See note to the recto (D05842) for a more worked-up variant of this sketch in ink; the present version in pencil is more spontaneous and was presumably made on the spot, as Hill observes. As with the recto and sketches inside the back cover of the sketchbook (D40635) there is a connection with the contemporary, unfinished oil known as Men with Horses Crossing a River (Tate N02695) 1 but here the groupings are different. Although there is a similar central group of figures and horses, there are figures and a punt on the left and a cart on the right which were not used in the picture. Hill also notes the absence of the building that appears in the oil, despite Finberg’s claim to see Windsor Castle in the background. As noted for the recto, the scenery is more probably at Richmond.
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.118 no.170 (pl.170).