The long blond hair, the 'unusual' dress sense, the running around after a dog all the time (sorry wrong coach)
Could Purple coach Tim Foster and Scooby-do's side-kick Shaggy be related by any chance?
U L ROWER
|DOTTING i's AND CROSSING t's|
Questions about whether last year's Tideway Small boats head was run to the necessary safety standards were raised after one particular incident, where the coming together of a TRC VIII on a training outing and a competing sculler, ended with the sculler getting speared and injured. Indeed, this was one of the contributory incidents to the PLA deciding to instigate the current risk assessment.
With the date of this year's Tideway SBH rapidly approaching, sources close to the Thames Region Rowing Council suggest that the TRRC is starting to lose its patience with those running the event.
For some time now, race organisers have convinced the PLA that they are actually two events of fewer than 100 entries and that a river closure is therefore not required (of course this somewhat ironic as it's apparent from last years results that they had actually taken entry fees from more than 100 crews in both individual divisions.), they have also completed their declaration to the PLA, to the effect that they are officially sanctioned and properly insured.
The PLA have approved this year's event based on the information they have received from the organisers. They will, however, respond to TRRC communications that all is not well as, alas, things aren't quite as straightforward as they might first appear...
For the PLA have now cottoned on that this is a 100+ event masquerading as two small events and, being not best pleased (to put it politely - though they didn't!) to discover they have been misled by the organisers, are contemplating whether they should demand an application for a river closure. However, as 28 days is required for this to happen, no more river closures are possible this calendar year. So entries for the race (the Saturday before Christmas) will therefore have to be below 100 in total.
As to being officially sanctioned... the TRRC are none too pleased either, because:
- The organisers have not applied to move their date from Sunday 12 December to Saturday 18 December
- They have not responded to written requests from the region after last year's event, to supply information to their Umpires Commissioner, nor has he been sent a risk assessment, a safety plan, or details of the membership of the organising committee or the Race Committee.
As a result the TRRC Chair wrote to the Tideway SB committee earlier this week, giving them until next Wednesday to supply all the outstanding documentation together with the names of their Race Committee and Race Umpire. The TRRC has no middle ground under the rules, between allowing the event to go ahead and stopping it completely. So, unless the committee can convince them that they are wrong before the end of next week, the following will happen:
Mind you, who wants to race the weekend before Christmas anyway?
- Approval for the date will be withdrawn
- Approval to run under ARA rules will not be granted
- ARA Officials will be advised not to attend or officiate at the event
- Affiliated clubs will be advised that the event has not been sanctioned.
- The PLA would be told of our decision and would withdraw their approval.
- Other events run by AK would be scrutinised very, very carefully.
Watch this space
|ARE MY EYES DECEIVING ME?|
The slug has recently noticed a strange phenomenon occurring in front of the Putney Embankment. "What?" I hear you cry "Surely not a London RC coach slowing their launch down to pass a single sculler?"
No dear reader, nothing as strange as that... This is the real world after all.
No, after studying old aerial photographs of the Embankment and comparing these to the present view whilst slithering along the pavement, the slug has found that the gap between the last of the moored boats and Putney Pier appears to be getting smaller and smaller.
The result of this creeping change is that rowers spinning around the last moored boat are finding themselves nearer to Putney Pier than they might ever have wanted to be... Indeed in the case of an unfortunate IC 2x one cold morning this week - close enough to have to abandon boat and be rescued.
Coaches with junior crews have be seen resorting to grabbing hold of their crew's stern post and physically hauling them round with their launches (to avoid the youngsters being similarly impaled on the barge looming large above them). And woe betide any crew that stops to have a quick drink of water whilst spinning - before you can shout "Watch the barge!" - you'll be stuck underneath it.
But What can the explanation be?
Or could it be that the last mooring is making a bid for freedom and is heading for the open sea (perhaps with a little help from its owners who don't want their boats to knock together when the tide turns?? - shurely not)
- Plate tectonics perhaps, causing a localised upheaval of the river-bed moving Putney Pier further upstream?
- Or have all our rowing boats got longer over the years such that the realative size of the gap just ain't what it used to be?
- Maybe the stream has suddenly increased in force, such that boats are flung downstream much faster than ever before?
Hmmm, I wonder...
The captain of Molesey Boat Club took strong action on Sunday, banning all rowers from participating in the apparently life threatening activity known as "standing on Swiss balls".
This radical move occured after two women rowers at the club managed to fall off in separate incidents over the weekend- one landing on her elbow and ending up with her arm in a sling, and the other concussing herself.
After the decision, an anti-swiss ball protester applauded the move "it's about bloody time too, swiss balls are the work of the devil, i can't even kneel on the damn things without falling off"
Meanwhile the black death's men's squad were unavailable for comment as they were all too busy watching filthy video clips on their mobile phones (dirty boys).
|RINGING AT CHRIST CHURCH?|
OK, so they couldn't manage to get into Cambridge, but still, one would expect that your average Oxford student would at least be able to read and interpret a list of entry restrictions, but alas not....
Indeed, it would appear that their inablilty to read rules led to the Keble College (or "feeble", as they're affectionately known on the Isis - or at least they used to be, but maybe I'm showing my age... ahem) men being disqualified from Christ Church Regatta at Oxford University ( http://regatta.chchbc.org/2004/ ) last week.
The Regatta is strictly for novices only - "Novice" in this case being clearly defined as anyone in their first term of rowing who has:
All other rowers are ineligible for entry.
- not raced in either of the annual bumps races;
- not raced in an ARA/WARA/SARA event (even if they lost),
- or has never raced in any foreign equivalent.
Keble entered one Noah Riner, in their men's A crew, apparently the same Noah Riner who has rowed for Dartmouth USA...they didn't seem to understand that a member of last year's Dartmouth Hwt Varsity VIII didn't quite fit into the above defn of "novice".
After being pulled up for potential "ringing", Keble reportedly said something to the effect of 'there must have been more than one at Dartmouth'.... unfortunately for them, the organisers took the trouble to contact the university and check...
Pics from the event available at http://www.rowtherace.co.uk
|THOSE DIRTY RATS|
Incase you're wondering, the "Tideway turd" race, did take place last Tuesday (23rd November). Though it failed to attract as much attention from the main stream media as the organisers had been hoping for, it did get plenty of attention from the river authorities with boats from the EA, Harbour master, RNLI, Police and Fire brigade turned out to keep an eye on proceedings...
From the starting horn the two rowing eights burst off the start line for an 800m sprint on the stretch of water most famous for the Oxford/Cambridge boat race. Each boat towed a 14 foot inflatable faeces and the crews were clad in gas masks as a demonstration against the unacceptable levels of pollution in the river Thames.
The red BioHaz team stormed to victory at Putney bridge leaving the blue GasHaz team fuming in their wake. There was some talk of race fixing as the GasHaz faecal inflatable looked decidedly sick and was not running in the water at all cleanly!
After the race Rowers Against Tideway Sewage (RATS), joined representatived from Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) to deliver a 320 strong petition from river users to the offices of the Department of the Environment.
|OH WHAT A TANGLED WEB...|
Whilst walking (shurely crawling? ED) down the towpath of righteousness, early Sunday morning, the slug couldn't help but notice a stationary Sons'ette of the Thames eight, having a heart to heart with their coach.
Although the girls and coach were significantly tucked away out of oars reach of other crews, it didn't take long before a certain mens 4- from LRC appeared, apparently wanting a piece of the action.
Despite collision warnings from all eight, it seemed the only thing to stop the boys ramming the girls, was a scary bark from the Sonsette stroke, who snarled... "LRC, I DARE YOU TO COME ANY CLOSER "
This reprimand was soon followed by a very sheepish quote from the LRC bowman, who retorted, "obviously my dear, you're having one of your girlie sensitive days."
After which they skulked off with their oars between their legs...
Ok, so anyone who knows the LRC boys or who has had the misfortune to encounter the boisterous blue's in a collision, will quite happily vouch that these boys are not usually ones to skulk off without a valid reason......
Well, faithful reader, with the bowman being on "anger management parole" (which if broken by shouting at other crews would result in him being severally reprimanded...) Oh and one other member of the LRC crew being extremely embarrased by the whole situation as he thought an old flame was present in the girlies 8.... the reason soon becomes apparent. (though surely there are better ways to contact the x!)
No wonder the mornings are so very quiet!
|THE SINGLE LIFE|
The Vesta scullers head, blessed with slightly better weather conditions than last year, went ahead in all its glory on Saturday, although a combination of Junior trials, the imminent Indoor rowing champs, and "I've been having break since Affens" syndrome, meant that the number of national rowing treasures competing was well down on the usual.
Pink boy, Mark Hunter starting second, won the event overall, overtaking Hugh Mackworth-Praed just after Barnes bridge as both scullers got washed down by a rather excitable safety launch which was heading for the start and merrily ignoring the loud pleas from marshalls and spectators to slow down... amusingly, one mass circulation Sunday paper, normally well known for its total lack of rowing knowledge and appalling coverage, did contain a short report on the Sculler's Head. However it reported that M. Hunter won the Scullers Head Race from Malt Lake to Putney???
Wash aside, the racing in general went fairly smoothly... there was the usual problem of muppetry round the turning buoy with a significant number of competiors - including one very experienced umpire / marshall who should know better (ahem) - getting tangled around it...
One sculler had a bit of added drama, after discovering at the start that one of the bolts holding his wing rigger on had come undone, he then got stuck on the turning buoy and was unable to free himself. After getting a helping hand to the side, he dashed off... managed to borrow a boat from somewhere and got back on the water and raced (Slug says respect is due!).
Full results available http://www.vrc.org.uk/sh/ScullersHeadResults-2004.phtml
The Slug was chewing on the BBC Bristol website recently and was surprised to come across the following article.
What particularly got the feelers twitching is the second paragraph -- about City of Bristol's 'best performance' in the fours head.
to see why, check out the results
All relative i suppose...
I don't know if anyone has pointed out the uncanny resemblance between the recently sacked,ex-shadow arts minister and MP for Henley, Boris Johnson's hair and the style currently sported by Olympian, Oxford stoodent, Andy "impressive" Triggs Hodge.
Do they perchance have the same hairdresser?
Curious of Henley