Pembroke is without doubt the best college for rowing in Oxford University. The facts speak for themselves: we have the best facilities, some of the best boats, the highest average river positions and the most university oarsmen. We are unique in that our success reaches across both Men?s and Women?s rowing and in our unprecedented University-level representation. Whether you are a junior international with aspirations of the Blue boat or a keen novice looking for a new sport there is a place within Pembroke Boat Club for you.
The club has prided itself on an unparalleled level of college participation and the development of new talent. In recent years we have we have consistently fielded the highest number of novice boats in Oxford and it is not unheard of that a talented novice be developed to 1st VIII standard within a year. Its not all hard work though as the club also takes pride in its social events: our termly rowing dinners, Boat Club bops and huge Summer Eights party show that Pembroke also knows how to have fun.
In the past decade Pembroke Boat Club has developed a tradition of success, achieving a number of notable firsts in Oxford rowing. In 2003 Pembroke set a new benchmark as the first college to hold both the Men?s and Women?s Eights Headship titles simultaneously - a historic achievement that won the club national acclaim. This built on a succession of previous achievements: In 2000 we became the first mixed undergraduate college to achieve the Women?s Eights Headship and have successfully defended it since, and in 2001 we were the first college to have representatives in all seven University boats. We continue to grow as a club, and hope to maintain our position.
Men: The Men?s 1st Eight are Head of the River. The Men?s 1st Torpid after a disastrous rudder failure and crash which saw them drop from 2nd are now 8th (but plan to move up fast). The Men?s boats completed an outstanding year in 2003 finishing with the highest 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th VIII?s in the University.
Women: The Summer Eight are Head of the River while the 1st Torpid are 6th. The Second Eight are again improving their position every year.
Pembroke has over the last ten years had 47 people rowing or coxing for men's and women's University crews, more than any other college in Oxford. We have the highest number of Coxes, Men's rowers, Lightweight Blues (Men and Women), Women's Blues, and coxes of any college.
- In 2002 we fielded two members of the Men?s Blue Boat (including OUBC President Ben Burch) who won an epic Boat Race.
- In 2003 we again had one representative in the Blue Boat and two in Isis.
- In 2001 Pembroke was represented in every single crew which raced against Cambridge - no fewer than 10 oarsmen and women. This is an outstanding achievement - the first time that any college has ever been represented in every University crew.
Pembroke has got some of the best training facilities for college rowing in Oxford. We have a fully equipped gym with both free weights and static weights and 8 Concept C or B indoor rowing machines, all for use by anyone in the club.
We have two Men's Empacher 8+ shells (1994 and 2003), as well as 2 Janousek 8+ shells (1991 and 2000) and an old Simms. The Women have got an Eton Phoenix (1998) and 1 Janousek and one Aylings (Early 1990's). There are also 2 4+ Janousek shells (2003), a 2- and a single scull.
Coaching at Pembroke is of the highest standard. In 2003 the coaching team included a former lightweight international and a member of the 2001 Cambridge Blue Boat. The top boats regularly contain several people who learned to row in previous years at Pembroke. In 2001 Louisa Rowbotham, Anna Jowett and Vanessa Harding all won their blues (OUWBC) having learnt to row at Pembroke, following Catherine Heyes who gained a blue the previous year again having never rowed before joining Pembroke.