Tag Archives: spring camp

Camp Hard : Spring Camp 2013 : Day 3

20 Apr


So they well and truly ruined us today!

It’s been a long day, and were all in bed early again feeling like we need the sleep. In fact tomorrow we have a lay in – breakfast is at 8.15 – thank the lucky stars!

After yesterday’s drama – being caught down the pub by our coach (i wasn’t even boozing like the rest!) – he’d told us we wouldn’t be rowing today, but when he finally turned up to the club, he seemed fairly cheerful and in a good mood. He told us that what happened would be forgotten about, but that he would make us pay for it today – and that he certainly did!!

Racing Starts

We had a long steady rate 18 row up to the weir and back, with a short break before getting back out there to practice roll ups, and racing starts. Mid session a footplate came off, and so we came back to the club to fix it and in doing so our cox took us to the pontoon slightly too quickly and took part of the bottom of the boat off!

Anyway! We got back in the boat and back out to row for another forty minutes or so before being told we would be racing! Not only was this sprung on us, but the fact it would be against the women’s four, we became ratty defeatist pretty quickly!

Anyway, with gritted teeth we sat ready,

‘Thames Four, Thames Eight … Ready … Attention … GO!!!’.

We hit off to a great start.

A bit like sitting at the lights next to another car though, over the first few strokes the lighter boat with the fewer bodies shot off a little quicker than our eight, but once we got through our racing-start drill of 8 3/4 slide draw-ups, and started to lengthen out we soon caught up, came level, and finally overtook them.
As we got to the finish point, I looked over to see the other boat slumped and looking pretty exhausted, pulling in just behind us. We were all pretty surprised we managed to keep up the pace, and keep them off us right to the finish.

As we turned around to come back down we noticed all the other boats sat waiting to race, lining the banks of the river. It seemed funny, seeing as in the races we’ve had before all of the other boats marshalling have been from other clubs.
Like chavs, it seems the other crews cruised up and down the stretch of river picking races against other boats!

Unfortunately we didn’t get to see any of the boys’ crews racing, and not long after turning we pulled up against the pair in the scull. It turned out they had been left out of the coaching that morning, and that they hadn’t been involved in any of the racing too, so we set up to race them.

Ted explained to them how to manage a racing start, and lined us up. We set off with four or five good strokes, and before we knew it, we were hit by the pair. Having kept my eyes in the boat, I didn’t see them, and so had no idea they were getting close, so it wasn’t until my blade struck the boat that I realised, and by then I was unable to get it out of the way, and unfortunately was forced up and over their boats, and subsequently over their heads. For a second it looked like the pair were going to roll in off their boat, but they kept hold of their blades as we managed to pull away from them and they kept themselves afloat.

Once the pair had calmed down, we had a couple more racing starts with them, before moving onto racing the boys eight – of which we lost to.

After all the excitement we had a gentle paddle back up to the club, followed by lunch out in the sun, before heading to the train station for Henley.

Henley Rowing Club


Once in Henley, we headed straight for the club, where we dropped off our kit and made a swift change before the boys were sent off on their outing. Us girls – led by Ted! – went off for ice creams, and then walked the course of Henley. We saw the boys go by and cheered them from the banks, had a few photos taken and then headed back to the club for our outings.

Jon had arranged for us to borrow Henley’s boats, and so the first eight took the sweep and my crew took one of the two octuplets that had been lent to us for the afternoon.
Tim was our cox, and we left the club and headed out towards the town centre – by all of the riverside pubs that at the time were swamped with sunseekers! – for the start of the race course.

The row up was a bit wobbly – not all in the boat had sculled before, and so for the first kilometer or so the blades were kept running on top of the water, but as we got out passed the town centre Tim pushed us to keep the blades off of the water.
As we got to the beginning of the course we came across Ted on his bike, who cycled beside the river to coach us.

It was a really nice outing, but given the effort and energy spent earlier in the day, you could feel the slump in the boat, as it chuffed along! Tim kept pushing for us to get our legs down, and send the boat away … there wasn’t much send!! There was nothing left in the tank, and by this point most of us were exhausted and really aching. I especially felt it in my back, and with sculling having a straight upright back usually comes quite naturally for me, however I was really struggling to keep upright!

Tim gave us multiple options as we got close to the end of the course, however our stroke decided it was too much for her back and so we headed back to the club.

As our outing had been shorter than planned, we then had the option of either getting an earlier train or staying in Henley for another hour. And so to the pub we went!

Diet cokes, home for dinner, and bed!

So a few us headed to the pub – Angel on the Bridge, for a cheeky diet coke, and to soak in the sunshine before heading back to the hostel. We had a good giggle, and Ted told us more about  his experiences at Henley when he raced.

Once again, an early night in Room 5 – we’re all exhausted and the evening has flown by.

Bed at 10.30pm!


Camp Hard : Spring Camp 2013 : Day 1

18 Apr

So were all in bed, getting some zzz’s ready for what looks set to be a long day tomorrow!

Today started off with the rigging of boats, followed by a short outing, lunch, another outing and then over to the hostel to unpack, before returning to the club for a third outing at 6, dinner at the hostel at 9, and now in bed for half 10!

5 Day Camp Plan


Camp Hard : Packing!

16 Apr

5 hours later, I’m home after helping pack the twenty-something boats we seem to be taking on camp with us!

It’s been a long evening, and I’m sure were all thinking the same thing – we’re bound to have forgotten something!!

Anyway, only two sleeps before camp!! 🙂

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