The successes of last year have been firmly built upon in all aspects of the club, with an incredibly busy, exciting start to term.
As novice women's captain I've been overwhelmed with the enthusiasm and commitment from the girls trying out this year! Recruitment was a dream because there was so much interest in people wanting to join the boat cub and get stuck into the training. As selection approaches we have 40 girls training very hard and dedicating their time to the club which is what I and our coach, Thomas Broomfield like to see. I'm really looking forward to this year and can't wait to get to know the girls better.
As novice men's captain it's been a pleasure to see so many freshers interested and eager to get involved in a new sport. We currently have around 70 novice men completing a training course before selection in week 4, which takes the form of a 4 minute rowing machine test. The competition will be fierce, and the novices are making the most of training to boost their fitness beforehand. Turnout in training has been excellent; Lulu and I particularly enjoyed putting the novices through their paces on Friday on Tocil field, where we ran a circuit session. A very encouraging start to a year.
The year has started really positively for the Senior Squads. The grueling week of pre-season was a great success with the addition of a very strong contingent of last year's Novices and a fantastic group of new recruits. Different variations of crews have been put out over the last few weeks, both in sweep and sculling boats, and are progressing well under the watchful eyes of OJ, Jack and Didi. The first test of this year comes in the form of The British Rowing Championships this weekend where both squads are hoping to smash out a good performance and make their mark early on in the season.
Social events have made the start of term fun for everyone, with members of all squads enjoying time together off of the water. Our pre-season club meal was a huge success, with us dominating over half of Leamington Wagamammas, and our Superhero themed social was a great way to round off a tough week's training! Since term's begun we've enjoyed a Toga Party social and a huge highlight has been the Club T-Shirt social; with over 100 attendees, it was an amazing night and a great chance to meet all of our new novices.
All the senior squads came back a week early to get back into the swing of training to be able to hit the ground running for the start of term. It was a fairly intense week with 3 sessions a day, so many blisters made reappearance after going soft over the summer. But all in all it was very successful week, we had good fun and bonded well within our squads with a few new seniors. We even managed to do a massive tidy of the boathouse and started painting the changing rooms.
The start of term means Naked Calendar time, and things are definitely very exciting for both calendars this year! The Women's Calendar has been featured in The Metro, The Mail Online, The Mirror Online, The Huffington Post, The Sun, and has even made the news in Lithuania and Israel! With more bonus material albums and new limited edition posters - here's hoping that both calendars experience even more success than last year!