Summer Eights 2014

St Peter’s College Boat Club has won double blades this Years Eights. First, W2 managed to catch Univ IV within just about 30 strokes as on the days before when they caught St Anne’s III (Wednesday), Univ V (Thursday) and Keble III (on Friday) and won blades in WDiv VI. The last time the second women’s Eight had won blades was 2004, so this came right on time for the 10th blades anniversary for the 2004 crew.

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The last day of Eights continued with M2 rowing over the course and avoiding Spoons in MDiv IV, V with a courageous row over the whole course, finishing down 3 in this year’s competition. Next, W1 managed to catch St Hilda’s just after Donnington bridge finishing off a strong showing this year going up three spots (to bungline 6, WDiv III) having bumped St Anthony’s (in the gut) and St John’s II (after the gut) on Wednesday and Thursday, and just missing out on blades as Wolfson II had bumped out in front of them on Friday. In total, this has been a phenomenal Eights campaign for the women’s team’s coached by Dr Chris Cooper.

Maybe the highlight of the day came last as M1 were facing the challenge of catching Jesus (coached by St Peter’s alumnus Nick Fulton). It took the whole length of the racecourse from Bungline 10 to the finish to complete this mission. After a quick start as on the other days, the boat followed closely behind the Jesus crew often within reach of a bump. There were several attempts by coxswain and next year’s captain Caroline Roden to catch the boat by steering into them, but the oppositions coxswain avoided the bump through the gut, along greenbanks and boathouse island. Finally, an “up two” call by 7 man Karl Hudspith gave the boat the final push to make contact with Jesus as their stern was almost passing the finish line.
St Peter’s M1 wins blades for the first in 21 years at Eights (that blades were last won before half of the crew members were born). The boat is also the highest ranked Eight to win blades this year (not taking into account headship crews), climbing up from bungline 13 to 9 in MDiv II. The crew – coached by Moss Ruiseal in his first year at St Peter’s – had previously bumped Somerville (Day 1, after Donnington Bridge), Christ Church II (at Donnington Bridge) and Exeter who were gaining strongly on Jesus on that day on Day 3 on Greenbanks. The new Hudson Eight The Francis King Family has more than fulfilled the expectations winning blades in it’s very first bumps competition for the club. This provides a perfect finish to a successful year for St Peter’s rowing.
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