As Joe was in London, we had a brand new stroke man in the considerable shape of Tom Rose. Fortunately he managed to take his eyes off Steph for long enough to get us going, and we had clear water after 200m. We continued to move away from Sidney and won by the amusingly large margin of three lengths. (Flying)
Finding any sort of rhythm basically went out the window as we rowed through their blades. Think I hit each one only once or twice though, as they were pretty slow. Not sure how much the crew appreciated it when after one of these encounters I came very close to 'doing a Swainson'. (Rose the Twat)
We assembled at the boathouse with Esther, our guest coxswain for the day.
We went to collect our racing number.
One of the organisers gave Esther '69'. Twice.
Mark got a '69' from Esther.
We boated a division early in order to get one over on the opposition and sneak in a warm-up and some starts practice.
Corpus 1st VIII arrived at the start after a whole 100m warm up and did a quick spack-turn.
After a bit of difficulty we attached ourselves to the stakeboat.
A good start saw us move away from the Corpus VIII on the outside station.
The first half of the race was good as we extended our lead, but we got a little tired towards the end of the long, arduous course.
We managed to hold Corpus off with some decidedly unspectacular rowing, but our spacking speed was superior to theirs.
And we won our first race of the day. (Matt)
Good start, only minor spacking
Second half: the splashing machine rolled into action as we lost sight of a weak Corpus
Verdict? Good, but the spacking was only at National Level (i.e. my mother could row better than you) (Esther)
We re-convened a little later in the afternoon and tried to boat for our division.
The organisers told us that
(a) They were running about a division late,
(b) That we were too late to be boating what was by now a division early.
So we turned the boat around and rowed off past the finish for our warm-up and practise start exercises.
Rowed up to the start and watched the oppo spack past and spin.
Lined up on the outside of the bend again, with a lot more skill and precision from Esther.
The start was OK, but we seemed to be a little tired from the previous race.
Our bladework wasn't the best, but we managed to row away from Trinity Hall II and win comfortably.
Esther said it was the worst "rowing" that she'd ever seen us perform.
First half: humm, we lost Tit Hall very quickly
Second half: after a shocking attempt at Spacking in the first round we finished off the day with Spacking at an International level (i.e my grandmother could row better than that)
My first side-by-side race since Clare Novices in November, and our first race of the term. The race was a bit scrappy to say the least, but after we pulled away at the start, we were never behind. A few very dodgy strokes just after half way let Fitz within 2/3 length, but we got back together to claim the victory by 1 length. (Richard)
Into the final went the 3rd VIII against the crew starting directly behind us in bumps. We were starting on the boathouse side meaning we'd have to row through the other crew due to the staggered start. We did a better start than against Fitz but Sidney had steered towards us forcing heavy blade clashes within a few strokes of the start so the umpires halted the race. Our start for the re-race was good and we quickly rowed through Sidney and then got clear water, gaining distance with every stroke. It seemed that the bowmen from both boats had their seats come off roughly at this point, but the result didn't seem in doubt. A push for the finish saw us have a whole length of clear water to win our division and my first pot. (Richard)
We had a shocking start (the start was fine in our only previous outing so we were a bit surprised at this) which lost us a length. Sidney then cut the corner in front of us so despite our higher cruising speed we could not get back into the running. Ah, what am I saying - they were faster than us over 400m and deserved to win. Bring on a bumps length course though ! (Dan)
Having jumped in a boat for the first time together just before the race, we hit a leisurely 44 off the start and moved away from Cambridge 99's finest. They then hit the bank, after which the race was an exercise in not laughing. Steph called a last-10-strokes-lift just after we crossed the finishing line - have you been getting tips from Sophie? (Flying)
Facing a Simoco crew who were clearly no mugs, we decided to do a racing start, winding to 48 and taking a length or two in the first 100m. We settled to about 39 and continued to move away to win very comfortably. (Flying)
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