Having clinched the title by the narrowest of margins in 2011, the lead in to this year’s Canoe and Kayak Intervarsities was a tense and anxious affair the UL Club. As many of the club’s core members who were crucial to the past two victories-had since graduated, all were aware that a huge effort would be needed to win this year’s title. Pre-competition training started for most in January and continued until the week of the event.
The first event of the three day tournament was Kayak Polo. Though the polo-squad had prepared well, they unfortunately received one of the toughest possible draws and were unlucky not to progress past the quarter finals. A considerable effort would be needed across the remainder of the weekend in order to win the overall tournament
Day 2 saw a huge effort from the whitewater and freestyle teams in their respective events: UL’s whitewater boatercross team came first by a comfortable margin while the freestyle team won with an impressive 870 points; 205 above their nearest challenger.
The final day brought a number of long-distance races across a variety of disciplines. To the relief of many competitors, the course’s length was scaled from a 6k endurance race to a 2k sprint as a result of problems securing the intended river course. A huge effort was put in by all of UL’s competitors for this last bout and the Club won the overall event with 2 first place finishes, one third place finish and a fourth place finish.
The club’s overall performance this year was a testament to the effort put in during the past weeks by so many to raise their fitness and technical skill. The victory wouldn’t have been possible without the presence of many of the Club’s first years who were indispensable in the victory. Three-in-a-row is always sweet and marked a huge milestone in the Club’s progression (the first in its history). On the back of this victory, UL’s canoeing and kayaking scene is as promising as ever.