Tom George (left) and Oliver Wynne-Griffith (right) were second fastest in the Senior Men’s PairPeter Hogan / @peterhoganmedia

With the thrill of this year’s Boat Race now settled after two weeks away from the Tideway, a healthy handful of Cambridge University Boat Club (CUBC) athletes dipped their oars into the Redgrave Pinsent Rowing Lake last Sunday (17/4) for the invitational GB April Trials. 

The meet was the final chance for GB rowers to battle it out for spots at this summer’s World Rowing Championships.

Located in Caversham, Oxfordshire, the lake provides training, medical, and scientific facilities for the GB rowing squad.

Glancing back to mid-February, Cambridge’s rowers enjoyed success in a number of categories at the GB Open Trial. Tom George and Oliver Wynne-Griffith were the fastest boat of the day in the Senior Men’s Pair, and Imogen Grant dominated the Lightweight Women’s Single.

In the U23 categories, Matthew Edge took a comfortable win in the Lightweight Single, while Luca Ferraro and Oliver Parish won the Men's Pair. Sarah Portsmouth and CUBC Women’s President Bronya Sykes also put on a solid showing together.

This time out, all returned except Grant and Edge, with the former testing positive for Covid-19 and the latter having to withdraw from racing following the time trial on Friday (16/4).

After topping their semi-final clash, George and Wynne-Griffith placed second in the final of the Senior Men’s Pair, falling to Matthew Aldridge and Joshua Bugajski of Oxford Brookes University Boat Club, who they had managed to beat in the previous round.


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In the second final of the Men’s Pair, Ferraro and Parish placed sixth, leaving them 12th overall and the second-fastest U23 pair.

Portsmouth and Sykes, fresh from winning the 76th Women’s Boat Race, went into the weekend hoping to build on their February form. They came ninth overall, making Portsmouth the fifth-fastest U23 athlete in women’s sweep.

This year’s World Rowing Championships will take place from 18th to 25th September in Račice, Czech Republic, while the U23 event will be held on 25th to 30th July in Varese, Italy.