Great Britain's Olympic men's squad won five trophies in a show of power at Henley yesterday in their last appearance at the Royal regatta before the 2012 Olympics. The sculler Alan Campbell, the pair of Pete Reed and Andy Hodge, the double scullers Matt Wells and Marcus Batemen, the coxless four and the quadruple scullers all led the way as records tumbled.
The British eight was the exception, going down by a length to the German national crew in the grand Challenge Cup, after its appeal against being washed down by Hansa Dortmund was turned down by umpire Fred Smallbone. Greg Searle, 39, the 1992 Olympic champion who occupies the No 6 seat, said that the Germans pushed towards the middle of the course several times, each time responding to the the umpire's warnings. Basically, the British crew was outmanoeuvred at the start and became a victim of classic match racing.
Aside from GB Rowing's five wins, only four events went to British clubs. Leander took the event for club quadruple sculls; the GB Under-23 lightweight four won the Visitors'; London RC won the club coxless fours; and Abingdon School trounced the American school St Andrew's in the Princess Elizabeth.