Radley to race against St. Edwards in Godstow. The event was repeated annually at a number of locations in the Thames valley, and then later at Pangbourne, until in 1963 when it moved to the Child Beale Trust Estate. With the growth of the regatta and the addition of many more events for junior crews the regatta changed its name to "The National Schools Regatta" in 1964. In 1973 the regatta moved to its current home at Holme Pierrepoint, due to the frequency of unfair weather conditions at the Child Beale Estate, and the ability to hold six lane racing at Holme Pierrepoint. The regatta has remained in Nottingham ever since. With the possible closure of the lake announced, it was feared that the regatta would soon have to move location again, but the closure threats have now receded. [1]

Championship events

Queen Mother Challenge Cup

The Queen Mother Challenge Cup for championship eights is the regatta's premier event, featuring the best eights from the top rowing schools and clubs in the country. The event attracts approximately 12 entries each year, with smaller clubs usually entering the Child Beale Cup for School eights. Due to the high level of competition, the Queen Mother Challenge Cup has only been won by seven schools and one club:

Eton College (16 wins), Hampton School (6 wins), Radley College (5 wins), Shrewsbury School (3 wins), St. Edwards School (3 wins), Abingdon School (2 wins), Pangbourne College (1 win), Wallingford Schools Boat Club (1 win) [2]

The course

The regatta is held at the National Water Centre just outside Nottingham. It is one of only a few multi-laned courses in Britain. The weather for the course is sometimes windy, resulting in the occasion that the regatta is sometimes cancelled. This has led to calls for the regatta to be moved to Dorney Lake, although this is just as much prone to wind problems, where the 2012 Olympics rowing events will be taking place.

2008 Regatta

After three 1st VIIIs, entered in the Childe Beale Cup, from The King's School, Canterbury, Bedford Modern School, and Shiplake College, swamped, it was decided by the officials to completely cancel the rest of the racing for both the Saturday and Sunday. The officials have been heavily criticised for not reacting quickly to the situation, and for not stopping racing earlier, instead placing some of the athletes in serious danger - an eight from The Oratory School ploughed straight into the swamped crew from The King's School, Canterbury, hitting some with blades and damaging their boat, moments later the Kingston Grammar School eight narrowly avoided hitting the Bedford Modern School eight, a black Resolute which was very difficult to see in the wavey conditions.

See also


  1. ^ "History" (html). National Schools Regatta. Retrieved 2007-05-29. 
  2. ^ "Past Winners" (html). National Schools Regatta. Retrieved 2007-05-29. 

External links

Official website

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