Lent Bumps 2018: Day 2 W2 Race Report

The second day of Bumps for W2 was even colder than the first, and even in more layers than we could count we were still freezing. When we arrived there was confusion in the boathouse: we had two subs for 6 and no cox. Luckily one had coxed before, so could hop into the stern. We followed her calls well to the P&E; the previous day’s race had clearly had an effect on us, as we were more sat than usual. The biting wind was against us as we rowed up, making each stroke more difficult, but we still arrived to marshal in good time.

We decided that there was no way we could catch Catz – they had bumped us so quickly the day before and had even overtaken us in Newnham Short Course. Our game plan was to row over, hoping we could hold off Downing for long enough for King’s to catch them.

Rowing up to the start, the nerves started to show – when Sarah called for a practice start we caught a crab, though we recovered well.

Mark was at the start alone to greet us, and at 30 seconds to go began pushing us out. He counted 20 seconds to go. Then 10. Then “2, 2, 2, 2!”. 2 took a tap and we came forward as a crew, but we had lost track of time and the cannon firing took us by surprise. The first stroke was weak, though our start gained strength and we began to lengthen. It soon became obvious that Downing was gaining on us. Catz were pulling away in front, and it was seemingly only a matter of seconds before we were bumped. We cleared the river quickly (much more cleanly than on Tuesday), and watched on as other crews raced hard past us.

The results didn’t matter too much to us; as usual our spirits were lifted by just finishing the race. And even in the short time we had rowed that day, we could tell that we had improved as a crew. We rowed back in a mini-blizzard, looking forward to a day off before we could exact our row-venge on Downing.

Phoebe Thomson-Bird, 6

Lent Bumps 2018: Day 1 W3 Race Report

It was the first day of Bumps, and for most of the W3 crew, it was our first time participating in Bumps! Our nervousness was palpable but there was also a lot of optimism in the boat, which stemmed largely from our cox, Hannah. As we pushed off to row down to the Lock, we faced the worst weather possible. It initially began with a strong headwind, which forced us to row even harder, and was quickly followed by a blizzard and hail, which made rowing down for the race even more agonising.

We were made to wait until the M3 race was over, which proved to be a relief because we were able to get out of the boat, stretch and bundle up to survive the freezing temperatures. Once we were given the okay to head down to the marshalling zone, we did so, and met our competitors; we were the last boat in the race, with the sandwich boat being Lucy Cavendish and the boat in front of us being Emmanuel W3. We waited nervously at our station as the countdown began, and once we were pushed out, it became a surreal experience. The cannon went, but no one in our boat began ‘drawing’ until Felicity called for us to draw, which partly was the reason for Lucy Cavendish quickly overtaking us. While we had a good few draws, a few people crabbed, which resulted in us having to quickly drop out, and the girls from Lucy Cav were incredible strong, and were able to bump us in less than half a minute.

As we rowed back to the boat house, we were disappointed, but alas, the weather took a turn for the worst again, forcing us to row through another blizzard. When we got back, our boat was completely covered in snow, resulting in everyone getting completely covered in snow when we lifted to heads. Once we got back for a debrief, we put our heads together and lifted our spirits for the race next day.

Even though our race was short, it was nonetheless a sweet experience. Thank you Nadia and Felicity for training us!

Thaneesha Raveendrakumar, 3

Lent Bumps 2018: Day 1 W2 Race Report

W2 arrived at the boathouse on a gorgeous snowy afternoon on Tuesday, wrapped up super warm and ready to race. We were all feeling pretty nervous – it would be the first time every member of the boat had rowed in Bumps, and we’d all heard the stories of how fun, but also how intense it is.

Following a gentle paddle up to marshalling and some chocolate, we had a good practice start up on Plough Reach, which boosted our confidence. We arrived at the Motorway Bridge, where we spun and waited for the cannon to go off to signal the four-minute mark. We had been told the cannon was loud, but I don’t think any of us had realised quite how loud it actually was, especially as were right next to it! As the one-minute cannon went off, Mark started pushing us out and getting us into position. The countdown continued. We came forward at 10 seconds, squared our blades at 7, and waited for the cannon to go off.

Our start was good, and we managed to get to within a boat length of Jesus in the space of a few strokes. Unfortunately, the Catz crew that was chasing us also started gaining on us. This threw everyone off, meaning the strong, steady rhythm we had started with became a bit frantic, and we were soon bumped by Catz.

While this was a disappointing start to our first ever Bumps campaign, our spirits weren’t too dampened, and we rowed home keeping spectators entertained with rousing show tunes such as ‘Let it Go’, Hakuna Matata’ and ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. This was duly noted in the Umpires’ Notes and Fines… let the history books remember!

“Murray Edwards W2 – Singing in boat – prepare an opera for Saturday’s race”

Tamzin Byrne, 3 and Giulia Bollen Gandolfo, 2

Lent Bumps 2018: Day 4 W1 Race Report

It was Day 4 of Lent Bumps, and Medwards W1 made our way to the start line for the first time this week, after our first two races were cancelled due to the snow.

The start cannon went, and we worked through our start sequence with our race plan in mind. It was the classic fly-or-die, bump-or-get-bumped kind of day, and we had no intention (or hope) of making it much further than Plough. However, after the start sequence finished and we lengthened out we began to realise how naïve we had been – Emma were about to absolutely destroy us and we would be lucky to make it to Grassy! Their whistles began to come thick and fast and we hadn’t even made it to head station. Mark was screaming fractions at us (as if this was a time for us to be doing maths!) as we began to gain on Christ’s, but did it really matter? As we approached First Post Corner, Emma had overlap, and their bow ball getting ever closer to our cox.

However, Alice called for a Power 10 and something in the boat seamed to click, maybe as we realised how embarrassing getting bumped before First Post Corner is (especially if you only started at station 7), and my god we gave it a power 10. For 10 strokes we connected, and we sent together as we refused to give up – that’s just not something Medwards gals really do! And in that moment, as we worked together and pushed around the corner, the gods of rowing looked down on us and gave us their blessing as Emmanuel W1 caught a mighty crab. We watched as their 4-seat blade swung round and they began to drop back. Had we just defeated the beast that was Emmanuel W1? As they struggled to regain control of their crab we realised there was no way they were going to make it round the stroke side corner, and clearly so did they, as we watched all 7 remaining rowing blades stop rowing and restart.

Before we had time to process what had happened, Mark’s shouts returned but with a different tone: we had two whistles on Christ’s and were gaining fast. However, the excitement clearly took control of the crew and we began to panic. Moments ago, bumping Christ’s had seemed like a distant dream but was suddenly going to become a reality, and we clearly just couldn’t handle that as we fell to pieces. The next few strokes to follow were probably some of the worst rowing we had ever done as we struggled to control our excitement. As we approached Grassy we hit overlap and the continuous whistle began.

Suddenly disaster struck as our 4 seat caught a crab. Or had it? Like a ninja, Hannah’s blade was back in and we powered on. Emma were fast approaching again, and we knew we had to make our next move. Alice called for another Power 10 and we got our rhythm back. As we approached the Plough, Emma had closed the gap of about three lengths to just one and their whistle began, but that didn’t matter any more as we heard Mark’s calls to hold it up.

The excitement spread through the boat as nobody was quite sure what had just happened. Had we actually just bumped Christ’s? Had we really just escaped Emmanuel W1? The answer, to everyone’s amazement was in fact YES, we most certainly had!

Tomorrow we will return (weather and ice permitting) and prove what Medwards really can do. Unfortunately, we will now be chasing Emma W1, who went on to over-bump FaT. However, as we just proved, the nature of the beast is that in Bumps, anything can happen… 😉

Taine Ranaghan, 7

The Neptunes January 2018 Volume 9 Issue 2

Find out what we at MECBC got up to in Michaelmas Term 2017! Featured in this issue are articles by rowers from every stage of their training, a coach’s perspective on the term, and lots of dates for your diaries for this term.

The Neptunes October 2017 Volume 9 Issue 1

Find out what MECBC got up to in Easter Term 2017. This issue features articles and interviews by rowers, coxes and coaches alike, updates from our alumnae, and more!

We would also like to add a special welcome to this year’s freshers – we hope you’ve enjoyed Boatie Tea this afternoon, and we would love to see you down at the river!

Murray Edwards Boat Club – Call for Novice Rowers!

Calling All Students Old and New: Murray Edwards College Boat Club is recruiting for our next novice squad, and we need you!

No prior rowing experience needed!

Taster sessions will be held during the first week of term, and we will be hosting a Boaty Tea in the walkway of college on Monday 2nd October, where you can ask us any questions about what being part of MECBC involves.

Sign up here to be part of Cambridge’s most iconic sport, and the biggest sports society Murray Edwards College has to offer: https://goo.gl/forms/Y1YKn2ssspjiyZJ72

In the meantime, if you have any questions, just drop the Lower Boats Captains an email at boatclub-lbc@murrayedwards.cam.ac.uk!

Neptunes Dinner and Pembroke Regatta

Invitations to Neptunes Dinner are out! The dinner will take place on 6th February 2016. RSVP until 21st January by emailing boatclub-socials@murrayedwards.cam.ac.uk.

Pembroke Regatta will take place on the same day and we will be entering at least one MECBC/NHBC alumnae boat. Please contact Reana Maier (rgm37@cam.ac.uk) if you are interested in rowing with us before Friday 22nd January.

We look forward to seeing many of you there.

MECBC Rowers in the Blue Boat 2011

Both Izzi and Tamara have been trialling with CUW this year, and have made the Blue Boat! 

You can view their profiles and follow the run up to the Henley Boat Races on the Blue Boat Blog.
http://www.cuwbc.org/the-boat-race/2011-crews/blue-boat-2011 

We are incredibly proud of both of them. Both noviced at Murray Edwards/New Hall, trained hard and pushed themselves, and have gone from strength to strength. We wish them luck in the upcoming encounter against the dark blues, and it is very likely that we will be organising a trip to London to see the race on the day! Events will be shown on the calendar on the front page. 

To cover the race expenses they are running a Sponsor a Seat campaign, details can be found here:
http://www.cuwbc.org/fundraising/sponsor-a-seat

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