OURCs Captains' Meeting Minutes

7th Week, Michaelmas Term 2001

Apologies received from Gabriel Wright (again)


1. Minutes

The minutes were not read out, and no objections to the published minutes were raised.


2. Matters arising



3. Squad News

OUBC: (Ben Burch) Squad has competed successfully in the British Indoor Rowing Championships and Head of the River Fours (winning 4 pennants on time, beating Cambridge opposition). With an average (top 8) 2000m erg score of 6:00, the squad is in a strong position 3 weeks before trial 8s.

OUWBC: (Jess Wilson) Squad members had competed at the national trials (including the top U23 pair), 4s head (4th fastest 4, beating Cambridge to the S2 pennant) and the BIRC (top university team).

OULRC: (Ross Crooke) Squad has been competing successfully at the 4s head and BIRC, and managed to hold Nephthys regatta.

OUWLRC: (Rachel Abbott) Squad has won at Kingston and competed at BIRC. The club has organised a cocktail party for Thursday 22nd.


4. Rule Changes

a) Other regattas

O3 changed to "Permission letters must be sent out to the following bodies at least 4 weeks before the event."


O4 changed to "A safety plan must be submitted to the OURCs secretary for approval at least four weeks in advance of the event."

Proposed: AH, Second: Conor O’Neill


Passed with 1 abstention

b) Complete crews

R4 changed to "All boats shall carry their full complement at all times unless the written permission of the OURCs Secretary has been obtained. Boats being transported from City of Oxford or Falcon to the boathouses , hence not required to turn, may carry fewer than their full complement of rowers."

Proposed: AH, Second: C O’N


Passed with 1 abstention

c) Reasonable misapprehension of a bump

B13.3 "Boats easying under a reasonable misapprehension that they have gained a bump shall be awarded a row over, otherwise all boats are expected to complete the course where possible."

changed to

"Boats easying under a reasonable misapprehension that they have gained a bump may be awarded a row over. In Eights week, boats easying under a reasonable misapprehension that they have been bumped may be awarded a row over, otherwise all boats are expected to complete the course where possible. The decision in such situations will be entirely at the discretion of the Race Committee."

Proposed: AH; Second: Guy Barnett


Passed unanimously

5. "Vortex" Blades

Heather Walker (New) pointed out:

These blades had been approved by the NGBs of Britain and the US.

An article in the October issue of Regatta had stated that the rounded edge of these blades was actually safer than a standard composite blade.

New already have a set.

Liz Nixon (ARA Regional Safety Adviser) responded:

No decision had been forthcoming from the previous ARA council meeting, although many umpires had raised doubts about their safety during the season.

The Regatta article is from Concept 2 and does not represent the views of the ARA

In ARA events contact between bumps is a foul, while in bumps racing, this is the goal. Her personal point of view is that the ARA will not ban these blades, but that the hazards and risks in bumps racing are very different from those of ARA events.

In her view, the article is incorrect in stating that the blades are incapable of producing more than minor scratches.

Ed Harrison (St Annes) asked if banning these blades would help our reputation with the ARA. Mark Nixon (ARA Regional Council Chairman) responded that many people in the ARA were opposed to bumps racing, and that this would be seen as evidence of a responsible attitude to safety during bumps of OURCs.

Ross Crooke offered the opinion that a ban would be overkill, and that bans on riggers would be coming next.

The Lincoln Captain of Coxes asked her Captain to pass on the view that she was unhappy with the use of these blades.

After repetitions of the arguments the tabled rule addition was voted upon:

B16 Oars with sharp protrusions on the spoons are not permitted

Proposed: Laura Hannay (BNC), Second: Lincoln

For: 22, Against: 15, Abstentions: 15



Some Captains and committee members felt that this was unfair on New, and proposed that New be granted an exception to this rule for 1st division boats, for the reasonable lifetime of their Vortex blades

Proposed: RC, Second: Luke Shepherd

For: 26, Against: 5, Abstentions: 14, Couldn’t be bothered to abstain: at least 7



6. Safety Audits

Guy Barnett (OURCs Safety Adviser) pointed out that all clubs are obliged to complete a safety audit before Torpids and that Liz Nixon would be inspecting St Catz and Pembroke in addition to the clubs identified in the previous meeting.


7. Transfers

a) Jeffrey Williams (Green): Osler-Green to Univ


Passed with 2 abstentions

b) Tamara Cohen (Green): Osler-Green to Merton (typically allowed)


Passed with 1 abstention

c) Eleanor Hodby (ChCh) Christ Church to Merton (typically allowed)


Passed with 1 abstention

d) Michelle Dipp (Worcester) Worcester to BNC (typically allowed)


Passed with 2 abstentions

e) Susanne Etti (visiting student) to Linacre

Hannah Nicholas (Linacre) stated that Susanne, although registered as a student in Germany, was spending all 3 years of her DPhil in Oxford. She is being supervised by a Linacre Fellow, stayed in Linacre accommodation in her first year, and had rowed as an associate in the previous year.

Susanne does not have a college affiliation on her Bod card, and is thus "not allowed" to be granted honorary membership under C5 of the constitution.

JW thought it was lovely, however, and that it would be a shame if Susanne wasn’t allowed to row.

A special exception to grant honorary membership to Susanne was proposed.

Passed with 2 against and 1 abstention.

f) Kate Allen (New): New to Osler-Green

Lucy Sykes and Peter Bannister stated that the previous committee had informed them that Kate could choose to row for Osler (having previously competed for New) as all transfers had been voided at the end of Trinity 2001.

AH pointed out that anybody who had said this was wrong, and that the choice of a clinical medical student between Osler and their college was not a transfer.

LS stated that Kate couldn’t reconcile her course and New’s training times

Catherine Davidson (New) stated that Kate had not been in contact this term, and read the rules concerning Osler, and asked whether there was any point in having rules if the Captains ignored them.

Arguments repeated a few times.

For: 26, Against: 20, Abstentions: 7


Not Passed

g) Matthew Moorhouse (Corpus) Corpus Christi to St Anthonys


Passed with 2 abstentions

h) Susan James (Pembroke) to Osler-Green (typically allowed)


Passed with 3 against and 8 abstentions

8. OURCs elections

a) Phillippa Stanhope (St Peters) to ordinary member

Proposed: AH, Second: Wadham


Passed with 2 abstentions

b) Gabriel Wright (Oriel) to Treasurer

Proposed: AH, Second: C O’N


Passed with 2 abstentions

9. AOB

a) Rowing Strategy

AH stated that consultations with various University bodies are currently taking place.

b) Lights

C O’N stated that he had seen crews and launches out in thick fog at Godstow, adn pointed out that lights are useless in fog. This is in breach of OURCs rules, and all common sense.

c) Jesus requested a river closure for Saturday Week 0, Hilary Term, to hold a private regatta. Several clubs stated that they wished to train then.

Proposed: Henry Bremridge (Jesus)

Second: RC

For: 19, Against: 20, Abstain: 6


Not passed

d) Safety

LN registered her disappointment with the response to her emphasis of the rules regarding life jackets after the previous meeting, with 2 clubs observed being coached by coaches in launches, without lifejackets, within 24 hours.

LN also advertised the new ARA safety video, but did urge caution concerning the advice on bowballs.

There being no other business, the meeting closed at 8:58.