Rutherford Head 2022

Rutherford Head returned to its traditional late autumn slot, taking place for the second time in 2022 on December 3rd, after the postponed 2021 version was rearranged in February, on this occasion with no adverse weather predictions.

The clamour for places in the North’s premier competition of the head racing season was as keen as ever, with entries being suspended within 36 hours of opening on November 6th.

Thanks to diligent planning and organisation and the efforts of many volunteers over 250 eights, fours and quads were able to take to the water from the three Newburn-based clubs for the 4.5km time trial over the Championship course from Scotswood to Newburn. Entries were drawn from around the country, including the Universities of Edinburgh, London, Newcastle and Durham, and clubs from as far afield as Cambridge, Leeds, Chester and Aberdeen.

Rutherford Head Open 8+ band 4

Sixteen crews from Durham ARC started, twelve rowing with the tide in division 1 and four against the flow in division 2. Preparations had included the mammoth task of organising and loading the club boats along with those of 14 Durham Colleges on to 5 trailers for the short journey to the Tyne.

The five eights from DARC entering the morning division included, for the first time in many years, two from the Senior Men’s squad as well as two Junior crews, one beating Yarm School and Queen Elizabeth High School to win band 2 of the J18 8+ event and the other assigned to band 5 of the Open event. The Women’s Masters E eight raced against the Tyne ARC WMasD eight, with the Durham crew of Heather Hirst, Alison Clark, Vicki Jakson, Clare Woodward, Sarah Rutter, Gabrielle Moore, June Davison, Angela Lund and cox Nigel van Zwanenberg emerging as comfortable winners. The other win on the day went to the Masters E coxless quad of John Lyons, Paul Smith, David Heppell and Richard Court who ran out winners in a field of five. The victorious J18 eight of Finley Scott, Luke Davison, Lucas Walker, Sam Terry, Matthew Flatters, Tom Pfetscher and Will Terry were aided in their success by a substitute from Tyne ARC.

The Senior eights impressed in finishing 4th in band 3 (above) and 2nd in band 4 of the Open 8+, to take 19th and 29th positions overall against fierce opposition from nearly 50 crews, many representing the elite rowing Universities.

Rutherford Head J18 8+

Other morning results included 2nd place finishes in bands 1 and 2 of the Women’s J18 coxless quad and 2nd place in band 2 of the Women’s coxless four.

Two further Masters eights and two Women’s Masters quads raced in the afternoon division. The MasF 8+ placed 2nd in the MasFG 8+ race while the WMasB 4x- was 2nd in the WMasBC race.

Rutherford Head Women’s 4x-

Results for Durham ARC as follows –

Division 1

Open 8+ Knights 4th in band 3 and 19th overall – 14.52.6
Open 8+ Kay 2nd in band 4 and 29th – 15.47.3
J18 8+ Bolton 1st in band 2 and 45th – 16.42.0
Open 8+ Cardy 6th in band 5 and 60th – 17.51.6
Women’s 4x- McDaid 3rd in band 2 and 63rd – 17.56.8
MasC 4x- Terry 3rd in MasBC 4x- and 66th – 18.03.3
WJ18 4x- Windle 2nd in band 1 and 67th – 18.13.7
MasE 4x- Lyons 1st in MasE 4x- and 68th – 18.16.2
MasE 4x- McCarthy 3rd in MasE 4x- and 82nd – 18.48.7
Women’s 4- James 2nd in band 2 and 100th – 19.34.8
WJ18 4x- Suggett 2nd in band 2 and 102nd – 19.36.3
WMasE 8+ 1st in WMasDE 8+ and 108th – 19.53.1

Rutherford Head Women’s 4-

Division 2

MasD 8+ Dower 4th in MasDE 8+ and 64th – 19.01.1
MasF 8+ Heppell 2nd in MasFG 8+ and 67th – 19.13.0
WMasB 4x- Ashton 2nd in WMasBC 4x- and 93rd – 20.55.0
WMasB 4x- Buist 4th in WMasBC 4x- and 117th – 23.28.0

Rutherford Head MasE 4x-

In division 1 the fastest Open crew was the University of London Open 8+ in 13.18.8, and the fastest Women’s crew Edinburgh University W 4x- with 16.03.5. In division 2 the fastest Open crew was Tyrian Club’s Alumni 8+ in 16.14.6, and the fastest Women’s crew was Edinburgh University W 8+ in 16.39.7

College rowing is undergoing a resurgence following the effects of Covid and it was pleasing to see over 30 Durham College crews taking part, including South College making their competitive bow following affiliation to British Rowing earlier this year, and an entry from Van Mildert who are without a boathouse after last year’s fire.

Rutherford Head WMasE 8+

Leading Durham College Rowing results as follows –

Collingwood College achieved the fastest times of any of the Durham Open and Women’s eights other than DUBC.

Fastest DCR Open 8+ Collingwood College 5th in band 2 in 14.45.5
Fastest DCR Women’s 4+ St Aidan’s College 4th in band 2 in 25.27.1

Fastest DCR Open 4+ Grey College winner of band 3 in 18.37.3
Fastest DCR Women’s 8+ Collingwood College 2nd in band 4 in 18.56.5

Rutherford Head Open 8+ band 5

Full results are available on the Tyne ARC website.

Rutherford Head WJ18 4x-

Photos by Adam Lambert are available here.

The racing calendar resumes in the New Year.

On the Newburn straight