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The Club's Results

May Bumps 2008

2nd men's VIII

Crew list for 1 race:

Coxed by: Emma Salgård Cunha

Crew list for 3 races:

Coxed by: Emma Salgård Cunha

Bumped Robinson
Clinical. First Post Corner. Now it gets interesting... (Albert)
No nerves on the way down, especially after some blistering practice starts. The friendly support from many different colleges was well received - good to see I haven't totally wasted my eight years here!

Felt so, so good pulling up and not having the one minute gun go off: most of the crew have experienced this, and it's a right bugger. Plenty of time to go to the loo, have a chat, go to the loo, wonder if our coach had survived falling off his bike, go to the loo, and go to the loo. Coker started planning Henley as well - good to see his mind was on the job.

First couple of strokes were good and we really took it up to rate. Having listened to Seb's race plan ("let's go really hard. No, REALLY hard") I was happily spanking it along under the motorway bridge - we dealt with the wash well, but the push out of the outflow was immense. By this point we'd left Christs for dead: thought of poor old Karthik toiling away for BCG in some office somewhere.

No time for that though! One whistle came by top station, although we'd definitely worked for it. After that we thrashed it along in a rather unco-ordinated bumps push (surely we can't be bumping before the Plough?) and drifted to completely the wrong side of the river in an effort to avoid bumping Robinson before first post. Alas, they'd given up and it was game over.

Yay! Revenge for 2001 at last! (Dan)
So 2005 wasn't enough? Now I'm seeking revenge against Clare for disqualifying us at their regatta in 2002. (Tom C)
This was a nice race, we were confident we could catch Robinson, and we went out there and did exactly that. We went off hard and fast and reeled them in. I'm sorry I had to abandon the crew for the rest of the week, there'll always be some doubt about how things might have gone, but there is certainly no shame in going down to Fitz and I dont think having me would have made any difference. From the sound of things the final day's race was the highlight of the week, a truly gutsy row-over by all accounts.

Despite some low points (I think 99s regatta was probably the lowest) I have really enjoyed training with this crew all term, the banter has been superb. (Will L)
Rowed over
Bit colder outside today, which was always a bad sign.

Fair enough we rowed like muppets, but Clare looked much better than earlier in term. Bloody other colleges learning to row! We were never in distance despite a good start, but the catches went completely after a minute and we spacked along significantly slower than usual.

Was fun watching Binson get hammered by Fitz behind us though! Nice, long race tomorrow - we should be fine over the course. (Dan)
Clare seem to have done a good job pulling it together since the last time we raced. We were never a threat to them, and with Binson nailed before the motorway bridge, there was nothing for it but to put the quiche on halfway down the Reach.

Looks like being a boring set of Bumps for Clare, sorry guys. (Albert)
History in the making. Not since 2000 has the club gone a whole day without making a bump, and we sealed the deal by rowing really badly. It was very similar to how we raced in Lents, the difference is that now we have someone chasing us. (Tom C)
Bumped by Fitzwilliam
We knew what we had to do today. We went out there, and in short order found out that there was no way we were going to do it. We had a fast start, a decent bit of fast, sustained rowing, and a quick, painless end at First Post.

Rowing in front of Fitz is a bit like having front row seats at cirque du soleil. "Oooooh. They're really good. Impressive. I wish we could do that..." Game over.

To paraphrase a race report from last term:
We thought it was a race. We didn't know it was a show.

ADDENDUM: We just finished writing the song. It would be a mistake to miss the dinner this year... (Albert)
Training plan called for technical pairs work. (Emma)
(cheers leadbetter!) Still cold today, still a bad sign. Nevertheless the practice starts and rate bursts were springy and hungry despite some poor rowing. That said, the poor rowing just fired Seb up even more, which can't be a bad thing. You know; I think he pulled really REALLY hard today...

Our start was probably the best yet, pretty clean in and finishing roughly together. Rate jacked up to a pb, and we didn't bother with the whole settling rubbish, instead using the backs call to being the rate down to something controllable but not close to sustainable.

We went a good length faster than yesterday down first post reach, but alas so did Clare and we were only on station by the time Fitz bumped us... On the plus side we held some very good splits all the way until the last 10 seconds of rowing, but on the downside we were totally, utterly, completely outclassed.

Well rowed Fitz! Good luck with blades tomorrow! PS What did you think our cox was thinking about? Other than small puppies and other girly things? (Dan)
Rowed over
With a crazily quick Fitz ahead of us we knew that the last race was going to go all the way to the line. The plan: hard off the start, then think about nothing but getting the catches in for the next six minutes or so. Pushes into the corners ("Not you, Hannes") and our big lift on hand for whenever we needed it.

From the first stroke it was clear that Christ's meant business. Our start was strong and clean, rating up to 47 and sitting at a chunky 39 for the first minute and a half. Christ's were on station for most of first post reach but just started to close as we came into the first corner. There was no trace of panic in the crew however, and we held the rate high through the gut, passing a bumped out Emmanuel (with a moment's sympathy for Fitz). A wobbly grassy corner saw Christ's move up on us but our handy Sit Up push saw an amazing lift and they remained at just above a length to Ditton. This was where we knew we would have to make things happen, and we really did. A gutsy push off the corner stalled their advance, we kept our heads, and started to move away again.

Halfway down the reach it was crunch time again: Tom panted "one length" and Phil's calls from the bank were getting more frequent and less optimistic! With forty strokes to the line we took the rate up to row over about 1 1/2 lengths clear, securing the Michell Cup in the process.

This was Tom, Dan, Seb and Albert's last race and i don't think we could have asked for a better one. We held off everything that Christ's could throw at us and put in some of the best individual performances of the term. We proved that we deserve our place in the first division, and that a mish-mash crew of shorties, fatties, oldies and novices can get together to move a boat fast.

I've had a great term with you guys. Thanks to Gonzalo, David, Tom and JPD for coaching ("Nudge and open it out..."), and Phil for his support this week. Thanks to Gregor for stepping into the Hannes-shaped breach when we thought we'd lost him to injury. And thanks to Laff and Hannes for always putting the crew first.

And at least we don't row in a yellow submarine. (Emma)
And to think I first quit rowing 7 years ago...

At the tender age of 16, I had decided (1) that rowing was no longer fun and (2) never to row seriously again. I feel I've comfortably delivered on the latter. But how could I have been so wrong on the former?

Emma's race report pretty much says it all. I had serious doubts when Christ's held us around the first two corners and came inside distance at the Plough. Surely we're going to blow?!?! I don't remember that much more of the race (tunnel vision, etc). But the enduring memories from my hardest and last bumps race will be:

1. Emma's calls at the Plough, and halfway down the Reach. Absolutely no recollection of what you said, but it was good :-)

2. Coker's 3rd day chat: "The moment you decide you don't want to catch as fast as you possibly can is the moment you've decided you don't want to take the next stroke. That's when you lose the race." Or something along those lines, running through my head.

3. Hannes actually rowing well for the whole race. WTF mate. Nice job.

4. Coker being an absolute animal during the eternity between the Railings and the bend in the Reach.

I leave here having joined the ranks of the veterans of the 2nd May VIII (take a bow Tom Andrews and Seb Pancratz). Over the last four years, I've been grateful to have found a fun way to row again. Cheers. (Albert)

1. 2nd VIII get the wor...
2. Backsplashing
3. M2

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