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W1 - Day 3

Posted: Friday 27 February 2009, 10:08PM by James Gill


W1 post bump

Report by Beth Parker

Bumped Pembroke II

After 2 days of quick bumps we knew we were in for a harder row today; Pembroke II were much quicker than the crews we had been chasing the previous two days and we knew they would be out to catch Robinson in front of them quickly. We had a solid start but from the bows I could hear whistles for the boat in front of us along first post reach. We managed to get our first whistle not long after which seemed to give us an extra push, which, combined with an excellent line around first post corner from our cox, helped us to gain on Pembroke. They, however, were still hot on the heels of Robinson and it took another sterling line around grassy from our cox and some strong pushes for ten to keep the pressure on Pembroke. Calls from our bank party of “You have to get them now girls, GO NOW!!” followed by a resilient ‘up-2’ call along plough reach made quite a difference to the state of affairs. The boat lifted and as two whistles were sounded the determination really kicked in with three whistles being heard shortly after. One final tight corner from our cox really finished off the race as we bumped not long after Ditton corner. This bump had been hard to come by but was definitely worth the pain!

Edited on Sat, 28th Feb 09 by James Gill

W2 - Day 2

Posted: Thursday 26 February 2009, 9:57PM by Lisa Meegan


Bumped Pembroke III

Report by Tasha Scott

After an unexciting row over on Tuesday, W2 gathered at the boathouse ready to give their all. We were to be chasing Pembroke III, who had been bumped quite convincingly by Christs II the previous day. After warming up we marshalled and watched a triumphant M2 row past, making us more determined to achieve an up one.

After being mistaken for W3 and told to marshal in the wrong place, we managed to row up in vaguely the right order, although unfortunately not hot on Emma III’s tail (the crew who were to be chasing us) and spun to park. A longer than usual wait enabled everyone to be ready for the start, with many reminders from Mhairi to de-kit and sort footplates early, even though Robyn was no longer with us.

The cannons sounded and we took a steady start, Emma III managing to hold on to us. However, we soon pulled away from them in anticipation of a bump on Pembroke. Hearing whistles from the bank spurred us on, as well as numerous powers for ten called for by Mhairi. We pursed Pembroke III down first post reach, eagerly listening for more whistles, and on constant whistles found a final few ‘kill’ strokes to complete our task.

A few clearing issues had us mounting the bank, with an interesting effect on poor Roger Andrew, captured nicely by the Jet Photographic man. We were all extremely happy though, and even screams of ‘Shit, there’s a hole in the boat’ could not dampen our spirits. Collecting greenery, we proceeded to row home very solidly, hoping Tim would not be too angry. All in all, a good day for W2, with revenge on Pembroke for denying us any real first day bumping opportunity. Let’s hope we can make an imprint on Clare Hall I tomorrow!!!

M2 - Day 3

Posted: Thursday 26 February 2009, 4:23PM by James Gill


Report by Henry Scarlett

Row Over

Day 3 for M2 was probably the most comfortable day for the crew in many respects; we knew that the crew chasing us, Downing III, whom we had bumped on the previous day, were not going to be challenging us at all as they were a slower crew than us and being chased by a decent second boat from ARU. We were also sure in our minds that we had a quicker start than the crew we were chasing, Hughes Hall, who had been spared a bump from us on Day 1 by a decision from the umpires. As predicted, we had another one of the consistently quick starts that we have displayed this Lents, gaining to within a length of Hughes Hall. Unfortunately the crew in front of them, Clare Hall, who are eligible for spoons, crashed into the bank and so Hughes Hall had made an easy bump. On top of this, Kings II who started in front of Clare Hall bumped Queens III meaning that an over-bump for us was also impossible. All that remained for us to do was to make it to The Railings without Homerton II over-bumping us (ARU II predictably had bumped Downing III). This proved to be an easy task and as we came around Ditton we were able to row across the finish line leisurely at a rating of about 24s/m. Although frustrating that Hughes Hall managed to escape our bow yet again through no lack of speed on our part, we are set up for what should be a very successful Day 4 when we hope to bump Clare Hall and ensure they are awarded spoons.

Edited on Thu, 26th Feb 09 by James Gill

M2 - Day 2

Posted: Wednesday 25 February 2009, 4:56PM by James Gill


M2 at the end of the second day

Report by Henry Scarlett

Bumped Downing III

Going into Day 2, we felt confident of a bump against Downing III who had been bumped by Hughes Hall, whom we had held ground with before our premature finish to the race the previous day. As on the previous day, the crew had a brilliant start getting within a length of Downing III almost from the offset. Entering The Gut we had closed to within half a length of Downing III, and on top of that ARU II, the boat chasing us, had taken a very wide line around 1st Post Corner, unlike the Schumacherian line taken by our cox, Sam Tan. Approaching Grassy we gradually overlapped and Downing III’s cox finally conceded. Grabbing greenery as soon as we had cleared the river, we enjoyed our first row back after a bump this Lents. Tomorrow we hope to finish what we started on Day 1 with Hughes Hall, and that the umpire won’t save them from us again.

Edited on Wed, 25th Feb 09 by James Gill

M2 - Day 1

Posted: Wednesday 25 February 2009, 4:54PM by James Gill


Report by Henry Scarlett

Technical Row Over

Day 1 of Bumps for M2, although not the race of our dreams, proved to be a very encouraging start to this year’s Lents. With it being the first bumps ever for over half the crew and the culmination of a term’s hard work, the crew certainly had a lot to prove. Starting tenth in Division 4, the boat was behind Hughes Hall first boat and in front of Selwyn III in the starting line up.

Sidney had a great start from under the motorway bridge, gaining half a length on Hughes Hall very quickly and making ground between them and Selwyn III at an impressive rate. Unfortunately before we could capitalise on this start, Selwyn were bumped by Anglia Ruskin II just after the motorway bridge due to their cox’s peculiar decision to row in diagonal lines from one side of the river to the other. This bump created chaos amongst the boats behind and so the chief umpire made the decision to halt the back half of the division, including Sidney despite the fact the boat was well clear of the unfolding carnage behind.

Whilst disappointing that we were unable to finish the job off with Hughes Hall, who ended up bumping Downing III, it resulted in Sidney being awarded a technical row over before entering The Gut and thus avoiding the possibility of a tiring row over on the first day, and looking knackered in front of the women crews marshalling/ogling at us by the finish. The crew goes into Day 2 in front of ARU II, chasing Downing III. Many thanks must go to Rich Hughes and EC Gill for subbing in at stroke and 2 respectively.

Edited on Wed, 25th Feb 09 by James Gill

W2 - Day 1

Posted: Wednesday 25 February 2009, 8:33AM by Lisa Meegan


Rowed Over

Report by Mhairi McNeill

It was with the thought of last year's bumps success that the members of W2 turned up anxiously at the boathouse. After a motivational speech from Joe, we pushed off, aware that the row ahead of us might not be the easiest. Boat ten in the third division, we were chasing a strong Christ's II, who rather unfortunately for us were chasing the rather unimpressive Pembroke III.

Our practice start under the railway bridge was described as the 'worst ever' but a second attempt at the plough fared much better and it was with confidence that we paddled up to the start line, hard on the heels of Trinity Hall, who later would be chasing us. At our station Robyn decided at the 4 minute gun that she needed the bathroom, changed her mind, and adjusted her footplates instead. With less than 30 seconds to go, as we were being pushed out from the bank, the screws still wouldn't tighten. Luckily we got it back just in time, heard Veronica call 5 seconds, and were rather surprised by the almost immediate cannon. The start wasn't our best, but was reasonable with the girls both winding and settling high. Christ's drew away slightly off the start, and despite our best efforts to catch up, were quick to bump out Pembroke III just before first post corner. With Trinity Hall nowhere to be seen, we rowed on hard, aiming for the over bump on Queens. We gained to within 2 and a half lengths, but it wasn't to be, with Queens bumping out in front just out of grassy. Disappointedly, but not unexpectedly, we rowed over.

With one of the stronger crews in the division immediately in front and chasing a far poorer boat, we knew we would be lucky to bump on the first day. Conservative predictions were for a row-over, and setting out what we achieved to, W2 rowed home fairly happy, excited by the prospect of chasing Pembroke III tomorrow and hoping for our first bump! A great row from the girls, who maintained the boat speed and pressure the entire length of the course, despite an unlucky draw leaving us neither chasing nor being chased!

Edited on Wed, 25th Feb 09 by Lisa Meegan

W1 - Day 1

Posted: Tuesday 24 February 2009, 11:25PM by Lisa Meegan


Bumped Anglia Ruskin

Arriving at the boat house today, I'd have been lying if I'd said revenge wasn't somewhere in the back of my mind - and I think the other four crew members who'd been in W1 last Lents would have agreed. Two places ahead of us, a very poor CCAT boat had given an easy get-out to every crew we chased, and faced with the prospect of a long, hard row over, we'd cracked under the pressure three days out of four. Only on the last day had we produced what we should have been capable of from day one, setting up this year's first day encounter with CCAT (now Anglia Ruskin). Finally, we had the chance to put last year (and ARU) firmly behind us!

The term's racing so far suggested a bump should be all but certain, but then this is Bumps and nothing is ever that easy! Ahead of Anglia Ruskin, Pembroke II were a concern, and we knew we had to get to ARU before they got to Pembroke. The row up was tidy, with a couple of decent practice starts, but this didn't stop the nerves at the one minute gun.

The start wasn't our best but still felt pretty quick, and behind us Caius II were vanishing fast. We wound to 43 (our best all term!), and by the time we reached our stride we were already approaching our first whistle. The wash made things difficult, and we didn't settle as well as we had in training, but the whistles were now coming thick and fast as our bank party all tried to out-do each other! Two whistles quickly became three, and three continuous, and one and half kill calls later the job was done. For the first time in several years, W1 were able to row home with greenery on the first day of Bumps, and we will be hoping for a repeat performance later in the week!

Lents 2009 Getting On Race

Posted: Saturday 21 February 2009, 7:39PM by Mike Marsh


On Friday three SSBC crews, M3, M4 and W3, took to the water to race 2000m to 'get on' to the Bumps.

All three crews put in very creditable performances against stiff oppostition in one of the most heavily oversubscribed Getting-On races in some time.

Unfortunately, despite very strong rows from the two crews, M3 and M4 did not quite manage the time required to get in one of the eight available qualifying spots. However, W3 put in a storming performance to qualify as one of the six fastest women's crews racing and earn their place, joining W2 in the 3rd women's division.

Results for the Men's Getting-On Race were as follows:

Qualifying crews (in no particular order):

1. Homerton II
3. Churchill III
4. Christ's III
5. Corpus Christi II
6. Magdalene III
8. Christ's IV

Non-qualifying crews (in time order):

Darwin II 08:25
Pembroke III 08:28
Hughes Hall II 08:28
Wolfson III 08:28
King's III 08:31
Sidney Sussex III 08:32
Anglia Ruskin III 08:39
St Edmund's II 08:52
First and Third V 08:52
Fitzwilliam III 08:53
Magdalene IV 08:55
Sidney Sussex IV 09:11
Jesus IV 09:14
Homerton III 09:19
Girton III 09:24

Results for the Women's Getting-On Race were as follows:

Qualifying crews (in no particular order):

1. Downing II
2. St. Catharine's II
3. Magdalene II
4. Sidney Sussex III
5. Fitzwilliam II
6. Churchill II

Non-qualifying crews (in time order):

Christ's III 09:41
Homerton III 09:44
Queens' III 09:45
Hughes Hall/Lucy Cavendish II 09:53
Emmanuel III 09:55
Emmanuel IV 10:01
Lady Margaret III 10:11
Downing III 10:22
Anglia Ruskin III 10:38
King's III 10:48

Lent Bumps 2009

Posted: Thursday 19 February 2009, 3:46PM by Mike Marsh


It's that time of year again...

Best of luck to all those competing, in particular M3, M4 and W3 competing in the getting-on race on Friday.

Actual racing times are as follows:


Tue - 4:40pm
Thu - 3:20pm
Fri - 3:20pm
Sat - 3:20pm


Tue - 4:00pm
Thu - 2:40pm
Fri - 2:40pm
Sat - 2:40pm


Tue - 2:00pm
Wed - 2:00pm
Thu - 2:00pm
Sat - 12:40pm


Tue - 2:40pm
Wed - 2:40pm
Fri - 1:20pm
Sat - 1:20pm

and should they get on:


Tue - 2:40pm
Wed - 2:40pm
Fri - 1:20pm
Sat - 1:20pm

*M3 and M4*

Tue - 2:00pm
Wed - 2:00pm
Thu - 2:00pm
Sat - 12:40pm


Edited on Sun, 22nd Feb 09 by Joe Payton

Fairbairns - W3

Posted: Tuesday 30 December 2008, 9:24PM by Lisa Meegan


After losing four crew members to everything from a head injury to an interview at Buckingham Palace, Kirsty, Elin, Rhiannon and Emily from W3 were still so keen to row Fairbairns they begged me to let them enter in a IV. Despite rowing in Sidney's old, heavy wooden IV, Cambelles, with a stroke actually rowing on the wrong side, the girls produced a gutsy row and more than earnt their right to attend BCD!

Report by Elin Gosby:

Once upon a time, in a far off place called Sidney, in the land of Cambridge there lived a crew of boaties. The crew was called W3 and in the crew there were 3 big boaties (who had rowed quite a lot) 3 middle-sized boaties (who had rowed for a term) and 2 baby boaties (who hadn't rowed at all). The crew wanted to row, but had no one to teach them. Then down swooped their Fairy Godmother who said that she would brave the cold and the early mornings to teach them and that when she wasn’t there, the Great Coach-Man would help them. The crew were very grateful.

Slowly the crew learned to row and fought off the cold and tiredness that frequently attacked them. The crew was often attacked by the evil yellow-flag monster but luckily the text-fairy warned them so they could all stay in bed and the crew were grateful. Every week the crew fought a swarm of Ergs – those creatures that every boatie learns to fear and dread – but each week they were successful despite the battle being so early in the morning. Though the battles were hard, the crew improved and grew in power and togetherness. A great camaraderie developed between the crew and they always sought ways in which to help each other. The greatest of these were the word searches and anagrams for when they were stuck in traffic as well as the group song “out of touch, out of time”. Thus the crew learned to row together and (vaguely) in time. They were pleased when the Great Couch-Man told them that they were shit “but not that shit”.

Then one day the crew decided to face the First Challenge, whose name is Winter Head. Winter Head was a very hard challenge, because the crew had not faced a Challenge before and neither the Great Coach-Man or the Fairy Godmother could come. However, a kind Mummy-Boatie helped them by shouting encouragement from the bank and by giving them yummy things to eat. Just before the challenge one of the boaties had a Big Problem: she was locked out of her personal boat house and had only her slippers, which were not suitable for rowing in. But the magic cox-fairy swooped down and gave the boatie her shoes and so she could row. And the cox-fairy was very warm in the slippers. Before the challenge they crew were very scared but the Cox-Fairy sang to them and soothed their nerves and the crew did well, despite one boatie’s blade trying to run away.

The crew then felt ready to face the Second Challenge. This Second Challenge was called Fairbairns and was far harder than the First Challenge but the crew were determined to try it for that evening there was to be a Great Feast at the Castle of Lady Francis of Sidney and it would be better if they had completed the Challenge. But then, disaster! An evil wizard named Colin cursed the boat and terrible things befell its members: one was summoned by the queen, another was seized by an enormous giant and dropped on her head, another was given an evil potion by the evil imp of illness and became very sick and the fourth was held prisoner by an evil Supervisor-monster. Only four boaties remained, but they were determined to face the Challenge so they could go with glory to the Great Feast and also so they could wear the pretty costumes they had bought. Thus, with the help of the Cox-Fairy, they begged the Text-Fairy to help them. The kind Text-Fairy persuaded Jesus to let them face the challenge as a four and Jesus said yes, however this was not the end of the obstacles in front of W3. The boat they were allowed to use was old and heavy and had no cox-box or ratemeter to help the poor boaties and the boaties had weird sized feet so the shoes did not fit: the boatie with the smallest feet had to use gloves to make hers fit and the boatie with the biggest feet got sore toes. The curse even hit the boat the crew were meant to be rowing in before the curse hit four of their members and the novices crashed poor Tominox. Up and down the land people mourned for the loss of Tominox.

On the day of the Challenge the crew were excited but scared, as they missed their friends and had never rowed without them. But then out of the distance there rode a great host: Mummy and Daddy boaties, the Text-Fairy and the Fairy Godmother as well as two non-boaties all came, and they were known as the Bank Party. The crew felt very loved and became less scared. The Challenge was hard for the little boaties for the others who were doing the Challenge were far more experienced and had rowed in a four before. The boat was very old and hard to balance and the boaties were frequently attacked by shoals of River-Crabs but the boaties persevered and defeated the Challenge. As a sign of their success, the Cox-Fairy was presented with a cloak of finely-wrought silver to wear to row home in. The return journey was hard as the boaties were very tired and cold but they were encouraged by the thought of their achievement and of the yummy food that was waiting for them at the Boathouse. When they arrived they were very pleased that the boaties held prisoner by the evil Supervisor-monster had managed to escape and had come to meet them, and also that they received much help in getting the boat out of the water, for they would not have been able to do it by themselves. They all ate much chocolate and felt better.

That night at the Great Feast they were reunited with the rest of the crew and much merriment was enjoyed by all.

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