Head of The Christina

  • Hosted By: Wilmington Youth Rowing Association
  • 2021 Registered Regatta
  • Cancelled

It is with profound disappointment that we must announce the cancellation of the 2021 Head of the Christina Regatta.

---More information below---

Hello all,

Since yesterday’s announcement of cancellation I have received many messages inquiring as to the justification of our refund policy. WYRA has incurred certain non-recoverable expenses through the planning process and as such are unable to offer a true ‘full’ refund of this year’s expenses. However, after discussing with the WYRA board of trustees, we are planning to modify the refund policy as follows:

Entrants in this year’s regatta will be refunded 95% of their entry fees, an increase from the previously announced 75% This will allow WYRA to cover the incurred costs from this year’s planning process that we are unable to recoup while at the same time offering a minimal financial impact to all teams affected by the decision to cancel the event.

Entrants in this year’s regatta will continue to be offered a voucher of 25% towards next year’s regatta entry fees. We continue to offer this benefit in the hope that teams continue to consider our regatta in the future and appreciate that the ongoing shortage of licensed officials willing to work events is out of our hands.

I would like to stress that the cancellation of the regatta was due to a shortage of licensed officials, and while we considered extending a call for volunteer marshals it was determined that the race could not go on safely without the watchful expertise of USRowing certified officials. We have had (minor) incidents in the past and as such were not comfortable with the risk associated with running the event with diminished referee corps.

It is our sincere hope that this policy is satisfactory for everyone given the circumstances of cancellation. We would like to wish everyone a healthy and successful racing season and year and once again hope you all consider the 2022 Head of the Christina scheduled for October 2, 2022.

Thank you,

Will Beardell

Regatta Director

2021 Head of the Christina

----- Previous Message (09/28/21) -----

Hello everyone,

It is with profound disappointment that we must announce the cancellation of the 2021 Head of the Christina Regatta. We have been unable to secure enough USRowing officials to safely put on the event and regretfully must call it off. The nature of our race, with the winding path of the river and strong tidal current is such that we would not feel comfortable if there were any blind spots along the race course, insufficient supervision on the dock, and at the start and finish line, and as such we have determined it cannot go on. Please be assured that this has been done out of the utmost concern for the safety and fairness of racing for all involved.

We are working with RegattaCentral to allow for a 75% refund of all entry fees for this year. Additionally, WYRA will provide a voucher for an additional 25% off of next year’s edition for all 2021 entrants. We genuinely hope that you will consider the Head of the Christina again in 2022 to open your fall seasons. We were hopeful to be able to bring you all a long-awaited return to head racing this weekend but unfortunately it seems it wasn’t meant to be this year.

On a personal level, I would like to assure everyone that we left no stone unturned when it came to trying to find officials or ways to put the event on over the past weeks and particularly in the past few days. It brings me great personal sadness to see the prospective largest edition in HoC history end this way, but we are eminently hopeful that you will all join us in 2022 for our next edition. It is our sincere hope that the global health situation will be brought into control within the next year and we are all able to once again gather on the banks of the Christina to kick off the fall season in Wilmington. We wish you all the best with your fall seasons and hope to see you on October 2, 2022!


Will Beardell

Regatta Director

Head of the Christina

----- Previous Message (09/21/21) -----

Risk Mitigation Plan (PDF download)

Hello all once again and welcome to the 2021 Head of the Christina Regatta!

It has already been quite an eventful fall with weather in the area causing extensive damage at the Philadelphia area clubs. We hope that everyone has managed to effectively weather the storm and are returning to practicing on the water! WYRA was lucky to be spared the worst of the fallout from Hurricane Ida and we are working hard to put on a great regatta.

Since our last communication, we have made an updated course video. Please make an effort to watch the video before racing, particularly if you are entering novice events or have not raced here before. The video is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgnoBzPu4Gk

Note that our river is a tidal river – there is a strong current that will change direction about halfway through the morning. Low tide will be at 5:08 AM, followed by high tide at 10:35 AM, and low tide again at 5:10 PM. The current will be in the direction of racing for the early morning races, and against the direction of racing after 10:35.

Please note we have a no grills policy due to restrictions from the Wilmington Riverfront Development Corporation – WYRA will be selling snacks and bottled drinks at our food tent but we strongly recommend teams bring prepared food for your athletes. There are some restaurants within a short walk along the riverfront as well.

I have received a few emails regarding the status of team tents – teams will be able to set up tents along the riverfront upriver of WYRA; there is plenty of space with great views of the racing.

Please be advised the entry deadline is Sunday, September 26, 2021 at 11:59 PM. The schedule will be posted on Rowtown.org once the deadline has passed.

As always, please feel free to reach out with questions – we are looking forward to seeing everyone in two weeks!

Will Beardell

Director, Head of the Christina Regatta

----- Previous Message (08/27/21) -----

Hello all and welcome (back) to the Head of the Christina!

After a year away due to the pandemic, we are excited to be bringing our lovely regatta back on Sunday, October 3. I hope all crews, athletes, and programs have been able to persevere through the past 18 months, and hope that we may all find some welcome familiarity together at this regatta. I will be reprising my role as Regatta Director, surrounded by a great team of experienced race officials. We are all eager to have another great event!

For those returning to the regatta, we’re looking forward to welcoming you back to the banks and waters of the Christina river and hope we can provide a great start to a successful return to fall racing.

For first-time entrants, we are grateful to have you give the HoC a shot and hope our winding course and friendly atmosphere allows you to sharpen up your skills as you head into your fall competitive seasons!

We will be releasing a new course video as there have been some changes to the riverfront since the last course video was taken. However, as the route along the river hasn’t changed, feel free to reference this video as a primer to the regatta course. We will update you all with a new video when it is available. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9Jrfwxui6A

As in previous years, we will be using Rowtown.org for the schedule and results. We anticipate the schedule to be similar to that used in 2019; the event list will be updated with approximate start times for each event shortly. Please be mindful of this schedule if you plan on having athletes race multiple events.

Entries will open at midnight on August 28; the regular entry deadline will be one week before the event, September 26. Please make an attempt to submit entries by that time as there will be a fee for late entries, accepted until Wednesday, September 29.

We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the regatta this October and are looking forward to a successful event! I will be happy to address any questions regarding the regatta.


Website https://www.wyra.org/hochr
Contact William Beardell
Email [email protected]
Phone (302) 547-5950
Sanctioned by  
Juniors Yes
High School Yes
Middle School No
Collegiate No
Open Yes
Masters Yes
Elite No
Para No
Inclusion No
Entry Fees (USD)
Standard Cost Late Cost
Doubles $55.00 $65.00
Eights $130.00 $140.00
Fours $95.00 $105.00
Quads $95.00 $105.00
Singles $40.00 $50.00
Plus taxes if applicable