Our Rowing Club came home from the annual Scottish Schools Head Race on the Forth & Clyde Canal at Auchinstarry Basin on Saturday 3 March 2012 with the Peter Grieve Memorial Trophy, the victor ludorum for the school winning the most races overall at the event.
This competition is the conclusion of the Scottish Head Racing season, and determines the Scottish Schools Head-of-the-River Champions. Such outstanding results will put George Watson's College in an excellent position in preparation for the British Schools' Head of the River over the Boat Race course from Mortlake to Putney later this month, and for the head-to-head regatta racing in the summer months.
Racing the 3,000m course from the lock at Banknock to the Craigmarloch Bridge at Dullatur, the boys and girls of Watson's put in some sterling performances. The Senior Boys coxed four of Ian Walker, Alex Frew (both S6), Jack Dryden (S4) and Laurence Bialy (S3), coxed by Louise Henderson (S6) retained the St. Mungo Cup for the Schools' Head of the Canal, the fastest school crew of the day, beating Glasgow Academy by 12 seconds.
Not to be outdone, the Senior Girls' 'B' crew of Ellie Brown (S4), Robyn Gillies, Emma Rankin (both S5) and Eleanor Marlow (S4), coxed by Isla Ferguson (S3) were the fastest girls' crew of the day, winning the Bob Neill Trophy and the Senior School Girls' event.
The Boys' Under 16 four of Sam Hoskyns Abrahall (S5) Hamish Duncan (S4), James Stevenson and Blair Ketteringham (both S3) coxed by Calum McLeod (S5) finished third in the Schools' U16 event, just 6 seconds behind winners George Heriot's. The J15 boys however were comfortable winners of the Under 15 Schools event: the coxed four of Alasdair Watson, Struan Stewart, Arseniy Morgunov and Peter Smith (all S3) coxed by Anna Fenning-Kazantzidi (S2) beating second placed Albyn School of Aberdeen by 1'40".
George Watson's College also produced the fastest Girls' quad scull of the day - the crew of Holly Cook, Katy McDonald, Errin Gall and Emma Crawford (all S3) coxed by Julie McDonald (S1) overtaking not only the other Under 14's, but also both Under 15 Girls' crews.
In the slightly less clement conditions of the second division, our crews competed in their 'open' age categories against clubs from across Scotland, eager to break the domination that Aberdeen Rowing Association have enjoyed at this level. Two of our crews came away with resounding victories: the Under 15 Boys' crew of James Stevenson, Laurence Bialy, Blair Ketteringham and Alasdair Watson, coxed by Rebecca Moore (all S3); and the Girls' Under 14 Quad Scull of Holly Cook, Katy McDonald, Emma Crawford (all S3) and Rachel Malin (S2), coxed by Julie McDonald (S1).
Congratulations go out to all of our winning crews, and a huge vote of thanks to the Watson's parents who organised the catering at the event and helped to make the event run smoothly.