Came 4th out of 5
We were level with Nottingham RC off the start, and had moved through them by the 500 marker. At this point I looked to my right and saw us level with Monmouth School. By 1000m I was on their bowman, but unfortunately their push out of halfway was more powerful/effective than ours and we dropped back again. With 500m to go we most definitely died, our lifts didn't have the desired effect, and they finished a length and a half ahead of us.
All in all a much better race than we had expected. After a warm-up which seemed slightly shaky with too much focus outside the boat, we had a particularly nice first km, followed by a rather artificial and forced third 500 and a seriously painful last 500.
Oh and somewhere around 1300m in "we seem[ed] to have caught up with Goldie". That was exciting.
Having looked at the opposition which included CUBC (Dev squad) amongst others, we rowed to the start knowing that if we were to race the race of our lives, there might be a slight chance of making the finals.
It wasn't quite the race of our lives, but certainly the first km of our lives.
After a very calm start, we settled into a very smooth 34, with lots of flow, length and composure. We quickly gained on Nottingham and soon after 500m just watchted them disappearing into the distance.
The middle km of the race was a tight neck-on-neck with Monmouth School. We took them seat by seat and were half a length ahead at the 1k mark. Shortly after we slightly lost our finesse and with the rate dropping down to 32 at times, Penelope had to make us aware of apparently having caught up with Goldie to help us picking it up again. Unfortunately at that point, Goldie B and Warwick, well ahead of the rest anyway, both decided that they would prefer to duel each other in the semifinal rather than the final and aggressively sprinted ahead. This meant that our motivational boost was only of short duration.
At 500 to go Monmouth were slightly in front and started winding it. We responded with a slight blade mishap, a very gentlemanly apology (someone in our boat was clearly quiching) and a few steering mishaps, crossing the line 5s after Monmouth.
Considering that we were a scratch four, this was a surprisingly good race - up to the 1k mark it was probably the nicest race I've done in a good while. It would have been even nicer to not have blown up at that point though...
Wow. Spurious accusations indeed. I blame the gate... Quiche had nothing to do with it. A positive result considering the lack of outings. More regattas please...