By Fleur Rollason
Apart from smaller sports events that take place throughout the year, Rhodes students look forward to three main events.
The first event is Tri-Varsity, which takes place at the beginning of the third term. The build up to Tri-Varsity includes buying overalls and painting them before all the fun starts. Rhodes, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) and Fort Hare take part and it is hosted by Rhodes and NMMU alternatively. This year we are hosting Tri-Varsity and perhaps we will have a repeat performance of 2006 when we narrowly beat NMMU for first place. In 2007 Tri-Varsity was held in Port Elizabeth with NMMU winning the overall event.
Boatrace takes place in Port Alfred on the last weekend of the September vacation. It is modelled on the Oxford/Cambridge Boatrace but involves head races before the finals. Students can enjoy three days of rowing and the roars from the sea of purple can be heard from miles away. For the past few years Rhodes has done very well in this event with at least two or three crews bringing home trophies and medals. In 2007 Rhodes narrowly missed out on winning all four of the events, with Stellenbosch winning the men’s B crew final.
Finally, the third major sporting event of the calendar is the Fish River canoe marathon. Many Rhodes students migrate up to Cradock in late September to support the canoeists and enjoy a couple of days of good canoeing. Once the canoeists have finished their gruelling three days on the river a huge after-party follows. Rhodes is well represented by the canoeing club and last year the club was the third university to finish the race. Spectators camp on the Friday and Saturday nights which seems to be enjoyed by all.
However, students don’t have to wait until the third term to enjoy great sports events, as there are inter-residence and inter-varsity events that continue throughout the year. So come on down and support our Rhodes athletes!