On the 30th of November, Worrall completed the Fairbairn Cup; ending our Novice odyssey triumphantly. After a term of challenging outings, battling against balance, the elements and our own personal demons, the labour paid off with what can only be described as our finest outing.
On a frosty Thursday afternoon, we pushed through the bitter wind and made our way to Jesus College Boat Club to begin the race. With the wind on our side, we set off with a rolling start, achieving an initial rate of 27 and settling down to 24 strokes per minute for the duration of the race. Staying in the racing line and keeping the power down, we were soon gaining on Queens’ NM3. We tailed them all the way to the Green Dragon Bridge by which point we were close enough to overtake. Choreographing the perfect manoeuvre and pushing off the bridge with a power ten, we thundered past Queens, sliding in front. We stormed ahead towards the railway bridge, preparing for the last leg of the race. After passing the bridge we emptied out with pair pushes and power tens on The Reach, putting down everything we had left, excited by hearing Tim shout that we were starting to gain on the boat ahead, too. We powered on past the finishing line, completing the race in 11.49.8 and coming 4th in our division of 32 boats.
After refuelling we headed home, elated by our success and singing Christmas carols to keep our minds off our chilly toes. All in all, a riveting race, blessed with our best balance yet, plenty of power and camaraderie.