An event both highly regarded and ridiculously fun, this year’s swimming cuppers took place at Rosenblatt Pool in the Iffley Sports Complex. In this refreshingly cool and over-chlorinated venue, 15 college swim teams competed for points in eight events. Colleges racked up points depending on where their swimmers finished in each overall event. Oxford University Swim Club (OUSC) members, all outstanding athletes with toned swimmer bodies, organised the event and were only allowed to swim in the relays.
Impressive performances in the individual events included Thomas Bloomfield of Exeter in the men’s 100 IM and Alice Gatland of St. Catz who pulled off a stunning 31-second 50 freestyle. But the most remarkable of the individual races was the men’s 50 free, which required a time of 0:25.25 to win. Olivier Dudas of Magdalen took 1st place there.
The Magdalen relay team was out to dominate the men’s 4×25 freestyle and none were able to beat them. The women’s 4×25 freestyle relay race revealed a surprise when a St.Catz team finished a strong 1st. Placing Alice Gatland, winner of the 50 free, as anchor was a tactical manoeuvre unforeseen by the Magdalen women, who still managed to finish second.
As the scores were read off, it was no surprise when Magdalen finished with a first place record score of 162 points. St. Catz, due to its very strong women’s relay team, finished second with 67 points. Trinity, close behind, finished third with 57 points.