The Oxford Torpids will be begun to-day and will continue until next Wednesday. Illnewss and accident have prevented some of the colleges from putting on more than one crew. Only two colleges, Exeter and St. Peter's Hall are in a position to put on three crews.
There are 42 crews taking part in the races — the same number as in 1939 — and the war-time custom of colleges amalgamating has been discontinued, each college now rowing under its own colours.
Boats damaged by ice
From our Special Correspondent
Heavy snowstorms added to the difficulties of the crews in the second day's racing of the Oxford Torpids and two at least of the boats were damaged by floating ice. New College went to the head of the river for the first time since 1938, but may have to struggle on Monday to keep away from Christ Church.
There were 15 bumps on the third day of the Oxford Torpids on Saturday, bringing the total so far to 39.
The races were again rowed in heavy snow-storms. New College retained their position at the head of the river and paddled on after Christ Church bumped St. John's early in the race. To-day's race between New College and Christ Church may decide the question of the leadership.
The Torpids postponed
The fourth day's racing in the Oxford torpids was postponed yesterday because of the severe frost and the dangers of ice flows. Weather permitting, the racing will be continued next Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
It is hoped to continue racing in the Oxford Torpids to-day, but if this is not possible the event will be abandoned altogether. Only three days' racing was possible up to last Saturday.
The Oxford Torpid races were resumed yesterday afternoon after three days during which rowing was impossible because of ice. The close race expected between New College and Christ Church for the headship did not materialize. Since Saturday two members of the Christ Church crew contracted mumps and changes naturally affected the crew's chance. There were 12 bumps yesterday, bringing the total for the fours days' racing to 51.
Thirteen bumps were recorded in the fifth day of the Oxford Torpid races yesterday, and for the third occasion six of these were in Divison 2. In Division 1 New College now look like keeping their position at the head of the river, which they last secured in 1938... It is interesting to recall that the last time that weather interefered with the races was in 1926 [? probably referring to 1927] when several boats sank and the races had to be abandoned for one day.
The Torpid races were concluded on Saturday after being abandoned for three days in the early part of the week because of the wintry weather. Rowing was quite out of the question on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and the races could not be resumed till Thursday. It is over 20 years since the Torpdis were at the mercy of the elements, and that was for one day in 1926 [again, probably 1927]
New College finished head of the river. They last occupied this postion in 1938, but lost it in the year war broke out. Christ Church, who finished second, had the bad luck during the three days' postponement to have two of their crew compelled by illness to retire, and this undoubtedly prevented them from making a closer fight for the headship, if not achieving it.
The most successful crew was Queen's, who went up five places, while the most unlucky crews were Magdalen, Merton, and St. John's II, each of whom lost six places. A bump claimed by Wadham II over Worcester II on Friday was conceded after a meeting on Saturday. Bumps altogether totalled 78.
The most successful crew in the Oxford Torpids was Lincoln, who went up six places [as did New College II], and not Queen's, as previously stated.
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