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M1 Lents 2016: Day Four

On the last day of Lent Bumps we found ourselves chasing Christ's again.  We knew it would be tough to catch them, but we also knew they were unlikely to escape by bumping out, as they did on Thursday.  Once again we had nothing to worry about behind us - all that counted was getting close enough to Christ's to finish them off on the Long Reach.  A strong start gave us a bit of ground, but choppy water through the Gut threw us off and allowed them to slip away again.  Christ's were rowing strongly, buoyed by the potential for a bump on Robinson, and they moved further away from us along Plough Reach.  As before, however, everything came together as we came out of Ditton corner and onto the Reach, and we first held them, and then started to slowly take ground out of them.  Our row up the Reach was epic - despite our burning legs and fading vision each push increased the boat speed, and as we came under the railway bridge we finally got a whistle on them.  We turned up the volume yet again, and over the last couple of hundred metres took another half length out of them.  Sadly, it was all a little too late, and the finish line saved Christ's, who crossed it ahead of us with just a few feet between our boats.  'Almost bumped' doesn't count for anything so our bumps campaign ended with two bumps and two unchallenged rowovers.  There is always a strong element of chance in bumps, so we'll take that - more significant, perhaps, is the fact that we demonstrated clearly that we were faster than any of the boats close to us in the division, and therefore achieved the goal we set ourselves at the beginning of term.  We are going to give everything to repeat this achievement in Mays.

M2 Day 4

Emma II continued their fine run of messing up bumps for us by having their rudder break, thus crashing and getting caught by Christs. So started another epic battle between us and Hughes M1, who we pushed off despite our bowman catching a crab halfway down the reach. Our third row over ended what was a fantastic bumps campaign. It's been a pleasure to row with the crew, and I look forward to seeing how M2 will fare in Mays.

W2 Lents 2016: Day Four

W2's plan for today was simple: row as well as we had done yesterday, and get the same result. Unfortunately no-one told Clare Hall, who decided that today they would rather not row the full length of the course.

While the results this week have not gone perfectly, I am so proud the crew for all the hard work they have put in this term, and all the changes they have begun to make. Ten members of SCCBC have had their first experience of racing bumps, and we will use that experience next term. In the Mays, we are chasing a certain Jesus W3 on day one. W2 aren't ready yet - but they will be. FTW!

M1 Lents 2016: Day Three

Thursday's rowover prompted some deep thought on why we hadn't caught Christ's, and what we would do differently chasing King's on Friday.  The consensus: row better.  We kept our heads in our boat this time, instead of worrying about what was happening up ahead, and after a slightly ineffective first half the rowing came together coming out of Grassy Corner.  Still on station at that point, a united push brought us up to a length off King's as we passed the Plough, and then after a strong corner we came together again out of Ditton and started to build up the pressure.  Our mentality changed as we realized the hunt was properly on, and a series of sharp pushes quickly brought us to half a length off, quarter of a length, canvas... and then by the railings those of us in the bows felt King's' stern scraping along our boat; on my right I caught a glimpse of their stern, reached out, and gave it a few thumps just to make sure.

(Clare finally got their bump too, and as they rowed past we all agreed to forget the farce of the previous day and be friends)

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