CUWBC beat Oxford Brookes on the Tideway

Cambridge University Women’s Boat Club opened their competitive account for the year against a strong Oxford Brookes crew, in the first women’s fixture of The 2016 Cancer Research UK Boat Race season.

Ahead of this, CUW “B” raced against Oxford Brookes University BC “B” crew, also with 2 solid wins for the light blues.

Race reports from the crews are provided below.

Bow Ashton Brown (Fitzwilliam)
2 Zara Goozee (Downing)
3 Alice Jackson (Homerton)
4 Fiona Macklin (St. John’s)
5 Daphne Martschenko (Magdalene)
6 Thea Zabell (Downing)
7 Hannah Roberts (Jesus)
Stroke Myriam Goudet (Lucy Cavendish)
Cox Rosemary Ostfeld (Hughes Hall)

In piece 1, Cambridge won the toss and chose to race on the Surrey station, while Oxford Brookes raced on Middlesex. Brookes took several seats off the start, but, remaining internally focused through the Fulham bend, Cambridge were able to hold Brookes attempts to take the advantage the bend presented. Cambridge began to gain momentum down the straight towards the Mile Post and past Harrods’ wall and went on to win the piece by a length.

In piece 2, Oxford Brookes chose to race on the Surrey station. Cambridge got off to a better start in the second piece, holding Brookes around their bend, through the last section of the bend as both crews settled into their race rhythms, Cambridge took the momentum and a seat. They capitalised on this as the crews raced into the Middlesex bend stretching their lead out to ¾ length by Barnes Bridge where there was a clash of blades which was handled better by the Cambridge crew, pushing on to stretch their lead out to clear water.

Bow Ellie Hopgood (Girton)
2 Rachel Snow (Churchill)
3 Ruth Allen (Emmanuel)
4 Rachel Elwood (Gonville and Caius)
5 Caroline Habjan (Homerton)
6 Lucy Pike (Trinity Hall)
7 Dorrotya Nagy (Churchill)
Stroke Imogen Grant (Trinity)
Cox Nicole Abernethy (St. Edmund’s)

Before the race there was a balance between nerves and anticipation. We had set ourselves up in a good place following the previous days’ promising outings.
We got off to a strong start off the first ‘Go’, sticking to our plan and keeping it internal in the boat, and slowly inching through Brooks until the black buoy. Settling onto a powerful rhythm gave the whole boat confidence and helped us continue moving through them, pushing them away until the finish.

Lining up for the second start, over half a length down to give Brooks an advantage, we had confidence that this race was ours for the taking-the question was by how much. Our rowing was far from perfect, but a few off strokes didn’t put us off, and we swiftly took the lead, and held it until the end. Overall, this was a great racing experience, consolidating the fierce attitude we had in the boat, and teaching us what we are capable of with such a long way still to go.

The Cancer Research UK Women’s Boat Race will take place on March 27th 2016.