UCL make a splash at Allom Cup

Plenty of success to report from the annual Boat Club meet

allom cup Boat Club london Rowing sport Thames ucl uclbc UCLU

“U-C-L, U-C-L, U-C-L,” we chanted as yet another UCL boat crossed the finish line victorious, on what was an incredibly successful day for UCL Boat Club at the Allom Cup last Saturday.

The Allom Cup is an event held every year for all of the University of London college boat clubs. For us, this was the first time that all four squads had raced together, on the same day, at the same event, causing the deafening roar of ‘U-C-L’ to dominate the day.

Despite the bitter cold and generally grim weather, there was an incredibly vibrant atmosphere at the University of London boathouse, as rowers filled up on mince pies pre-race and mulled wine post-race, and happily surrendered to the Christmas spirit. UCL had entered 11 boats in all 8 categories and came away with an impressive 5 wins.

The Novice Girls were the first to row to gold. After easy wins in their heat and semi-final, the girls defended the title won by UCL’s Novice Girls last year and secured their third consecutive gold of the season.The Novice Boys followed suit in an impressive fashion, winning their final and marking UCL’s second win of the day.

An unfortunate loss by the Women’s Senior VIII to Georges and then by the Women’s IV in a nail-bitingly close race only served to increase the girls’ grit and determination for their following race, the Women’s Intermediate VIII final, which they won with clear water.

As the Men’s Senior IV rowed to gold followed by the Men’s Intermediate VIII, the cheers of UCL on the banks reached earsplitting heights. All that was left was the Men’s Senior VIII, racing for the Allom Cup itself which UCL currently held from last year. From a distance, it was impossible to tell who was in the lead, and even as the boats came directly into our line of view no one quite knew what would happen…

Two boats, 16 blades and 16 men giving everything they possibly could for one final push, one final stroke. And then, silence. We awaited the verdict: Georges win by one foot.

Though we may have missed out on the Allom Cup this year, five UCL wins can hardly be met with disregard. Instead, it will only push us more; hours in the gym, hours on the water. And then, next year, the rematch.