The summer regattas kicked off with BUCS regatta held on the Mayday bank holiday weekend. Liverpool sent several crews from each of the four squads to race over the three days.
On the first day we had the Senior men’s 8+, Senior women’s 4x and Novice men’s 4+. The men’s 8+ had recently found speed after training camp in Poznan and were excited to see where they would be in relation to other university crews. After the time trial they finished in the D final, a good result after realising there was only 5 seconds between them and the A/B semi-final. The women’s quad placed in the C final, a good result for the girls. The novice men’s 4+ after placing second in the time trial were in strong contention for a medal, something that LUBC hasn’t seen in a long time. They won their semi-final giving them a favoured lane in the final. After a great race in the final the four finished in third place, gaining a deserved bronze medal. Who would have thought the crew that flipped their boat on training camp would come away with a BUCS medal.
The second day was to be another great day of racing. We had four crews racing. The men’s 8+ from Saturday had split into the coxed four and a Lwt2x, racing at championship level. The novice men’s 4+ was joined by 4 more novices to make the novice 8+ and the Senior women’s 8+ also raced, some of which had raced in the quad the previous day. The Senior men’s 4+ had a good row in their time trial making the D final. In their race they finished 3rd, ahead of crews from Bristol and Kings College London. The Novice men’s 8+ qualified for the A/B semi-final but narrowly missed out making the A final, finishing 4thin the B final. The Lwt2x finished 7th overall, narrowly missing out on a place in the A final. This was a good result for the double having had 3 sessions in the crew. The senior women’s 8+ qualified for the D final but suffered a broken blade on the way to the start of their final. With a replacements blade being biked to the start the girls had to hope it reached them in time. Luckily them managed to race, placing 4th.
The final day of racing saw the novice women’s squad race in the 8+, the senior women’s 4+ and the men’s quad made up of seniors and a novice. The Novice women placed in the A/B semi but unfortunately did not make the A final. They finished 4th in the B final, an excellent result for the girls. The senior women’s 4+ placed in the C final from their time trial but found it tough racing some very experienced crews from Cambridge Durham and Exeter, with only 5 second separating the 6 boats. The men’s quad, with a novice on board who had only sculled a handful of times had a good race to finish 2nd in the D final and looked forward to what the boat could do in the future.
With racing finished for the weekend the club was very pleased with how far both novice squads had come with all boats making the A/B semi-finals. The seniors were also pleased with results showing the hard work put in on training camp and through the winter season.
With people finishing their exams the day before, the Metropolitan regatta at Eton Dorney would be a well-deserved break from the library. Both the men’s and women’s squad had 2 boats entered. The women having 2 Coxed fours and men’s squad having an 8+ and coxed four on each day. Both squads were using the regatta as seat racing for their Henley crews.
On the first day the men’s 8 won their heat, a great progression from BUCS regatta, and came 4thin the final, only half a second separating them from 2ndplace. The men’s four had a hard race placing 6thin their heat. The 1st women’s 4+ came 3rd in their heat to give them a place in the final, however the 2nd 4+ finished 6th. This was a good result for the crew made up of mainly novices. In the final the 1st crew finished in 6th place behind strong crews from Agecroft, Nottingham and Thames, clubs which have strong women’s programs.
On the second day the crews had been tweaked for seat racing and were ready to go again. The women’s 4+ raced in the championship category and came 2nd in their heat to an oxford Brookes boat. They finished in 6th place with a strong field racing the final. The second boat raced tier 2 and narrowly missed a place in the final by 0.8 seconds. These were good results for the squad, having only finished exams 48 hours ago and having formed the crews 2 weeks before, leading to high aspirations for the rest of the rest of the season. The men’s 8 raced in the time trail against all other 8+ at the regatta, placing in the H final, and finished 2nd to a quick UCL boat. The second 4+ raced tier 2 placing 6th against strong club 4s. Again, these were good results for the club and allowed crews to be finalised for the squads Henley campaigns.
With exams over, rowing became the priority for all the athletes at the club. The club had 4 boats entered; two women’s 4’s, men’s 8+ and men’s 4+. The men’s 4+ was first up, having 3 rounds they won the first 2 but could not keep the winning streak up for the final. In the afternoon division the women’s 4s raced. The 1st crew won their heat against Trafford, however the 2ndcrew lost to a crew from Royal Chester. The first crew then faced the Chester crew, and beat them comfortably, winning the event, a great result for the women's squad. The men’s 8 was the final race, first they raced the 2nd crew from Kings school Chester. After having a good row, they beat them by a length to go on to race their first crew. In the final the kings crew came out on top with the 8+ not having a good a row as they would hope for but learnt a lot and how to improve for next time.
The men’s squad sent an academic 8 to the event which hoped to qualify for Henley regatta. With near to perfect conditions at Eton Dorney the eight had to put a quick time in to reach a higher final. The crew qualified for the B final in 12th position but knew they had more in the tank for the race. They finished 5th only 4 seconds behind the race winners. This was the last race before the crew would head to Henley qualifiers, with the results shown at the regatta the crew was feeling confident.
Henley Womens Regatta
This year a coxed 4+ was entered into the new development 4+ event. The crew was Cat Oliver (cox) Hannah Garmston (stroke), Jess Trott (3 seat), Charlotte Siddoway (2 seat) and Finli Ann Jones (bow). A huge amount of training and preparation prior to the event meant that the girls were excited to see what they could achieve, with three of the girls qualifying in the previous year in their first year of rowing. After a tough time trial, unfortunately they placed 18th, only two places away from qualifying. Despite missing out this year, they are hopeful to see what they can achieve for the 2018-19 season.
With qualifiers day arrived, the squad met early to rig and go for a paddle before the qualifying race. The crew of Jordan Simons, Dan Tucker, Jacob Norman, Jack Sawcer, Nicolas Cerulus, Alex Moss, James Brown, James Thorne coxed by Georgia May had a good paddle beforehand. The crew was still confident that a qualifying place was available. With the UK experiencing dry weather the flow on the river was slow meaning conditions were going to be quick. The crew missed out on qualifying by 15 seconds, meaning that the season had come to an end. However, from where the squad had come from at the beginning of the year, everyone was pleased with the progression made and looked forward to what next year would bring.