John Peters squad drew the seeded crew from Frankfurter Germania and defeated them on the Wednesday.
The Thursday saw them despatch Reading RC. On Friday QBC lost narrowly to a strong Neptune crew.
The Big VIII win at Wallingford
John Peters' squad win Wallingford.
Boat Naming - 3 new Empachers for Quintin
Quintin Hogg names coxless four after our founder. Three generations of Webbs and Firmingers help name Frank Webb and the Tim Firminger.
Start your training camp as you mean to go on. Quintin met in the Wetherspoons in Liverpool Street.
Landing at St Etiennes we made for the hire cars. The trip to the course was hampered by Dov's misunderstanding of the Ford Focus - modern manual cars come with more than one gear.
Our hotel was to be the Lodges du Lac - which had come highly recommended by the Twix Chicks. Joy Skipper immediately decided it was like camping and the exodus was planned.
Madame Gevrier was happy to welcome the boys back to the Novalaise Plage - the rush for the rooms was a classic Le Mans start in reverse. The screech of brakes and the dash for the ground floor. Rowing with the old Sons crowd is having a bad affect on the Quintin boys as the Captain and Fordy sprinted for their old room.
Mealtimes soon took on a familiar pattern. Huw "It's not timeshare it's holiday club membership" Jones was always quick to the sun facing seats. Dov was always late. Nicko hit the sweet tooth high score with a feast of Nutella, Choco Chips all washed down by a litre of Hot Chocolate every breakfast.
Willy trotted out the James Last Orchestra joke (though the impact was lost when he had to explain who the man was to our younger members). Tim joined in entertaining the troops and the tumbleweed came down from the mountains.
The Quintin Boat Club confused the French International Centre Manager still further on this year's trip. Seeing the new Empacher pair being rigged he assumed the top athletes had come out this year. They had - Bill and Sandy relished their outings in the George Marshall. For many years the Vice Presidents have chided the younger club members for their preciousness over boats - "The Vice Presidents don't care what we row in..." So when faced with an afternoon of starts and 1000m pieces they declined until offered the new boat. The feigned tiredness vanished and the the Abbagnale brothers were straight down to the course.
Let's hope the Abbagnales' keenness remains back in the UK though there aren't too many regattas where you can take a 750m head start.
And so to the racing - Bucket managed to get a pairs ride with Nicko and wisely chose the boat with the biggest rudder. Luckily the video showed them winning from Pete Meaney. Huw missed out on a trick by leaving early as we would all have gladly given him an hour or two of our time to avoid Pete's Readings from his SpeedCoach.
Getting other members back for an outing was more difficult. Huw was always sleeping in the sun. The Odd Couple demonstrated the greatest inertia. John Le Badger Ferrario sought solace in the FT whilst the naked Bucket enjoyed his lazy lob in bed - the condensation forever clouded the window in the Duvet Twins' room. No matter though - Dov was always late.
Dick Findlay exuded his own personal terror on the camp - carrying the head and steering foot of a former bow-steersman around in his Hi-Tech bag as well as his assortment of Ninja weapons. Sandy is normally a sound sleeper but it appears the slow rasp of the machete sharpener at night cured his snoring. The Captain fell fate to Chief Coach Will's crew selections - his head will be next in the bag after sending Dick out in a mixed quad with our Putney Town representative.
Roy took up where Mental Mick Lonnergan left off last year - looking for alternatives to the rowing. The ex-ski guide was soon negotiating a mountain bike excursion for the gang with the sports centre manageress Anne.
The Mountain Biking trip proved to great fun trekking in the sunshine enjoying the mountain views. The tranquillity was interrupted by our political correspondent Will who espoused the theory that both the quality of life in France and the number of velodromes in "poxy Ghent" was down to heavy UK funding of the EC and the spending of American soldiers post-war. The arguments are hoary old chestnuts of Will's but unique to Quintin as a topic for discussion following a particularly slippery descent.
Baseball has Shoeless Joe - the rowing world has Sockless Will. The eccentric treated the boys to designer cycling gear and a smattering of helpful insights - "Fordy you're rowing like a man from Alcatraz" was perhaps the best. The Big Man did get a bit excited when accused by Pete of being Muriel, the man who had "too many cucumber sandwiches" in the Scullers Grand VIII.
The mountain biking brought no injuries bar the Bucket who picked a soft impressionist meadow to crash in - claiming to pick up a muscle injury to his inter-stellar overdrive. The fact that he was due to race 2k in his single apparently had nothing to do with it...
Back at the Lakeside Bar Roy's quote "There are some classic French men here" was understood by all but had to go in the quotes of the week. Returning from the biking Roy was keen to resume his chat with Anne the sultry local temptress. Willy stopped Bucket in his tracks by explaining and then demonstrating that Roy was "Le Bisexual".
In the 2000m 9 lane race on the Tuesday morning Tim teamed up with Dick in the double and stormed through the field to a convincing win. Donuts lost his glasses before the start but steered his mixed double all the better for it. The Treasurer demonstrated his experience starting the race timer by shouting "GO" at the end of the 100 metre white buoys. Like everything on the trip though it was all caught on film superbly by his wife Liz - an Oscar for photography. Well almost everything was caught - Pete catching his blade after losing it on a buoy in a practice start entertained everyone he'd beaten earlier that day but the spectacle we all wanted to see was sadly missed - the Abbagnales' Eskimo roll at the finish. Not one to practice at home on the Tideway folks.
The final day saw the feeding frenzy at the Crewline store - the Captain sadly sprinted to the door first and the club larged it on kit. Pete Meaney amazed us all (no, not because he opened his wallet) by buying some non-black kit.
Some people didn't want to leave - Dov first tried to check out with his Sainsburys Reward card and then spun in the gravel traps before the Peage. Dick struggled through customs - remembering the Day of the Jackal they were worried by the gas canister from his lifejacket. Luckily he had buried his weapons on the far side of the course. "Tonight's weapon of choice - the crossbow..."
The flight was slightly delayed. But grown men didn't mind - the airport had throwaway polystyrene aircraft kits to assemble and throw. And the bar did serve Leffe. The happy troop flew back to Stanstead and some of them even got their luggage on the other side.
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