First and Third Trinity Boat Club
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The Club's Results

Lent Term 2008

1st men's VIII

Cambridge Head-2-Head (1st division)

Won, 1st overall
Time: 13:34
Not quite nuthin' but a peanut. But still lightweight, baby... (M-C. Chung)
With a crew weakened by injury and holiday, I wasn't expecting to win this. But we performed well, and the wheels stayed on until the last reach, thereby completing a year of Cam winning. Yeah buddy. (Tom C)
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Head of the Nene (Senior2 VIIIs)

82nd overall
Time: 59:39
First 2k showed a lot of promise, but the training plan then called for technical pairs work. (Dan)
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Robinson Head (1st division)

Fastest crew
Time: 8:33
Yeah buddy... (M-C. Chung)
Controversially, they put LMBC in front us in the draw. So our plan was to set off as close as possible behind and overtake. We didn't do a very good job of it. At one point we were almost on their stern but there wasn't much of a wind to the finish and we fell back a bit.
The other crews in range benefited heavily from a lesser stream in later divisions, but even so this ain't good enough. (Tom C)
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Pembroke Regatta (1st division)

1st round
Beat Emmanuel by 4 lengths
Time: 3:28
Waking up at 0600h did not help the race preparation, and coupled to the freezing conditions the two crews who lined up at 0815h were feeling a bit sorry for themselves.

We were pretty confident but determined not to have a 'Clare Scare' like Pembroke Regatta 2007 - the start was to be ridiculously unsustainable, through to a ridiculously unsustainable finish.

Emma had a bad start and we had a pretty fair one - much splashier than in practice now we had a crew alongside. Nevertheless we hit about 50, sustained at 44 and strode down to 39 - at which point we were length up and cruising far, far faster than the oppo.

We didn't sit back on the lead and Leadbetter mercilessly called for a legs push to double the clear water before the 500m point. Job done - we sat on them at about 34ish.

In fairness to Emma, FaT are notorious for their poor starts and this race took them by surprise. We wouldn't have this advantage in later races. (Dan)
2nd round
Beat Fitzwilliam by 1 length
Time: 3:16
Fitz were big, and had blatantly been making the use of their shiny new boathouse - every time I went to the boathouse in the evenings I'd always know that there would be some poor bugger pulling his guts out in Fitz BH.

We're not a massive crew so pulling up alongside them would have felt a bit daunting if this sort of thing hadn't been happening for eight years. They wanted it, so did we. Bring it.

Our start was messy and there was a whiff of panic (possibly from the other crew, but equally possible from us) as neither crew pulled away. The fact we knew we would have to unleash hell meant the stride had to happen quite a few times before the rate finally came down to 38. This didn't help with finding length at the front, and was not our most efficient rowing.

Nevertheless, we stuck to our pattern and trusted in the training plan (e.g. the technical pairs work at the Nene). We didn't make any massive moves; were just a bit sharper and fitter and it began to tell as we came under the railway bridge.

Although this was no indication of their fitness over the course, I feel very, VERY sorry for the poor crews being chased by Fitz this bumps. (Dan)
After's Emma's remarkable capitulation in the 1st round I thought the whole regatta was going to be a walkover. I certainly wasn't expecting a serious challenge from Fitzwilliam. I think we had confidence in our start and went pretty quickly, but not enough to take a lead.

Drawing inspiration from last year's boat race, we didn't panic and stuck to our plan, staying level around the outside of the reach. Emma timed a big push perfectly, seizing the initiative as the river turned in our favour. It turned out to be decisive, and we cruised the last 20 or so strokes a length up.

It's nice that the other colleges have finally shown an interest in competing. (Tom C)
Quarter finals
Beat Robinson NRO
Apparently one of their guys has broken his hand. Not good; hope it's better for the Mays. (Dan)
Semi finals
Beat Christ's by 3 lengths
Time: 3:24
These guys had watched the previous races and knew a massive start was required. The adrenaline kicked in and we both hammered off the start.

Both crews a little splashy - bow pair in FaT doing their own thing, as usual - but both found a good racing speed. We pulled away under the bridge, which led to some spectacular rate 36 rowing once we were in front: just tapping it along, no effort whatsoever. What a pity for an extra mph or so we have to kill ourselves, eh? (Dan)
Beat Clare by 3 lengths
Time: 3:18
This time we were racing the clock. The effort was certainly there, but the speed started to disappear in the second half. I was quite disappointed that we were slower than in round 2, having worked a lot harder. The two possible explanations are that it'd been a long day, and maybe 38 is more efficient than 40 at this stage. I'm leaning towards the former. (Tom C)
This was Iain's first chance to see our controversial but 'fun' racing start. He didn't approve. (BJ)
We wanted to see what we were capable of, and killed ourselves. Main things to learn were that rate 40 is sustainable for an entire kilometre, and that emptying the tank in the first 500m doesn't lead to a fast 2nd 500m.

Congratulations to Pedro, as this is his third consecutive win at this Regatta. (Dan)
That's Pedros Hat Trick sorted... Pretty good days racing, lot of work still to do for bumps. (C.S.Dunleavy)

1. The speed coach was ...
2. Ming examining the r...
3. Still level at halfway

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Sparring against CULRC (Cup)

did ok
1) 500m off the start. They were a bit quicker in the first few strokes and went slightly ahead. Once we got going we had a bit more speed by being cleaner in the tailwind, stayed hard, and rowed through them after about a minute to win by half a length or so.

2) Middle 1000m. We clammed up for the headwind which was a good choice. They got a cheeky head start by winding up before the go. We exchanged a seat or two with our pushes, but no crew ever took a significant lead so we're calling it a dead heat.

3) Last 500m. Again they started ahad, and not much happened to start with. We began our wind for the line first and took about a quarter of a length before they responded and held us at that margin.

So we think we came off better, but they also reckon they did. Their start is a lot better than last year which is nice. I think we row a bit tidier and can rate higher, but their power advantage came to the rescue in the headwind.

It would've been more fun without the BA dinner hangover, but still a worthwhile morning which is a good exercise for next term's regattas. And go beat Oxford, yeah. (Tom C)
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Lent Bumps

Rowed over Head
No worries. First few strokes were a bit messy, but we made it the corner at 42 and settled at a comfortable 36 out of grassy. We put in an effective push at the Plough which more or less ended the race. It was pretty close between Jesus, Caius and LMBC, with the latter bumping around the railings. We wound down gradually, settling at 30 by the railway bridge.

As an unexpectedly twist, some river pirates appeared at Morley's holt and tried to rob Jesus. The boys in black and red took evasive manoevures and managed to escape with their wallets, but only after some intercourse with the bank. Downing had a clear run and "overbumped" them, but the umpires bizarrely awarded a technical rowover.

We continued unperturbed, crossing the line 12 minutes and 15 seconds after the first shot was heard. (Tom C)
Very steady start rowing well within ourselves - I kind of miss Pembroke Regatta and going for 60 though. Bit splashy but perhaps tomorrow we won't be staring at the chasing crew; the starts are damn close though, even after eight years. Heard some whistles in the gut but I assume they were for someone else. Took Grassy wider than usual (which worried me at first but then remembered Emma had warned us the line was different) before a comfortable push down the plough to finish it.

The rowing behind us was much more interesting... although obviously I was concentrating on the back of Bryn's head. However, have been told that Jesus really went for it and their technique fell to pieces on the reach, just as Caius put in a good push. Luckily LMBC showed their form and managed to save Jesus by literally seconds: I would guess the latter are really going to have to go for the long race if they want to hold onto second, as that puts LMBC three lengths up today.

Just after the railway bridge we passed a small fishing boat heading downstream... oh no wait, heading directly for Jesus. I didn't realise they'd crashed, but could hear Downing celebrate their 'overbump' later. Is their cox really that inexperienced?! I guess they did make it round Grassy, which is not a corner I can claim a clean sheet with.

More importantly, why was the fishing boat allowed through? Why weren't racing crews warned? Why wasn't the fisherman warned? And, above all, did the idiot get thrown in by the Jesus boatman? (Dan)
Rowed over Head
Conditions were good so we did a time trial. Start was a bit cleaner than yesterday, and the row through the corners pretty similar. But we never found a decent rhythm on the reach, and spacked along at 35 with our faces becoming ever droopier. The wind for the finish was more effective, but too little too late.

Won't be publishing the score just now, but suffice to say it's a useful marker and we identified some weaknesses to work on in the run-up to tideway. (Tom C)
Ah, so the fisherman from yesterday really was clinically retarded from the gossip. Hope he restricts himself to the local chippie from now on, and doesn't have a driving license.

Row today was knackering - knew we had to kill ourselves or Ming wouldn't let us off the weights session (Seriously, have we earned it? Are you not entertained?!) Start pretty solid, corners much better than yesterday. Felt surprisingly knackered just before Grassy, but it was just the 'fake pain' I warn my novices about. Luckily I'd actually done some ergs this term and so - unlike my poor novices - the fake pain disappeared just in time for a gorgeous crowd pleaser down Plough Reach.

Bit of a tail wind, and we possibly even found a few extra pips before Ditton. Corner good again, although the lifts in the reach were a little saggy and we were only five or so lengths up on Jesus when they were bumped out (long race guys! I warned you... Best of luck tomorrow though). Thought I was going to blow just before the Railway Bridge, but a big push from middle four meant I couldn't really let them have all the glory and over committed once again to an enthusiastic legs 10.

Lots of shouting and support from our ever present and much appreciated bank parties meant we couldn't take the foot off the gas for a second, keeping the rate high and instead hanging around at the catch for a breather. Plenty of little things to change for more speed if necessary tomorrow: fingers crossed for more sickly-but-not-too-sickly looking faces. (Dan)
Rowed over Head
Our intelligence was that LMBC were going to blast it off the start. They weren't as sharp as Jesus and never got within distance, but were only about two lengths off at the Plough. We hadn't bothered clamming because the wind didn't seem too bad on the paddle up. In the event it strengthened considerably, indeed the charts say it was worse than for any Lent race in the last 10 years. Struggling with bladework and gearing, we plodded up the reach at 32, eventually extending the margin to 3 lengths. An impromptu wind for the finish saw us extend this to 5 lengths, or 18 seconds. The clock stopped at 8:57, and we went harder than on Wednesday. Big. (Tom C)
Cycling over from the maths dept was miserable - cold and windy, with spits of icy rain. My body was feeling a bit achy from the piece the day before and I was very relieved to see Jesus had a full crew complement again. Fingers crossed they'd bump LMBC back and we would be spared having to attempt to row in the awful headwind.

Certainly Jesus' practice start outside the plough was much crisper than the previous days, and I felt quite happy to have secured myself such a good view of the bumps. The first three strokes of our practice start were a little messy, but we held it together and hit a comfortably high rate before striding down to something sustainable. Then Bryn's footplate broke.

We limped around the corners in sixes, desperate for Iain's loving hands to make it better. Hats off to the spectators on Grassy who not only braved the weather but also dutifully laughed as I quipped 'it was better all eight'. The marshals kindly delayed the four minute gun so we had plenty of time to deal with kit, etc. today.

Started to rain on the minute gun, poor start (airstroke-tastic!), plough reach solid if technically inept, much to my disappointment Jesus didn't gain on LMBC (good rowing from Maggie), wind horrendous on the reach. The boat literally stopped and I was tempted to suggest we pull in and clam up, but LMBC were too close. Maybe tomorrow we'll try and get the blades into the water in a headwind - it's crazy, but it just might work. (Dan)
The neutral observer (or indeed Richard Bullock) might have called those early margins closer than Tom and might also notice that, although 18s equates to five lengths, only four of those were clear water. However, as Chris was keen to point out, if Maggie were inside station on the reach it was 'only ever spatially' and not temporally; unfortunately, in bumps, it's spatially that matters.

[Edit: our timing team was a step ahead of me: the 18s was stern to bow so it was five lengths clear water.] (BJ)
Rowed over Head
A fairly average row. There was less wind and we used clams, so it felt better. As per Thursday we never found a good rhythm on the reach, but did enough to keep the headship safe. LMBC did better than yesterday and finished about 3 lengths away from us. Need to improve a lot if we're to make any impression in London.

Stroke: Height - 6'1"; weight - 13st (after BA dinner); finish position last Lents - Head of the River; highest boat before Mich 2007 - Henley VIII (Tom C)
Please could Peter include his height for posterity? People will probably think it's a joke. (Phil)
Bit nervous today - if we screwed up this time, there wouldn't be an opportunity to fix it. The paddle down was good, and the practice start very together. Downing were looking strong, and were obviously keen for LMBC. It was quite friendly down at the start, and we had a nice bit of banter with the Maggie boys while waiting for Queen's to fix their rudder strings.

Start and gut were good, with none of the nervous wobbles that might be expected under pressure. The video of us going round grassy really shows how much work Ming has done on our catches, and we quickly pushed away from the crews behind. The 'Plough Reach Burn' was even more successful than usual, and I think we had almost three lengths clear water by Ditton.

The reach was okay, but not up to standard. We failed to continue our push away from LMBC who were rowing well, not giving anything to Downing. The support was deafening and I doubt I could have slacked off even if I'd wanted to: not finding a rhythm in the second half is what is holding us back at this point, not a lack of effort.

Thanks to everyone who came down to watch, and best of luck to those training for HORR.

Technical pairs, anyone? (Dan)
After a fairly rollercoaster start to the term, as my likelihood of getting in M1 varied from 10% to 80% on a daily basis, this was a great way to finish my first Bumps. I first started to realise this crew really knew how to do what was necessary to get the result they wanted at Pembroke regatta; 2 seats down to Fitz 700m in, I was starting to think "this isn't meant to be happening"; but then we came under the railway bridge, we stepped on it, and 15 strokes later we were a length up and sitting happy. Job done.
That kind of row gave me a lot more confidence that we were going to be fine; otherwise my nerves might have been a bit more of a problem, with several recent crabs and my inability to get the hang of this "racing round corners" thing constantly at the back of my mind. Now onwards to the summer, where I feel Fitz maybe threatening once more... at least I'm prepared for them!

Bow: Height 5'5", Weight 10st 10, Only previous bumps finish: (vaguely illegal) bump on Wolfson in M2 the day before. (Peter)

1. Heading home victorious
2. Headship crews on th...
3. 1st men set off on a...

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Head of the River Race (Senior3 VIIIs)

Time: 19:11.61
A strong line-up, but not the best two weeks of training. The post-lents hangover always lasts longer than you expect, and the weather was rubbish. In particular our 15 minute practise piece was rowed into a vicious headwind, and we didn't learn much from it except that we aren't so good at keeping the rate up.

The race started well, and we weren't put off by a little clash with the crew in front (although they were keen for some "banter" at the finish). It started to go a bit wrong after we overtook Clare (apologies for the abuse, too eager to avoid another clash); we made a good surge to go past but weren't able to maintain it.

Hammersmith bridge was the crucial point. We had a fair amount of cash in the bag, but needed to attack the headwind if wanted a really good result. Maybe some of the guys were suffering. It felt a bit like the practise piece. We need to learn to force the rate when the legs aren't keen.

Given our preparation and the crap start position, we're pleased with how it went. And it was a lot of fun.

Suggestions for next year:
-Row at least one 5k race in lent term
-Do a weekend trip to the tideway
-More pieces over the lock
-Leave lents to the 2nd eight

Big thanks to JPD for coaching and support, and Sarah Jane for beds and teas. (Tom C)

1. At Hammersmith Bridge
2. Passing through the ...
3. Overtaking Durham ARC

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