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LMBC round-up for Lent term

M2 in the Bumps

After another successful term for College rowing, the Lady Margaret Boat Club has plenty to celebrate. Student Laura Day has contributed this round-up on behalf of the club. 

As the River Cam goes quiet after the excitement of Lent Term, the rowers of The Lady Margaret Boat Club can look back on the last 8 weeks with pride. It has been an unprecedented term of success for the Club, both on the water in races, and off the water in training. Combine this with the prospect of three Club members representing the University in Varsity racing, and St. John’s College has much to celebrate as the Easter term beckons.

The Club members came back early after Christmas to train: crews took to the water over the course of a week to prepare for the coming term. Last summer, in the May Bumps, the men of M1 took the prestigious title of ‘Head of the River’, meaning that they were ranked the fastest Men’s boat on the River Cam. Going into Lent term this year, M1 – made up of some new and some previous members of the 2016 crew – were keen to repeat their success. During the Lent Bumps, late in the term, M1 managed to achieve a feat not seen for 27 years – they are now top of the River in both May and Lent Bumps, after bumping Pembroke, Caius and Downing Colleges.

On March the 26th, the crew travelled to Henley-on-Thames, to compete in the intercollegiate races. As the top ranked men’s crew on the River Cam, they went head-to-head with Oriel College, Oxford, beating them by three lengths across the entire course. The success was made even more special for the crew by acknowledging that they had raced Oriel once before, back in December 2016, and were 30 seconds slower. Men’s Captain, Paul Myatt, commented on the race: “From the outset we rowed a more aggressive race and within one and a half minutes we had established a lead of one length. This has been another successful term of rowing for Lady Margaret which has without a doubt established itself as the leading Oxbridge college for rowing”.

In terms of overall standings in collegiate rowing, these achievements by M1 place them as one of the best College boats in the country currently.

On the same day, former W1 rower Fenella McLuskie took to the water in the Cambridge University Women’s Lightweight Boat, competing in the 34th race against the women of Oxford. The Cambridge boat won their race by over three boat lengths, covering the 2000m course in 6 minutes and 45 seconds. It was a spectacular victory for the Cambridge Women, and was watched on the bank by  numerous Lady Margaret supporters, all wearing their distinctive red blazers.

Earlier on in the afternoon, ex-LMBC and Blue Boat rower Fiona Macklin took to the water in the CUWBC Alumni race against Oxford.

Elsewhere in the Club, the ladies of W1 have been working hard in training, and successfully competed in the annual Women’s Eights Head of the River Race in London, on March the 11th. The girls battled the Tideway, racing against a further 290 crews. In an outstanding effort, the Lady Margaret girls came in at 100th place, with a time of 20:48.2 across the 6.8KM course from Chiswick to Putney. They were the second fastest Cambridge College out on the water, coming in slightly slower than Jesus College W1, but beating other Colleges including Clare, Churchill, and Downing. At the end of Lent Term, the women travelled to Wales for a week's training camp, surrounded by the beautiful Brecon Beacons National Park.

This coming Sunday (2 April), two more LMBC rowers will take to the Tideway in the famous Varsity Races against Oxford. Charlie Fisher will race in the Goldie crew at 17:05, and Kirsten Van Fossen will race with the Blondie crew at 16:50.

For more information and details about the happenings at LMBC, including full race reports and news, please go to the website: http://www.ladymargaretboatclub.org