Archive

This page contains a complete record of any news item or race report ever posted on the website.

Alumni Reunion Day, and Official Opening of Newly Refurbished Boathouse

Booking is now open for this event on March 16th.

More information, and online booking, is available here.

Women's Novices Fairbairn Cup

Our Novice Women had a hard act to follow this term after last year’s novice women’s successes, but they took on the challenge with open arms and worked with dedication throughout the term towards the ultimate race of Michaelmas: Fairbairn’s. Leading the Novice Women’s division, the girls began as they intended, with a relaxed yet powerful start which certainly impressed the large group of Catz supporters who had come down to cheer them on (unconfirmed reports suggest we had the largest bank party on record..!). Making 2.7km look as easy as Queen’s Ergs, the girls maintained an excellent rhythm and focus right up to the finish line, with our cox Harriet taking some excellent lines, and the crew responding  to calls of ‘power 10’ with great effect. An exceptional race overall, putting the girls in 10th place out of a total of 57 novice women’s crews. This result really does highlight the progress made and dedication the crew has shown over the course of the term, and I am sure we’ll see this group of amazing no-longer-novice women return in Lent with even more determination and success!

Men's Novices Fairbairn Cup

Entering three Men's Novice Boats into the Fairbairn Cup for the first time in many years, we felt that the term had already been a successful one - any strong race results would be the icing on the cake.

Leopards (NM1) were the first to race, and got off to a strong, if relaxed, start.  So relaxed, in fact, that certain members of the crew weren't even aware that the race had started! The crew held a good rate throughout the course. Leopards' control and composure meant that they could easily have been mistaken for a senior crew to anyone watching from the bank, and finishing 9th overall they achieved a time that many seniors would be pleased with too.

Jaguars (NM2) were next. Thanks to some chaotic marshalling, they found themselves behind Selwyn NM5: not an ideal situation for the Clare Novices' Plate holders. Despite being given an enormous (90s) time gap, Jaguars still managed to catch them by Chesterton Footbridge, and Maria had to call a rate drop to avoid a crash. Fortunately this lasted for only a short time before Jaguars swept past on the inside line. Jaguars completed the race as strongly as they started it, finishing fifth overall and in doing so claiming the title of 'fastest second boat'. 

Perhaps a special mention should go to Kieran Hall, who rowed for Jaguars having already subbed in for Leopards earlier in the day, and gave his all to both performances. 

Panthers (NM3) followed strongly behind Jaguars, and should be very proud of their performance. Maintaining a solid rate throughout the course they avoided any major incident to finish ahead of a good deal of other third boats and even Trinity Hall NM1. 

The real victory at this Fairbairn Cup is one that belongs to the whole novice squad - the strong results from all crews reflect a real strength in depth, that was only possible thanks to the enthusiasm and and commitment of all this year's novices, whether they rowed in fairbairns or not. With so many keen novices becoming seniors, next term should be an interesting one!

W1 Fairbairn Cup

The weeks of preparation culminated in us sitting in our boat under the Fort St Geoge Bridge freezing to death waiting for the start of Fairbairns. The day hadn't started off particularly well as when we arrived at the boat house we realised that, with two alumni crews and M1 racing in the division before us, we didn't have any blades or a cox box, and they had managed to take our numbers with them too. However, whilst marshalling for the start with our own personally designed and hand crafted numbers,  we felt as prepared as we could be for the 3.6k that was to come.

Rowing up to the start we could see that the alumni and M1 were back and were watching us from the bank so we were determined to show off and do a flying start. Somehow we actually managed this and had the best start of the term which sent us shooting off down the river rating about five pips higher than we had mangaged during the whole rest of term. Despite all being a bit shocked at how easy '33' can feel when we are all doing the same thing at the same time we managed to sustain this for pretty much the whole rest of the race. Our cox, Beth, expertly steered us through all the windy bits and managing to make the corners feel light and easy, which we were extremely grateful for! 

We powered it home down the reach and across the finish line. Once we had managed to detach our frozen claw hands from the blade handles the general feeling was one of satisfaction that we had done everything we could on the day to make the wheel proud. Our efforts were rewarded with a creditable 5th place out of the 12 Cambridge Women's IVs, even beating the two '1927' crews who I have been informed are very good. We beat our result from last year, and were 37 seconds faster (of which I am told the stream only accounts for 15). We would like to say thank you to Georgie Plunkett for coaching us, we could not have done it without you. 

Bring on Lent Term!

M1 Fairbairn Cup

Fairbairns was the culmination of a term of hard work for the senior men. We produced a decent-feeling row overall, the crew completely unrecognisable as the motley one that began the term. However our time was a bit slow for two reasons: firstly we lost our bowman to suspected glandular fever (many thanks to Chris Quarton for stepping in at the eleventh hour), secondly we raced in a later division and I'm reliably informed that the stream was slower than it had been for the other senior men. Despite these setbacks we still beat a number of colleges, not to mention the alumni VIII with a number of 'big names' of recent times.

I think everyone in the boat would agree that the term was a much greater success than our results might suggest. We spent much of the term in slight chaos, borderline homeless with the ongoing boathouse renovation and for the first few weeks without a coach, however we made huge leaps forwards as a crew in terms of technique and fitness. We still have a long way to go as rowers but I didn't finish the term thinking we'd given anything less than our best. Bring on the Bumps (they're much more fun anyway)!

Fairbairns results

Photo

M1 Winter Head

In our first race as an VIII this term we produced a performance we were very pleased with. With no pretensions of being the most powerful boat on the river we did well to row a time that placed us 20th overall (of c.250 crews) and about 10th among the colleges. CULRC won the event with a time of 8:20, we trailed by 42 seconds to finish in 9:02.

Roll on Fairbairns.

W1 Winter Head

Winter Head is the last head race before Fairbairns! We approached this race as a practice for sustaining a high rate for a longer period of time, and as a chance to show the other crews how far we had progressed since Autumn Head.

For the first half of the race we managed to sustain a much higher rate than we had previously been able to maintain, and started to gain ground on Caius ahead of us. After an incredible reset at the top of the reach led by our stroke, Sarah, we did let the rating drop a bit down the second half of the reach. After hearing our famous fan club cheering us on from the bank we got it together again and powered it home. 

At the end of the day we came 5th out of 10 Cambridge Women's IVs, and narrowly missed out on a cash prize. This is a definite improvement from Autumn Head, and we know where we could have made up some time. 

Credit must go to our novice cox, Beth, as this was her first ever race. She successfully navigated all the corners and kept us entertained for the entire 11.35mins of the race! 

Queens' Ergs

In the Cambridge rowing calendar, Queens' ergs is a bit of a one off - being the only event where technique is largely irrelevant and it's all about smashing up and down on an erg for 500m. Catz had a strong showing this year, entering 4 novices crews: 2 men's and 2 women's

Despite competition from some crews who looked much more like they'd be at home on the rugby pitch than in a boat, the SCCBC men's crews put out a strong performance. The second eight averaged a very respectable 01:39.4 - a time that would not have been out of place amongst the first crews. In fact, the only two crews to beat them in their heat were first crews. The men's first crew also did Catz proud, qualifying for the final where they came 10th with an average of 1:35.0.  Comparing their technique to the other finalists, it was clear that they just weren't rushing the slide nearly enough - something that gives us confidence that they will be able to transfer their speed to the water very effectively.

As always the Catz women's crews were not to be outdone by the men. W2 came fifth in their heat, with an average split of 2:05.3. The first eight had a lot to live up to, defending their title from last year. Their erg training clearly paid off however, and they qualified for the final at the top of their heat. In the final they pushed a strong Churchill crew all the way, but were pipped to the finish line in the last few seconds, and finished with an average of 1:52.2. Nevertheless, being the second fastest crew is something to be very proud of.

As we come into the last weeks of term, racing on the river really hots up, and we're confident that the fitness obtained from the ergs in combination with technique on the water will result in strong performances in the coming races.

M1 University IV's 2012 Round One

Having had just three outings with our new coach, Lianne, we produced a solid row against a well drilled Trinity Hall to lose by three seconds.Trinity Hall went on to win in the next round before losing to Caius, the eventual runners up. The first half of the race seemed to be going our way with significant gains being made (we were drawn on station two, 120m behind Tit. Hall), however our lack of fitness showed as we approached the reach and Tit. Hall more than made up the ground against the fierce headwind on the reach - all credit to them for a well executed race.

The crew contained two newcomers to SCCBC, Dan Stein at 2 (First year medic) and Jonathan McCree-Grey (First year physics Phd) at stroke. Both have already shown themselves as great new assets for the senior men.

Training is now under way to put a competitive senior 8 into Fairbairns at the end of the month.