By Charlotte Lennox
Hammersmith head was our final race in the run up to WeHoRR and the senior women’s first 8 were setting off second last in IM2. The race plan, as dictated by our coach, was to have an aggressive rhythm and ‘smash it’.
We set off from Putney with our standard warm up of all 8 square blades, bodies only – definitely not a way to scare the opposition! Whilst sitting marshalling in the cold wind we could only dream about our early start position for next Saturday.
And then we were off.
Through the start we built up to rate 36 and maintained this through to Barnes Bridge, easing through the crew ahead of us. The Vesta supporters at the White Hart reported us looking aggressive, although even our coach doubted whether we could maintain that rhythm for the duration of the race – we were to prove him wrong! With the rate not dropping below 35 we had a strong row through the middle part of the course, powering down the island before starting to wind up (not that there was much ‘up’ left) for the finish as we came off the end of the island. The full crew was definitely relieved to be finishing at Hammersmith bridge! It was only once we had easied did our cox Robyn, tell us to look behind for us to see how much we had caught up with the 3 crews ahead.
After a gentle paddle back home we were eager to see the results …… 3 days later it was confirmed – WE WON! A first win in Vesta kit for many of the crew and first ever win for our 3 girl, Buffy.
Next stop ….. WeHoRR!