Since Oxford is great at canoe polo  we like to go away to tournaments to prove to other teams how great we are (and win prizes). There are a number of tournaments through the year, some are organised by other Universities and are standalone competitions with prizes for the best teams. These can be one day or a weekend, in a pool or outside. Generally there are opportunities to send open, women’s and novice teams, the biggest of these is BUCS held at the start of Trinity term in Doncaster where we get a chance to prove our muscle against all the Unis. We also take part in Div 4; part of a national league, this is generally our strongest players, and is played on 4 Saturday evenings during Michaelmas and Hilary in Cheltenham with the first match at 4pm, generally getting home after 10pm.
Details of when/where these tournaments are can be found on the calendar. When staying overnight we usually camp, sometimes supper is provided, otherwise we will find somewhere to eat as a squad. It is generally advisable to bring lunch, breakfast, snack food and beer as we don’t always stop off to buy food.
For Tournament dates please check the calendar.
Q: When are they? How do I sign up?!
A: Tournaments are generally at weekends during term, although some Div 4 tournaments fall in the vac, and we might have some Wednesday evening tournaments, for specific dates check the calendar! If you wish to attend tournaments during the year you will need to fill in the google docs to express interest and then confirm commitment via email closer to the time.
Q: How long are trips?
A: For weekend trips we usually leave on Friday evening and return on Sunday evening. If it’s a day trip we’ll leave Oxford early in the morning and return in the evening.
Q: What is the cost and what do I get for my money?
A: Each costs a different amount because the cost is worked out from the entry cost, fuel ( and vehicle hire if necessary ), camping cost, and a little towards the upkeep of the boats ( they tend to get damaged during tournaments). So you get transported to a great tournament, somewhere to sleep, potentially supper ( depends on the tournament ), equipment to use ( as in boat, paddle, BA, helmet ) and then we bring you home again.
Q: Okay so what do I need to bring?
A: Other than yourself you will need…. (you can always ask if you’re not sure)
- Warm clothes (including woolly hat because they are cool) – camping isn’t all that warm
- Playing clothes – this depends on personal preference, if we are playing an outdoor tournament I try and bring dry bikinis, board shorts and rash vest for each match because you are a heck of a lot more comfortable if you don’t have to put on wet clothes ( I appreciate this is a lot to own – however do ask; people have things to borrow ). More specifically you may wish to have a mix of layers; rash vests, thermals (tops and bottoms), dry cag, cheap waterproof trousers can make a lot of difference to your temperature, socks ( even if you have wetsuit boots – again on the dry clothes against skin front)
- Shoes that you can get wet
- Sleeping bag, roll mat and pillow, some people will bring a tent this isn’t essential as we have a giant club one which is sociable.
- Water proof clothing for wearing over your dry clothes – as it has been known to rain
- Food – ideally lots of it, for a weekend tournament at least two lunches and a breakfast, and then lots and lots of snacks.
- Beer for the evening
OUCKC canoe polo is organised by Tom Jin.