Friday 19th July was the last day of Town Bumps 2019, with this day contested by all 4 men’s and 3 women’s divisions. Cantabs crews didn’t disappoint, with some more great bumps and performances.
At the end of 5 days of racing, Cantabs has the Women’s Headship and the highest W2-5 and M2-5. Three of the top 4 women’s crews are Cantabs crews. M2 is placed higher than all but 2 other club’s M1s, which is particularly impressive considering that this year’s M2 was a J18 crew.
W1 rowed over as Head of the River for the third year in a row, finishing over 5L clear of City of Cambridge, who were fighting off a strong challenge from Cantabs W2 (Returners) behind them.
Elsewhere, W3 and W4 both rowed over, W4 (Senior Women) unable to close the gap enough to Nines W1 before they ran out of water. The end of Friday’s racing meant that Cantabs are the first club to ever have 3 crews in the top 4 in the history of women’s eights racing at Town Bumps, with our W4 finishing higher than all other clubs’ W2s. Isabella Mahoney, who stroked W3, said:
The final day saw us push as hard as we could to try close the gap between us and our W2, resulting in a solid row over as we sat confidently in 4th place head of X-Press W1. We all knew going from 6th to 4th was going to be a challenge, but we achieved it with joy and a brilliant team spirit! On behalf of the crew we would like to thank the fantastic support of our coaches and bank parties pushing us along, keeping our belief strong, especially in the nail-biting final pushes of the races!
Division 2 saw W5 (Intermediate Women) race hard starting 2nd to try and catch City W4 to become sandwich boat into Division 1. It was a great race, but unfortunately W5 weren’t able to make the bump, rowing over. W6 (Intermediate Women) were bumped by Nines W5, and W8 (Hills) by Champs W5, though there was some bumping in this division, with W7 (Hills & Returners) catching City W7.
Women’s Captain Ellie Darlington said:
It’s been a really good week for all of our women’s crews, especially the top 5 who came away with some great results. After going up 77 places in the last 5 years, to continue climbing even more was always going to be a massive ask, so I’m really pleased that W3, W4 and W5 were all able to get some bumps on higher ranked crews from other clubs. For 3 of the top 4 women’s crews to all be Cantabs is a fantastic achievement, and really is a testament to both the unrivalled coaching we’re so lucky to have, and the supportive squads we’re all a part of.
Cantabs women’s crews finished as the highest W2, W3, W4 and W5, with promising performances from all of our squads. If you’re interested in finding out more about any of our women’s squads, please contact Ellie.
Men’s Division 1 saw some exciting racing on the final day. M1 went for a ‘fly or die’ approach in a bid to catch Nines W1, committing to the race and getting within 1/4L at one point, but not managing to make the bump, before dropping back.
2 places behind them, the highest placed M2 in the event (Juniors & Hills) raced well to try and catch Robs M1, but ended up rowing over. Elsewhere, M3 (Senior Men) were bumped by Robs M2 after narrowly escaping a bump on Thursday, and M4 (Hills Returners) unfortunately earned spoons when they were bumped by Champs M1.
In Division 2, M5 (Senior Men) rowed over, and M6 (Intermediate Men) were bumped by City M7. The Aquaphobes (M7) earned blades, bumping St Neots 2 to complete a week of bumping every day. Lucio Cicolecchia said:
With 3 bumps already chalked up, the Aquaphobes had the chance of winning blades. Being our 10th Bumps year, though, we knew how many things could go wrong during a race, so nobody mentioned the ‘b word’! We were chasing St Neots, who were fighting hard to avoid spoons. Right from the start, while we kept on station, we could hear them gaining rapidly on City – but we kept our heads and piled on the pressure. By First Post Corner we were on 1 whistle, in the gut we heard the shout of ‘half a length’, and then Emma took one of her brilliant racing lines and we got the bump on Grassy, hearing with great relief the shout to hold it up. So, a hard fought bump and blades! Many thanks to friends in and out of Cantabs who bank partied, especially Phil Gunning who had a great calming influence on us before and during each race – and who brought along the flag, just in case we bladed!
Division 3 saw M8 (Hills) bump Champs M2 to become sandwich boat in Division 2. The Poachers (M9) were bumped by City M10, M10 (Past Masters) rowed over, and the Coaches (M11) were bumped by Chesterton M3.
If you’re interested in finding out more about the men’s squads at Cantabs, please contact the men’s captain.
Thank you to Guy Beauchamp, Bill Amos and Chris Radbone for the photos. You can find more of Guy’s photos on WEROW.