Sunday 29 April 2012

Head of the Cam - results and round-up

The original Head of the Cam post got treated as a live document and updated as we went along. So this is a new post for the wrap-up.

Thanks to all our competitors, support, marshalls and umpires for making it a successful and fun day. We had a total of 860 rowing seats in 136 crews. The fastest crew was... 100-Caius-snap1 by Andy Southgate

...yes, you guessed it, Caius. Congratulations. Fastest womens crew was, rather less expectedly, also Caius. They beat Downing by 14 seconds.

Full results are available from here (a number of people were kind enough to thank us for the speed of the results; its all thanks to googly docs). Video of the event is just going up as I speak at spannerspotter though it will be a while before its all up. For those of you who prefer the security and solidity of a PDF, this is the final results, sorted into time order.

Oh, and someone lost a pair of glasses in a kangol case on the towpath. If they are yours, do let me know [now reunited with their owner].


138-sculler We didn't really have any serious issues - at least, we thought not. Hopefully you agree. Even the weather, whilst grey and occasionally a bit damp, spared us from downpours.

Turning boats back

We had to turn one, or perhaps two, boats back who were late for their division. Sorry about that, we don't do it lightly, and where possible we'll give you a chance to race in a later division. In at least one of the cases the boat was late because it had failed safety inspection: the heel restraints weren't in place and had to be put in place. Moral: check your boat is all in order in good time.

The Cow that could Swim

Half way through the race we were informed of a prodigy - a cow that could swim, on Stourbridge Common. We thought it best not to trouble you with that.


We hope to make things even better next year - please feel free to email ( with any suggestions. One thing I do want to do is to seed the draw better, probably by asking people to submit a recent head course time, or their own best guess.


Everything went well with the timing except the problem with boats 117 and 118, which was only resolved right at the end. Unfortunately it turned out to matter for the prizes for the W2 Mays. So let me bore you with the tedious details. Before I do that, the timesheets are available for div 1, div 2, div 3 and div 4. Feel free to look, but you won't learn much.

115-rowback So, the sequence began with boat 115, Xpress MasB IV, which broke their rudder (they eventually and boldly started, and here is a nice pic of them trying to take Grassy with an improvised rudder, but they had to retire in the end). Their dropping out caused a hole in the start order, which got filled by Kings W1 (118) going off out of order ahead of Cantabs W IM3 (117). Not in itself a problem, but the start times and finish times as we got them looked like:

114 CCRC, CRA MasD 0:24:53 0:34:51 0:09:58
117 Cantabs, W2 IM3 0:23:31 0:37:57 0:14:26
118 Kings, W1       0:26:02 0:36:39 0:10:37
120 Cantabs, Mas E  0:26:54 0:38:38 0:11:44

You see the problem. Kings (it became clear) had started before Cantabs, indeed just before Cantabs, so 23:31 isn't a believeable start time; and Cantabs total time is implausibly slow. Eventually, after a considerable amount of indecision and hearing from both crews, we decided to go with Least Modification, and resolved the conflict by assuming the Cantabs 23 was really a 26. That fits with what the timings Kings coach gave us; and it also fits some times we got belatedly from video on Grassy: Kings had gained 18 secs on Cantabs by then. ps: Champs head vindicates us. Kings W1 did well there, too.



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