SCBC Captain Teresa Baron was on the sidelines all afternoon today to watch Selwyn W2, M2 and M3 row the Lent Bumps Getting-On Race- not, unfortunately, due to her overwhelming commitment to the boat club, but because she was drafted by CUCBC to umpire every division as finish timer. This means, though, that she got to watch each crew row past to marshal and then power up the reach to the finish line. It also meant she could snap a few pictures, between recording race times! Here’s what she thought…
M2 was the first Selwyn crew racing today, in Div 1 of the GoR. They rowed confidently downstream to the start line under a bright blue sky, taking a practice rolling start halfway up the reach. I watched them disappear round Ditton, and didn’t see them again for nearly an hour as crew after crew rowed down the reach. In the meantime the wind picked up- a strong 25mph headwind. When Selwyn reappeared they were taking this in their stride, maintaining a strong rhythm as they powered up the middle of the river. Spurred on by the sight of the finish line, cox Will McDermott (subbing in for the race) called for extra power on the drive and the crew visibly sped up, emptying the tank for the last 100m. Perhaps a little messy as they came over the line, but a solid performance from M2. W2 were next, and they rowed downstream with clear determination on their faces. Like M2, they vanished behind Ditton and I was left to wait for them to reappear a little later with the rest of the racing crews. When they did appear, they were valiantly battling against the brutal headwind on the reach, and had Tit Hall hot on their tails. They managed to keep their distance all the way up the reach, motivated by fresher Kenneth McHardy in the cox’s seat, who called for a power 10 just in time to widen the gap just as they flew over the finish line.
M3 raced the Getting-On Race for time only, having been unlucky with a combination of yellow flags and injuries which prevented them from having the 12 outings required by CUCBC to be eligible for Bumps. That didn’t stop them putting in everything they had, though! They may not have been technically perfect (they at least managed to stay mostly together, unlike some lower boats from other crews who quite frankly resembled millipedes, with blades doing mexican waves above the water) but they gave a gutsy performance. A gust of wind hit them halfway up the reach, threatening to send them into the bank, but cox-on-loan Aleka Gürel (our W1 cox) expertly steered them out of harms way and across the finish line.
Great performances from the Selwyn Lower Boats today despite unpleasant racing conditions- we’ll keep you posted on the results!