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Summer 2014: from the Women's Captain

The Women’s First VIII have had a successful term, building on their achievements in Hilary, after an intense two week training camp to start the term. With two fours to train in, all the girls made massive improvements, so the opportunity to race in the 4+ at Oxford City Bumps was exciting. The first four successfully bumped up one, finishing 3rd on the river. The second four had a rather nightmarish start which involved firstly the bank, secondly the bungline attaching to the rudder, leading to a bungee start (funny for the spectators, not so funny for the rowers!) and thirdly all the boats ahead of them bumping out. But the girls didn’t give up, and their determination paid off ending on a high by bumping Wolfson.

The squad continued to put in the hours, and their hard work showed at the 150th Bedford Regatta. UCBC won Novice 8+, beating King’s School Chester RC by 1 and a 1⁄2 lengths in the final, and winning British Rowing points. We also placed 2nd in College 8+, after being defeated by a Blues-heavy Emmanuel College boat in the final, missing out by 1 and 3⁄4 lengths.

This highlights the massive commitment of the girls, who had multiple successive races, without even getting out of the boat.

Following on from this success, we were keen to show Oxford what we capable of at Summer Eights. Surrounded by strong crews in front and behind, we had four strong and gutsy races. A special mention must go to Ann Laube, who didn’t let exams prevent her racing, jumping straight into the boat after her exam. Our first race went well, although the nerves showed, with the crew struggling to hold the rate. However we rowed better each day, and despite rowing over every day, everyone gave it their all and it’s a credit to eveyone’s determination that we were able to hold our position as 8th on the river. W1Bedford Training didn’t stop after Summer Eights, as five of W1 trained hard in preparation for Henley Women’s Royal Regatta and the rest of the crew prepared for Oriel Regatta. The Oriel Regatta crew had rowed together once before the race and a last minute change in the line-up before our first race meant we feared that crew may not get to row together again. Fortunately, Niamh Broderick (our ‘super sub’) moved from the coxes seat to bow and a solid performance from the crew meant we quickly pulled away from St Peters in the quarter-finals. Our success continued and we easily beat Johns and Green Templeton in the Semis and Finals respectively meaning we won the Women’s 8+.

We have all made massive improvements in our rowing this term thanks to the commitment and brilliant coaching we have received from John Ewans. Well done to all the girls for their dedication which has definitely paid off. We are excited for next year; hopefully our success will continue and we will move up towards the top of Division 1.

Vicky Olive
Women’s Captain 2014-2015


Posted on Aug 14, 2014

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