May Bumps – Wednesday

W1 – Rowed over 2nd in Div 2

Written by: Tabitha Biller

After a slightly inelegant slide out of the first division in last year’s May bumps, the crew was keen to build on the progress we had made in Lents. Having finished a couple of seconds behind Catz in Champs Head we knew that catching them would be tough but not impossible, while we would have to push hard to keep off Trinity Hall behind us. Roger’s usual technique of sneaking as many rolling starts as possible into our warm up made up for the fact that a delay to the division left no time for a standing start and proved that our series of last minute outings had been crucial to sharpening up our technique! Despite battling the usual first day nerves as we waited for the cannons, a good start allowed us to gain on Catz, closing to half a length coming into Grassy Corner. With Trinity Hall creeping up behind us we continued to chase them down Plough Reach gaining us (a slightly overly optimistic) three whistles. As we rounded Ditton Corner, defying expectations that it would be over by the Plough one way or the other, the tiredness started to hit and with Homerton bumping Trinity Hall we lost the push from behind. While some fierce coxing kept us working hard down the Long Reach, with our stroke making a determined effort to bring the rate up under the railway bridge, ultimately we had to settle for a row over. Although we got frustratingly close we were definitely pleased with our row and go in to tomorrow with a better sense of our competition. 


M1 – Rowed over 13th in Div 1

Written by: Jacob Toop-Rose

The mood was of excitement with M1 chomping at the bit, ready to go out and prove themselves. The internal walls of the boathouse were put up to stop the skittish Churchill being spooked by the pumped up M1. The executive decision had been made to take the crew down to Jesus Lock which paid off in dividends with the boat moving as if on rails. Off the start the rate was high and strong. Hitting 46 off the winds and settling onto 41. Neil “Line Graph” Paul reassured us that the first minute was strong. The rowing was strong for the remainder of the course although it was clear we could have given it more gas. Lifts were fiery but it would have been preferable if we had managed them for longer than three strokes at a time. It was very clear that our stuntman/cox Hrutvik “Blades touching the grass” Kanabar won us a lot of time on the corners. Although frustrating to not bump it was satisfying to be a competitive crew so early on.


W2 – Rowed over 2nd in Div 4

Written by: Ruby Whipp

With our boat, the Jolly Roger finally fixed after 8 weeks on the morning of day 1 of bumps, the scene was set. A division switch-around had meant that despite originally being originally placed third in the start order of the W4 division, we had been shifted into second. This could only mean one thing: potentially becoming sandwich boat on the first day. Challenge accepted, our game plan was to bump ARU (AR-who?) cleanly and swiftly, before then bumping Churchill (boathouse rivals) in the W3 division later in the day. Despite our less-than-flying start, we had one whistle on ARU quickly. Fitz were chasing us and got bumped quickly by Murray Edwards so we had a clear run to reel ARU in. We held them until the top of the reach, maintaining around a 1 length gap. But, after a few wobbles, ARU strode away. Ploughing on, we tried to regain our composure and continue to the push to the line. That’s when we saw Darwin, coming up fast on the reach for the over-bump. ARU were out of range now and we passed the railway bridge and the marshalled crews, praying for the finish line. Darwin then stepped up, and before we knew it they had overlap. Dylan conceded under the Green Dragon Bridge. Turns out the finish was 50 metres before then, so we found out later that we had actually survived the over-bump! Hello row-over.


M2 – Rowed over 4th in Div 4

Written by: Alistair Goodman

After a week and a half of no outings as a full crew, no one was really sure how M2 were going to perform on the first day of bumps. With Girton 2, a dark horse crew in front of us, we didn’t really know whether to expect a bump or not, despite this we set off with the plan of munching them down. The cannon fired and we got off to a start perhaps more effective than what we have been used to this term (although anyone in M2 will know this isn’t an achievement!) and then we set into our racing rhythm. As a head race specialist crew, we thought that if we had the entire course to chase them down then we could get ’em! On the earlier straights our superior wattage delivery was evident, we ate into the gap…but like superman has kryptonite, we have corners, and we couldn’t quite keep our rhythm and speed around bends of the course. Overall the generally mediocre performance led to a row over, but not a bad result at all! We still have our heads high, and with a couple over bumps on the agenda, Kings M2 are still looking to climb the divisions!