Members of the St Catharine’s College Boat Club (SCCBC) were able to attend a training camp during the Easter vacation, thanks to the Master’s Fund created as a result of a generous donation of £100,000 from Jon (1983, Natural Sciences) and Ann Ardron.
Around 20 student rowers and coxes joined Carmen Failla, the College’s Head Rowing Coach and Boathouse Manager, at Walton Rowing Club for four days of hard rowing on the Thames and land training. The group averaged two outings each on the river each day, plus land training sessions, with a focus on racing-style sprints on the last day. Carmen commented:
“We improved more during the four-day camp than our students thought possible, with all crews rowing on the final day much faster and much more efficiently than when we left Cambridge. We all feel incredibly fortunate to have received support from the Master’s Fund, which made the experience more accessible for our students who didn’t have to cover the cost of using all of Walton's facilities, and had travel and food subsidised too. There’s appetite for another training camp next year, which is a clear indicator of the club’s ambitions and camaraderie.”
Rory Cockshaw, a third-year Natural Sciences undergraduate and SCCBC Men’s Captain, has represented the College most recently as part of the Lent Bumps 2022 M1 crew, and he looks forward to our May Bumps campaign. He explained:
“The training camp has been, by far and away, the best thing to have happened to the club in the three years I have been part of it. Many similarly-sized clubs run training camps nationally and internationally every year, but this is (to my knowledge) the first such camp that SCCBC has run in at least the last decade, perhaps longer.
“The stretch of the Thames at Walton is gorgeous – much wider and straighter than the Cam, and much, much better for our training. It's often impossible to row for more than a few hundred meters on the Cam without getting caught up in a traffic jam. We could row for an hour or more on the Thames with hardly any interruption. The effect that has had on improving our power and efficiency is just staggering.”
The Master’s Fund covered the cost of hiring the training facilities in Walton, as well as travel, food and other necessities. To find out how to apply to the Fund, please visit: https://www.caths.cam.ac.uk/masters-fund-application.