The Club's Results
Head of the River Race, Lent Term 2023
A huge head race on the Tideway (tidal river Thames) over the University Boat Race course
Sat 18th March
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- with many members still rather ill (see Bumps reports), the unfortunate decision to scratch was made. A rather disappointing end to term, especially for Igor, who had been moved to M1 after Bumps just for this race.
After the outbreak of "Tobyvirus" left the majority of M1 bedridden, we were forced to scratch from HoRR. I had been very excited to race tideway, with my only previous off Cam race being Bedford Head earlier this term, and was hoping that somehow I'd get a chance to still row it. However, just as I was beginning to like the idea of a Friday night without a drinking ban, Luke began feeling unwell. As the only healthy strokesider in M1 I was given the opportunity to sub. With HoRR being much longer than Bedford Head or the Bumps course and thanks in great part to our underwhelming performance in Bumps, I have raced further with M2 than M1 this term.
Igor, after having been initially promoted to M1 for HoRR due to Krisztian's geography school trip, was so desperate to find a way to race on Tideway that he went to London with us, hopeful that a bowsider would injure himself on the way there so that he could sub in. Unfortunately for Igor the journey was uneventful and we arrived comfortably in time for push off from Furnival.
Overall the time from push off to starting the race was about 130 minutes - most of which was spent taking strokes in the queue to combat the strong stream. During this time our bow got close to a QMUL boat, whose stroke man accidentally knocked off our race number. Then, in a display of both mental and physical ineptitude, their cox grabbed the number and attempted to throw it to us - only for it to land nowhere near us and sink into the Thames.
We set off well and soon settled into a good rhythm at around 32 spm. The rowing felt far more together than during the paddle on the day before. There were a couple of minor crabs including one from me but they didn't upset the rhythm of the boat very badly. In the last kilometre we started winding it up which initially went well however, at a final up 2 call around 20 strokes from the finish, we seemed to all have different ideas of what up 2 meant leading to a few very messy strokes near the end. During the race we overtook no crews and were a way off from those chasing us until Corpus M1 kept going after the finish, not winding it down until they were close to us.
We were quite happy with our time of 20:08 at 1:30 average splits, making it FaT M2's fastest since 2010. Although this of course has to be taken with a pinch of salt thanks to the extremely strong stream on the day.
Full Head of the River Race results archive
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