This week (3rd – 7th July 2013) is Henley Royal Regatta, the world’s oldest and most prestigious domestic regatta. Although the 2K Bow Ball has only just gone into production we have our product on a number of racing crews including Leander Club with their unique salmon pink coloured core and Nottingham Rowing Club.
Pictured above is the Nottingham RC Wyfold coxless four wining a round on Thursday against London RC. The bow ball is a universal design and on this occasion is fitted to the German manufactured boat by Empacher (yellow shell with black tipped bow nearest to us in picture), the most popular make at international racing level closely followed by the Italian boat maker Filippi.
The injection moulded strengthened coloured core is a high density Dryflex TPE material supplied by Elasto UK. The stiffer core offers durability from continuous use and around the fixing hole. The core is over-moulded with a softer grade to form the ball and protect the core from UV degradation ensuring the 2K bow ball will be longer lasting than current single material designs.
History of Henley Royal Regatta
Henley Regatta was first held in 1839 and has been held annually ever since, except during the two World Wars. Originally staged by the Mayor and people of Henley as a public attraction with a fair and other amusements, the emphasis rapidly changed so that competitive amateur rowing became its main purpose.
The 1839 Regatta took place on a single afternoon but proved so popular with oarsmen that the racing lasted for two days from 1840. In 1886 the Regatta was extended to three days and to four in 1906. Since 1928 its increased popularity meant entries exceeded the permitted numbers in several events, and so Qualifying Races are now held in the week before the Regatta to reduce the number of entries to the permitted maximum. In 1986 the Regatta was extended to five days, with an increase in the maximum entry for certain events.
As the Regatta was instituted long before national or international rowing federations were established, it occupies a unique position in the world of rowing. It has its own rules and is not subject to the jurisdiction either of the governing body of rowing in the U.K. (British Rowing) or of the International Rowing Federation (F.I.S.A.), but is proud of the distinction of being officially recognised by both these bodies.
Unlike multi-lane international regattas, Henley still operates a knock-out draw with only two boats racing in each heat. This entails the organisation of up to 90 races on some of the five days. To complete the programme by a reasonable hour, races are started at 5-minute intervals.
The length of the Course is 1 mile 550 yards, which is 112 metres longer than the standard international distance of 2,000 metres. It takes approximately seven minutes to cover, so there are often two races at once on the Course for much of the day.
There are 20 events in total: 6 classes of race for Eights, 5 for Fours (3 coxless and 2 coxed), 5 for Quadruple Sculls, and races for Coxless Pairs and Double Sculls. In addition there are single sculling races for both men and women.