Two crews from Enniskillen Royal Boat Club have pre-qualified for Henley Royal Regatta which starts next Tuesday, June 28 with the Boys 1st 8 competing in the prestigious Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup for the first time since 2015.

A record 739 crews have entered this year’s event which will take place over five days for the first time. Indeed there will be rowers from 17 nations competing with 172 international entries including 66 from USA and 37 from Australia.

The Boys 1st 8 will compete in the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup having focused on the other Junior Men’s event, the Fawley Challenge Cup in the last few years. The crew is Tom Blake, Marcus Davis-Kunze, Oran Harty, Tim Murphy, Lewis Nixon, Charlie Smith, Nathan Kelly, Luke Paton and cox Frankie Reihill.

There are 43 crews entered in this event and this will be reduced to 32 crews after Friday night’s qualification races. Entries include the holders Eton College, St Paul’s School along with four crews from USA and two from Australia.

The boys will race on Tuesday in the heats, two crews competing in a side by side knock out race over the 2.112km course

The Girls 1st 8 of Niamh Campbell, Laura Turner, Acorn Cassidy, Katie Donnelly, Aine McCaffrey, Chloe Thompson, Martha McBrien, Rachel Cullinan and cox Grace Ralph will compete in the Prince Philip Challenge Trophy.

There are 27 crews entered which will be reduced to 16 after Friday’s qualification races.

Entries include the last year’s winners Headington School, and both the crews that the girls raced against at Henley Women’s Regatta last weekend, Green Lake Crew USA and St Edward’s School along with the crew from Henley RC.

The draw will take place on Saturday afternoon and both crews will then know who they will race first next week.