A Decisive Victory for the CULRC Reserves

In Match Reports by Nicholas Rice1 Comment

 Granta (CULRC Reserves)men
1. Jon Swain (Clare)
2. Ed Nash (Caius)
3. Sam Pettinger-Harte (Selwyn)
4. James Wood (Trinity Hall)
5. Jake Rowe (Trinity) Granta Captain
6. Hugo Ventham (Homerton)
7. George Hawkswell (Caius)
8. Nicholas Rice (Magdalene)
c. Juliet Armstrong (Trinity)
Coached by Bob Greatorex


Slightly disappointed by the cancellation of the Eights Head of the River the previous day, Granta readjusted their focus to the reserve VIIIs race at the Henley Boat Races. The cross-headwind against stream conditions were familiar to the crew, who had been training on very similar water on the Tideway in the few days preceding the race. Nephthys won the toss and chose the Buckinghamshire station.

The practise in rough water proved valuable as Granta took 2 seats in the first 150m having had a much cleaner and stronger start. This early lead gave the crew the impetus to keep the pressure on Oxford and by 250m in, Granta were half a length up and moving. Aggressive coxing by both crews saw a slight clash and warnings were issued to both coxes to get back on station. Granta had settled into a race rhythm striking 34 and were a full length up 350m into the race. Superior blade work and length in the water saw the crew continue to take ground on Nephthys. When a length clear, Granta steered ambitiously to take the fast stream, a move which saw the Nephthys cox steer off station to try and force a foul. Nephthys also then suffered the rough water being sent down by the surging Granta crew who were at this stage racing in line. However, the charge from Granta proved too much to handle as they extended their lead by Upper Thames to over a canvas of clear water.

Nephthys attempted to make up some ground by putting in a push just past the Oxford supporter’s camp, but Granta responded and made the greater strength and length in the water count to extend their lead to 2.5 lengths at the Fawley marker. Nephthys were warned and turned sharply to get back onto station, a move which cost them a further half a length which allowed Granta to continue striding away. In the last 250m before the 1750m finish Granta pushed on again, making the final verdict 3.5 lengths.


Leave a Comment