The Club's Results

Novice Fairbairn Cup 2014

1st men's novice VIII (1st division)

1st men's novice VIII
bow Neil Ibata 2 P. Bradbury
3 Unknown 4 Duncan Barber
5 Connor Mui 6 Shahid Wahab
7 Jake Rowe str Tom King

Coxed by: Harry Stockwell

2nd NM1 (lost to LMBC)
Time: 10:00.1
I'm writing this race report more than a year on, and I realise that some of the finer details of the race will be absent from it. This was probably the most disappointing race that myself and the rest of the crew had rowed in up until this stage, and probably since as well.

We were almost certain that we were going to win. We hadn't lost a single race all term. We had dominated Clare Novices, with our closest race being against LMBC in the final, whom we beat by ~1 length. The last week of term was hectic, with us not being able to get much quality training due to novice carnage on the river. LMBC, who rowed in the afternoon, were not impeded in their training. We got nervous at the prospect of making history by being the first 1st & 3rd novice eight to win Fairbairns in several decades. LMBC wanted the win badly and had their best row of all term. We wanted it badly but lost composure and lost to LMBC... ...by less than 3 seconds.

There were many ways in which we could have taken the requisite 4 seconds off our time. We all blamed ourselves for the result, thinking about how extra focus, a few percent more power or additional cohesion would all have sufficed. Sadly, none of these things came to pass on the day. Despite the frustration, I think that that race was a crucial point in many of the crew members' rowing career. We realised how much pain we had to put ourselves through to win; we found out just how important relaxation and composure were in race circumstances; and we realised that even from the most upsetting moments, it was possible to bounce back and perform better than ever before. And in a way, all but the loss to LMBC was more than made up for with the row that we had on the next day in Senior Fairbairns.
(Neil I.)

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