Britain's Royal Henley Regatta opened on Thursday (5 July) in brilliant sunshine. In the first?
HENLEY-ON-THAMES, UK (JULY 5, 1070) (REUTERS)
GV River Thames with rowing boat coming into foreground
SVs Women wearing fancy hats, men dressed up, and some wearing very casual clothes at the Regatta, walking around and chatting (7 shots)
GV Boat being prepared for race
GV Spectators in stand
GV Race number under way with B. Chielens and D. Croix of Belgium finishing to applause
GV Race number 21 with Eight rowers coming home close to another Eight
GV Race 23 with fours coming home followed by another Four
SV More people in fashionable clothes arriving, some with boater hats on (3 shots)
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Background: Britain's Royal Henley Regatta opened on Thursday (5 July) in brilliant sunshine. In the first day's rowing, the United States teams took six events, with Yale University taking three of the six. Two U.S. colleges -- Yale and Berkley -- are expected to clash with England's Oxford crew later in the competition. Last year's winner of the Grand Challenge Cup, the Trakia Club of Bulgaria, will not be back to defend their honour this year.
The legendary Royal Regatta at the picturesque market town of Henley-on-Thames, west of London, still retains its position as a jewel of the English social season. Vast throngs jam the towpaths and the more exclusive tented enclosures. Wide-brimmed hats, boaters and yachting blazers are the order of the day for some, but others prefer summer casual dress.
Of the two hundred and forty-four entries this year, only forty-one are from overseas. Several major European rowing nations have forsaken Henley. In the opening day double sculls event, the Belgian team of Chielens and Croix beat Britain's Riddle and Lions with ease.
In the Ladies Challenge Cup Eights, England's Peterhouse from Cambridge narrowly beat KES High School and St. Stithians College -- a combined South African team.
Georgetown University from the United States took a first round win from the Isis team from Oxford, England, by a one and two-thirds lead.
After the first day's results, many sportsmen expected most of the premier events to be taken by England this year. Only three non-British boats survived the first round of the Diamond, Double Sculls and Silver Goblet competitions.