Boat Club look strong at BUCS and UH Head.
The Head season is well and truly upon us. For a rower, this means racing perhaps every other weekend in a different place, on a different river, against different crews. On the 16th of February, UCL Boat Club entered into the wilderness of Boston, Lincolnshire, to compete at BUCS Head. We returned to our familiar River Thames on the following weekend to race the other University of London Colleges at UH Head.
After a last minute change of venue due to flooding, BUCS Head relocated to Boston. University boat clubs from all around the country embarked upon this small and somewhat unlikely town, filling up every hotel and booking every table in every restaurant for the entire weekend. Boston, I’m certain, has never before seen such a boom in their tourist industry.
The first crew of the weekend to race were the Novice Boys. Despite being up at the crack of dawn and having a slightly different crew than before, the boys raced excellently in a difficult category of 41 boats, achieving a 13th place finish. Later that day, the Novice Girls took to the water finishing 5th out of 38 boats, adding another impressive result to the girls’ rowing careers.
The following day was the turn of both the men’s and women’s senior crews. In their IM3 category, the Senior Women finished in 6th place out of 20 other boats; a result which establishes the women as a competitive university crew. The Senior Men ended the weekend in an excellent fashion. With a 7th place finish in the Championship Eights category, the men place themselves amongst the top universities in the country for the rest of the season.
From Boston to London
The proceeding weekend saw UCLBC return to the Thames to race at the UH Head. Despite the snow, freezing temperatures and washy water (the worst), our results show only sunshine and rainbows. The Senior Men’s Eight achieved the fastest time of the race, whilst the men’s Four placed 2nd in their category. The Senior Women won their category, placing them as the second fastest women’s crew of the day. Impressively, the Men’s Novice crews achieved 1st and 2nd, whilst the Women’s second and third crews – some of whom had never raced before – placed 3rd and 4th.
It’s a great feeling when you realise that all those gym sessions, weights and days of rowing in the bitter cold and darkness were worth it. The results of BUCS and UH Head show that UCLBC are on track for the Big Ones; the culmination of all our winter training. And so the countdown begins… The Women’s Eights Head of the River Race takes place on the 9th of March and the Head of the River Race will go ahead on the 23rd. Until then, I guess we’ll see you in the gym.