The Torpid Races begin this afternoon at Oxford, the Third Division rowing first at half-past 2. Balliol start Head of the River, but they will have a hard task to retain their position, with University College, Magdalen, and New College near them. A new crew is St. Peter's Hall, which only came into existence last year.
The Torpid Races, which were begun yesterday at Oxford, attracted an unusually large number of spectators. The sun shone brightly and tehre was only a light easterly wind with very little stream to contend against.
Thirty-five crews took part in the racing and the newly-founded St. Peter's Hall crew marked their entry into the competition by making a bump at their first attempt... and unless New College can work themselves up it does not seem likely that there will be any change in the Headship.
[Div I] The racing between the three leading boats was very uninteresting as they kept their respective positions with little difficulty. Balliol finished two lengths in front of University College, who were the same distance in front of Magdalen. Christ Church were lucky in that they had lost ground to New College, and the latter were well on to them when one of the New College crew caught a crab. New College, on the other hand, were bumped by Worcester on coming out of the Gut.
The weather took a change for the worse at Oxford yesterday, and although it kept fine there was every promise of snow. The cold northerly wind had a very marked effect on the attendence. The racing was uninteresting from the spectator's point of view and not a single bump out of the 11 recorded took place on the finishing side of the new boathouse.
[Div I] Balliol maintained their position at the Head of the River without any difficulty, passing the Post two lengths ahead of University College. The latter at one time lost ground to Magdalen, who were within a length at the Boathouse, but they drew away again along the Wall and finished two lengths ahead. Christ Church, who rowed through on Thursday, were outclassed by Worcester, who made a capital start and caught them just before reaching the Ferry.
This year's Torpids look like creating a record, as with no fewer than 13 bumps registered on Saturday the sum total amounts to 36, as against 21 last year... Balliol again retained the Headship without much difficulty, and although they finished two lengths ahead of University College, Worcester may possibly create a surprise, as they unexpectedly bumped Magdalen before reaching Saunders Bridge, Magdalen having got within a length of University College.
Balliol retained the Headship of the River, ahead of Magdalen, without much difficulty, but they will have a much more severe task to-day when they have Worcester following them.
Worcester, who had made a bump each afternoon, made coparatively short work of University College, and to-day's race is sure to create an immense amount of interest ... The Second Division race ended in a fiasco, Exeter, on coming through the Bend in the Gut, struck some wreckage and one of their men caught a crab. They were consequently bumped by Lincoln, who had St. Catherine's right up to them. The latter could not get clear, and although Pembroke passed them the river was so congested with boats that it was impossible to say who had bumped and who had not, and the difficulty was solved by the Boat Club Committee ordering all the boats, with the exception of Merton, to row again this morning at 11 o'clock.
Worcester go Head of the River
The fifth day's racing in the Torpids at Oxford excited much interest, more especially in the First Division, in which Balliol, who had not hitherto been pressed in the race for the Headship, had on this occasion to start in front of Worcester, who had successive victories to their credit, all of which they had gained with consummate ease. The general opinion was that Worcester, who if they are not a particularly polished crew undoubtedly possess great pace, would prove equal to the occasion, and so it proved. Although Balliol had a substantial lead coming out of the Gut Worcester gradually wore them down in a succession of spurts from the Willows, and Balliol went down, fighting hard, midway between Saunders's Bridge and the Cherwell.
With regard to the Second Division, it had been decided that Monday's race should be re-rowed, but Lincoln appealed against the decision, and at a Captains' meeting in the morning their appeal was upheld, it being decided that Lincoln were entitled to the bump they claimed over Exeter and that the other boats should start in the same order as on Monday. All boats have to stand by their accidents, according to the Boat Club rules, and consequently Exeter were bound to lose a place, but a question arose as to whether Pembroke were entitled to a bump over St. Catherine's through having rowed past them. The point at issue would be whether the fact of simply rowing past a boat is the equivalent of a bump or whether the boat rowing past has to complete the course. If the former, then St. Catherine's should have lost a place to Pembroke, which would have been terribly hard luck on them. As it was, the contretemps probably deprived them of a bump, as they were right on to Lincoln, when Exeter caught their unfortunate crab.
Torpid Races Concluded
The Torpid Races were concluded at Oxford yesterday in delightful weather, brilliant sunshine succeeding a dull, wet morning. Worcester retained their position of Head of the River.
There were big attendances at each Division, but especially the first, in which the struggle between Brasenose and Wadham excited much interest. Wadham had previously made six bumps and were out to score a "highest possible," but the fates were against them, and, although at one time it looked as though they might achieve their purpose, they found Brasenose a class above the crews they had previously defeated, for this was the first occasion that they had had to row farther than the Free Ferry, and Brasenose managed to get home with a quarter of a length to spare.
Worcester left off Head of the River in a manner befitting their position. Seldom have a crew finished in such brilliant fashion, and they made Balliol look mediocre indeed. They appeared to have a real stroke in F. T. Hawkin [sic, presumably Hankin], the St. Paul's freshman, who is a brother of the Old Blue. They had been coached by their old captain, M. G. Billing, and Mr. Vivian Nickalls. The first and last occasion on which they had headed the Torpid was in 1922, and on that occasion they had an American oarsman in their crew, S. R. Tyler of the University of Virginia, who rowed No.2.
St. Peter's Hall made a brilliant debut, for they only came into existence two years ago. They made a bump every afternoon and from the ease with which they made them would have gone a long way into the Third Division before reaching the end of their tether. Their performance is the more noteworthy as they have only 40 members on the books. Next year their prospects will be hardly as good, as most of those rowing this year in the Torpids will be requisitioned for their Summer Eights. Corpus, another of the smaller foundations, who have always succeeded in maintaining a prominent position on the river, also did remarkably well in making five bumps in the First Division, a record equalled by Keble; and St. Catherine's, in the Second Division, and Jesus, in the Third Division, also gained five palces. But for sheer bad luck St. Catherine's might have done likewise [?].
Some crews were very disappointing, notably New College and Magdalen, who had given much promise in practice. Magdalen lost only two places, one of which was to the Head Boat, but New College went down on no fewer than five occasions. Bumps were much more numerous than usual, as 58 were recorded during the six days' racing.
|B:||T. Ryder (Radley)|
|2:||S. R. Tyler (U. Virginia)|
|3:||J. M. Jacoby (Glenalmond)|
|4:||L. R. Addison (Bromsgrove)|
|5:||F. W. Manning (King's College, Taunton)|
|6:||R. Green (Haileybury)|
|7:||T. Y. Price (Bromsgrove)|
|S:||F. T. Hankin (St. Paul's)|
|C:||W. H. Pritchard (St. Edmunds, Ware)|
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