Trial Eights Report 2018: Speculation vs. Faff

The OUWLRC Trial Eights took place over the weekend of the 8/9th of December, with the race schedule set to to include an omnium of six races over three different distances.  The winner of each race would be awarded points with 2 points awarded for a win in a 500m race, 4 points for a 1000m race and 8 points for a 2000m race.  The two crews were named “Faff” and “Speculation” after the coaches most resented squad habits.

Saturday’s racing took place at Eton Dorney, with the two 8+s competing in four races (two 500m and two 1000m) in a breezy cross-wind.  The two 500m races were closely fought, with Speculation taking the first win, but Faff drawing level on points after a win by a bow ball in the second 500m.  Speculation took both wins for the 1000m races, leaving them ahead by 10 points to 2 going into day two.

Sunday’s racing saw both a change of location and of conditions, with the Eton Dorney lake swapped for the Henley course and consistent breeze replaced with relatively calm conditions, with scattered gusts.  Faff (racing in white baselayers) entered the second day of racing needing to win both 2000m pieces to win, while Speculation (racing in dark baselayers) knew that a win in the first race of the day would guarantee them the overall win on points.  Speculation won the toss and chose to race on the Bucks station first, giving them the advantage of sitting in the stream.  After a strong start, Speculation took the win in the first 2000m race by 2 lengths, thus giving them the overall win of the competition.

The final race of the day saw both crews racing with nothing to lose. Faff could not win the competition, but now had the favoured station with no races for which to save themselves.  Speculation would be racing for the near white-wash of the competition, looking to win 5 of the 6 races.  A stronger start from Faff in the slight stream of the Bucks station but them slightly up of the start, gaining to a length lead by 1000m in.  Speculation fought back, gaining ground in the final 500m to finish only 3/4 of a length down.  The final standings left Speculation ahead, leading Faff by 18 points to 10.


Crew Orders:

NB: The rowers were consistent across the two crews for all races, but the coxes were switched between all crews for races.


  • S: Grace Joel (Balliol)
  • 7: Jane Ellis (St Edmund Hall)
  • 6: Ellie Watts (Wolfson)
  • 5: Oriane Grant (St Catherine’s)
  • 4: Emily Hinson (St Hugh;s)
  • 3: Katie Hurt (Corpus Christi)
  • 2: Leah Mitchell (Balliol)
  • B: Katherine Ferris (Trinity)


  • S: Fiona Jamieson (Corpus Christi)
  • 7: Grace Hanna (Exeter)
  • 6: Amanda Thomas (Trinity)
  • 5: Tuuli-Anna Hulkuri (Nuffield)
  • 4: Laura Boddy (St John’s)
  • 3: Jessica Wang (Christ Church)
  • 2: Anneloes Hoff (St Antony’s)
  • B: Anna Glück (Somerville)


  • Jolet Mimpen (Green Templeton)
  • Charlotte Lee (Balliol)
  • Ruby Harrison (Corpus Christi)
  • Cal Shearer (St John’s)