HOCR attracts more than 9,000 athletes each year and more than 300,000 spectators to witness the amazing feat of physical ability. Competitors come from high schools, colleges and clubs from almost every American state and many countries. Athletes age range from 14 to 85 years old with experience levels from novice rower to Olympic athlete.


Experience prestigious races


The course of the HOCR is a 2.81 mile stretch from the start at Boston University’s DeWolfe Boathouse to the finish right after the Eliot Bridge. The course contains six bridges with sharp turns at the Week and Eliot Bridges.

The HOCR is so named because it’s a head race, a time trial competition. Overall, there are 61 events, but the last are the most esteemed. These include: Championship 4s and Championship 8s for both men and women as well as Championship sculling events (1x/single and 2x/double). Championship events usually include the race’s best athletes, including rowers from United States national teams.

Getting the whole HOCR experience


Watching the races is, of course, the main focus of the event. It can be a thrill to watch boats slice through the water in the hopes of winning the title and the glory.

In between races, there are plenty of other exhibitions and events occurring for rowing enthusiasts and rowing neophytes alike.


Visit the HOCR exhibits


Situated near Harvard’s Boathouse, the Weld Exhibition is one of the Regatta’s liveliest sites. Here you can purchase official Regatta programs and merchandise or check for up-to-date race results. The official Head of Charles Regatta sponsors line the banks of the river providing delicious free samples of local flavors. The Weld Exhibition also features some of the races best’s viewing sites to cheer on your favorite athletes.

At the Rowing and Fitness Expo tent, visitors can test a rowing machine and have a shopping experience unique to this exciting event, trying on rowing-inspired jewelry or browsing new workout gear. Everyone, not just rowers, can enjoy the expo. Aside from boating and rowing vendors, Brooks Brothers, Sperry Top-Sider and Clif Bar all have displays and products for sale.

To witness the winners, head to the awards ceremony, of which there are three. All first place winners are presented with their HOCR medals here.

Event Details:

  • 50th The Head of Charles Regatta
  • When: October 17, 2015 - October 18, 2015
  • Where: Eliot Bridge & Christian Herter Park, Boston, MA
  • Official Site: www.hocr.org/the-regatta