Peterhouse Boat Club

Race Reports

This page lists race reports. For general news see here and here for alumni-related news.

Second Trinity Challenge Sculls 2005

Posted by Admin on Monday 14th March 2005
'Twas a wee bit windy on the 15th March.. Not sure the words "big" and "head-wind" really quite capture the level-five hurricane which was blowing straight into our bows, but in the absence of a handy thesaurus they'll have to do..

Come to think of it though, that should be qualified a bit - it was actually relatively calm in the morning. Unfortunate for us poor souls drawn in the second division.. Not that Charlie, Jack and Callum were ever in danger of not finishing 1st, 2nd and 3rd mind!

The race was, well, as tiring as a full-course head race into an f-ing huge head-wind is always going to be. At least the Cam has more interesting scenery than Boston.. Was my first time back racing in a single for a while (around three and a half years..), so pacing was a bit of an issue. Forearms dead by Ditton, with a loooonng way left to go.

Was quite pleased with 6th place. Not too far off Paul Wilkins (now a beasty Rob Roy sculler). Plus beat Steve Benjamin by 2 seconds (cf. the Colquhoun Sculls report..) *evil cackle*

Lent Bumps 2005

Posted by Admin on Monday 28th February 2005
Day 1
Well done to all the crews rowing today, especially the 1st men and women with some good fast bumping! Starting as we mean to go on, W1 caught CCAT, as expected(!), and M1 sailed past Girton 1 on the second corner after they had problems following the racing line. Hard luck to the 2nd men, who were caught by a strong Fitz 2 probably still with a vendetta from last Mays... Tomorrow both men's boats start behind their opposite numbers from Fitzwilliam, with some scores to settle. The 1st women will be chasing Kings 1, who managed a row over today. Everything to play for, watch this space for further results.

Day 2
Go Second VIII! Peterhouse M2 claimed back the position they lost yesterday with a bump on Fitz 2. That's all I really know for now, if anyone was there please send in a quick report. Well done guys, it's a great omen for the 1st men tomorrow. Fitzwilliam really aren't going to like Peterhouse...


Day 3
Oh dear oh dear oh dear. The 1st men are back where they started, having been bumped back by Girton at the top of the reach. After a sketchy start with bowside on the bank, they held Girton off through the gut with some tidy cornering, but it all came to nought after a sluggish plough reach and an exhausted ditton corner. Ah well, we've bumped them before so let's get them back on Friday

The 1st women chased Darwin for an overbump as Kings bumped Emma 2 ahead of them, but it wasn't to be. No blades for the women this year then, but through no fault of thier own.

Day 4
Another mixed bag of results for Peterhouse. The 1st women continue to press on upwards with a satisfying bump on Emma 2, bringing their tally to up 2. The 1st men, however, went down again to LMBC 2, bringing their score to down 1. The 2nd men repeated their battle with Fitz 2, again going down 1. And so the struggle continues...

Day 5
And so, it's all over for another term. The 1st women claimed that Darwin bump they'd been threatening all week, bringing their tally to up 3. Very well done ladies, the best W1 result for a while and very well deserved!

The 1st men had an epic row over, being the centre boat in a 3 way battle all the way down the long reach. Thanks to LMBC 2 and Sidney 1 for a row we'll remember for a long time... The 2nd men again did battle with Fitz 2, but in a fitting if not appealing end to their week's rowing both crews rowed over. Stalemate.

So, at the end of the day the results are M1 down 1, W1 up 3, M2 down 1.

May Bumps 2004

Posted by Admin on Friday 3rd September 2004
Day 1
The 1st men worked hard as sandwich boat at the foot of the 1st division, but were unable to catch Fitz and rowed over. The 1st women had even worse luck, being bumped by a much stronger Darwin. The 2nd women also struggled with Fitz, but were bumped. The 2nd men, however, caught Fitz II before the motorway bridge, retaining their 'we don't do corners' record. The 3rd men also had a good first day, bumping Churchill IV without too much difficulty

Day 2
A couple of solid row overs today saw the 2nd women and 3rd men holding position, while all the other boats unfortunately went down.

The 1st men produced a row to be proud of, holding off a much stronger Pembroke 1st VIII featuring a certain Wayne Pommen. The 1st women were bumped by 1st & 3rd.

Most unlucky of the day, however, were the 2nd men. After reeling in 1st & 3rd III to ½ a length, a broken seat and the accompanying crab let Trinity Hall close up the gap and overbump us halfway down the reach. So ends that glowing 2nd VIII record, and we're back behind Fitz tomorrow...

Day 3
Well done to the 1st men, bumping Fitz and rowing over at the foot of the first division, and the 2nd men, bumping Fitz II (again). The 2nd women were very unlucky to have stroke's blade depart from the gate on the 2nd stroke, when they looked almost certain to catch a slightly less polished New Hall IV.

Well done to the 3rd men, who struggled valiantly but were eventually bumped by a stronger Queens' crew.

Day 4
Peterhouse are back in the 1st division! Congratulations to the 1st men for bumping Caius II back into the 2nd division. No more sandwich boating!

Well done to the 2nd women, who bumped Selwyn III more than making up for their cheeky bump on Friday. The 1st women were less lucky, being bumped by King's to secure their spoons.

The 2nd men chased Emmanuel III through the whole course in the driving rain, closing to ½ a length on the reach (again), but it wasn't to be and we rowed over.

The 3rd men went down to LMBC IV, but should still be very proud of their performance. Bring on the Getting On Race 2005!

The 2nd men would also like to offer their congratulations to Fitz II, who have been a very sporting opposition all week and avoided spoons today with a row over behind us. Well done guys!

Sponsored Row To Ely 2003

Posted by Admin on Tuesday 17th June 2003
Arriving at the boathouse at 9am in the morning, the prospect of rowing, [coxing] 53 kilometres did not seem too daunting, it was, after all, only like doing 5 trips to the lock and back. We failed to take account of two minor details: firstly, that we had to get the boat over two locks each way, and secondly, the sadistic sense of humour of the man in charge of the weather.

Leaving the boathouse, with Aidan Roberson subbing in for Matthew, still suffering from his inebriated exploits at the Boat Club Dinner, we progressed swiftly, stopping only for a stretching session at Baits Bite Lock before reaching Bottisham, only 15km from Ely. We were confronted here with a combination of unsuitable landing station and nettle coated banks that we feared we would have to carry the boat half of the remaining distance. It was also at this point that Manu’s phone, tired of the claustrophobic conditions within the front of my lifejacket, decided to try its luck at swimming. Unfortunately, it was not buoyant. Lamenting the loss of Manu’s close companion we set a slow rate towards Ely, only picking up when I glimpsed the cathedral and ending in unfitting style with us steaming into Ely rating 32.

While some stared perplexingly at their hands wondering where they had left large chinks of flesh, others gorged in the gourmet delights of peanuts and cereal bars. The spitting rain was a cruel omen of the row back ahead of us. Jeremy Faro replaced Aidan for the return leg, and we were thankful of the fresh set of legs after about a minute when we began rowing into a ‘gale force’ headwind. Our impressive technical rowing quickly wasted away into a stubborn struggle against the elements. Only now did the safety waning “Do not set out if it is windy-you don't want to be trying to do any more than light pressure for this kind of distance” seem noteworthy. Our seemingly eternal struggle, interspersed by brief interludes to take on and release fluids, was made ever worse by optimistic distance landmarks and occasional boat stopping gusts. The sight of Bottisham Lock released a sigh of sheer relief [and that was just for the cox].

After traversing the lock the last 10km was relatively easy, our fluid, technical steady state accompanied by the mellow lyrics of John Mayer from the stereo which travelled with us, strategically rammed between my legs. Back at the Boat House they rowers didn’t even look tired, but they whined and groaned and moaned more than usual. Many thanks to Dave for organising the trip, to Aidan and Jeremy for subbing in and carting around our kit, food and drinks, and especially for everyone that sponsored our row to Ely. The £138.60 raised for Wintercomfort for the Homeless and the Stroke Association made it more than worthwhile!

May Bumps 2003

Posted by Admin on Tuesday 10th June 2003
Day 1
1st Men
We knew today was going to be tough, although the plan was to try and catch FaT M2 before they could catch Emma M2. Our start was effective, although not as intense as others we had done. We initially gained on FaT, with Wolfson remaining on station, however, by the end of plough reach, and through Ditton, we had fallen back to our on station position. For all of this time FaT had overlap with Emma.

We pursued FaT up the reach, and when we reached the Railway bridge a call came through to harden and go for it. We had faced FaT from this position before - over a length down at the bridge, and won - so we knew we could do it. The push worked, and the boat speed increased dramatically, and we bumped FaT with a shock that shook the entire boat within 10 strokes, before Morleys Holt.

1st Women
We knew the first day would be tough: although well matched with Selwyn ahead of us, we were faced with a very strong crew behind. Girton were eager to wreak revenge for our bump on the last day of Mays last year, and despite our strong start at 45 and remarkable lack of panic as they shot towards us, they caught us just before First Post corner.

2nd Men
Race 1

Emma III ahead of us - we beat them a few weeks ago at 99s Regatta, but today was a new race and we knew they wouldn't hand the bump to us - they were head of the division, and we were determined to not row over.

We went off at a speedy 45, striding to 36 by First Post Corner. Simon (6)'s shoe came off on the fifth stroke, but we kept going no matter what. A tight First Post Corner followed by an almost as tight Grassy corner put us under the length distance behind Emma III with St. Catherine's III behind us nowhere to be seen. A strong push in the Plough Reach brought the distance down to 3/4 length was followed by a VERY close Ditton Corner. Emma III went wide at Ditton and we found ourselves going side-by-side up the reach - never chancing to swing for the bump, a bump was awarded close to the Railings once our bow ball past theirs - sucess.

Race 2

Quite tired, but with a replaced footplate we made our way down to the lock - from the top of division four to the bottom of division three as sandwich boat. The gun goes and we wind up to 45 again, striding to about 35. It starts to hurt quite quickly, but the feeling in the crew was clear that we will give it our all. We didn't know what to expect from Jesus III, or Clare III in front of them, although we expected Fitzwilliam II would bump in front of Clare III. We quite quickly make it up to a length distance, and after that is was simply a question of slowly reeling them in, pushing through the tiredness to get them, which we did after Grassy Corner. Phew!

3rd Men
We took advantage of the bend (below the motorway bridge) to gain a little distance off the start. FaT went off in a bad direction and immeadiately lost half a length to us. At the end of the starting 20 we were within half a length of them and closing, they were likewise closing on their target crew. A power 10 was called but it proved not enough, a few strokes were taken to get the rhythm back and another power 10 finished the job, straight into their stroke's blade. Getting Tom clear proved a little tricky as FaT didn't row on for far enough, but no harm was done to the division.

First bump for a lot of people in the boat, and nothing behind ever got a look in. Great row by this ringer crew!

Day 2
1st Men
With several areas for improvement from Day 1, we knew we had to be fast. We had to catch Emma M2 before they could catch Downing M2. Our start was faster, and we kept the boat speed up. Going into first post reach we were at a length and going for a whistle build. Coming into grassy we were down to half a length, and still wanting to keep pushing, to keep decreasing the separation. A push out of grassy saw us drop within 10 strokes to a canvas, and then getting overlap and bumping in the next 10. We bumped immediately in front of The Plough - so ensuring spectators a good bump!

1st Women
Sandwiched between Girton ahead and Magdalene behind who were predicted for blades, its fair to say that we were apprehensive for todays race! However we focussed on building on our strong start and breaking through Girton's two minute barrier-they go off like a rocket but seem to peak at two minutes. We prepared ourselves for a long battle or at least a row over. However Magdalene suprised us and shot off the start, despite a gutsy effort they caught us again just before first post corner.

2nd Men
Two bumps under our belt and Clare III in our sights. Jesus III behind us, after having to row over in front of Emma II so they were quite tired.

We started at a bit of an angle after snagging the bumps chain, but quickly recovered after a rather panicky three draw strokes. Finding our rhythym by Little Bridge, we passed through Fitzwilliam who had caught Sidney Sussex, and drove on to 3/4 length about 50m from the A14 bridge. A push for ten really lifted and refocussed the crew, again reeling in Clare III quite nicely to catch them at First Post Corner.

3rd Men
The threat from below was considered low, so eyes moved to St Catz V which had rowed over the previous day. It took a little longer this time and the cox held off a long time before acknowledging. We sat with overlap for about 10 strokes before I got bored of the wait and impatiently tried to move over on them, but the big rudder on Tom slowed us down a little and we fell back a couple of feet. A last Power 10 (going on Power 15) got them just like we did yesterday this time about 50 metres beyond the motorway bridge.

Again a little Men's 6 carnage with FaT running into us having been bumped but no damage was done to boat or crew. Another great row and a the crew now are beginning to feel its no longer total fluke that they're getting foliage in their hair.

Day 3
1st Men
Race 1


Today started at 9.30am with a light technical paddle to the Pike and Eel. An exercise in getting us all working as one unit, and to help give us that little bit extra when it came to this afternoon. We knew it was going to be a challenging day.

We had to catch Downing M2 before they caught Pembroke. We did not. We closed to about 1 length, and held this steady, with Downing gaining on Pembroke with every stroke. We kept pushing, still trying for the bump, however it didn't happen, Pembroke and Downing bumped out before we got overlap.

However, we had considered this possibility, and our plan was to switch to pushing for the over-bump on Sidney Sussex. We knew we could do it. Coming onto the reach, our heads lifted and we hit a wonderful rhythm around 35 that felt like you could stay in it all day. We were gaining on Sidney all the way up the reach, and by the White House we received an optimistic 1 length call. This was the rallying call we needed. Our kill instinct lifted its head, the rating squeezed up to 36, and we got a double whistle. We kept pushing, relentless. 3 whistles - down to a canvas - we really wanted this. Finally, just after the Railway bridge, the bump was ours.

Race 2

This was a case of give it everything, there was no issue with us blowing up - we couldn't be bumped. Our start worked well, and we held the rating high - we were going to try against Caius M2. We remained on station, however, they got the bump on Fitzwilliam before we made much progress. A good solid start, and just the kind of start we need to go for tomorrow.

1st Women
Friday saw Magdalene in front and Queens as the sandwich boat, eager to push their way into the first division. Despite a brilliant effort from everyone, we could only hold them off until the Plough reach. Nevertheless, the days events meant that we were determined to win back our first division place the following day.

2nd Men
The third day started early in the morning with a technical paddle to overcome the little effects that all the racing (& bumping!) was having on our technique.

Sidney Sussex II were in our sights and we went to the start with a strong confidence in our ability to get them quickly as Fitzwilliam II had on the previous day. We went off quite high, at 46, striding to a rushed 36, Clare III looked quite large behind us and the crew panicked a little. An emphasis on finishes brought the rate down to 35 with a noticeable improvement in cover. We had the length distance by Little Bridge, and 3/4 length by the A14 Bridge. A push into & out of the bridge quickly got that down to a canvas and a second push bumped them halfway between the A14 Bridge & First Post Corner.

Day 4
1st Men
The final day we were sitting head of Division 2. We knew we had to row over head, then we could take a shot at reclaiming Peterhouse's place in the First Division.

Race 1

We had a reasonable start - the first stroke was a little awry but we went off nicely, kept the rate reasonably high, always pushing to try to increase the gap between ourselves and Downing M2. By the time we had settled onto our rhythm around 45 seconds in, we had increased the gap to 2 lengths, but kept pushing - we wanted as much clear water as possible. By the 2 minute marker we had settled around 34 and there was a good rhythm in the boat.

Coming onto the reach, we hit 33 and sat on a great rhythm pushing away with every stroke. We cruised to a comfortable row over around 35 seconds ahead of Downing M2. Probably our best full course piece ever.

We had assured ourselves of our blades.

Race 2

Our start was fairly quick, and we again kept the rating high, however, we struggled to maintain the balance through the 'Motorway Bridge', where there was a lot of swell.

As we progressed through the race we moved up to a length on Fitz, and down to half a length, however we struggled to move beyond this. Coming up to the Pink house, we jumped to try and get the kill, and from here just kept pushing. We chased Fitz all the way to bottom finish, sadly we were a couple of feet off their stern. No bump sadly, but a good hard row.

1st Women
After a disheartening three days it was somewhat of a challenge for me to motivate the crew for the race today. Nevertheless, once again everyone surprised me with their determination and positive attitude, a fact which stands us in good stead for next year.

The first race was tough to start with until Darwin's cox managed to give us a break by steering her crew into the bank. We took our opportunity and our training finally paid off with a good hard row over.

With this behind us we moved on to getting back into the first division. In the next division we faced Queens in front of us and, despite a gutsy row with a perfect rhythm we couldn't quite catch them.

Overall we maintained the place held two years ago by Peterhouse women-top of the second division. Now that we have an experienced crew for next year we should be able to wreak a bit of revenge for this year in the 2004 May Bumps!

As a final note I must thank Andrea Clarke and Sarah Jackson for their commitment and enthusiasm over the past three years with regards to Peterhouse Boat Club - good luck to both in the big wide world!

2nd Men
We'd bumped to blades yesterday, today was about bumping Fitzwilliam II for ourselves.

We went off hard and stayed on station up to the A14 bridge. Everything bumped out around both of us, and the battle really started. Both crews were giving it their all for the crowds on the banks. Between First Post Corner and Ditton, we repeatedly moved up to about a length distance but were matched by a determined Fitzwilliam II who were investing just as much effort as we were. The reach hurt a lot, (as the photos of fatigue show!) but nobody gave less than their all. We had fallen back to station by this point, and a huge final attempt before the Pink House was yet again matched to the end.

We'd rowed over behind a crew that we could call an equal; putting the 2nd Men back on a course for recovery for the years to come, that they really deserve. Beware Fitzwilliam II - we'll be coming for you!

3rd Men
There was something of a battle going on in front of us today. King's III had been bumped by St Edmund's II on day one, and on day three a technical bump saw Kings get them back. It was a borderline decision and the smart money said St Edmund's would get them today unless we had something to do with it.

The start was the best yet with the crew well aware of what lay in front. Wolfson behind us was never a threat. We closed in to about half a length and our momentum slowed a little. We then pulled 20 hard strokes out of the bag to close it to a canvas but things were getting hairy up front. St Edmunds were just a canvas off Kings. A premature, but urgently needed Push 10 for Blades took us neatly onto the stern canvas of Edmunds and Kings got away. For a first time a good thump was felt down the boat and the DU confirmed the bump.

Quote of the day: "I never heard the push 10 for blades, but by about stroke 3 or 4 of it I worked out that something was going on so I pulled a bit harder" Ollie @ 2
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