Rowers nab title at BUCS Regatta

Sports Editor Mark Sleightholm reports on the Boat Club's show of dominance in the BUCS Regatta

Mark Sleightholm
14th May 2018
The Newcastle rowers celebrate their victory accordingly. Image: NUBC

A clean sweep of Victor Ludorum titles showed just how dominant Newcastle are on the water as the Boat Club notched up unassailable leads in the BUCS Regatta.

The prestigious event is the largest student regatta in Europe and marks the high point of the BUCS rowing calendar. For only the second time in the club’s history it was Newcastle who took the overall Victor Ludorum title, as well as the men’s and women’s titles.

Boat Club President Alex Turner described the win as “very special”, adding: “In what was my fourth and final BUCS, I could not have been prouder or more impressed by the spirit shown by everyone racing and supporting. This success is only the beginning of what will definitely be a great summer.”

[pullquote]For only the second time in the club’s history it was Newcastle who took the overall Victor Ludorum title[/pullquote]

Newcastle entered 53 boats across the three days of racing at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham, and won 19 medals in total, six of which were gold. This haul gave them 1,094 points in the overall rankings, 22 more than second-placed team Oxford Brookes.

Indeed, it was Oxford Brookes who offered the only serious challenge to Newcastle’s dominance in overall rankings, with the two teams well ahead of the rest of the pack in the men’s, women’s and combined rankings. A total of 35 universities took part in the event.

With so many impressive results for Newcastle, it’s hard to select standout performances, but Rob Fuller and Ryan Ballantine won three gold medals each, in the lightweight four, quad and eight races. The club’s first women’s quad gold came with a stunning nine second winning margin over Durham University by the beginner team, while Newcastle took silver and bronze medals in both the men’s and women’s intermediate lightweight singles.

The Blue Stars’ dominance on the hottest weekend of the year is due in no small part to long-standing Head of Rowing Angelo Savarino, who said: “the performance is the comprehensive result of athletes and coaches, and in particular the volunteer coaches Steven Leigh and David Stevenson did a fantastic job.”

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