At the end of 4 days of fantastic racing, Cantabs finished the week with some fantastic results overall. Cantabs entered the most crews of all clubs taking part (11 women’s and 16 men’s – the highest number of men’s crews ever entered by a single club). This year, we gained a total of 35 places across all 27 crews, with W4, M3, M11 and M13 winning blades. M13 bumped into Division 3 for the first time, and W7 and W8 into Division 2 for the first time. We now have 4 women’s and 3 men’s crews in the top 10.
M1 and W1 rowed over to maintain the Double Headship, the first time a club has held a Double Headship since 2003. We now have the highest ranked W1, W2, W3, W4, W8, W9, W10 and W11, and M1, M2, M3, M4, M5, M9, M10, M11 and M12.
At the top of Women’s Division 1, Cantabs W1 had a comfortable row over as Head of the River, with W2 and W3 also having their 4th row overs of the week.
W4 (J16s) got themselves their 4th bump of the week, bumping Robs W1 having bumped Robs W2 on the Thursday. This had them finishing 10th on the river, and winning blades!
In Division 2, W5 (Intermediate Women) got their 2nd bump of the week by catching Champs W3. W6 (J18s) had a clear row over, having started behind W5. Similarly, W7 (Hills Returners/Intermediate Women) and W8 (Hills Road) also rowed over at the bottom of Division 2, having bumped up into it earlier in the week.
Division 3 saw a bump for W9 (Progression Squad) on Champs W6 on First Post Reach. W10 (Racks Out) had an exhilerating row-over, as Jane Gilbert writes:
A disappointing first 3 days left W10 with plenty of energy and determination to fight off Nines W7 (who were hard pressed all the way by Nines W6). In one of those epic row-overs that feels almost better than a bump, they refused to give up and accelerated away from overlaps to stay just ahead, buoyed by terrific support from the bank.
W11 (Hills Learn to Row) bumped Isle of Ely W2 before First Post to finish +2 for the week, an impressive result for a crew who had only learned to row a matter of weeks ago!
Overall the Cantabs women’s crews finished +12 for the week.
At the Head of Men’s Division 1, M1 enjoyed another row over, this time with less pressure as Nines M1 finally bumped St Neots M1 behind them along the Reach. M2 rowed over behind X-Press M1 to finish +1 for the week, and M3 bumped Robs M2 to earn blades. M2 cox Ben Whitelaw said:
We went into Day 4 feeling confident we weren’t going to get bumped as we had caught Rob Roy, the crew chasing us, rather quickly the previous day. We weren’t sure whether we would catch X-Press M1 because they had evaded us on Day 1. We rowed a good, clean piece that was strong from start to finish but unfortunately did not catch X-Press and ended the week with three row overs and a very well deserved bump!
M4 were unlucky to be bumped by City M3 and finished the week level after having bumped Robs M3 on Tuesday.
In Division 2, M5 (Intermediate Men) rowed over behind X-Press M2, finishing +1 for the week. M6 missed out on a 4th bump and blades, after Nines M4 bumped City M5 before they had chance. M7 had their 4th row over of the week.
M8 bumped X-Press M4 after a mixed week which saw them bumped, bumping and being overbumped! M9 got a bump on City M9 to finish +3 for the week, and M10 bumped their City counterparts, too, to also finish +3.
M11 (Past Masters) had a great end to their week, finishing +6 and winning blades after bumping Champs M4 to go with their 2 bumps and overbump from earlier in the week. Ben Peterson said:
We bumped Champs 4 for a Champs hat-trick! We got them just before first post corner after a pretty poor start. Blades!! Well done to the club Captains, organisers and volunteers, it’s been a great experience.
Arguably the stand-out performance of the week has to be that of Hunter Crew (M13) who won blades via bumping up a division, finishing +5 for the week after bumping both Nines M7 and City M12 on the Friday. This was the first time that 7-seat and Club President Mike Hunter has ever won blades in 20-odd years of Bumps racing! M13 bumping also meant that cox Carrie Frazer won TWO sets of blades this year, having also won them by coxing W4!
In Division 4, M12 (Activ8) rowed over, and there was another Cantabs-on-Cantabs bump showing just how hard it is to get the ordering right in the lower divisions! M16 (Motley Crew) bumped M14 (InveterEight) to finish the week +3. Elsewhere in the division, the youngest crew on the river were chasing the oldest crew on the river. After suffering being bumped twice this week, M15 (J15s) were keen to get their first ever bump and had a good start behind the Cambridge Veterans. The Veterans put up a good fight along First Post Reach, though it wasn’t enough, with M15 bumping them before First Post Corner.
Overall the Cantabs men’s crews finished +27 for the week.
Thank you to Bill Amos, Guy Beauchamp and Dave Meredith for the photographs. Thank you also to everyone who volunteered to marshal, bank party, pole off, count down, coach and who ran the races this year for a brilliant Town Bumps and to everyone who works on the Cantabs committee behind the scenes to make it all possible.
You can find full results on the CRA website here.