Torpids 2019 was a fantastic display of strength by all seven Oriel crews entered. Congratulations to the men’s First VIII on retaining their Headship and to the men’s Second VIII on gaining blades.
It was smooth sailing for the men’s First VIII throughout the four days of racing as the crew kept up an impressive pace ahead of Pembroke to comfortably row over, successfully defending their Headship for the second consecutive year.
The men’s Second VIII also gave an incredible performance by bumping Keble II within 30 seconds on the second day’s race. After a dramatic restart due to swans on the third day, the M2 crew went on to bump St Peter’s M1 and Jesus M2 to move up into Division III. They successfully bumped Christ Church II on the last day, gaining blades and securing themselves in 10th position in Division III.
The women’s First VIII started as Head of the River but the challengers for the Headship title this year were too strong and, despite the valiant rowing and unwavering spirit shown by the crew in each race, they fell to fifth position of Division I. The women’s Second VIII was bumped by a fast Corpus I on the second day, but showed some great skills over the remaining races to comfortably row over Wadham II for two days in a row, finishing in 11th position of Division III.
Oriel may not have retained the Double Headship title this time around, but the perseverance and Oriel spirit demonstrated by all crews – including the W3, M3, and M4 crews who just missed out on qualifying – throughout the course of Torpids make it clear that they will be back next season ready to take up the challenge.