University rowing (UK)
University rowing in the United Kingdom began when it was introduced to Oxford in the late 18th century. The first known university boat race took place at Oxford in 1815 between Brasenose and Jesus and the first race between Oxford and Cambridge was rowed on 10 June 1829. Today, many universities have a boat club and at some collegiate universities—Oxford, Cambridge, Durham, and London—each college has its own club as well as a main university club. In Scotland, the rowing clubs of Glasgow University and Edinburgh University initiated an annual race in 1877, making this competition the second oldest in the United Kingdom. Competitive university rowing in Northern Ireland began in the 1940s with the Wylie Cup; the Welsh Boat Race began in 2006.
Most universities compete in the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) Championships with a number of events over the year. For non-indoor events, boats are separated into Championship (where "BUCS points" are available), Intermediate and Beginner (for students in their first year of the sport).
As of 16 June 2008, UCS (who represented the professional staff working in the sector) and BUSA (the lead body for competitive sport in the sector) have merged to form "BUCS" – British Universities & Colleges Sport. Events from 2008/09 onwards therefore come under the BUCS banner, rather than BUSA, e.g., BUCS Regatta.
BUCS Small Boats Head
The Small Boats Head is held in October. The event was introduced in 2004 and first held on the Trent in Nottingham. From 2008 the event has been held on the Witham in Boston, Lincolnshire where it now runs in conjunction with the GB Rowing Team 1st Senior/U23 Assessment.
BUCS Indoor Rowing Series (UIRS)
In 2010, BUCS Rowing and British Rowing managed an indoor rowing series at 11 Universities across the UK. Almost 900 students competed a 2000m test and a similar series is planned for 2011.
BUCS Head of the River
A 5 km head race which was held for many years on the River Trent in Nottingham during February or March. In 2009, the decision was made to move the event to the River Nene in Peterborough, and to split the competition into 2 separate days, with Beginners racing on one day, and Seniors racing on the other. However, due to inclement weather, the event was cancelled. The event was again held in Peterborough in 2010, 2011 and 2012, and was due to be held there in 2013. However, due to flooding, the event was moved to Boston that year.
A 2 km regatta held (usually at Holme Pierrepont) over the May Day weekend. Points for the Victor Ludorum are awarded for finishing places in the finals (more points for champ events and bigger boats).
The regatta was first run (as the BUSA regatta) in 1994, replacing the UAU 'Regatta' that had been a two-hour slot for University races in the Nottingham City Regatta. The first Regatta attracted 105 crews; by 2000 this had grown to 354. The 2001 Regatta was the first to be held over two days, and attracted over 500 crews. In 2006 the Regatta grew to three days with almost 1000 crews taking part.
In its early years the Regatta was dominated by Nottingham, but in 2004 it was won for the first time by Durham. In 2005 Durham were 1st again, followed by Reading University in 2nd place and University of London behind them in 3rd place. Durham's dominance continued until 2014, when London took the trophy, with Durham 2nd and Imperial College 3rd.
2014 also saw the introduction of separate Victor Ludorum trophies for men's and women's teams in addition to the overall trophy: Durham took the women's prize and Imperial the men's. 2015 saw Durham retain the women's title and Newcastle the men's, with Durham taking the overall title. Newcastle's men retained their trophy in 2016 and Newcastle University won the overall trophy for the first time. The University of London won the 2016 women's trophy on gold medal count, having finished equal on points with Exeter.
In 2008 the BUSA regatta was held at Strathclyde Country Park, as NWSC was not available that weekend. Two weeks earlier, a BUSA Sprint Regatta was held at Cotswold Water Park, though the regatta had to be held as a time trial because the weather had prevented the course and stakeboats being laid.
A number of university boat clubs have organised annual races between themselves. These include:
- Oxford and Cambridge – University Boat Race
- Durham and Newcastle – Boat Race of the North
- University of London Colleges – Allom Cup
- Bristol and UWE – Bristol Boat Race
- Edinburgh and Glasgow – The Scottish Boat Race
- De Montfort University and University of Leicester – Varsity of Leicester
- York and Lancaster – Part of Roses Tournament
- Aberdeen and Robert Gordon University – Aberdeen Universities Boat Race
- Manchester and Salford – Two Cities Boat Race
- Birmingham and University of Warwick – Varsity Boat Race
- Trinity College, Dublin and Queens University Belfast – Irish University Boat Race
- Swansea University and Cardiff University – The Welsh Boat Race
- University of Stirling and University of Dundee – Tayforth Boat Race
- United Hospitals Boat Club – London medical, veterinary and allied students – regatta, head race and bumps races.
- Queen Mary, University of London (non-medical section) and Barts and The London, Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry (medical school of QMUL) – Part of the Merger Cup
- Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester – Christie Cup Competition
- University of Northumbria and Newcastle University – Stan Calvert Cup
- University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University – Varsity
- Kingston Student Rowing Club and University of Surrey Boat Club – Varsity
There are separate bumps races held every year for the Cambridge colleges, Oxford colleges, and London medical schools (called the "United Hospitals Bumps"). Durham College Rowing organises two inter-collegiate regattas and a head race between the Durham Colleges.
University boat clubs
- Anglia Ruskin Boat Club
- Bath University Boat Club
- University of Birmingham Boat Club
- Bournemouth University Boat Club
- University of Bradford Rowing Club
- University of Bristol Boat Club
- Brunel University Rowing Club
- Cambridge University Boat Club
- University of East Anglia Boat Club
- University of East London Boat Club
- Essex University Rowing Club
- Exeter University Boat Club
- Gloucestershire University Rowing Club
- University of Hertfordshire Rowing Club
- University of Hull Boat Club
- Imperial College Boat Club
- Keele University Boat Club
- University of Kent Rowing Club
- Kingston Student Rowing Club (Formerly Kingston University Boat Club before 2012)
- Lancaster University Boat Club
- Leeds University Boat Club
- University of Leicester Boat Club
- University of Lincoln Rowing Club
- Liverpool John Moores University Rowing Club
- University of Liverpool Boat Club
- University of London Boat Club
- Loughborough Students Rowing
- Manchester University Boat Club
- Newcastle University Boat Club
- University of Northampton Rowing Club
- Northumbria University Boat Club
- Nottingham University Boat Club
- Nottingham Trent University Rowing Club
- Oxford University Boat Club
- Oxford Brookes University Boat Club
- University of Plymouth Rowing Club
- University of Portsmouth Rowing Club
- Reading University Boat Club
- Roehampton University Boat Club
- Salford University Boat Club
- Sheffield Hallam University Rowing Club
- Sheffield University Rowing Club
- Southampton University Boat Club
- Southampton Solent University Boat Club
- Sunderland University Rowing Club
- University of Surrey Boat Club
- Teesside University Rowing Club
- University of Warwick Boat Club
- University of West England Boat Club
- University of Westminster Boat Club
- University of Worcester Rowing Club
- University of York Boat Club
- York St John University Rowing Club
- Queen's University Belfast Boat Club
- Queen's University Belfast Ladies Boat Club
- University of Ulster at Coleraine
- Aberdeen University Boat Club
- Dundee University Boat Club
- Edinburgh University Boat Club
- Glasgow University Boat Club
- Heriot Watt University Boat Club
- Robert Gordon University Boat Club
- Stirling University Boat Club
- Strathclyde University Boat Club
- University of St Andrews Boat Club
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Of the precise date when boating became a common amusement in the University we have no record, but we find T. F. Dibden, who came up in 1793, and took his degree in 1801...
- X (1900). The Speaker, the Liberal Review. 2 – April to September 30, 1900. London: Cassell. p. 23. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
...a history of Oxford rowing from its earliest days, even before the actual racing began—his first extracts relate to the year 1793...
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Everyone knows that the first race took place at Henley in 1829, but no one has yet been to decide how it was that the idea of a between the two Universities arose.
- Nigel Mayglothing. "BUSA 1996". Archived from the original on 28 January 1999.
- Nigel Mayglothling. "BUSA Rowing Regatta 2001". Retrieved 16 October 2015.
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the winning handful of points needed to unseat Nottingham University, the champions for the past seven years
- "The History of Durham University Boat Club". Durham University Boat Club. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
2004 … DUBC won the BUSA Regatta winning the Eric Halladay Memorial trophy, the first time that Nottingham had ever lost the title.
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