Huntingdon head, 2015

The Huntingdon head was something of a mixed experience for us.  The ladies did well, winning pots as VIII and IV+, in 16:51 (fastest women's crew) and 18:51. The men however suffered from an incomprehensibly stupid draw (who puts a 2- in front of an VIII?) and had to settle for 4th place in 15:15. But as Simon E said, one of the men won two pots. Division 1 was still, grey, but dry. Division 2 was a little wet, I understand.

Simon E (cox); Anne, Annie, Jo, Meg.

Simon E (cox); Anne, Annie, Jo, Meg.

The men's row wasn't our finest - we rated 32 for most of the course, and would probably have been faster at a longer 30 - but it was quite decent. Unfortunately the aforesaid 2- was ahead of us, and we left it a large gap (alas either not large enough, or too long: with a small gap we'd have got past in the first 2 k where you can overtake) which lead to us overtaking it - on the fourth attempt - towards the end of the course (one, two, three, at last). And then there were the comedy ducks (just as we'd got past the pair, James called us "OK, settle down now, concentrate, our race...").

How much time did the draw / pair lose us? We'll never know for sure. My estimates range from 1:30 (looking at the GPS track) to a rather conservative 0:45 based on a rough guess at splits. Just 1:00 would have won us the event, which is frustrating.

Crew: Me, Dan McGreal, Simon Lloyd, Steven Andrews, Simon Green, Mike Prior-Jones, Brian Stevens, Keith Lee. Cox: Mr Tidy.

Trailering by Mr Emmings; our thanks again.

Notes on the course: its a nice place to row, and fairly close to Cambridge, so it was good to go and see it. If you're going to overtake, do it in the first 2k or so, after that its a nightmare. The course is 3800 m not 4k. Slightly regrettably the boating stage, which will take one VIII, is just on the course side of the finish line, so everyone stacks up around the town bridge waiting for the division to finish before they can de-boat. If I were them, I'd buoy off a thin channel so that people can sneak back off while the race is still on.