Every morning of every day of the Lent and May bumps, the amassed boat clubs of 1st and 3rd Trinity and Lady Margaret assemble in their respective colleges. At the first strike of 8 a.m. of the Great Court clock the 1st and 3rd machine makes its way across Great Court and through New Court to the backs, to intimidate our lesser rivals next door prior to beating them in the racing later in the day.
The two clubs come face to face, and after a bit of a scrum, dropping annoying coxes in to the ditches, throwing snowballs (1995) or whatever else might present itself, an amble through the Dark Place brings us back to Trinity, where various members of LMBC are generally kidnapped and tortured by feeding them breakfast in Hall.
Whilst 1st and 3rd is the biggest and best club on the Cam, Lady Margaret could perhaps lay claim to being the 2nd biggest and 2nd best, and as such the two clubs have battled in recent years for quantity and standings of lower boats, as well as the top crews. Crews from the two clubs have raced in adjacent starting positions in every bumps for at least the past three years, and probably for several years before that - notable recent battles including the 1st men's VIIIs in the Lents '99 and Mays '00, and the epic four day campaigns of the 3rd May VIIIs in 1998. In recent memory the Stomp has therefore been very relevant to the racing and lends itself to a good deal of aggression when either side feels confident of a Bump!
"Remember that LMBC are the enemy and that any
opportunity we have to humiliate and destroy should be taken with passion." Harry Hampson (Captain 1986) - Nov '99.
Face to face on the Backs
Lady Margaret's Tree
Lady Margaret's Stomp tradition once included each VIII slapping an enormous tree on the St. John's backs and shouting the
name of their target crew. Three gold rings mysteriously appeared on the tree after LMBC were bumped in the Mays in 1992. Sadly, however, their ire at having the tree painted led to
them ripping off the gold rings - and the bark all the way round. As a result, the tree died two years
later, and they then just went and slapped the stump. In the end, this was
dug up, and a glorious Maggie tradition was wrecked...
The 1st May VIII and LMBC's tree, 1992 Mark Crawford's stripeys need some attention after an excursion into a ditch
On the Wednesday of the 2003 Lent Bumps, M1 were a quarter of length off Maggie coming into Ditton, when they crabbed. They were unable to catch up, and so rowed over. On the Thursday, Maggie placed a crab on the route through St John's, with the message "Always a crab when you least expect it!".
Always a crab when you least expect it!
Martin Peck, 15 August '01
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