The Club's Results
May Bumps 2003
The famous Cambridge University May Bumps on the River Cam
Wed 11th - Sat 14th June
At the bottom of this page there is a link to Cambridge weather. Club members, please go here to add (or correct) results, crews or race reports.
Over the last week and a half we have improved beyond measure; this showed in our paddle down to the start (despite a dodgy moment in our practice start).
The start of the race was quite tense, with some ripping which we had virtually eliminated in practice. However, St. Catharines had been pushed out angled toward the opposite bank, and this allowed us to close to 1/3 of a length by First Post Corner. Although there was no audible indication of this from the bank, the rocking and swaying sensation of being close to another boat was quite noticable at the kink in First Post Reach. St. Catharines then put their experience to work and began to open up the gap.
Meanwhile, Clare made very little impression behind (we had moved perhaps 1/4 length away off the start, they got it back by Grassy, and then they disappeared behind us increasingly rapidly). When it became obvious that we weren't going to bump Catz or be hit by Clare, Mark Hall (our finishing coach) called for us to save ourselves for the next day.
In front of Catz, Robinson hit Jesus a little before the Railway Bridge. Catz also decided to save themselves, but as we started our "practice" wind for the finish, Steph realised that they were well within distance, and seemingly hadn't noticed us moving up. Eventually they moved as well, and we were about 3/4 length off at the finish.
Let's see what drama day 2 can bring.
Rowing pretty much the same as yesterday, but without any real drama; paddle down good, not a bad start (apart from an air-stroke from Ed) and then slowly moving away from Clare (who were just short of 3 lengths down when bumped by Queens') with Catz moving away slightly (who hit Jesus). We again wound it down in the reach, but apart from watching Churchill on a mission to nothing behind us, little else interesting happened.
Another good paddle down, with very comfortable bursts at 37, and a lift to a smooth 39 in one. The practice start wasn't our best, but was by no means terrible. The real start was very strong, and we moved about 1/3 length in the right direction on the crews in front (Jesus) and behind (Queens'). Coming out of First Post corner, it got very rocky, causing the boat to crash over to stroke side for one or two strokes. We recovered quickly, and within a few strokes we had our single hooter for 1/2 length. As planned, initially we didn't change much, but a few strokes later Steph called "Go Now", and we went. We hit them on the entrance to Grassy. With Queens' only a couple of lengths behind we had to move quickly to the outside of the corner, removing the bowball of our boat on the bank in the process. Oops - sorry Iain.
We had an absolutely amazing row despite a last-minute crew change! The warm up couldn't really have been much better and the practice start was probably one of the best we've ever done. The actual start was just as gutsy and set us up for a solid and neat row down the whole course, easily holding Robinson off and closing at times to within a length of Queens'. After such a smashing row, things are looking good for the rest of bumps! Ra ra!
Got the bump just after grassy, lucky to get it as Darwin crashed at the corner and in fact had Alex not steered for the bump (there was plenty of overlap so this was fine), we would probably have ended up with a rowover. Well done to Alex and the whole crew.
Bumped by Peterhouse
A strong, relaxed, powerful start took us to within a Canvas of Emma II coming around First Post Corner. With the bank party shouting and whistling for all they were worth, we couldn't hear Rachel shout 'Kill' and anyway, surely Emma weren't that useless. Anyway, as it slowly dawned on us that we were really close to them, we tried to row right through them, but every time we got towards overlap, a spacky stroke re-opened the gap again. Emma somehow held us at under half a length all the way to the Houses, with Peterhouse comfortably outside distance until this point.
Around about the Pink House, Peterhouse started to push up on us, coming inside distance for the first time in the race. We got a bit scared, since we still hadn't bumped Emma, and we fell apart slightly. At the same time, Peterhouse put in a big push off the bridge, and we were bumped about halfway between the bridge and Morley's Holt, still half a length or so off Emma.
An amazing race... The second boat were being chased by a strong Wolfson I who managed about 8 feet overlap around Morley's Holt, but failed to make the bump, blowing up a few moments later and being bumped themselves as our boat pulled away to comfortably row over.
A slightly worse start than yesterday saw us close a bit on Peterhouse off the start, but they managed to bump Emmanuel in the Plough Reach and were soon removed from our path. Wolfson behind were maybe a little inside distance coming around Grassy, but nothing to really worry about (yet!)
Avoiding the bump ahead cost us some line around Ditton corner, handing Wolfson a further half length or so in advantage. A series of pushes from the Wolfson crew gradually brought them closer to us all the way up the Long Reach; our answering pushes weren't quite as effective at keeping them away. This continued until they were getting dangerously close to our stern around the Pink House. With a wonderful bit of steering, we crossed very early under the Railway Bridge and hugged the meadow as Wolfson pushed their bowball past our stroke man, but on the other side of the river ! At about this point, it was noticed that Lady Margaret were slightly inside distance on Wolfson, and the sight of our old foe gave us renewed strength to push the infidels away. We slowly pulled the overlap back to a matter of inches as the Wolfson bows drifted, all too slowly, across the river towards our stern. With our seven man shortening up slightly to ensure no contact was made to his blade (although there was no real danger of this) Wolfson sagged for a couple of strokes. But we all seemed to have forgotten about the third crew in the race ...
In a flash it was all over. Lady Margaret had closed the final gap between the crews and as the Wolfson hand was raised in surrender, we wound it down and rowed from Morley's Holt to Top Finish at what felt like a rather light 34.
"There are no Wolfson chasing us. I will show you. IN ONE HOUR !"
"Our initial assessment is that they will all die" - and so it proved.
from the Cambridge Evening News (Friday 13th)
"Lower down in the men's second division, 1st & 3rd Trinity II looked likely to be toppled by Wolfson when the latter overlapped them by 10ft at the Railway Bridge and steadily came across the river. However, they failed to get close enough for contact and the crew behind, Lady Margaret II who had closed to within half a length, seized their chance. In a dramatic minute, they caught Wolfson at Peter's Post just as 1st & 3rd scrambled clear."
Bumped Emmanuel II
We were once again starting by the outflow. As the count passed through "3," the bungline went taut in Rachel's hands and the bows swung round slightly to strokeside. Despite Tim's best efforts, we were still pointing across the river a bit at the gun, and Rachel's call of "Harder Strokeside !!" caused a bit of spacking, including the 6-man bombing the slide to get to stroke 2 of the race.
After sucessfully avoiding the bank, we started to take distance off the Emmanuel crew ahead of us, in a similar fashion to Wednesday. Due to our significantly poorer start, we were in the region of a length off at First Post, but behind us the "Lady Margaret '1B' crew" were obviously going for a "burn and die" race plan. With scenes reminiscent of the Queens' II affair from the year before, Maggie closed to within a canvas by Grassy, and as their cox steered slightly wide, a lovely curve from Rachel saw their bows pass from the inside to the outside of our stern. Maybe the infidel cox of the Maggie boat was trying to give her 2-man the chance of making the bump (According to Rachel this would have been the worst possible humiliation for her), maybe she just steered for the bump, or maybe she, being a Maggie-girl, was just plain incompetent, but we'd just been given the half-length hooter on Emmanuel in front, and as Maggie put the 'die' part of their plan into action, we pushed away from them and towards Emma for the bump.
Maggie tried to hang on to our wash for as long as possible, but after about 15 strokes at under a canvas, a delightful shudder ran through the boat as we managed to convert our pressure into a result this time around. The action occurred just before Ditton corner, and we needed to clear the river swiftly before Lady Margaret ploughed through the wreckage. With only a couple of minutes to spare, we cleared to the outside and found a nice weeping willow to adorn ourselves with, before cheering on Wolfson as they chased Maggie down the Reach.
As the euphoria of bumping settled upon us, an even sweeter feeling was felt as the realisation that we had denied Lady Margaret their blades slowly dawned on the crew.
Ahead of us, Peterhouse overbumped Disney at the same place they bumped us on Wednesday, so we'll be chasing the Mickey Mouse crew of the division tomorrow, and they're chasing Pembroke who got bumped by Downing just on Ditton corner.
We have a bad start
Lady Margret are closing;
we spring on Emma
Disney are going down tomorrow. Well done boys!
Second men spack hard
and Bump Emma at the plough;
No Blades for Maggie.
Members of LMBC are advised to check the photo gallery.
Bumped Sidney Sussex
After a slightly shaky warm up, we settled in to wait for the guns. After a couple of slightly dodgy draw strokes, we wound it up nicely off the start and settled into a nice relaxed racing rhythm. With Disney moving slightly on Pembroke off the start, we surged after them, and soon the encouraging shouts of "You're closing" from the bank lifted our spirits. As we rounded First Post Corner, the crowd noise hit us like a wall, and the shouts from the towpath blended into the background cheer and gasps of "Oooh !" and "Aaaah !" were heard from the crowd, evidence enough for the bumps veterans in the crew to show that there were two (or three?) boats in quite close proximity. As if on cue, the length hooter sounded as we came off the corner and this was quickly followed by the half-length just before Grassy. With Mark's Dad just arrived on the towpath at Grassy about 5 seconds before we came by, the treble blast on the horn sounded, signifying a canvas or less separated our bows from their stern. We dutifully took the rate up 2 (four) and were rewarded immediately with the continuous "overlap" hooter and about a stroke later with the whistles for us to hold it up as we bumped before the exit of Grassy Corner.
We collected the usual array of twigs and brambles and rowed home in celebratory fashion, with six twirling his blade every so often in his inimitable style. Passing Pembroke boathouse, we got a resounding cheer for saving them from their Spoons.
All in all, this was our best row of the week by a country mile, and I'd like to thank the rest of the crew for a great term's rowing.
Fantastic! Just a pity it took three days of practice to row like this.
Also nice to see a good amount of clear water between emma and maggie down plough reach, ie we were quicker than the infidel scum.
A good start saw us close to a length off Selwyn before they pulled away. Ahead of them, Girton bumped Downing III, Selwyn achieving an overbump on Maggie III scum ahead at Ditton.
A strong push from Fitz II towards the end for the overbump saw us scramble over the finish line with not a little relief.
So tomorrow, a weak Maggie III in front of us. Scum.
Bumped by Magdalene II
This was a tough re-row, Magdalene II chasing us all the way to bottom finish at Morley's Holt, with nothing for us to chase. The crew went a bit hard off the start and actually managed to open up the gap to Magdalene initially, although this quickly became a length and a quarter. Magdalene only really started to close inside a length after first post corner, but the guys had not really worked out how to respond, so were hit by the Plough.
We set off with the aim of catching LMBC III and quickly started hearing whistles, unfortunately, LMBC were closing quickly on Downing III ahead. Around first post corner, we got to a canvas off LMBC, but Maggie bumped Downing before we could bump. We were so close that we had to hold it up to avoid carnage. Magdalene II asked the umpires for a re-row which they were given.
It was always going to be a tough re-row with Magdalene being a fast crew and their knowledge that they could go very hard off the start with nobody behind. Magdalene gained much quicker than in the original race finally hitting us just before the Plough pub. Later on we have to avoid Fitz II and maybe look for the overbump on Maggie III.
This was simply stunning and quite possibly the best row I have ever had. Fitz M2 almost overbumped us on the first day, while Magdalene in front were substantially faster than us. We started off holding station with Magd. while Fitz started to creep up on us. Magd had bumped out by first post corner (to a simply shocking Downing III) while the boats behind them did the same. It was simply us or them. Fitz continued pushing hard and we were finding it hard to hold them back and by grassy they had overlap. Their horn was blowing continously, but there was no fat lady singing.
With Joan Osborn (and other FaT supporters at the plough) screaming support for us on the bank, it was obvious to everyone that we would only survive with amazing coxing, top notch rowing and a powerful response to every push they made. If one man in our crew believed that we were going to be bumped, that would have been it. But we are a bit more bloody minded than that. The push out of Grassy gave us 1/4 of a length of clear water, a better corner at Ditton meant that they were too far from us to make the bump physically on the reach. Much of the reach was spent with overlap, but we knew when we were going to really give it some. Our unsustainable push out of the Railway Bridge gave us clear water again and now, with Fitz directly behind us, it was the push for home. They got close to overlap again, but we were having none of it.
The call to easy was superb. Fitz behind us could not bring themselves to speak, our bank party were near hysterical, and this only left the afternoon to explain to all my friends on the bank that Fitz will be chasing us again tomorrow (but briefly, because we are going to hit Downing so hard and fast they won't believe it).
Todays row showed what its all about... what a team.
These guys really pulled it together to row away from Fitz, who were right on their tail all the way from Ditton (where we were very nearly bumped).
We knew today would be tough, after being bumped by Magdalene II in the re-row, we knew that they would catch Downing III pretty quickly and so we would be left chasing the overbump on Maggie III whilst trying to avoid Fitz II who came a bit too close for comfort for the overbump on day 1. We did pull away from Fitz II initially, but Fitz soon approached fast - faster than Magdalene II did in the re-row. They had overlap round grassy (although I didn't realise at first - judging distances is difficult from the 2 seat) and we managed to push them away. They pushed again, gaining overlap at Ditton, but their cox steered for the bump and missed sending Fitz wide whilst we held the racing line and we once again had clear water. Again Fitz pushed and gained a significant amount of overlap, but we responded well and held them at bay. We passed under the railway bridge and they still hadn't converted so we pushed hard and gained a small amount of clear water which we held to the finish line. Awesome race.
Bumped Downing III
We were out to do what we did yesterday, since at some point Downing would get in the way.
Fitz II were out sprint into us, before we could hit downing.
Fortunately Fitz dont know how to sprint, and despite our rowing being rather messy they were rapidly well outside distance.
Downing got in our way after about 2 minutes, and at long last... greenery.
After our epic race yesterday, most of the crew were on a bit of a high and were very keen to make it all worthwile by bumping a slow Downing III today who were on for spoons. On Thursday, we'd closed nearly 3 lengths on Downing by First post corner when Maggie III had bumped them, so we knew today had the potential to be a short race. Despite this, our race plan was simply to stay ahead of Fitz and eventually by doing so, we'd hit Downing. We had expected Fitz to go very hard off the start to try and catch us quickly in revenge for yesterday, however after the gun, we pulled away from them surprisingly quickly - maybe they'd given up on the idea of hitting us and were keen to save energy to ensure that they could stay ahead of Peterhouse II who were on for blades. We quickly started hearing whistles from our bank party and after seemingly no time at all, we had overlap, I felt the boat suddenly move to bowside and heard the call to hold it up - we'd bumped - and before top station. After the rest of the division had passed, we pulled into the other bank to collect our greenery, congratulations from our coaches and the rest of our bank party, and a bottle of champagne which the 3rd ladies' hadn't managed to finish off. We rowed back with applause and cheers from the bank and switched to rolling sixes to finish off the rest of the champagne.
After getting bumped on the re-row, it would have been very easy to have fallen on every subsequent day, however a brilliant last two days for us have seen us return to where we started with only Maggie III between us and the 3rd boat headship.
Bumped by Darwin II
Personally I was expecting Darwin II to be a crew cobbled together the night before in the bar - sadly, no such luck. They bumped us within minutes :@(
Bumped by Clare Hall
Although we still got bumped, this was a much better row than yesterday. We managed to hold off Clare Hall for a few minutes but they closed in and went for the bump - only for us to dig deep and pull away again. They kept at a constant (albeit a close) distance behind us, before closing and going for the bump again. This time we had nothing left. Darwin II who bumped us yesterday went on to bump Vet School (again dressed as cows). Tomorrow we're chasing Clare Hall and have Addies chasing us.
Bumped by Addenbrookes
Good effort, nearly caught Clare Hall back (got to 1/2 a length)! But sadly got hit in the gut.
A storming row today - I thought that they would get us within a few strokes of the start but we held them for what felt like ages - and we made up on Clare Hall who bumped us yesterday. Sadly we couldn't keep it up at that pressure and they caught us. OK - we got bumped again today - but we put in a real good effort.
While rowing down to the start, we found a Homerton blade in the river, minus its button. Some of us suggested leaving it there to make them scratch, but only jokingly-deliberately not letting the opposition race would be a bigger disgrace than spoons. It wouldn't have worked anyway as what Homerton then did was to row to the start in sixes and send their bank party for a spare blade. We were fairly confident that CCAT were good enough to claim their blades with a real bump and did not need to be handed a technical one.
Off the start Homerton closed down on us much like all the others had (to within half a length if their bank party is to be believed), but this time there was visible hope in CCAT closing down on Homerton. At the A14 bridge CCAT caught Homerton, and all we had to worry about was the Hughes Hall sandwich boat.
Rowing over hurts, of course, and it was tempting to give up-until I remembered that if we got caught then we would have to do it again next year as head of division 4. This time we at least had two spaces behind us and something (even if it was something that had caught us before) to chase.
Shortly after the finish we discovered that 4's seat was stuck. Whether it had got stuck while we were still racing I do not know, but if it had it wouldn't be the first time we had overcome technical problems-both my previous row-overs had finished with a seat actually off.
Bumped by Trinity Hall III
Well we bumped something... unfortunately it was grassy corner, and not Catz III who were roughly 1/2 length in front of us at the time. With us parked on the bank Trinity Hall III easily caught up (had been roughly holding station before) though failed to notice our acknowledgement leading to a bent rudder for us, and a snapped blade for them!
Bumped by Darwin II
Well, at least this time we made it past Grassy! Thanks to some rather inspired crew shuffling, which involved swapping Dan from stroke to bow, we even managed to take quite a tight line around the beast that had robbed us of the bump the day before. We also managed to acquire a shell that steers, since the fellows had an unfortunate entanglement with the bank earlier in our favourite bathtub, Peter Brandt. Sadly, in spite of our good line, and the rather weaving approach taken by the Darwin cox, we were rudely bumped outside the Plough. D'oh. Oh well, at least we didn't have to row too far...
Overbumped by Christ's III
Being chased by the scum, i had a vague idea that we might have to work quite hard to hold them off, as they had quite clearly broken the spirit of the bumps by maintaining the same crew order from day to day, and training together. Surely there should be some rule against this?! No matter, the gun went and on stroke 3 they plowed into the bank rudderless, to be bumped by Corpus. At this point, our overly enthused stroke, Mr. Colvin, shouted at the top of his voice, and with very few soothing undertones "relax". And relax we did, apart from the frantic two-man pushes coming from bow pair, we were settling into a nice rhythm. Some way back, out nemesis was stirring - Christs closed up on all the straights, and lost ground on all the corners, but as soon as we got onto the reach, they made us pay dearly for our complacency. Closing the last length of distance for the overbump in what seemed like the blink of an eye, we once again found ourselves in the bank having been bumped. D'oh. Two-thirds of the way up the Reach. Double D'oh. I did, however discover that a 200-stroke push is definitely the way to find your max. heart rate...
Today, we had the dubious honour of being able to chase the Maggie scum without first having been bumped by them. Hmmm. Undoubtedly our best start of the week saw us close up on Maggie, and pull away from Queen's, but sadly the two crews ahead bumped out, leaving us to row the course being chased. With a different crew again, and me back in my favoured home, the bow seat, we seemed to find something we'd been lacking all week, and had what can only be described as a powerful and stylish row-over. I don't know whether it was deliberate, but Hugh also kept taking the rate down once we were on the Reach - i like to think he might have been mocking the poor guys behind! No matter, we plummetted down the tables, but at least we had a laugh doing it...
Bumped Clare III
Not quite Mark (thanks for the compliment) - a pretty poor row we thought. But hit them anyway. Hooray!
Bumped King's II
We thought Kings would be harder to hit than Clare. But in fact we hit Kings quicker -- by top station (also quicker than Pembroke had done the day before). It was a much better row as we coped well with the dirty water (mostly by avoiding the shitty lines of the crews ahead). It seems we have gained a lot of speed this week.
Bumped St. Edmund's
Everyone a bit nervy, so a poor row but a well deserved bump at the entrance to First Post corner. That's a first boat, two second boats and a third boat down this week. Jolly good show.
Bumped Corpus III
As we were warming up in the Boathouse, we commented how much easier life would be if Corpus III broke their boat, or some other calamity, on the way to the start line. Baz immediately set to work meditating and sending out negative vibes.
After marshalling we were told that Corpus III hadn't turned up, so our race consisted of about 10 strokes or so- although we did make a challenge of pulling in quickly and tidily.
A valuable lesson learnt: don't piss Baz off.
Overbumped by LMBC V
Corpus III failed to turn up again so the Robinson boat two places behind us 'bumped' straight away and left a clear river behind us. Caius IV in front of us seemed to be about as bad as we were and we held station with them (according to the people on the bank). Sadly we never really relaxed and as a result the LMBC fellows' boat closed the gap between us upsettingly quickly and overbumped us near the start of the reach.
Bumped Corpus III
Corpus again failed to show up so we had our second 15 second race of the week. This is turning into a very bizarre week. I'm not sure what to expect tomorrow, I think rowing over might be the most likely outcome but who knows.
Bumped by Corpus III
If Corpus III had actually turned up with this crew for the first three days, they would have stood a good chance of blading.
They were definitely better than us, and despite a clean start, our boatspeed was no match. Starting from the motorway bridge they caught us just before First Post corner.
An interesting set of results though...
Bumped St. Catharine's IV
Everyone's first bumps race and and a bit of a poor start, still gained a length on St Catz. And then finished them off pretty quickly for our first bump!!
Rowed over as sandwich boat
A better start this time, but emma bumped an apparently poor Caius quickly, leaving us chasing the overbump. We passed manybumped out boats, and weren't sure who we were chasing, but new we were gaining quickly. We'd also picked up a huge crowd of onlookers on the towpath, and we witnessed a bit of an accident over there, don't know what happened... I mean I saw nothing but the back of 6s head. We kept on gaining for ages, and were down to a couple of feet apparently, but we weren't aware of where the finish was and ran out of river. Just missed out on what would have been a famous double overbump on Tit hall. Have to do it all again tomorrow, but we know we can beat catz and can row the course now! So close...
This was actually even closer than neil suggests. They achieved overlap as they came across the finish line. In a huge effort coming up to the line they closed 1 length in no time at all, however reminiscent of the last minute push by Cambridge in the Boat Race this year, they just left it a little too late.
Rowed over Head
Comfortable race for the GradVIII. Were roughly 2 lengths up on Catz coming into grassy after catz had a much better start than yesterday. However catz crumbled and were about 5 lengths off when they got hit just out of grassy corner. Rowed the rest of the course with pauses at hands away coming past bottom finish.
Bumped Caius V as sandwich boat
Quick race. I managed to miss the entire thing by trying to catch the guys on my bike and dropping my chain. i just caught them up in time to tell them to easy coming round the first corner (before the motorway bridge).
Bumped Jesus V
Bumped, NOT bumped by, Jesus IV. Not a great start followed by some sloppy rowing saw Jesus hold us off for a while, but sitting half a length behind them with Christ's well behind us it was only a matter of time. Despite evasive jinking we bumped them just past the motorway bridge.
Indeed we did bump, Jesus V. Not our best start but we still pulled away from Christ's IV behind us and got the bump fairly quickly. I think the charts are messed up because LMBC VI Scratched. Tomorrow we chase the Tit Hall crew we nearly double overbumped on Wednesday for blades. Should be interesting
Note: On the way back from the boathouse, in out kit with greenery on, we were offered a punt tour of the river. Hilarious.
Bumped Trinity Hall IV
A dodgy push off and the chain went taught and we began drifting back towards the bank. We paniced slightly and had a poor first few strokes, but a good wind and stride saw us back on track and we reeled in Tit Hall to get them just after the motorway bridge, payback for day 1!
Blades for the grads, rock on!
Hooray!! Going up tomorrow, I think.
At last a measure of success - we still have one eight behind us - hurrah!
We are now beginning to work as a team - and to follow instructions from coach - thanks Ruth - and cox - thanks Fan. The tendency of the Trinity Fellow to be a tad intellectual hasn't altogether helped to date - according to national and personal taste, instructions have been leading to philosophical debate or technical analysis rather than to prompt action - but we're getting there!
Apologies to Trinity IV for our attack on Peter Brandt on Wednesday. We were more careful with our wooden replacement (Ian said we would swim if not).
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the following information, note that the results are unofficial.
Men's bumps charts
Women's bumps charts
Michell Cup points
|1st and 3rd||0.00|
Ineligible after entering fewer than 3 crews:
Full May Bumps results archive
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