Henley IVs and VIIIs 2018: Race Reports

On the 17th of February, both sides of the club entered Henley IVs and VIIIs Head, with the men fielding the stern 4 from the VIII they raced in the morning again in the IVs racing in the afternoon, and the women entering a single VIII.

Men’s First VIII

Cox: Ettie ‘Cavalry’ Caverly

Stroke: Danny ‘Build the Rate’ de Rozairo

7: Harry ‘Butter’ Connor

6: Hamish ‘Skinny’ Streeter

5: Jack ‘WHAT’S THE RATE’ Waterman (capt.)

4: Marcus ‘Weetabix’ Green

3: Maciej ‘5 eggs’ Bugala

2: Freddie ‘No carbs’ von Kaufmann

Bow: Patrick [Oar]stin

After a challenging term of icy Radley mornings, gruelling ergs, and lactate inducing circuits, Hertford M1 were eager to prove that their pain would result in gain. After catching a bus at the leisurely time of 7am, and fuelling ourselves up on sandwiches, energy bars, or, in Harry’s case, a tub of butter, we arrived at Henley keen to prove our might.

After rerigging the Empacher, the crew dispersed to grab last minute coffees, use the ‘posh’ portaloos, hydrate, eat butter, and do some bracing stretches. Boating down to the start, our rowing was precise and formidable, with the other crews marveling at our ‘late backs’ and ‘6ft 8 legs’. 

Soon the first boats were setting off, and the rapid passing of Leander gave us inspiration for the race ahead. After a quick spin, we too were off. Soon we hit a brisk rate 34, bringing fast arms and faster backs. Maintaining this pace, Ettie called that we were closing on Univ. However, we were swiftly being closed on by Wadham, and Ettie had us move out of the optimum racing line to allow them to pass. For the rest of the course, we gradually gained on Univ, though in the middle kilometre the boat began to be muscled, catches became sloppy, backs came in too soon. However, with one kilometre to go, we regained our focus and technical precision, and remembering metaphors including ‘squeezing the toothpaste’, ‘passing the whiskey jar’, and ‘weetabix hands’, we began to empty the tank into the finish line. A number of calls of ‘Yeaahh Hertford’ from supporters gave us a needed boost, and we sailed into the finish looking strong.

We finished in a time of 12 minutes, beating Univ by 4 seconds, and Brasenose by 18 seconds. However, we were disappointed to be beaten by LMH, Corpus Christi, and finish a distant 1m 5s behind Pembroke. We thus were aware that we were not yet in ideal form for Torpids, however, in the days following Henley we have attacked the training with even greater effort. The last week has seen major improvements, and we thus approach Torpids confident that we will produce results far better than our performance at Henley.

Freddie von Kaufmann

Men’s First IV

Cox: Ettie ‘All 8 to Backstops’ Caverly

Stroke: Danny ‘Look to the Sky’ de Rozairo

3: Jack ‘Early Backs’ Waterman

2: Hamish ‘Eyes Out’ Streeter

Bow: Harry ‘3m Springboard Champion’ Connor

Fuelled by hot cross buns and after impatiently waiting in the grid lock that was the loos, the partially heavy weight 4 boated. We had a bit of a shaky warmup as we settled into the heavier coxed 4. After arriving to our marshalling slot a good 40 minutes early we sat in a tree resulting in twigs poking into eyes and invading unisuits. Eventually the time came we spun and we set off in band 2 chasing Warwick University and being chased by Corpus Christi. We built to rate 32 and maintained this the whole 3km. Warwick started a while before us so catching them was unlikely. However as we got to Temple Island, around 1km in, the corpus 4 had closed to 1 length. From then on there was a real power struggle and some neck and neck racing. Whilst our aggression was unheard of in the current M1 squad, our lack of training in the 4 was evident as we struggled to keep our finishes together as the metres ticked away. However we managed to hold off Corpus and we crossed the line in 13min20s but in typical coxing fashion Ettie refused to wind us down much to the Crew’s disgust. We packed the boat away, took some photos and headed to Spoons in classic Hertford style.

Hamish Streeter

Women’s First VIII, or:

Henley 2k18: An Investigation Into The Effect of Rowing Like Absolute Legends on Boat Speed


Cox- Joe ‘Can I GPS track everything?’ Wynn

Stroke- Phil ‘Aye Aye Cap’n’ Thornton

7- Sarah ‘The Master’ Edwards

6- Maddie ‘The Student’ Burrell

5- Annie ‘The Meme’ Ault

4- Sophie ‘Boats > Cheerleading’ Clark

3- Harriet ‘Boats > Horses’ Thomas

2- Ellie ‘The Birthday Girl’ Von Vogt

Bow- Amy ‘The Veteran’ Holguin

Coach- Ollie ‘The Professor’ Watson

Abstract: Prior to torpids, we took a women’s VIII to the historic stretch of the Thames known as ‘Henley Reach’. We aimed to observe the effects of pinpoint catch accuracy and perfect balance on boat speed, whilst testing the hypothesis that the Facebook page known as “The Isis Chopper” makes invalid predictions. We report a positive correlation between legendary technique and boat speed, whilst noting a significant negative correlation between Hertford boat speed and Pembroke morale. We conclude that Torpids may be quite interesting, and that rowing like a total don places you 2nd in your band by only 4 seconds.

Methodology: A KIR shell (‘Leslie Atkinson’) was trailered from the Isis to Henley, whilst the crew rode a public bus (‘River Rapids X38’) to the same destination. Riggers were attached and hull secured in situ, and the crew boated at c1245 in conditions described as ‘a bit more streamy than I’d have liked’ (Wynn et al., 2018). The start line was somewhat congested, but racing proceeded as planned at c1330. Rate was capped at around 32 strokes per minute, with a 1:3 ratio between drive time and recovery time. The Hertford boat was briefly hindered by wash from a Bristol VIII in front, although not for long as the Bristol cox considerately crashed into the bank to allow them through. A pressure call off the end of temple island made significant inroads into the Pembroke crew, whilst support from spectators running alongside made for notable gains in morale. Further pushes at Remenham and the finish line made for further (sick) gains, even if misjudged (if well intentioned) coxing calls towards the finish made for the longest 4 yards in all of science.

Results and Discussion: The Hertford crew ranked second in their division band, only 4 seconds off the Pembroke crew that eventually won. This, we postulate, is down to the effects of lightening quick leg drives, silky smooth recoveries and matching kit (endowing free speed). We further extrapolate our results to infer that the competition for Torpids 2018 might do well to discard any prior inferences based upon the predictions of The Isis Chopper. Finally, we anecdotally eport that other crews seen at Henley looked ‘pretty shaken’ (Thornton et al., 2018).

Conclusion: Forza Hertford, we’ll see you at Bungline 4 next week.


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