Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Need for Speed.... Peterborough Summer Regatta

Over the Saturday and Sunday, Amy and I visited Peterborough for their Summer Regatta. Amy has switched clubs to City of Cambridge, and I was subbing in to cox another boat for them. The regatta, 1,000m on the Saturday and 500m on the Sunday over 4 lanes, is very exciting and it was great fun to take part. I was coxing an IM2 men's eight, and we didn't have a very good race on Saturday and didn't progress through the heat. Amy, on the other hand, had a great race with her novice women's boat - they won their race and gained the all-important first point, making them no longer officially novices!

 For those who aren't aware, rowing races are overseen by a handicapping points system that places each crew into a variety of categories, from Novice (beginners with no points), Intermediate 3, Intermediate 2, Intermediate 1, Senior, and Elite (Olympic level) so races can be fairly matched.

Video of Amy (in the bow seat, right at the front of the boat- dark blue kit with gold and red stripe) from 8'42" onwards:

 We stayed over in Peterborough with some friends who I was at college with, and on Sunday, had the opportunity for more racing, this time over a fast-and-furious 500m course.

My crew were determined to do a lot better, and we started off suicidally hard and kept the rate (the number of strokes per minute) much higher - above 40 strokes per minute for most of the race, starting at 45, which is pretty high.

Our race was a bit of a friendly grudge match. In the IM2 eights race, there was a Peterborough crew (in the blue and yellow closest to the camera) with a friend of mine, Dave, from college who I'd stayed with the previous night; a Clare Alumni crew, in the blue and yellow, which I was going to cox but didn't; and our crew, with lots of people who knew other rowers in the other boats.

We knew that there'd be a great deal of "friendly" joshing and joking for the crew that lost, and this made us pretty determined to win, which we did, by 5 seats, or about 10m in front of the second-placed crew, Clare.

Amy's crew had a not-so-good race; an equipment failure left them a good deal of distance down off the start, but they managed to recover it and get back most of the distance, but could only make it back to third place before running out of course. Still, a very good effort!

We finished the weekend with a pot - a shiny pewter tankard for winning - each, which are now hanging happily in the boat.

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