The last two months of 2016 has been a busy period for Queen’s Rowing seeing both Micro Head on the Lagan and Bann Head. On top of this both novice and intermediate crews see huge improvements with many members exceeding their personal best times at the BUCS indoor event. In December, not only did we see two excellent dinners but also astonishing results at the Trinity Sprints and Festive Head. Additionally, Trevor McKnight has been appointed to the role of Club Development Officer for the 2 Queen’s Boat Clubs.
On the last Saturday in October, there was a small head event on the Lagan for local crews with both novice and intermediate crews competing. However, our first main race was Bann Head on the 12th November 2016. QUBBC managed to secure some promising results with a win for the Intermediate Men’s 8+, finishing 1 minute 20 seconds before second place and being the fastest crew on the river on the day. The Intermediate Ladies 8+ also finished first, a notable 18 seconds ahead of Trinity and they were also awarded a “Fastest Women’s Crew” pennant for the Intermediate 4-. At the BUCS indoor event, both clubs saw PB’s left, right and centre, with some of the most impressive erg scores we’ve had in years. This is a great start to the year and may the improvements continue into regatta season. As our very own Emily Jordan would say, ‘winter miles make summer smiles’.
Outside of rowing, Emily Romeril and Bilal Korimbocus organised a fundraising event at the SU entitled “How Well Can You Pull.” The event asked members of the university to enter the competition for £1 and erg 100m in the quickest time with winner grabbing themselves a free Boojum. On top of this, there was also a raffle where the winner would win a luxury hamper. In all, this event was a huge success bringing both positive publicity to the clubs as well as some funds. This event will hopefully be run again in the second semester. In the last weekend of November, the men’s club partook in a Naked calendar photo shoot at the boathouse and on the Lagan, with the published results being available this week. Proceeds are being split between the club and Leukaemia and Lymphoma NI. Feel free to send myself, any of the rowers or the Queen’s Rowing Facebook page a message if you’re interested in picking up a copy for only £10.
Moving into December, we began in style with the Men’s and Ladies dinners over the first weekend, alongside novice Tub Champs. Jack Knight-Owen, the Men’s dinner organiser, has said that “the annual 2016 Men’s dinner was another success for the club. Thank you to everyone that attended and I’m sure as anyone who witnessed it would agree, a huge thank you to Phil Costen who stole the show with a great speech.” Phil Costen, a beloved ex-coach, is now working with the Warwick Ladies. The Ladies were treated to a great speech from ex-Queen’s coach, and current Senior Coach at Rowing Austrailia, which undoubtedly added fuel to the fire of the passion to win that we have already seen this season. Congratulations are also in order for Rhiannon Wells and Eleanor Kelly, 2016 QUBLBC Tub Champs champions, keep up the good work ladies!
In the weeks that followed, we saw impressive results from both of our novice squads in the Trinity sprints, with wins for both men’s and ladies’ crews. The novices this year are showing great potential already, and under the watchful eye of coach Andy Wells, it’s looking to be a great new year ahead for QUBLBC. The final weekend of the term saw Queen’s boats compete in both Festive Head and Rowing Ireland trials for our EAP and Academy rowers. The trials involved EAP athletes: Sam McKeown, and Tiernan Oliver along with Academy athletes: Ewan Murray, Miles Taylor, Jordan Wilson, Olivia Blundell and Roisin Maguire. The trials saw impressive performances over the 6km course from all our athletes, with notable mentions going to Sam McKeown and Tiernan Oliver. Sam was third overall in a time of 23.57 behind Mark O Donovan, 23.53, and Shane O Driscoll, 23.57, who were both the Senior World Championship in Rotterdam in August. Sam also finished ahead of Olympic silver medalist Garry O’Donovan, 24.09. Tiernan finished 6th in a time of 24.17. Sam and Tiernan combined the next morning and have an impressive win in the double sculls to show for their efforts. Congratulations to all. Finally, onto the most festive race of the season, Festive Head. This year saw QUBBC Inter 8+ storm ahead as fastest crew on the river, in suitable festive fashion dressed as reindeer with a Santa cox. QUBLBC Inters and both novice squads also put in great times, and even more festive cheer into their performances, in a very sparkly and fast end to the 2016 season.
Looking forward, individual training will continue over Christmas and the new year, with all squads working towards a productive January training camp before the final months of Head season.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at Queen’s Rowing!
Yours in rowing,
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