Lost to Steele (Christ's) by 59s
So this was also a fantastically successful sculling race in which I lost horrendously from the very beginning. Soon enough, although I started a good distance ahead of Steele, he overtook me. Some small consolation comes in being told that it looked like I crossed his finish line before he crossed mine. The famous Cambridge river crabs were out in force and there was little I could do to stop them. Next time I'm definitely getting some practice in.
Lost to True (Clare)
The start was ok and I was keeping pace with True nicely for the first hundred metres or so, me in my tracer using macons, him in his racing shell using cleavers. Then I caught a crab, and one crab led to another, and the race was basically over. Sculling is difficult when you're sufficiently unsat that tapping down becomes a nervous exercise in trying not to capsize.
Lost by most of the reach
By virtue of being one of only two people to make it to the startline in this event (and I nearly missed this by being late, Mr Kenyon was sculling back past the P&E when he nearly crashed into me, and then worked out who I was and turned round), I lined up for the final of the Fairbairn sculls against, once again, someone much taller than me in a rather shinier boat.
Just as we were about to set off, Thomas splashed his way towards us along the mudbath of the towpath. Without his guidance, I would almost certainly have ploughed into the two Cam Conservancy boats who were meandering downstream around Grassy on the wrong side of the river, so many thanks for braving the weather, Thomas!
I was reasonably happy with my sculling, most of the practice for which had come while coaching; sitting up into the catch a little more and rolling out a little more length would afforded some more speed, but it was fairly irrelevant. At the Plough Thomas called it as 10s down, and at the exit of Ditton the margin was "large", so I took it down to a paddle to try to recover for the pairs races a short hour in the future.
Racing 2k on the Cam for the first time since Freshman sculls was useful experience, and my intention is to actually train next year and have a more serious shot at this. Whether said intention will last the winter is less clear...