IIs-IVs Varsity 2023

Millicent Dickinson | Tuesday, December 19th, 2023


On 26/11, the biggest CUH&H team of recent memory travelled to Priory Park, St Neots for the first Varsity weekend of the year. As Captain I was of course extremely happy to have so many new runners, so much so I didn’t even complain about having to fit more people on coaches than seats.

First up were the selected races, where we knew Oxford were going to be far stronger than the year before. The Women’s IIs team fought well, but Oxford proved too strong on the day. Holly Sprosen was first Cambridge across the line, finishing strongly for 7th place. The Men’s IIs and IIIs were both extremely close, with the IIs going our way but sadly just losing out in the IIIs. Men’s Captain Lawrence led the Light Blues home in the IIs placing 2nd , which he followed up with another excellent run at Blues the following weekend. He was supported by excellent runs from Max Walk, George Ogden, and Adam Dray in 4th , 6th , and 7th, with a narrow team victory of 38-40. Cameron Deverill and Alex Beeston placed 1 st and 4th in IIIs, both unlucky to not have been able to race Cuppers but showing their class on the day. Unfortunately, Oxford packed well behind, with the match going to them, 43-35.

For weeks in the lead-up, the hype had been building for the two Mob Matches, with a whole team working behind the scenes to build the biggest Mob Cambridge had ever seen. Oxford were not prepared, with the memory of their two resounding victories from the previous year fresh in their mind. First to the line were the Women’s Mob, who dwarfed the Oxford team by comparison. However, as the race went on it was clear Oxford were dominating to the top, and even our resident Maths PhD-ers were unsure who had won at the end. After an hour of checking and finalising, Oxford had won by an agonisingly small margin: 640-624. The Men’s Mob were to follow, and a strong showing of 87 men were on the start line. Eagerly waiting in the woods on the first lap, this race was the highlight of my day: a steady stream of light blue vests ran past, with hardly a dark blue in sight: total domination. Finally, a Mob Match that reflected the size and depth of our club- Blacker, Will, Paddy, Maya and Ellie were the Mob Match captains we needed and deserved- with their endless energy making the difference in the lead-up and on the day.

II-IVs is a big event, and with such a large turnout, the team spirit was felt all day. The growth of CUHH is undeniable, and there were lots of new runners making their first Varsity outing for us. It couldn’t have been held without the help of many individuals- notably Alan Turnbull from Riverside Runners. We quite frankly would be lost without his expert help in setting up the course each year. I hope everyone enjoyed the day, and make sure you come back next year, where we will be going to Oxford, battling to take home the glory once more.