Tally at the end: M1 =, W1 =, M2 +1, W2 -3, M3 -1; overall -3.
Again, a skeleton that needs filling in. For the moment, I've nicked some of David Pontings fine pix: find more on facebook.
Tonight the plan was to eschew the hard-but-steady attack on Nines of yesterday in favour of the all-out attack that had worked so well on Tuesday. Ah, hindsight: had we but flung this at them yesterday, it could all have been so different. But it seemed to make sense at the time. A lesson.
A reasonable start, again as per day 2 up to 41 and holding it high until past the motorway bridge. St Neots, behind, as expected were coming up - but not too fast. And we could hear the "nearly a length" calls from the bank on Nines 2. By the end of first post reach that had closed down, to maybe 3/4 - but at the same time St Neots had come up shockingly fast; that shows rather clearly on the video I saw in the Waterman last night. We had a rocky patch of maybe 10 strokes where things just weren't right, a little before the corner.
Not far around the corner St Neots thought they had got us - they certainly had overlap, and maybe enough, but James didn't concede and the marshall didn't give it, although St Neots stopped. But they very soon got going again, and although we then got to perhaps 1/2 length on Nines - I'm not sure exactly - St Neots came back like a steam train and it was all over.
Final day of bumps and it needs to be glorious. Our crew line-up needed to be changed around to get a last minute sub for Chris W. (who fell ill the night before) into the boat. This meant shifting Dave B. to stroke side and Tom into seat 5 behind me.
(Now! Please excuse the metaphors but ...) On the menu for tonight is one hot and juicy serving of Club 99's 4 boat and we are very hungry. As was noted, this crew was on its way to earning their spoons for this year and so we would have to bump them ASAP to retain some kudos from it. Our start was brilliant and we managed to lengthen out smoothly after the completion of the winds for a fast (for M2) boat. We gained rapidly on 99 and almost crammed our bow into their stern just the other side of the A14 bridge. After that things became generally chaotic as we scrambled to get out of the way of the other on-coming boats. This ended with a decidedly disturbing thud after hitting the bank and snapping off about 7 cm of P O' Kanes bows (oops!).
Oh no not again thought the P O'Kane.
At last! A row-over, which must have felt as triumphal as a bump up. Well done.