Jorvik BC vs. UYBC 2011

Following a month of intense preparation, primarily involving email exchanges entitled ‘Pain Train’ and ‘Smack Down’, the first ever Jorvik BC crew arrived at Henley Rowing Club with one sole purpose – not to embarrass themselves! Despite everyone turning up on time (a rarity for many of those present), the Race was instantly in jeopardy with only 7 of the UYBC VIII available. Thankfully Jorvik’s 2-man Dan Steele agreed to jump into the UYBC boat, while Henley RC regular Tom Cannon put himself forward (after the promise of a free BBQ and a brand new Jorvik BC Singlet) as a last minute replacement.

The crew tentatively got the boat out onto trestles and spent a solid 20 minutes faffing, before actually plucking up the courage to put it on the water. With no cox box to speak of, it was agreed that calls would be bellowed by James Padmore in the 6 seat and the crew pushed off, much to the delight of Matt Richardson, Conor Cooling, Angus Allison and Matt Hepworth, none of whom had stepped foot in a boat for at least 5 years. After a timid warm up in fours and then all eight the crew got down to business – practice starts – before paddling up to the beginning of the 400m course.

Led by the stern pair of Ben ‘time on the slide is time wasted’ Knowles and Tom ‘rate is my friend’ Carter, Jorvik went off at what can only be described as a short, stabby and frantic rate of 49, before settling to a slightly more ‘conservative’ 42. Despite cox Jen Maxfield’s best efforts at motivating the crew, the race plan of getting out in front off the start hadn’t quite worked and at half-way Jorvik found themselves a man down to UYBC. Fortunately the crew had one secret weapon stashed away in their arsenal, the call for a push to end all pushes – ‘Hammer Time!’ As discussed before the race, when Hammer Time was called the crew would go ‘potty’ for 10 strokes and get the rate up as high as they possibly could. Jorvik responded as best they could and coming into the last 100m they had drawn back level with UYBC. With the end in sight Jorvik went for one final ‘Hammer Time’ call. Once again, the rate rose and the strokes became shorter. The crew dug deep, closed their eyes and hung on for dear life as they prayed for the finish line before they inevitably blew. As they crossed the finish both crews initially celebrated convinced of their victory, but after analysing the photo finish and referring the result to the non-existent race umpire, the race was declared a ‘dead heat’. Thankfully for Jorvik’s sake a re-row wasn’t requested so all that was left were the mandatory gun-show team photos and recovery beers and burgers. May this be the first of many UYBC vs. Jorvik races. Crew lists and photos below:

Jorvik BC:
Cox – Jen Maxfield (Graduated 2007)
Stk – Ben Knowles (Grad 2007)
7 – Tom Carter (Grad 2003)
6 – James Padmore (Grad 2006)
5 – Matt Hepworth (Grad 2005)
4 – Angus Allison (Grad 2005)
3 – Conor Cooling (Grad 2007)
2 – Tom Cannon (Henley RC)
Bow – Matt Richardson (Grad 1988)

UYBC:Cox – Roz Wood
Stk – Tom Bulpitt
7 – Oscar Neilson
6 – Dan Steele (Jorvik BC)
5 – Sam Agass
4 – Paul Lloyd
3 – Richard Nixon
2 – John Underwood
Bow – Darren Smith

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