Coaches and Support Team


Rob Baker

Chief Coach

Rob brings a combination of international and Tideway experience to his role. Prior to his appointment with the CUWBC, Rob worked as the Lead Under-23 National Coach for Rowing Ireland. Before that, he was Assistant Coach at the Cambridge University Boat Club. He coached the winning Goldie crews (the men’s reserve boats) in 2006 and 2007, and acted as Head Coach in 2008 when the club won the Stewards’ Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta.


Rob is born and bred in Cambridge, apart from his stint in Cork, he has lived here all his life. He is married to Hayley, a Veterinary Surgeon and CUWBC Lightweight alumni from 2006 and is father to two and a half year old Evie.


“Seeing the students develop as athletes and as people is what I find so special and fun”


Paddy Ryan

Assistant Coach

Paddy has thirteen years of prior Tideway experience. Before joining CUWBC in 2013, he spent six years in a central role at London Youth Rowing (LYR), during which he helped to grow the organization from a small charity to a London-wide group which worked with over 9,000 teenagers last year. While there, he won multiple medals at the British Championships and guided many athletes through the GB Junior Trials.


Prior to working at LYR, he was the Head Men’s Coach at Thames Rowing Club from 2004–2007, with many Blue Ribbon wins including the Wyfold Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta in 2006 (which he won as an athlete in 2003). Paddy’s experience of competing as an athlete at National Level began in his native Australia, when he medalled as an Under-23 sculler.


Paddy married is his wife on Fraggle Rock in Whistler, Canada in February 2004 on skis and he signed the marriage certificate on his snowboard! Now Paddy and Sian live just outside of Cambridge where Sian runs a dog training school. They have four very different but equally lovely (and well trained!) dogs themselves.


“I am continually excited to have the opportunity to work with female athletes who are incredibly bright and it is exciting to think that I might help influence them as they help to shape the future of this country and the world.”

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James Lee

Club Coordinator

James works alongside the Coaching Team and the Executive Committee to ensure the smooth day-to-day running of operations for the Club. With a BA in Event Management and MSc in Sport Management, James brings a wealth of experience in sport administration having previously worked for British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) and the GB Rowing Team.


James has been involved in the sport since he was 16. Initially he started at school as a cox and has coxed at various clubs and at varying levels since. James is also a qualified coach and has coached female students for many years. Gradually, James got involved in organising rowing events, including the BUCS 4s and 8s Head, BUCS Regatta, the Junior Inter-Regional Regatta and several events in Henley-On-Thames. James has also acted as GB Team Manager at the European Universities Rowing Championships since 2010.

“Every day I am inspired by the commitment and passion shown by the members of our Squad”


Milosz Wrobel

S&C Coach

Milosz has over 6 years of experience as a coach in delivering S&C to all type of athletes. Since 2012, he has worked for Cambridge S&C and is currently a senior strength and conditioning coach, leading the S&C for Cambridge University Women’s Rugby and Tennis Clubs. Milosz’s key interest lies within sport physiology, injury prevention and application of S&C to young athletes.


In his spare time he throws his bar up and down performing Olympic lifts. He is also studying a Masters of Osteopathy when not being bitten by his Border Collie puppy!

Kate Hays

Kate Hays

Sports Psychologist

Kate has been working as an applied sport psychologist for the past thirteen years and joined CUWBC for the 2015 Boat Race season. In September 2015 Kate took over as Head of Performance Psychology for the English Institute of Sport. Whilst she has experience working with several sports, her primary contracts have been with British Diving and Harlequins Rugby Union team. In her role as a sport psychologist she has travelled extensively and has supported the diving team at several National and International competitions including the Olympic Games and World Championships, and Harlequins at all domestic and international competitions. As such, she has an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the high performance sport environment, and the needs of a diverse range of elite athletes and coaches. Throughout her applied sport psychology career, Kate has continued to pursue her research interests. Her PhD thesis examined ‘The Role of Sport Confidence (SC) in World Class Sport Performance’, and was based upon the experiences of World Championship and Olympic medallists.


Kate has recently moved to a converted Barn in Edingley with her partner, Ian and her daughter, Coco. This is the first time Kate has lived in the countryside and she is  enjoying getting used to the quiet and the ducks that visit everyday for some bread.


“I never cease to be impressed by the work ethic and commitment of the group who manage an incredible university load around a demanding athletic programme.”


Dr Justin Roberts

Nutritional Therapist

With over 20 years’ experience in Sport and Exercise Physiology and Nutrition and having worked within the British Olympic Medical Centre, Dr Justin Roberts now specialises in Performance and Functional Nutrition with a central aim of exploring dietary and supplementation strategies to support performance and health related adaptations to exercise. He has worked with numerous elite athletes, and was Senior Nutrition Advisor to the England Football Team (Senior Mens Squad) and Manchester City FC (Senior Mens Squad).


Justin has a passion for two research areas in functional medicine: i) how nutritional strategies enhance metabolic efficiency (such as Green Tea and fat oxidation) and ii) the impact of nutritional aids (such as probiotics) on gut endotoxemia in athletes. Justin is also a keen athlete himself, having completed four Ironman Triathlons, as well the Marathon Des Sables (a gruelling 150 mile ultra-race across the Sahara Desert).


Dr Roberts is a Senior Lecturer and Researcher with the Sport and Exercise Science Research Group at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge. He is an accredited Sport and Exercise Physiologist and Chartered Scientist with the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) and a Member of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). Dr Roberts is also a Registered Nutritional Therapist with the British Association of Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy (BANT), the Nutrition Therapy Council (NTC) and the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC).


David Jakeman

Physical Therapist

David graduated in Sports Therapy in 2009 and has since worked with a variety of athletes from different sports. He has also become an integral part of the coaching team for the City of Peterborough Swimming Club, looking after their rehabilitation, injury prevention and strength and conditioning programme. The time working for COPS has seen David help to produce swimmers racing at both national and international competition as well as gaining scholarships to swim for various UK and American colleges. In the last few years David has also worked with the Amateur Swimming Association, coaching and presenting at their regional talent camps. David joins the CUWBC Team for the 2016 Boat Race Season as a physical therapist and will be working closely with the S&C coaches.


As a result of David’s own background in cycling and his experience looking after athletes, in 2014 he worked as a cycle soigneur for Rapha (for one of the biggest brands in cycling and current sponsor of Team Sky Professional Cycling), travelling round Europe supporting the riders as they took on the challenge of the Alps, Dolomites and Pyrenees.

Peter Rudge

Coxing Coach

Peter was a member of the British rowing team for four years and coxed at four World Championships. He won a bronze and silver medal in the coxed four in the 2001 and 2003 World Championships, respectively. In between, Peter also coxed the British eight at the 2002 World Championships. He is a CUBC alumni, coxing the men’s blue boat in 2005 and 2006.


These days Peter is Master in Charge of Rowing at St Edward’s School Oxford and has assisted as the coxing coach for CUWBC since 2015.


“I am passionate about the boat race and, having experienced two losing boat races myself, I am extremely committed to helping CUWBC win against Oxford.”