The Club's Results

Lent Bumps 2014

The famous Cambridge University Bumps on the River Cam
Tue 25th - Fri 28th February

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.


Results Overview

Click a symbol or crew name to be taken to the relevant part of the page.

1st women's VIII Rowed over Bumped Downing Rowed over Head Rowed over Head
1st men's VIII Bumped by Jesus Bumped by LMBC Bumped by Pembroke Bumped by Christ's
2nd men's VIII Bumped by Jesus II Bumped by LMBC II Bumped by Queens' II Bumped by Wolfson
2nd women's VIII Bumped by Pembroke II Bumped by Corpus Bumped by Darwin Rowed over
3rd men's VIII Rowed over Rowed over Bumped Magdalene II Bumped Selwyn II

Guide to the table

Double Overbumped
Overbumped - hit the crew 3 in front
Bumped the crew in front
Row over head of division
Row over - did not bump
Got Bumped
Got Overbumped
Got Double overbumped
Got Triple overbumped. D'oh.


1st women's VIII

Wednesday
Rowed over
This term has been a nightmare for predictions. So much so that Marc Jacobs, instead of even having a half-hearted attempt at guessing who would bump who in the Lents Program, went on an extended rant about the standard of college rowing. Personally, I'd rather have had the BumpIT charts published.

While we hoped that Downing would cave at First Post and capitulate to the bump at Grassy, we knew in our hearts that they would be a decent crew. To field anything else when defending the headship is unusual. Our plan was to go off steady until in the first half of the race, grind them down, and then use our experience and guns to really take it up on the reach.

It seemed to me that the gun came far too early, and when sitting in the middle of the river listening to Iain count down, I was surprised. I wasn't entirely sure what I was doing here, or how we had got to this point. I am always glad when the gun goes and we are in the race, as then there is nothing more we can do, but our best.

We stuck to the race plan, albeit striding to 38 just before first post and then to 36 in the gut, rather than our loose, long 34 from outings. We closed off the start, but they pulled away in the gut with a more effective stride. We sat inside station until the exit of Grassy, which we took much better than Downing thanks to Yining's line and got a whistle from Iain here. Both crews took a plough reach burn, but by the entrance of Ditton we were comfortably inside a length and began our big push onto the reach. This gave us two whistles.

We were getting constant updates from Fordy and Thomas about distance, but we went so long without hearing any whistles that I wondered if Iain had forgotten it. On two whistles, Yining called for us to get her three, but our lift here was ineffective. We were pushing on for what we expected would be a long race, and sacrificed a massive push here, waiting for 3 whistles for a big move. Downing responded to our two whistles and started to move away. We tried to respond after a call from Yining, but the momentum was now with Downing.

We started to hear less and less from the bank party, which the older members of the crew realized meant we were drifting back. We kept the pressure up, but the high rates in the early stages started to cost us as we limped along with dying legs. At the railway bridge I'm told Downing had to take another push to contain us, and we were never outside station, showing that we were putting decent pressure on them the whole race. We wound for the line, but too late, and rowed over the line without the headship.

We've shown that we're the faster crew, and that we can give Downing a good scare. Tomorrow we need to go out there and finish it off when it's still our race. (Julia A.)
Gained a little off the start, closed to within a length down plough reach. Half a length on the reach. Downing pulled back out to on station down the reach. Yo-yo'd down the reach between within a length and on station, finally finishing 1 length down. (Thomas)
An inevitable dress rehearsal. The stage is ours tomorrow, girls! (Yining)
Thursday
Bumped Downing
Sometimes you gotta play nice; sometimes you gotta go in for the kill. Today was kill day.

"You're underrating them and gaining" was the theme of the race. With first-day frustrations out of the way, we set out ready to race and hungry for a Headship. Our stride was as effective and efficient as it had ever been and really gave us the length we had been chasing yesterday. We had fantastic corners as always and closed to half a length around Ditton. Then we just ate up the distance, sticking at a canvas of overlap before Nina scraped a good chunk of paint off of Downing's stern.

"Show me how much you want this!" The ease of that row made me believe that we could've pulled it off a second time right then and there. Luckily for us, we get two more chances to do just that. (Yining)
WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!! (Gonzo)
Absolutely delicious, WELL DONE!!!!!!! (Yimin)
Head... For now
Gained into ditton, moved strongly out of ditton, head at the railings (Thomas)
Massive congratulations!!! :) :) xxx (Katie)
YEAH!!!!!!!! Well done girls!! (Liz)
Much better than yesterday, and the finish was absolutely clinical. Halfway.

May I add that in the midst of our jubilant celebrations, Ian Watson (Downing boatman) could not have been more gracious. (Neil T)
I'll post a more detailed race report on Sunday, along with all the other days, but for now, I think this is all you need to know about the race:

When Yining called for us to hold it up, I screamed. Then Canadian stern 3 burst into tears, and the bows started cheering.

UPDATE:
I can remember what it feels like to take a headship. I can also remember what it feels like to be bumped off of head station. Downing held on for a day and half a course longer than we did in 2011, and they were good and kind enough to smile at us when we told them they raced well when we rowed past them on our way back to the boathouse. There were times when I believed they were being held in that position by the force of Ian Watson's will alone. That is not true. They were a good crew, but this was our year. At the end of the race, Ian Watson came over to Fordy and said 'you should have got us yesterday'. That meant a lot to those of us who knew who he was.

Our race plan was to move the kill push to two whistles, and to stride to our long rhythm at 34 instead of a stabby 36. Off the start we needed 3 strides to calm the excitement but eventually settled onto a 34 that felt so easy. Our loyal bank party were telling us that we were inside station coming around Grassy. Our push in the gut had been effective, and we felt strong and calm. Thomas shouted that we were 'under-rating them and gaining'. We got one whistle on Plough reach, but they started to move away and we had to take a push to respond. Our lift caused the rate to rise a couple of pips, and Yining then had to change tack and call for a smoother ratio again. We had a good Ditton and knew that it was now time to bring the race to Downing in earnest. This time we had rate to spare for a big push, and the legs to match. We took a brilliant corner, as we always do with the powerful Yining/bow four combination we've come to rely on, and then we waited for our whistles.

I didn't even notice the headwind, hopefully because we've grown strong and comfortable in them through a term of typhoons, but more likely because Yining had us sat in Downing's wind shadow. Thomas and Fordy were screaming 'inside half a length!' which I'm told afterwards was being relayed from Iain, who was so far ahead, monitoring the gap between us and Downing, that we could barely hear them. Yining called our kill push from the bank party's calls and we moved. We lifted the rate and squeezed on the legs, the move we had been waiting for for 2 days. We heard 3 whistles, loud and clear, and it lifted our spirits and gave us the adrenaline to carry on. Amazingly, Iain repeated the three whistles at least twice more, something I've never known him to do, almost in time with the clunking of the blades. Yining was demanding that we give her the overlap she needed, and Thomas and Fordy became unintelligible, screaming that we were closing fast, that we had it, that it was ours if we could just carry on pushing for 3 more strokes, for 2 more. All I could hear was a mass of noise from them, desperate and jubilant and crazed at the same time.

Finally, though I can't be sure I actually heard it, or whether I just sensed that it was time, I held it up. The joy and shock and happiness were so overwhelming that all I could do was scream, and then burst into tears. All of my celebration plans, and victory fist pumps, flew out of my mind because I just had to press my hand to my mouth and look for Yining and think about everything that had happened in the past 4 years. Our bank party had swelled to include my parents and Neil and Matt, his arms raised in victory from the overlap whistle, running down the bank after us.

We pulled in, and cheered and hugged each other and hugged our bank parties and smiled for the pictures. People kept appearing and smiling at us and waving. We were so happy to have so many people to share our joy with. I still can`t believe that it actually happened. I expect to wake up tomorrow and either find that it's 2010, or I've been dreaming.

Headships are taken with one bump, on one day, but the making of them takes years. Every crew I have rowed in since the day we bumped Emmanuel in 2010 to today, has brought us closer to this. They pushed us to be better, they held our places for us in the charts, they fought and scrapped to keep us near the top. Bumps is a historic race, and it's not fair to the people who aren't there on the day, because it depends on them too. We got the greenery today, but it belongs to all of you too. Thank you. (Julia A.)
Congratulations! A fantastic achievement. All good wishes for glorious row overs tomorrow and Saturday (AmeLia)
Wooooooooohey!! Excellent job, ladies! (Ulrike)
Brilliant, well done! (Mark)
AWESOME!! (Jane)
Awesome!!!! Congrats!! (Allen)
MASSIVE CONGRATUALTIONS FROM ALL US IN LONDON!! What a fantastic achievement girls, you will remember this day forever!!! We don't have to be in Cambridge to know that you've all worked!

Now just make sure you don't party too hard tonight and lose your cool tomorrow. PASTA HARD, NOT PARTY HARD. xxxxxx (O. Skilbeck)
Friday
Rowed over Head
Day 3 traditionally sees a gap in W1 race reporting, so I thought I'd oblige.

After I had grabbed the bung just before it was too late, we delivered a confident start, if a little scrappier than the previous day. We pulled away from Downing almost immediately and continued to do so while taking several strides to stretch out to our optimal rhythm. They fell back along Plough Reach and never regained distance until their final attempt to scramble away from Emma halfway up the Reach. Our own row was strong and committed until Downing were bumped approx. 2 lengths behind at the white house, whereupon we settled down and finished the course to a heartening amount of support from various M1 crews marshalled along the bank.

Well done to Emma W1 for their clinical bump. I'm looking forward to meeting them tomorrow and seeing both crews pull out all the stops. Let's give 'em a good show!

P.S. To those hungry for every excruciating (occasionally literally) detail, hold on til Sunday for Julia's incredible narration. As faithful readers will know, you won't be disappointed. (Yining)
I went into this race with a strong sense of deja vu. The last time I rowed over head with Downing behind us, it was a grey, rainy, miserable day. Then, we had no idea how fast they would be, as we hadn't raced them all term. Today, we knew we had bumped them yesterday, but had no idea whether it had been a bad day, whether they had an amazing sprint that would surprise us, or whether we could just row away from them. On that day in 2010 we were scared, we rowed badly, and we let them get to somewhere around a length. Iain proclaimed it a 'bullshit whistle' at the time, and I believe him, but I still think of that as the gap.

Today, I hadn't been nervous until we were sitting at head station. I had been so excited last night about what we had the potential to do, and what we had already accomplished that I had trouble sleeping and woke early this morning. The fire alarm test also helped with this.

Sitting at head station I worried about everything that could go wrong. Would my hand slip on the handle? Would we be able to contain Downings sprint? Looking at their blades at marshaling I was sure they had geared up. It was another grey, rainy, miserable day. Iain was chipper, and gave us three rules:
1. Don't give them a sniff.
2. Row well.
3. Enjoy it, not many people get to row from here.
Amazingly, this correlated very well with our race plan. We wanted to move away from them from the first stroke, and keep walking away.

Our start was a bit scrappy, as our nerves started to show. Downing may have taken a few inches here, but we strode, and strode again and finally hit a more sensible long-race rhythm. We started to move away around Grassy, and by Plough Reach our bank party was disagreeing about whether the gap was 2 or 3 lengths.

We took a brilliant Ditton and started to feel comfortable enough with our position that Iain decided to hold an outing in the middle of the race and coach us about clearing our puddles and taking time over the feet. I was reminded of standing in someone's kitchen during crew pasta on the third night in 2010 and hearing that Julijana and Ulrike had been so sure of our ability to row over that they hadn't been at 100%. Having rowed in Ulrike's seat for the past couple of years, I thought, 'Badger it, Ulrike wasn't pushing, I can quiche'. I feel a similar train of thought moved through the crew at about this point, as in the crew chat afterwards we admitted none of us were at our limits.

Downing began to gain on us again as the situation with Emma became more critical around the white house. Their bumps push and Downing's response took them back to somewhere between 2 lengths and 2 and a half. Some interesting evasive action caught the attention of the crew and most of us became spectators at this point, as we realized a bump was imminent. The two boats speared across the river and we took a tactical stride.

The rest of the row was fairly processional. I saw a huge umbrella waving at me out of the corner of my eye, which was my mother doing an excellent Mary Poppins impression, jubilant that the crews had bumped out behind us and that we could have a gentler row. The men's crews at marshaling cheered us as we wound it down to 28. We easied once we were over the line, took a breath and rowed a chunky 22 home.

We have a new opponent tomorrow, and we'll have to face them knowing that on Saturday, there are no do-overs. Neil said this is what he wanted, for us to face all of our competition equally so that we can hold our heads high tomorrow and either say that we were defeated by a worthy, a faster crew, or that we were the fastest boat on the river, undefeated. (Julia A.)
Downing gained a little off the start, but once settled onto rhythm the gap opened. This went out until Downing effectively responded to Emma on the reach, when the Gap started closing.
Outside station when the challengers bumped out.
A good chance tomorrow to see who the fastest women's crew on the river are. (Thomas)
Saturday
Rowed over Head
YESSSSS!!

Massive congratulations, girls! Sweet sweet headship, well deserved! (Ulrike)
W1 took hold of the race in the first two minutes, opening up the gap to over 2 lengths. They settled into a long 34, and looked untroubled and unflustered until Emma called their 'last ditch headship push' coming into the railway bridge, this started cutting the gap, to my consternation on the bank. The crew were unphased and responded with a little more pressure to keep Emmanuel around 1/2 a length behind, with a little more distance gained back before the line. (Thomas)
Much of this is being posted after Julia's report below, but I wanted to make sure I got a few words in first; the headliner should always come after the supporting acts.

We were marshalled at the finish line when Madgalene M1 rowed over comfortably ahead of Caius M2 at the top of the men's second division. They were pleased to have "controlled every minute of the race". Kate and I agreed that we had to follow suit. Simon later said that that was exactly what we did.

Julia and Kate might have been relaxed coming into this final race, but I don't think I've ever been so nervous. Everything about me was shaking - my legs, my hands, the rudder wires that I was so crucially responsible for. I must've readjusted my grip on the bung a hundred times in the two minutes leading up to the starting gun. Then my hand went up in the air, Alexa and Nina took a tiny tap, a moment of silence and suddenly I was calling the draw strokes.

It was a bizarre experience to row bumps twice without having anything to chase. While the girls had the benefit of seeing Downing and Emmanuel rise up or fall back, I could only gauge how well we were doing from hearing our respective bankparties: distances and "you're moving away!" from Thomas and Fordy and a vague, optimistic buzz from Emma's infamous wishful thinkers. It was oddly backwards from the usual situation, where the girls have to rely on my vision and their ears. Coming past the Plough, I was struck with the sense that the girls could have just defended the headship by themselves; this was our best row technically and the support we received from spectators on the bank certainly drowned out any inkling of doubt.

I was surprised when Emma moved up on us coming towards the Railway Bridge. Thomas shouted "station!" rather anxiously and then the whistles began. We took our well-rehearsed lift off of the bridge, but when they still got to three whistles and I wasn't getting any feedback from Kate or Julia, I had to break a coxing rule and turned around for a quick glance. Relief. They were killing themselves for that 3/4 length gap. We were strong and ready to lift up a pip. And so we did, to the rousing shouts of M1 crews, including our own. We crossed the line with our heads held high and an easy length clear of Emmanuel.

A great race, to be sure, but I think the sheer ridiculousness of everything that occurred afterwards will leave a stronger impression. I was given a massive flag to wave/hold/keep dry as we took our victory lap to a stunning amount of applause and respect from both sides of the river. Lots of hugs, tears, medals and congratulations. Then I was carried back to college on a wooden boat by my rowers and coaches, trembling to have been singled out in such a way - and to have been taller than Jon Glass for a glorious 20 minutes! The boatburning was incredible and emotional. The whole club had contributed to that moment and joyfully shared it with us.

From Nie (2014: iv): To the girls and coaches at First and Third: every day you teach me what it means to be dedicated. Two years ago with spoon in hand, I would never have dreamed of being part of a plausible Headship campaign, but this W1 crew stuck together, fought for every inch and proved that hard work and commitment pay off. I am so, so proud of what we have achieved, and thank you for trusting me enough to allow me the honour of being part of this crew. Someday I might even forgive you for tossing me in the river... (Yining)
The reality of what happened yesterday only hit me when I put my new headship medal next to my old headship medal. Thinking about all the ergs and sweat and tears and work over the past four years, I broke down and cried for a few minutes. Not from sadness or exhaustion from the effort of it all, but from astonishment that something that we had been chasing had finally been caught. The pursuit of a dream, especially one of excellence, is all-encompassing, and stunning when it is over.

I woke up early on Saturday, earlier even than I needed to for the photos, because I was so excited about the potential of the day. The flurry of activity and club spirit that took place as we posed for our photos kept my mind off what was to come that afternoon. We had had our pre-requisite terrifying speech from Neil about what we were going to do if Emma got to a canvas off our stern, and were in a mixed state of nerves and enthusiasm. I spent the morning preparing presents for the coaches, thinking about what I would write in the cards later if the race went well, and if it went badly. We all desperately wished for it to be 24 hours later, so we would know. I was very nervous in the hour before I left my room, but as I was walking down the corridor, I had a feeling of calm and well-being, and I took this as a good sign, as I told Kate later. I walked to the boathouse, because I hoped I'd be carrying something rather heavy on the way back.

Today, we wanted it to be our race. We had let Downing dictate the terms of the race to us on Wednesday, and had allowed circumstance to convince us to take it easy on Friday, but today, we had to defend our headship. The river was flooded due to rain overnight and the works on Stourbridge Common, and there was some chaos with exchanging wellies with M3. We eventually rowed off at a long 19, all eyes in the boat and ready to face the task at hand.

At marshalling we had Aoife for stress relief and to take our minds off the battle that was to come. However, I had begun to see geared up blades everywhere, and Emma looked as if they were going for a 2 minute race plan from the placement of the stop on the collar. It took Fordy a few minutes of explaining the mechanics of collar placement to calm me down. We rowed up in beautiful sunshine, had a blistering wind on the reach and strode to our best rate 34 rhythm at the practice start at the Plough. We knew we were ready.

I wasn't nervous on the start line, and Kate agreed that we were beyond nerves then and just ready to walk away with a medal. Our start was good, we strode to a more reasonable 36 (Yining?) and then again onto our 34. We started moving away from Emma almost immediately, with our bank party calling '2 lengths!' in the gut. From there, we started walking away. We heard the cheers of encouragement, the roars from the bank. We had been expecting Emma to sprint, to test us in the first half of the course and then fall away after Ditton. Perhaps they didn't fancy their chances against Yining's steering through the corners. We continued to move away on Plough Reach and took a nice line around Ditton to open up a lead of about 3 lengths. We settled into our long race rhythm, and flew down the reach in a comfortable stride. We were later told that the update coming from the umpires at this point was 'FaT are 3 lengths up and don't even look like they're racing'.

Coming up to the white house I started to hear the word 'station' from our bank party. Long distances are difficult to judge, but I glanced up at Emma and determined there was no need for concern yet. We had a small lift, a squeeze on the legs, but didn't deviate from our rhythm. Just before the railway bridge the Emma bank party began whistling. They got one whistle, which confused me, as I was judging the distance to be outside or on station. I didn't want to shift to see if it was Downing making a late surge to bump Emma back, so I waited for more information from the bank party. Two whistles came as we came straight out of the railway bridge, but they still seemed too far away to justify anything but one, so I didn't call for our kill push. At this point, the Emma bank party seemed to be using their whistles more as encouragement than as a means of transmitting information about distances, as they were given three whistles soon after. Kate and I remained unperturbed, but Yining glanced over her shoulder and called a move, just to be sure. We shifted up a gear. It had been time for our finish line wind anyway.

We crossed the line about a length apart, with plenty of breath for cheering. We floated, dazed, for a few moments, enjoying the sunshine and the knowledge that the headship was ours. Some admin was communicated about whether to spin, how to collect the flag, and when we wanted our medals. We ended up following the men's division up for our victory lap. Yining discovered how large the flag is, and how difficult it is to hold it bolt upright and steer. We were exhilarated. We responded happily to the congratulations and cheers from the bank, waving to our friends and parents, who were smiling and jumping up and down along the river. We took another burst on the reach to see how straight we could get the flag behind us, with Yining and Blanka laughing at the ridiculousness of it all. We were getting updates from John about whether we could go to the Plough, and were able to collect other supporters and boaties as we spun at Grassy. The paddle back was solid, Yining told us we were rowing into the sunset, which seemed a fitting end to our fairytale.

When we parked there were reunions and photos and tears, but mostly smiles and laughter. We cheered the other men's crews and cheered our men back and forth. Everyone was hugging someone. There were so many people there to share in our happiness and who deserved to be thanked for making it real.

For me, this was an incredible ending to my rowing career. I'll be back for Mays, but this was my last Lents campaign and it was an unbelievable (and I mean that literally) way to finish. I don't think any of us (except maybe Yining and Chris, who found the wooden boat) had actually allowed ourselves to believe that we would find ourselves Head of the River until we crossed the finish line. Fordy and Thomas and Jon Glass and Neil and Peter Summers and Matt had all believed in us. We had bufties wearing FaT stash in support around the world. I told the girls to enjoy every second of the celebrations, carrying the boat, the bumpers at the dinner, jumping through the flames, because you need to be in the moment to believe it later. You'll want to have those memories to call back, to convince yourself that it all happened.

The glow of victory is amazing, but what truly amazed me was the support and out-pouring of good wishes during and after the races. Several times a text or email that I received that night would bring tears to my eyes, and the unselfish joy and congratulations of every single member of the club humbled me. I wish every one of you could have jumped over that boat with us, because you all helped us to get there, whether you were screaming from the bank, or finding us wellies for the flood, or giving up your morning outings, or getting in the way of our Headship video, or hiding incognito behind bushes to cheer us on. The past four years can seem amazing to me now because of the instantaneous happiness of winning, but they would always have been incredible to me later on because of the gratitude I feel for the friendships I've gained, and the camaraderie and happiness of being a part of First and Third. Fordy said it last night. We've lit the way for you, but it's yours to carry on and make into a dynasty. I can't wait to see it.

RA RA FIRST AND THIRD!

P.S. Yining, we all went in after you, and carried you back to college on a boat. Debt repaid. (Julia A.)
This was a wonderful end to a fantastic four days of racing. The focus in the crew was palpable on the row down, with some excellent paddling providing a preview of what was to come. It was a gorgeous day to race, with fans lining either side of the river, very little wind and lots of sunshine - a spectacular day to be rowing at Cambridge. As we lined up at the headship station, I took stock of my nerves, and found (to my surprise) that I was very calm. Julia had said earlier that she had a 'good feeling' about today, and I felt exactly the same way. We had worked so hard for this moment all term, we knew were were the fastest crew on the river, and all we needed to do was execute our race plan.

We had another explosive start around rate 42, drilled into us by Jon Glass, which immediately created distance off Emma. Our wind was clean and powerful, and we strode into our efficient, magical rate 34. We steadily widened the gap to outside two lengths, gaining confidence every stroke. We were fast, strong and technically sound. Coming round our beloved Ditton, I became certain the headship was ours as long as we remained consistent.

Halfway down the reach, Emma began to sprint, but our boat remained calm and we continued to row at our best rhythm. We knew that we could take the rate up if need be, but despite an impressive attempt by Emma to catch us at the end, a sprint on our part was never necessary. We crossed the line comfortably clear of Emma, let out a collective cheer of joy, and allowed the moment to sink in.

It is a very profound experience to set a goal as a team, work incredibly hard for it over a sustained period, and finally see that goal realized. Each girl in this boat committed to every aspect of our training, getting personal bests on the ergs, improving our strength, and always remaining dedicated to a very high technical standard at both an individual and collective level. There was no weak link and no wavering commitment. Girls, thank you for your heart, your ambition, your friendship and your passion. It has been a privilege to row with you all.

Many people played a part in this victory. Every step of the way, we were supported by our devoted and talented coaching staff, who created a training environment conducive to excellence and shared endless wisdom on rowing technique, teamwork, sport and life. We also felt the tangible support of so many others: the rest of First and Third, alumni, family, friends and others in the Cambridge community.

Looking back at my first week in Cambridge, when I rather nervously stepped in a boat on the Cam for the first time, I had no idea I would be racing for the headship, rowing a victory lap with Yining proudly holding our flag, or jumping over a burning boat several months later. I did not expect to feel so deeply embedded in this community, receiving support and congratulations from people I had only met days before. I couldn't ask for a better start to my rowing experience at Cambridge and I am already looking forward to seeing First and Third achieve more success in the future. Let's show everyone why we are back where we belong. (Kate)
^ top

1st men's VIII

Wednesday
Bumped by Jesus
With an inexperienced crew, we weren't expecting great things against Jesus - we knew they were strong so our aim was to go off hard and last as long as possible. After unexpectedly watching 7 back it down (after the 10 second call had already passed), we were away and moving. The boat speed of Jesus became evident immediately and it wasn't long before they were ominously bearing down at us.

We continued pushing, and when we heard a whistle came from the bank it was a pleasant surprise to later learn that it was for us gaining on Queens. Shortly after, Jesus caught us and that was that. Nonetheless, the rowing showed promise and we look forward to having an attack on Queen's later in the week. (Strange)
After an unexpected backing stroke called for our 7 man within the last 10 seconds before the gun, we set off pretty strongly. Jesus gained quickly on us and we stayed at high rate without settling into race pace. We were ultimately bumped just as we were coming to first post. Things were over quickly, but it was clear we were getting close to Queens' as there was at least one whistle directed at us. I'm excited to see what happens tomorrow. (Sean)
It was a fairly strong start for the first day of bumps. We quickly closed the gap with Queen's in front but Jesus were just too fast from behind (unsurprising given Fairbairns times) and we were bumped fairly quickly.
I look forwards to a good row tomorrow holding off Maggie (Amar)
We did our duty for Captain and Club.

Coming on board with M1 having been 50s off Jesus in Fairbairns, I am not exactly surprised that we were bumped as quickly as we were. Indeed today was written off on day 1 of term. The more experienced members of the club have continued with their hiatus, such that we have approx 2.5 terms rowing/person in the boat, and indeed there are two novices from last term in the mix.

Closing the gap on Queens' to 3/4 of a length by the time we were bumped was a nice surprise. I've been so preoccupied with how quick Jesus were going to be that I forgot the general standard of college rowing is awful. Queens' had 30s on us in Fairbairns, and closing the gap really does speak volumes about the progress the crew has made over the past 5 weeks.

Tomorrow shall be interesting. Jesus could very well bump Queens' before First Post corner if not by Head Station. If we steer through the carnage successfully, we should have fairly clean water (sorry guys but the overbump on Caius just isn't going to happen). We seemed to be comparable in speed to LMBC so there's a good chance we will row over if we row well. Having said that, this is Bumps we're racing. Maybe Caius will lose a rudder... (mt)
Jesus were fast. They beat us by 50 seconds in Fairbairn's, and are being coached by the former CUL head coach and GB talent development coach. They also had a lot more experience than us as a crew. Excuses over- we weren't prepared to go down without a fight, so we went off fighting. . . and got bumped in the first corner. However, though we were bumped very quickly, I am not completely disappointed. This is because we were 3/4 of a length off Queens' when we were hit. Queens' beat us by 30 seconds in Fairbairn's, and we closed in on them in just a couple of hundred metres. We have got a lot faster this term.

I expect a tough fight against the red scum tomorrow, but I am thoroughly looking forward to it.

Queens', take note- we are coming for you. (R.J.C. Stroud)
Thursday
Bumped by LMBC
Alas, the red scum got the better of us. We went off hard expecting a battle, but they were a lot faster than we were. Our start went reasonably well, but it was pretty terrifying to have them hold us through the power ten, our secret weapon in the start, and then finish us off coming around first post corner.  

It would have been nice for them to hold it up slightly more promptly than they did, though- I had make use of my ninja-like reflexes to avoid being run through with their bow ball...
(R.J.C. Stroud)
LMBC went off hard at a pace that was, simply put, greater than our max. It is somewhat unsurprising that LMBC might have gone off a little lighter on the first day in an attempt to avoid the carnage of Jesus on us, and that, therefore, we were bumped so quickly. Tomorrow we are being chased by Pembroke. We know little about them, as with LMBC, other than that they are probably slower than today's adversary. They do have somebody pretty handy at stroke though. I'm confident that we will at least make it around First Post corner, and from there I am expecting a fight. I'm not, however, entirely sure how the crew will cope when, for the first time in most of their lives, their legs start to hurt in a serious race situation. (mt)
Friday
Bumped by Pembroke
We had a decent start today and it seemed like we moved off Pembroke in our first power ten. Unfortunately, in the gut Pembroke managed to catch us up. Coming into grassy we held them with overlap for a bit. It was good to see we could hold them off even under pressure though they ultimately got the bump. (Sean)
Pembroke gained in the first few strokes of the start, but by the end the transition had been opened back up and slightly increased. At this point, the two crews seemed to be moving at fairly similar speed. In First Post, an ill recovered dodgy stroke and a wide line allowed Pembroke to gain significantly. Down the gut we again seemed to be moving at a similar speed. Around grassy Pembroke got their bows inside our stern but stuck. An initially wide line was turned into a tight exit in a gutsy if unintentional move that could have ended the race had Pembroke pushed and steered out. Out of Grassy, Pembroke sat with overlap as we pushed out of the corner. A final push from them ended the race. Had we had the best race of our short rowing lives, we might have rowed over but it's difficult to say. Once Pembroke appeared to be moving on us in First Post there was apparently a slight feeling of "that's us bumped again in 15 strokes" within the boat. Only out of Grassy was there a realisation that this wasn't necessarily the case. Tomorrow, our last day, we're faced with yet another unknown. But, once again, we know that they are slower than today's competition. Whether we end up with spoons or otherwise, I'm sure that tomorrow will be our best row of the week. I'll just be glad that this week is over so that we can get back to serious training; Catz Cardinals is but a few weeks away and Primark are stocking some seriously sexy bras this season. (mt)
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2nd men's VIII

Tuesday
Bumped by Jesus II
Flat out right from the start, but Jesus M2 were just too fast, and bumped just before First Post Corner.

Probably the best rowing we've done yet this term, though, and there are rumours that we were possibly keeping up with Homerton M1. (Preeyan)
We managed to hold off Jesus for about a minute and we cleared up the river for the other crews quickly. (Will)
A good solid start at 7th, under the motorway bridge, with the canon noise reverberating in our ears. Thanks to Iain however for his patented canon acclimatisation technique (two fingers in ears for 4 minute gun, one finger in shore side ear for 1 minute gun, mouth open for start).
It quickly became clear that we were not going fast enough to outpace Jesus M2; once we were up and running, our bow pair puddles were not being hit by stroke pair. Jesus on the other hand were well out of their pueblos. They had the boat speed and we were bumped shortly before first post corner. (H.B. Taylor)
Good start for our first race as a crew, but Jesus had some serious acceleration . We are being chased by Maggie tomorrow and we WILL hold them off.

Dom (D.F.J. Pugh)
Jesus were unbelievably fast; there was nothing we could do. Overall we rowed well for the short time we were racing. (Tom)
Thursday
Bumped by LMBC II
The main positive of the race was that we went further than on Tuesday, but not much further.
There may have been an element of complacency in our crew going into the race; we simply weren't expecting the jump Maggie had on us and perhaps we panicked.
The best thing to do on Friday is to forget the last two races and row the best we can to hold off Queens' and hopefully we'll make it past the first corner. (Tom)
The afternoon got off to a particularly bad start when M1 forbade me from having anything to do with tonight's cooking. Denial spawned disbelief which gave way to fury, and I came to the boathouse ready to fight fire with fire.

Opinions differed, though: apparently it's better to fight fire with river water.

Our goal was to row over in front of LMBC II. We were fully successful: we rowed in front of LMBC II, and it was over pretty soon afterwards.

Plan for tomorrow: we're going to remove the bungee, loosen the rate cap back up to 28, and put the Scotsman back in the boat at stroke. (Preeyan)
Clearly, it goes without saying that having been bumped twice in a row is indeed rather unpleasant. However, we should acknowledge the different natures of the crews involved. One should always bare in mind that most of us were novices last term and have thus little rowing experience and still plenty to learn. This definitely applies to me as well.
Although I do think we rowed well with no major mistakes from our side. Considering that the other team (Maggie) seemed considerably more experienced, one simply cannot fairly compare us to them and draw inferences about our ability as a crew from the fact that they bumped us. I am certain we are making good progress as a crew and we are getting better with every successive outing. Consequently, one can reasonably expect us to perform better in future races.
Nonetheless, as Preeyan concisely pointed out today, the next two bumps races are independent of the last two. WE CAN STILL GET A BUMP ON ANOTHER CREW!!!
Let the two previous races not demoralise us and approach the upcoming races with an open-minded attitude. We are capable of rowing well and if the next crews are of comparable composition to us, I am sure we will do much better. (F. Schaffner)
Decent start again, managed to make it significantly further than yesterday with MC Rowe achieving his personal best Bumps distance. Sadly, the Red Filth caught up fairly quickly, though not as quickly as the Jesuans.

Big race tomorrow to prove to ourselves that we can do it.Positive heads will be on and we will row over. (D.F.J. Pugh)
Friday
Bumped by Queens' II
It was disappointing. We caught a crab off the first few strokes of the start allowing Queens' to plough straight into MC Rowe's back under the motorway bridge. Matt fortunately managed to emerge from the collision unscathed.
In total, we probably only rowed 50m, which left everyone in the boat feeling highly frustrated.
Our last race tomorrow is going to be unpredictable, since we haven't had a chance to fully gauge Queens' and Wolfson's capabilities; I only hope that we can make a proper race of it, to make up for today. (Tom)
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2nd women's VIII

Thursday
Bumped by Corpus
Having missed the first day, I was told that we had gained on the start against Pembroke. The girls were keen to go hard off the start, and see if we could inspire a fear-induced crab, or something. Credit to the girls - they tried to do just that. The start was fairly clean, and committed. We moved on Pembroke, a little bit, but it was clear that the boat that mattered was behind us, and closing fast. The girls lifted as Corpus approached, and I think they slowed Corpus' progress, but they were just too good for us. We succumbed just before the road bridge.

This wasn't the result we were hoping for, but it was a good effort, and I'm sure we can give St Edmunds a good run for their money tomorrow. If we can hold them off, we could well have the opportunity to finish Bumps on a high.

Hopefully the cox-box works tomorrow, so we can once again inspire false hope at the proximity of the railway bridge. Courage legs, cursing, and confidence (I couldn't help myself) will be required. (Sam)
From umpiring the crews behind you: Corpus were many lengths ahead of Darwin or Eddies when they bumped you, so if you can keep it together you should be able to move away from them tomorrow. Good luck! (Peter)
Friday
Bumped by Darwin
I think this was a better row than yesterday. Not just because we made it further (First Post corner rather than the bridge), but because it looked like the girls gave it absolutely everything. Iain reckoned it was their most consistent row of the week so far.

Unfortunately, it wasn't enough to hold off another first boat. How damaging the one-boat-rule has been to our Bumps campaign is difficult to quantify, but I can't help feeling that next term should see us more able to compete with the lower first boats. Having seen the heart and commitment in the crew, it remains to commit to a good, hard row tomorrow, and avoid spoonage. It goes without saying that I am proud of the way the girls have performed - I couldn't have asked for more - now let's get a result to take to dinner! (Sam)
Saturday
Rowed over
I have possibly never been happier to see a green face - it ties closely with rowing over against Queens in my first year. This was a much more assured row-over than that. The girls took distance out of Peterhouse on the start, and had ~20sec at the finish. Fantastic!

I'd like to thank every member of the crew for showing real heart throughout the week. I'm really pretty proud of them. With some training, I can see Mays being a lot different. Ra Ra First and Third! (Sam)
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3rd men's VIII

Tuesday
Rowed over
An interesting debut. Sadly not quite to plan.

We were about a length off Magdalene coming into 1st post, who had Churchill 1/2 a length ahead of them. Steering to the outside round 1st post in order to get the bump via overlap, and get on their inside for Grassy, both the bank party and I failed to see an Emma boat (bumped out) hiding in the greenery outside the exit of 1st post. No lasting harm came from the brief encounter, but apologies to the Emma crew if they read this. Luckily CUCBC confirmed that this was impossible to avoid, and saved us the indiginity of a 'dangerous coxing' fine, instead deciding that our urination in public was unacceptable.

A good race right to the line sitting a length off Magdalene, but sadly they got Churchill just under the railway bridge before we could get them. As always in Bumps, nothing quite went to plan. Looking forward to an attempt on Churchill tomorrow :) (Alex)
Went off the start quite hard, completely failed to communicate to Alex quite how slowly Caius III were going behind us (I think we took two lengths in our first 10 strokes), settled onto a mediocre 35 and hammered our way along a bit in the wash. We got some whistles down First Post Reach, and got to half a length into the Gut. Then we hit Emma M2, drifting around approximately tucked into the inside of the corner; apparently Thomas and Iain on the bank had seen them, but we couldn't hear them, and Alex was blinded by the low sun. Apparently the umpire was also somehow blinded, as he turned round and asked Thomas whether he'd seen the crew.

In any case, blades were recovered from somewhere behind the strokesider's heads, no-one seemed to be more than bruised, so we set off again, apparently two lengths down. We clawed our way back up to a length, and then looped through:
*Hear three whistles from the coaches ahead, or a panicked shout from Thomas, suggesting the crew ahead would bump out soon
*Frantically wind the rate
*Give up after about three strokes when nothing happened.

This didn't work very well, so we staggered our way to the railway bridge, where Churchill (who'd presumably expected that we would remove Magdalene if they gave us enough time) finally fell to Magdalene. (Peter)
Wednesday
Rowed over
Technical row-over awarded after Magdalene and Churchill cause carnage bumping out ahead of us. (Alex)
Friday
Bumped Magdalene II
Increased stability from rowing in the Janousek meant we wound higher and strode onto 38, which unsettled me rather; I didn't feel we would be able to row effectively for more than a couple of minutes after this start. Luckily we didn't, the crews in front cleared successfully this time (although we still had four changes of direction during First Post corner), and we had an overlap call coming into the Gut. According to our bankparty, the cox should probably have conceded before we started our Bumps push, so we hit them quite hard. And then discovered we couldn't remember how to make boats go sideways. (Peter)
Finally. (Alex)
Saturday
Bumped Selwyn II
Selwyn weren't very fast, so we bumped them. I was slightly annoyed that we took a whole 46 (or 36; there was some disagreement within the crew) strokes to bump them, but I believe we did just about catch them earlier than Churchill had on the previous day. We were probably taking rather more strokes per metre than most crews in this division...

Then JGS's dad pulled a large branch off a nearby tree, we distributed bits of it amongst the crew, and Bence kept the remainder. This caused much hilarity on the bank and on CamFM, but after a while he got tired of having to row inside arm only and Alex took over the tree-waving. (Peter)
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Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the following information, note that the results are unofficial.

Men's bumps charts

Men's bumps chart, Lent Bumps 2014

Women's bumps charts

Women's bumps chart, Lent Bumps 2014

Michell Cup points

St. Catharine's39.00
Wolfson28.00
Churchill18.00
Darwin18.00
Murray Edwards16.00
Robinson16.00
Clare15.00
Downing12.00
Corpus8.00
Christ's6.00
Emmanuel6.00
St. Edmund's4.00
LMBC0.00
Peterhouse0.00
Sidney Sussex0.00
Jesus-6.00
Magdalene-6.00
1st and 3rd-12.00
Pembroke-12.00
Queens'-12.00
Caius-26.40
Selwyn-28.00

Ineligible after entering fewer than 3 crews:

Hughes Hall18.00
Girton12.00
Homerton6.00
Fitzwilliam0.00
Clare Hall-6.00
King's-12.00
Newnham-12.00
Trinity Hall-42.00
Anglia Ruskin-48.00

Cambridge weather: Tuesday text or graph
Wednesday text or graph
Thursday text or graph
Friday text or graph

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