Only the second visit that we as a club have made to Cambridge Champs Junior Head Race, but with eleven juniors competing on the delightfully short 1400m course it was going to be a fun day!

Following a two hour drive (leaving at 6.30am) Keith amazingly managed to manoeuvre the trailer down incredibly narrow streets with hair pin bends to Pembroke Boat House, having to push the trailer the last fifty metres with the help of juniors and parents. Quite a feat in itself. With only three clubs, Lincoln, Oundle and ourselves boating from Pembroke, we quickly had our first five crews on the water for the first division.

First off were Beth and Lucy in one of the new Swift doubles. Looking elegant as usual, and making it all seem so easy and effortless they managed a fabulous second place out of five in the WJ18 2x in a time of 6mins 46seconds. Alex and Emily rowing as WJ17 2x achieved a magnificent third place out of six in 7mins and 8seconds in their first double race together. Hannah and Izzy rowing as WJ13 2x looking very competent for such a young age category stormed to victory by 43 seconds in 7mins and 1second ahead of six other contestants in their category.

James took on fellow J14 1x and achieved a great time of 7mins and 34 seconds, and Cathal also in a single at J15 came a very respectable fifth place out of thirteen contestants in a time of 6mins and 41 seconds.

The second division brought Emily in her WJ15 single who, having battled through an extremely heavy hailstorm, came third out of eight in a time of 7mins and 26seconds. Sam and James in their J14 2x came second out of five in a cracking time of 7min and 3seconds.

The larger boats came out in the third division with the WJ18 4x of Beth, Emily, Alex and Lucy having a fabulous row with Lucy taking a superb line with her steering yet again. Sadly victory was not to be and they were beaten into second place by City of Cambridge but had a terrific time of 6mins and 15seconds. The younger mixed J14 4x+ with James, Izzy, Hannah and Sam and coxed by Tilda also had a great row and achieved a time of 6mins and 57seconds. Becky and Katie bringing up the last of our entries raced as WJ16 2x and had the largest group with fifteen competing in their category but still managed an admirable effort of 7mins and 29seconds.

Although we only came home with one win, it was a very successful day for the LBC juniors, who had stiff competition from a much wider pool of clubs than usual. We were all very proud of how well they performed and look forward to what they may achieve over the coming regatta season.