Durham University win Victor Ludorum at record-breaking BUCS Regatta 2023

1,250 crews from 72 universities took part in Europe’s largest student regatta over the bank holiday weekend


Photo: Drew Smith / BUCS Sport

Over 2,600 students from across the UK competed at BUCS Regatta at Holme Pierrepont in Nottingham from 29 April-1 May. Race controller James Lee spoke of his delight witnessing the racing across three jam-packed days. “The mix of universities picking up medals over the three days was particularly pleasing, proving we are catering for the wide range of university rowing programmes across the country. It’s an event that I absolutely love being involved in.”

Durham University took home the overall Victor Ludorum with 784 points after an outstanding weekend of gold medals across championship and intermediate events, including the men’s championship pairs and the women’s championship coxed fours. They were followed closely by Oxford Brookes University (704 points) with University of Edinburgh (600 points) in third.

Durham University also topped the table for the women’s Victor Ludorum, with 354 points. Oxford Brookes University stopped them from making a clean sweep of it, retaining the men’s Victor Ludorum title with 520 points.

University of Bath, Reading University and Queen’s University Belfast dominated the sculling events across the weekend, with all three clubs competing in the A Finals for the men’s intermediate quad, the women’s intermediate double sculls and the men’s championship double sculls.

The first gold of the weekend was awarded to Jack Norton of the University of Bath in the men’s intermediate lightweight single sculls, with the University of Nottingham and Queen’s University Belfast winning silver and bronze respectively. The championship quad events saw Reading University win the men’s and University of Cambridge take home the gold in the women’s.

Photo: Drew Smith / BUCS Sport

Oxford Brookes University also saw great success across the championship events, notably winning gold in the women’s championship eights by a margin of 8 seconds, with University of London taking the silver medal and bronze going to Durham University. The club matched their success in the men’s championship eights, taking the lead over Durham University by 12 seconds to win gold in a time of 05:37:39, and picked up gold medals in the men’s championship coxed fours and the men’s championship coxless fours.

The strength and breadth of university rowing in the UK was shown by the sheer number of clubs in the medal table, with Bournemouth University notably clinching bronze in the women’s beginner double sculls, and Strathclyde University defeating University of Edinburgh by 7.7 seconds to secure the silver medal in the men’s championship lightweight single sculls.

Sculler Ben Parsonage of Strathclyde University said “For us at Strathclyde, we’re especially grateful for the full range of events offered. The support of lightweight events in particular has allowed us to grow and develop as a club in ways that would not have been possible otherwise. I’m very proud to have been able to race amongst such high class competition, and I hope future generations of students from smaller universities will get to experience BUCS the way I have.”

This weekend shone a spotlight on some of the great novice programmes offered by universities, including Surrey University winning gold in the men’s beginner eights and University of Edinburgh winning by an outstanding 24 seconds in in the women’s beginner eights. The University of Edinburgh’s dominance in beginner categories was retained, after they also claimed victory in men’s beginner quads, women’s beginner quads, women’s beginner coxed fours and men’s beginner double sculls.

The organising committee expressed their gratitude to all the volunteers who worked behind the scenes to ensure the success of BUCS Regatta. “We really need to pay tribute to the huge army of volunteers that make it happen – from the umpires through to the students themselves that came and helped on the stake boats or timing in between their own racing. We’re looking forward to next year already!”

Full race results can be found here:

BUCS Results

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