While the host club had to give second best to Oxford Brookes in the Wallingford Head on Sunday, they did at least come out on top in the Blue Riband event.

Wallingford stormed to victory in the women’s elite eight.

With notable Great Britain performers on board such as Helen Casey and Alice Freeman, who were both in the Beijing Olympics plus international Atlanta St John, Wallingford pipped Brookes by two seconds.

More of Wallingford’s experienced rowers made their point by taking the women’s masters honours on the day.

Of Oxford Brookes’ six eight wins, five came for their men, their top two crews being used with slight changes over the morning and afternoon sessions and they managed to produce the four fastest eights’ times of the day.

Their other eights’ win came from the senior women’s crew.

Brookes also had success in the fours, their men winning both the intermediate 2 and 3 coxed classes.

After four cancellations in five years, there was relief that the event went ahead with 282 crews entered from all over the south of England.