First and Third Trinity Boat Club
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Head of the River Race, Lent Term 1999

A huge head race down-river on the Tideway (tidal river Thames) over the University Boat Race course
Sat 27th March

Rich describes the race preparation

We set off on the 26th with high hopes: we were defending champions in the Novice category and hence had a high position (85th). Things took a turn for the worse when a Mercedes had an argument with the trailer at Hangar Lane, the busiest junction on the North Circular. No boat damage, but a trailer missing an axle, a very poorly Mercedes (chuckle!) and 4 hours wasted. We eventually arrived at St. Paul's for the warm-up outing (luckily having left plenty of time), and promptly grounded the VIII on Fulham Flats. Utterly fucked. This was not a good thing. Tip for the future: don't do this. We had to load it back onto the severely wounded trailer, drive back to Cambridge, switch it for BP2 and drive back again. We eventually got to sleep at 1:30am-ish. I'm not even mentioning the fact that we managed to trash the jockey wheel on the way back (Very scary: imagine driving a trailer with two wheels and hearing a blow out!). Excellent race preparation!

Saturday was greeted with a fatalistic point of view: what would be the third hugh fuck up of the weekend? Ah, but Fate cruelly tricked us once more, deciding instead to break this third up into a multitude of minor screw-ups, lasting all day!

- Martin got lost finding the Embankment and was 1/2 hour late.
- I forgot the trophy for last year's win, to be returned without fail on the day.
- We got the furthest marshalling possible and hence had to set off half and hour before anyone else.
- One of the seats from the trashed BP1 did not fit BP2, Ingram spent much of the way up hammering it into shape with a spanner.
- I got a parking ticket because we were delayed getting off the water.
- Despite having bought tickets, we didn't make the party at Thames RC cos we were so knackered.
- We couldn't stay at Ingram's as we had the night before, so finally ended up crowded into the communal living room of an old school friend of Simon Case's girlfriend, which was part of the route to the house's only toilet.


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1st men's VIII, Senior4 VIIIs

165th overall
Time: 19:14.94
What a weekend. The fact that we rowed like shit and were beaten by Colleges like Robinson seemed small in comparison! In fairness, the preparation probably really didn't help. Oh well, we 'place-warmed' quite effectively, coming in at double our start place! Moral: I reckon some weekends are just destined to be shit! (Rich)
Rich has done justice to the immediate preparation but forgets the week leading up to the race.
He had had to return home and left me as de facto captain and in charge of training. Big mistake.

We were all totally knackered from our overtraining all term (6 land, 7 water seesions / week!) and a bit down after the Headship-loss. I therefore decided that it was more important to restore morale. Ably assisted at first by Glass, Fisher and Goodson and later by most of the club, a daily routine of afternoon football followed by Maypole drinks followed by Beer, Pizza, Beer, Pringles, Beer, Colin McRae and Beer was begun. Typical finishing times were 5am. By the end of the week we had achieved two of the club's finest achievements: The Beeramid; and modifying OddBinss stocking policy for Heineken.

However, we weren't getting much better at rowing and I think it is fair to say that even without all the other disasters would not have broken 100th. (Ingram)
It was Bottoms Up, not Oddbins. Clearly the slab market was not as buoyant in later years, as BU has closed down! (Graham Fisher)

1. The Beeramid

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