It’s nice to see the sun shining and the wind disappearing after a busy few days down at Holme Pierrepont, among the changeable conditions 21 crews competed over the bank holiday taking advantage of home advantage at the biggest student regatta in Europe.
There were great performances from every squad, the novices racing in 4’s and 8’s gaining race experience against some truly strong opposition, and the seniors representing each day in heavy and lightweight categories in both intermediate and championship events. The weekend offered the most successful BUCS regatta in recent years, with medals claimed each day, and the bar raised from last years performance.
Saturday’s highlights saw our first two medals brought in by the lightweights, both gaining silver. The women’s double and men’s coxless four raced comfortable time trials and semi finals to put them in good positions for the evening finals, they saw off tough competition and challenge for the top spot the whole way down the course, pushing the opposition to the end.
On Sunday the lightweight women stepped it up a gear and move into the coxless four to try and replicate their men’s squad counterparts, with little time together they gave the spectators a show with a course record in the final, picking up the gold and the second medal for Imogen North and Lucy Gillbanks. In the men’s championship finals the lightweight eight and heavyweight coxless four put together fantastic races to finish in 5th, breaking crews in powerful rows at the end of the day.
With two days behind them the lightweight women took to the water again now in the quad, the main boat for the season, showing little regard for the results so far they stormed through the time trials and semis to take on some of the best in the country in their hardest final yet. With a strong start and impressive pushes the crew pulled away in the middle to put clear water on the opposition, and break another course record as they picked up a third medal and another gold at the event. Also racing Monday the men’s lightweight pair challenged GB trialists for the podium, eventually settling on a fourth place finish in the championship final, just outside of a notable field of athletes.
16 spaces qualified for EUSA, 14 medals, 2 course records, and the best performance by the club in years taking Nottingham higher again on the national stage. We move from BUCS into the summer regattas with EUSA following what is set to be a competitive Henley campaign from both squads.