A win in the Oxford and Cambridge Cup at University Championships in October last year earned SUBC the right to represent Australian Universities against Combined New Zealand Universities in the annual Trans Tasman Rowing Challenge.
Melbourne University was representing Australia in the Women’s Eight and the event for 2019 was in New Zealand at Lake Karapiro last week - with two races over 2,000 meters and a final long distance match race over 5 km
Lochie Miles ( No 7 in the crew gave us this short account of the event.
Arriving on the Sunday night and the first race to commence on the Tuesday, Monday morning we got out for a paddle on the lake and did some race work to prepare for Tuesday.
Tuesday came around quickly and we were lining up for the first 2km race against a strong Kiwi outfit selected from a number of their universities. The Kiwis came out hard and fast, we managed to hold them off and started to step on from the 750m mark, this is what we focused on with our strong winter training kicking in back end of the race. We went on to a 6-7 second win. meanwhile the Melbourne women’s eight fought hard but lost round one.
Our second 2km race was on the Wednesday and after winning the first one we knew the locals would be coming out for redemption, we expected yet another fast start and that’s what we got, they came out with us again but this time a few seats up, however we managed to again push through the middle and gain clear water by the finish, this placed us two up, but we were looking for 3/3. Once again the Kiwi women held out the Melbourne crew.
With a day off on the Thursday we did a longer paddle 12km up Lake Karipiro which was a great experience for all, great scenery!
Friday was the final day and we had the 5km race which started 5km up the lake and finishing at the 2k finish. With little knowledge of the course our cox Talia had a few challenges. We were placed on the outside lane and off we went, the kiwis came out hard and really stuck with us for the first 1.5km, however with the big km training we have been doing in Sydney this race suited us, so we managed to stride out and push away to a commanding lead and with 2km to go we really looked to step on and distance ourselves from the kiwis. A 3/3 success rate for us and a 29 second margin.
Meanwhile the Melbourne women had managed to turn the tables in the longer race beating the Kiwi crew for the first time and giving the Aussie a 4-2 win in the series.
Our team was : ( in no particular order) Lochie Miles, Kieran Riach, Zac Noble, Morgan Brooking, Jake Bicknell, Jordan Duff, Tom Anderson, Finn Blake, Richard Ledger and Cox: Talia Barnet Hepples. Coach: Chris Holliday
Overall it was a great week of racing for all, with a lot learnt which we can take back with us into the next bit of the winter program.