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Making Better Men

Eton College’s rowing program under coach Alex Henshilwood
Photography BENEDICT TUFNELL

Eton College boasts rowing facilities that many national teams, let alone school boat clubs, would kill for. Not only do the schoolboys have priority access to Dorney Lake, the 2012 Olympic rowing venue, but they also have two other boathouses allowing them access to the three stretches of the Thames that surround the school. Add to this a brand new state of the art strength and conditioning facility, and surely you have a winning combination? With alumni including four time Olympic Champion Matthew Pinsent, and other medallists including Ed Coode, Andrew Lindsay, and Constantine Louloudis, the school has an illustrious history when it comes to providing exceptional oarsmen.

So with this great Olympic legacy, the unparalleled facilities, should these schoolboys ever have a reason not to win? “You can have all the stuff but you still have to do the work, you still have to sit on the ergs for hours on end, and go out and push as hard as you can on the water” explains Oscar Lindsay, a sixth former who has already represented Great Britain at junior level. “It definitely helps” he goes on “because we are able to go out throughout the winter, even if there’s too much flow. We have to use the fact that we have it, but not rest on it”. This sentiment is echoed by coach Alex Henshilwood “It’s great to have, obviously, who wouldn’t want to have the best equipment and facilities they could? But it puts a big target on your back, everyone wants to shoot you down”.

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About Row360

Welcome to Row360, the world’s only global, independent rowing magazine. Row360 brings you features from around the world, profiling the best athletes, coaches, and others from the whole rowing community – Olympic, Paralympic, college, club, ocean, and more.