Race ReportsThis page lists race reports. For general news see here and here for alumni-related news.
Lent Bumps 2003Tuesday
1st Men - 7th in the 2nd Division
We were chasing Trinity II, being chased by King's. The Bumps Programme predicted that King's would get us, although we had consistently beaten them all year. The start went well, winding to 45 before settling at 37 after the stride. First Post Corner went well; coming out of it, we needed to refocus before we found our rowing pattern again. A good grassy saw us close in Trinity. We squeezed in on them down Plough Reach, and we raced them around Fen Ditton. Coming out of the corner, we executed a jump start, getting the rate back up to 39. In four strokes, we went from a foot of overlap to pushing Sir John Meurig on to the Trinity seven rigger, tearing the stern. We bumped Trinity at the top of Reach, between the University Course posts. A quick dose of polyfiller was necessary once we returned home...
1st Women - 11th in the 2nd Division
Found out last night that Gill has been admitted to Addenbrokes, so was up early this morning sorting out subs. Have persuaded Caroline to row, as she managed to sub in recently when we were practicing starts!
Get to the boathouse, having eaten essential chocolate supplies and raring to go! Do a visualisation and scare ourselves imagining what it is going to be like.
At the start Wolfson seem to be gaining on us for a while but luckily we pull away and hold them off, unfortunately all the crews in front of us have bumped out (although we didnt realise that at the time) The race is a blur of pulling hard, and pulling harder, making appropriate faces for the camera, and then finishing, a little exhausted having rowed over.
2nd Men - 3rd in the 4th Division
This is it. King's II look sharp in front of us, Queen's III look strong behind us. We have 7 ex-novices in the boat, none of them have raced bumps before... Everybody is nervous... We have trained hard but still... 4 minute cannon. Last talks, last hurdle and in the boat. 1 minute cannon. Tension is high: there is no second chance: we have to bump today. 20 seconds, 10 seconds, 7 seconds (come forward to row), 3 seconds (square the blade).... GO !!! First strokes are quite scrappy but strong... First corner - stroke corner - well taken... however Queen's is gaining on us, we can hear their coach's whistle - oh dear !!! And then... a whistle coming from our bank: we are gaining on King's !!!! Second corner is coming up, 2 sharp blows for us, we are doing it ! unfortunately the corner does not go well, we take it wide, 7 touches the bank... we recover. No idea what happened at that point but from Carl's words "it is the fastest we've ever rowed" !!! 2 sharp blows: 1/2 a length away: we can do it !!! Queen's get taken out by Caius (no we didn't look).... More whistle, more whistle and then.... Hold it up hard !!!!! Our first ever bump: the first one for Peterhouse II since 1996 !!!!!! We did it !!! Green looks good on us.
Rest day. The crew went for a paddle, then did extended stretching during the day.
2nd Men - 2nd in the 4th Division
Reports tell us that Hughes Hall are not very good... are they really or did they catch a crab?? Were Trinity just lucky??? Who knows... Everybody's at the boathouse focusing on the race: we know we can do it, we proved it yesterday - let's just hope. We get on the boat and row down out starting position passing Hughes on the way (they all look big). 4 minute cannon, everybody's confident but worried (yes, that's possible). 1 minute cannon: we're all switched on. 20 seconds, 10 seconds.... GO. "Draw for one Draw for two Draw for three... Build for one Build for two" - short whistle blow from our bank (what already??) "Build for three Build for four Build for five Build for six Build for seven Rhythm in two Rhythm in one" - two short blows from our bank !!!! We settle in the rhythm for maybe 10 strokes and... we bump !!!!!!!! The practice starts we did were longer than that !!! Let's focus... time to get some greens and we'll race at the bottom of division 3 in 1 hour.
18th in the 3rd Division
1 hour after the last race, everybody is quite tired but no-one is ready to give up (two bumps in one day would be sweet). Our starting position is at the bottom on the reach by the lock (bad souvenirs). Start is given, we race well, we hear the first whistle for Trinity just before the motorway bridge and the first whistle for us seconds after !!! After the motorway bridge everything is over, Trinity caught Corpus II and we kinda crashed into them (they didn't clear the river). Despite some enthusiastic cheering from certain people in our crew, Trinity bumped Corpus. We lose time starting again and moving away from Trinity. We row over
1st Men - 6th in the 2nd Division
We were now chasing Downing II, and were being chased by Trinity II. We wound to 42, and settled at 36. We had an early whistle call after the start pattern. However, we were a little wooden in the second minute, although we relaxed into First Post and a powerful push saw us climb to a canvas off Downing II. A well executed jump start into Grassy Corner saw us wind to 39 again, before striding back to 36 as we quickly finished off Downing on the middle of the corner. We cleared well, but Downing II steered and parked into the inside of the corner, causing King's to go too wide, grazing the parked LMBC II boat.
1st Women - 11th in the 2nd Division
Today Bethan is our honorary Gill, we had a little practice yesterday morning to remind her of the start pattern....
Arrive at the boathouse determined to bump - rowing over was painful yesterday! Have the 'Nemesis' feeling at the start of the race - the feeling that you are strapped in and cant get out - and it's going to hurt!!
We hear the whistles quite soon, and close in on Emma II fast, and then they hold us a few feet away. With a last determined burst we catch them in the reach.
Celebrations and greenery!! Unfortunately looks like we are going to lose Olivia tomorrow - she deserves a medal for carrying on rowing today although her back hurt her so much it made her sick. No doubt who rower of the day goes to.
2nd Men - 1st in the 4th Division
Today should be fairly easy: we are being chased by Hughes Hall who are being chased by Caius III. The start is given, firm pressure all the way, all the corners go well, Hughes Hall get bumped... we row over :)
1st Men - 5th in the 2nd Division
Today the First Men were chasing Magdalene, and being chased by Downing II (who finished over a minute after us). The start went well, as we closed within a length during our start pattern. We got a half-length whistle down the Gut. However, Magdalene started to hold us well. We raced them into the Reach, where we got a canvas whistle. A jump-start moved us to within four feet. However, Magdalene pushed off us again. We battled down the Reach, with Peterhouse M1 moving to only a few feet off the Magdalene First Men, only for them to push slightly away from us. A number of jump starts worked, but failed to be capitalised on. We rowed over about two feet away from Magdalene crew by Top Finish. A shame, but we know that with a bit more spark, we can finish the job tomorrow.
1st Women - 10th in the 2nd Division
Another day, and we are chasing Kings. Not sure what they are going to be like although we know Darwin bumped them fairly quickly.
Quite windy today so its a bit chilly as we row up to the start although there are lots of supporters around - yay!
Start off quite well although the wind is making the oars blow about a bit, hear the first whistle, then two whilstles, brace ourselves under the motorway bridge to go for another push but Robin calls us to wind down!
Short and sweet! Kings have caught a crab - and stopped!!
2nd Men - 18th in the 3rd Division
This is it: if we want blades we have to get Corpus II, no other choice. Unfortunately most minds are already set on tomorrow's race and today sounds just a like a "formality". Everybody gets in the boat, a bit nervous. The start is given. Not the best start ever but the builds go well and we row quite well. First whistle is given about half-way up grassy... we row harder... two short blows... harder... continuous blow !!! We bumped Corpus II just before the motorway bridge !!! Tomorrow is the final race: we are chasing Clare Hall and should be chased by Caius III (N.B. Clare Hall got bumped half way up grassy by Trinity that day)
1st Men - 5th in the 2nd Division
Saturday saw the First Men again chasing Magdalene, and being chased by Downing II. After the race on Friday, we decided that rather than change anything major such as the rigging, we would alter our race plan slightly, and also settle into a harder rhythm with more emphasis on the second half of the drive. We went off well again, and received a length whistle along the Gut. A tight Grassy saw us draw even closer along Plough Reach. A massive push off Fen Ditton Corner, winding the rate to 40, pushed us to within a canvas. Again, we closed to within a few feet, before Magdalene pushed off us, only to see us push again to within a few feet. A steering error from the Magdalene cox saw us make overlap, but we were coming out of a push, so we could not capitalise on it. Passing the Pike and Eel, we again got overlap, but Magdalene pushed us two feet clear. The final straight saw us wind up the rate to 37 again, but Magdalene held us well and we again rowed over. We rowed better on the Saturday than on the Friday, but so did Magdalene! Both crews put in a fine effort, in a series of races that have been the talking point of the towpath.
1st Women - 9th in the 2nd Division
Another day, another sub. This morning persuaded Rebecca Normansell to sub in for Olivia. She arrived at the boathouse half an hour earlier than the others so that we could give her a quick debriefing on how we do our starts and our race plan. A little worried when she asked whether we will be using cleavers or not!
Paddle down to the start - do some practice starts which go quite well - Becky is obviously secretly a rowing pro! There are loads of supporters on the bank which is fantastic too.
Carl counts down - has become a tradition now - and worries us again that he has got his watch wrong, but the gun goes at the right time and we are off.
We are chasing Maggie II. Takes a little bit longer this time but we put our 'rowing faces' on, and bump on first post corner - Yay!!!
2nd Men - 17th in the 3rd Division
Last day of bumps, so far we have done everything we needed in order to get blades. We are chasing Clare Hall, we know we will bump them but are we going to bump them before Caius bump us? The start is given. For once our racing start is not too bad. After roughly 20 strokes we hear the first whistle. We push harder.. 2 whistles.. Peter calls "Push for Blades". We push, we bump.. we made !!!!! We clear the river very quickly only to realise that Caius is at least 2 and 1/2 length away from us. That's it... the flag is ours, we get it back up the river: We have Blades !!!!!