You are browsing the archive for 2009 November.

Novices Denied Their Manifest Destiny

November 30, 2009 in Captain's Blog

As too often happens in Michaelmas, another set of novices were left frustrated in 7th week, as Christ Church Regatta was once again cancelled, this time after just one day of racing. This year the Red and Blue crews have particular cause for frustration as both had, after clearing their afternoons as well as mornings to make room for outings, proved themselves to be amongst the fastest on the river the previous weekend at the Nephthys Head and Regatta: Red, deprived of their stern pair by a blown-out knee and a diplomatic mission to China still came second in the Head race, losing to New College by 2 seconds, but comfortably beating 10 other men’s novice crews, not to mention Balliol W1. Their internecine rivals, Blue, were denied of victory in the Regatta by a blade that snapped half way down the course in the semi-final, losing out to eventual winners Trinity. Definitive proof of Trinity’s sabotage has yet to be uncovered.

These strong results were the core of Balliol’s success as the Victor Ludorum of the Nephthys weekend.

With the river still at red flag, the question that has sparked much heated debate over the term, “who’s faster, Red or Blue?” was settled at our annual Christ Church Dinner with a boat race, in which the members of Blue managed to drain their glasses at a pace that Red could only dream to keep up with.

With both Red and Blue cruelly denied the Christ Church trophy, and Greene a chance to prove their worth, training for Torpids has already begun in earnest. Trials for M1, M2, and M3 are now underway, and with three sets of blades up for grabs and nearly five boats’ worth of oarsmen all hungry for glory (including plenty of novices wanting to challenge for a seat in the top boat), competition for seats is already hotting up…

The End Of A Promising Term

November 30, 2009 in Captain's Blog

Despite some early setbacks I think all would agree that this term has laid some strong foundations for our Headship campaign next summer.

After a strong recruitement drive for new rowers at the start of term we easily filled two novice boats. The girls were all dedicated and enthusiastic which made them a pleasure to work with. Despite disappointments in the cancelling of Christ Church regatta, we are strengthened by the knowledge that our crews were undefeated! Special thanks must be directed towards the two vice captains, Kirsty Duffy and Anja Hayen, without whom the novice training programme would not have existed. Christina Schoenbach, an ex-blue and ex-vice captain herself, kindly agreed to coach the A crew. With this strong foundation several of the the strongest and keenest novices also attended senior squad outings at Godstow (coached by Nick Bevan) to give them a taster of things to come.

At the start of this term the senior squad looked worryingly thin on the ground, due to several experienced girls leaving and others off sick. However, this gave a good opportunity for girls from last year’s W2 and W3 boats to move up into the 1st boat (more specifically our lovely Empacher, Happy Rogers) and experience Nick’s exceptional coaching.

Last week myself and both vice captains benefited enormously from attending a GB rowing technique workshop organised by British Rowing (formerly the ARA) and lead by Steve Gunn (one of the Team GB coaches). This focussed on novel ways to coach technique on the ergs, as well as how to objectively test which muscle groups require more training. We immediately started to implement our new-found knowledge into everyday training and are already seeing benefits in increased power output and greater core muscle stability.

BCBC is also proud to keep up our tradition of supporting the University squads: this term Nehaal Bajwa has been trialling with OUWLRC, whilst after a short break from last year’s boat race both Jo Williamson and Christina Schoenbach are now thinking of returning to OUWBC after the vacation to compete in another. I will keep you posted on their progress!

I hope that everyone has an enjoyable Christmas and look forwarded to keeping you updated with our progree in 2010.

Elizabeth Mumford, BCBC Women’s Captain

Christ Church Regatta Cancelled Due To Bad Weather

November 28, 2009 in Captain's Blog

After a hard term’s training and some promising results in the Nephthy’s races, we were all frustrated that poor weather conditions (and in particular the high winds) resulted in all but the first day being called off.

In particular it was a shame that the severe delays on Wednesday meant that the women’s novice B crew did not get a chance to race at all, despite waiting at the boathouse in the cold all afternoon.

The remaining women’s novice A crew and all three men’s boats did us proud, most winning their races by a sound margin.

Several bystanders commented to me on the day that this year’s novices at Balliol are the strongest, and have the best technique, that they have seen in recent years. We all hope that this early setback in the year’s racing calender will not deter our new rowers from keeping up the sport after the vacation, when it is certain we will come back and dominate Torpids as in previous years.

BCBC Wins The Victor Ludorum Trophy

November 23, 2009 in Captain's Blog

After a very successful two days racing in Nephthy’s Head and Regatta, organised by OULRC, it came as no suprise that Balliol were the proud winners of the trophy for best overall performace (beating the closest college, Exeter, by 6 points).

A special well done to all our novice crews, for who it was their first experience of racing. The women’s novice A boat came 2nd in the head race and reached the quarter finals of the regatta, showing ngreat promise for Christ Church Regatta in 7th week.

The women’s senior boat also did well; despite a disappointingly low turn out of competitors we were still proud by the extent to which we won the regatta (several lengths over a very short course). This was helped along, I’m sure, by the Alice’s call to imagine ourselves at the Head of the River on the last day of Summer VIIIs.

All of the men’s crews performed strongly, especially considering in one crew a blade snapped early on in the race.

We all look forward to eating our Soreen maltloaf prizes!

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by Admin

30 Years Of Rowing

November 21, 2009 in John Blacker Society

On Saturday 21st November six of the eight of the first ever women’s eight got back on the water as part of the celebrations of 30 years of women at Balliol.

As we walked down to the river, there was much talk from the crew of ’79 about how embarrassing this reunion was going to be – fears that they would have forgotten how to row, possibly that they would manage to capsize the boat. Within the first few strokes it was, however, clear that their rowing technique had survived the test of time. The two current W1 girls subbing in were, in fact, worried that they were being shown up.

Comparing notes on how rowing at Balliol had changed, we current girls were struggling to imagine rowing training without ergs. The crew of ’79 were delighted to learn that Steve the boatman was still Steve the boatman. All were pleased to learn that both then and now, BCWBC is a multiple blade winning club. A lovely time was had by all. Here’s to the next 30 years of women’s rowing at Balliol.

The rowers were Rebecca Hardy, Cressida Dick, Catherine Milsum, Margaret Quinn, Jane Edmondson and Susan Harnett. Debbie, cox of one of the first women’s eights, was bankriding.

ourcs: Please spread the word.

November 1, 2009 in Torpids 2010

ourcs: Please spread the word.

ourcs: We are planning to run Autumn Fours but with only X and S coxes. Crews must spin at Donny Bridge & quick starts may be used.

November 1, 2009 in Torpids 2010

ourcs: We are planning to run Autumn Fours but with only X and S coxes. Crews must spin at Donny Bridge & quick starts may be used.