After a tumultuous few months on the Kingston reach it was with great excitement that the women's IM3 crew (cunningly disguised as an IM2 crew) headed to the Tideway to compete in the Women's Head on Saturday with the intention of giving it our best shot!
After a quick outing on our own water on Saturday morning, to remind ourselves what it felt like to hold a blade, we de-rigged and travelled in convoy up to Putney.
As we waited in the sun (yes the sun!) to place our boat in the water Kath Grainger was spotted at Imperial's window and provided a little bit of extra inspiration! Well for me anyway!
It took just over an hour to get to our marshalling position ready for the start along with the 240 other boats. Cut this year from approximately 290 due to unpredictable conditions. We got a friendly wave and exchanged good luck with our dutiful membership secretary Birgith who was racing in a terrific composite Masters Crew. Who with their Masters Handicap applied were placed 11th overall. A really fantastic result!
We calmly spun at about 3.45pm and decisively paddled up to the start with Hayley and Rachael Kugele setting the boat up nicely. Then we were off!
We held off Reading RC for quite some time and even when they gained we didn't let them past without a fight and according to our faithful cox Ali they took a while to pull away. The roar at Hammersmith Bridge lifted us again but before long the other IM2 crews behind us were gaining water and we were soon surrounded as we came past the Harrods Depository. Determination kept us going but the last stretch of water was tough.
We were placed 218 in a time of 22:17 surrounded by other IM3 crews.
Crew, S Hayley Kugele, 7 Rachael Kugele, 6 Birte Gibbs, 5 Becky Ball, 4 Rosie Brunning, 3 Megan Addis, 2 Emily Baylis and B Caroline Wright.