Best of British & beyond

The Race attracts crews from across the UK and beyond.
Over 3,000 women come to race, from Olympic Champions to the very best beginners.


The Prizegiving is held on Race day. Crews and their supporters are encouraged to celebrate in the local rowing clubs. Since 2014 it has been held near the finish in Putney.

Thank you

Over 200 volunteers and officials give their time and expertise to the help make the Race possible. It wouldn’t happen without you.

Ready to race?

In the hour before the Race over 300 crews will gather along the rivers edge. At the witching hour each crew will turn in order, crossing the start line every 5 seconds.

2012 Racing the thin line

In 2012 the race was run on a neap tide with 288 crews completing the course. A headwind at Harrods tested the tenacity of the even the hardiest crews.

1930 WEHoRR is born

The same year as Amy Johnson becomes the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia and the great depression starts to bite across the world.

The Women’s Eights Head of the River Race

The Women’s Eights Head of the River Race – founded in the 1930s with 5 crews participating – has now become the largest women’s rowing race in the world with around 2,880 women racing and up to 320 crews taking part. It is the only race in the UK where novices can compete in the same race as Olympic champions and as such attracts a wide range of rowers from clubs and universities.

Our aim is to organise the largest and most iconic women’s distance rowing race in the world, and we are grateful for your support.

Statement on Refunds for WEHoRR 2019

The Women’s Head exists as a not-for-profit event, where all proceeds are reinvested in developing the event for the future. Unfortunately, the race incurs many of its costs up front, regardless of whether the event proceeds on the day.

In light of the cancellation, the committee has taken the decision for the race this year to be cost neutral, and rather than retain and reinvest the surplus as normal, to return it to crews in the form of a partial refund on their entry fees. We feel that this is a fair outcome for both competitors and the race. There are two exceptions:

  1. Those crews who have elected to take up the offer from the HORR to race in their event will not receive a refund.
  2. Any crew who scratched before the cancellation will not receive a refund as they would not have been refunded if the race had gone ahead as planned.

The refund will amount to £44, being 37% of the entry fee. Refunds will be processed through BROE in due course.

Head of the River Race (Men’s Head)

The WEHoRR Committee would like to thank the organising committee of the Head of the River Race for their generous offer to enable a division of women’s crews to take part in a time trial over the Championship Course as the final division of their race on Saturday 30th March.

Due to marshalling restrictions and the need to clear the course before the end of the designated PLA river closure, the number of crews allowed to participate is limited and we are unfortunately only able to open the invitation to the crews who featured in the amended draw published last Thursday. These crews will receive an email containing further information. There is no expectation that crews will take up this offer, but it exists for those without other plans who may wish to take advantage.

Please note that this is not a replacement for the original 2019 race and crews will race solely for time within the HORR. All rules, safety and marshalling instructions will be controlled by the HORR. No WEHoRR Pennants will be awarded based on these results, however athletes will be awarded PRI according to their finishing position. Results will be published to our Facebook page.

For clarity, as this is not a replacement race, the start order for the top 50 crews in the 2020 Women’s Head will be based on the finishing positions from the 2018 race.

Race Cancelled – Friday, 15th March at 9pm

The race tomorrow has been cancelled due to predicted wind conditions. We share everyone’s disappointment. Please understand that this has not been an easy decision to make, but safety has to come first.

We have had several enquiries about refunds. We can’t provide any information about this until the committee has met later this week. Specifically, arrangements with boating locations are independent of the race itself, and clubs should contact their host clubs if necessary.

Revised Pennant Rules for 2019

The WEHoRR Committee are pleased to be able to announce the Pennants which will be available for the 2019 race. Some of these will look familiar as they haven’t changed from previous years, however you will notice that some of the old ‘Status’ Pennants have been revamped. Developing the criteria for these new Pennants has taken a lot of work behind the scenes as we have attempted to give crews an opportunity to race others of a similar standard. Our intention is to ensure we respect the history and traditions of many of the pre-existing pennants, while continuing to look to move with the sport as it develops.

We have aimed to create a clear progression through each level and have tried to base these on clear, simple principles that reflect what we have seen in the results of previous years’ races.

As always, we don’t plan to sit still as an event, and will continue to review and improve where possible for subsequent years. Feedback is always gratefully received. We hope to see you all racing on the Tideway in March!