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BUCS Regatta 2018

As we come to the end of another BUCS regatta, it was incredibly exciting to see the Club go from strength to strength throughout the weekend. Following the success of Alex Chisholm winning a bronze in the MInt1x last year, more medals have been added to the collection in 2018 - two silver and one bronze. It has been our most successful one yet, a testament to the hard work and commitment of Boat Club and its members.

Racing began on the Saturday, in which six crews took to the waters racing in a number of categories. The Senior Men began their weekend racing in singles, more specifically the Ben Carruthers in MIntLwt1x and Dom Goymour in MInt1x. Time trials placed them in the C and D finals respectively, with both men giving it their best shot in their first time trial of the season. The finals followed in the afternoon with Dom placing third, in front of one of our fellow Scottish crews, Glasgow, and two other UK crews. It was also a great show from Ben who finished fourth in his C final.

The Novice Men also raced on the Saturday in MB4+ and MB4x. The quad made it through to the semi-finals, with the four just missing out on a final. The hard work of their coach, Jasper Jones, reflected through their racing, where in the semi-finals they qualified for the A final. This is an exciting step for the novices and the squad as a whole, seeing as it is the first time in the Club’s history that the novice men have reached the A final of this category. They weren’t so lucky in the final, missing out on medalling, but nevertheless gave it everything and made the Club proud.

Training in small boats has also been worked on throughout the year in the Senior Women’s squad, where the Club sent three crews into the WInt2-. The ladies placed 1st, 14th and 19th in the time trials. The crew placing 14th in the time trials was made up of Morgan Hartley and Jodie Cameron and prepared them well for the WIntLwt2- on Monday. The pair placed first in the WInt2- C final, four seconds ahead of those who came second. Skye Arnott and Alice Thompson additionally gave it their best shot finishing 2nd in the D final, following very closely behind Newcastle.

Our first medal of the weekend was won by Kirstin Giddy and Hannah Myatt, who smashed their time trial, coming in first place. They then went onto come first in their semi-final, moving swiftly through to the A final. They put up a great fight from start to finish, just missing out on first place to Oxford Brookes but winning a silver medal - a huge achievement for the girls and the Club. Medalling in an Intermediate event was a fantastic start to the weekend, with races like these demonstrating the progress and success of our training programme, and a perfect end to day one.

When Sunday came round, the club was ready for another great day of rowing. Racing and success came throughout the day from a number of crews; Int2x, MInt4+, WInt1x and WB4+.

The MInt2x double, made up of Dom Goymour and Joe Taylor, were up first in time trials, securing a place in the AB semi-final. It was a close race for the men in the semi-finals just missing out on the A final but then went onto smash the B final, leading the pack throughout the race and placing first. Racing continued for the squad, in the form of the MInt4+ where the crew qualified for the D final and raced to a high standard in that but sadly missed out on a podium position.

As the first day of racing for the Novice Women, this was the largest regatta they had been to, a completely different set-up from what they had competed in before. Excitement was focused into their first set of races of the weekend, namely WB4+. The A boat reached the semi-finals, which brought about tough competition where they just missed out on qualifying for the A final by a second. They did however confidently row their way to win the B final later that afternoon. The second WB4+ had an equipment malfunction in the time trial, a gutting situation for the crew, whose result was not a reflection of what has been a fantastic year developing into senior athletes with huge potential.

The afternoon was the time for more celebration, when our Senior Women’s Captain, Kirstin Giddy, won the silver medal in the WInt1x. She continues to set very high standard for the Women to follow, winning the Club’s third ever BUCS regatta medal. Racing for the Senior Women continued throughout the afternoon, competing in the WInt8+ category. Time trials were tight for the crew, placing thirteenth. Despite the disappointment of missing out on AB semi-finals by 0.2seconds, they went onto win the C final, demonstrating their worthiness of a higher finishing position in the event.

Day three of the regatta brought about action for all squads. In the morning, crews for the WCLwt2-, WInt4+ (2 crews), WB8+, MInt2- (2 crews) , MInt4x and MB1x were time trialled.

Once again the strength of the Senior Women’s squad and their programme was confirmed, with the 1st IV in the WInt4+ winning their time trial ahead of two Brookes crews. The 2nd IV in the same category, who had worked equally as hard throughout the year, weren’t as successful but went through to win their final. For the Senior Men pairs, time trial results were 22nd and 27th, securing the two crews some spots in the minor finals later in the day. The second of the two MInt2- were unfortunate to take 6th in their E final while the first MInt2- took 3rd in the D final just ahead of Scottish rivals Heriot-Watt.

Later on that day, it was time for the 1st IV to race in the A final of the WInt4+, up against UL, Brookes (x2) and Newcastle (x2). The girls showed their talent from the start, holding off both Brookes crews and a Newcastle boat. The girls took bronze on the line, our third medal of the weekend, in our newest addition to the fleet - Meridian, a Hudson Boat kindly donated to the Club by a private donor.

The WCLwt2-, made up of Morgan Hartley and Jodie Cameron, then continued to represent the Club to the highest of standards. Smashing the time trials, the pair just missed out on qualifying as one of the top two. They did however move through to race the rep to secure a place in the A final. As the only Champ boat of the weekend, the girls showed true determination throughout the day of racing against very well established lightweight squads and programmes, particularly in the final where they placed a fantastic fourth.

It was then over to Novice Man, Nick, in the MB1x who qualified for the C final in the time trial. His success continued into the afternoon, taking second place in the final, beating crews such as Edinburgh and Exeter. The Novice Women continued to deliver these great performances in the WB8+, even in the face of adversity. That came in the form of illness, where there had to be a last minute crew change and despite this, the ladies made it through to the AB finals, in which they placed second, and later made it to the A final. Following the success of last year’s novice programme, the novice women’s squad this year continued this, racing to an incredibly high standard in the final. Their determination and perseverance was clearly seen in the final race, pushing their competitors to their limit, but the girl took 6th in the end by the smallest of margins. A huge achievement for the crew and a fantastic end to their novice careers - onwards to Henley with integrated crews with the seniors.

Our last race of the regatta was by the Senior Men’s quad in the A final of the MInt4x. Earlier in the day they had put on a strong display in the time trial, getting themselves 7th amongst the well established sculling clubs. The quad nailed their semi-final taking a slot in the A final, placing a respectable sixth. This is a great result from the boys, mirroring the hard work and dedication they have put in this past year and we look forward to see the progress they make in the coming year.

All-in-all, this has been a weekend to remember; Club records have been broken, medals have been won and it is exciting to see where we will go from here. With another three BUCS regatta medals - two sliver and one bronze - our small but mighty Club is continuing to grow. It is on weekends like these that the dedication and support of our athletes, coaches, committee members, friends and family shine through, forever moving the Club forward. BUCS regatta 2018 has been the most successful yet and the season has only just begun.

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