This evening was everyone's favourite February indoor race, the 2K CRASH-B race. One of our men (Toby Medaris) won the heavy collegiate men's race, with my friend from Northeastern (Pat Sullivan) pulling a strong piece to take second. On our side, a couple of friends had phenomenal races (Kady Glessner and Catherine Starr), and Radcliffe overall had an extremely strong showing. I'm very excited for our spring racing season, based on how many people PRd and pulled very hard-fought pieces--right now, I think we're stronger than the year we took 3rd at NCAAs!
CRASH-Bs is an interesting race because all the factors that affect you individually, and usually stay within your own boathouse and team, are pulled out into the public eye. If you falter for five or six strokes, it's not just on your own monitor, it's on a jumbotron. As Blocker said, "it's not just a race, it's a performance."
I had a disappointing piece--I wasn't able to maintain the goal pace I had set for myself after the first 750 meters, which I think was largely due to having forgotten what it felt like to be in that much pain (rather, in the normal amount of pain you're in during a 2k). The good thing about that is that as Sullivan says, "there's a pretty steep learning curve between the first and second spring 2k." I'm not worried about it (last year I was 13 seconds faster in June than I was at this race), but it would have been nice to PR. However, now I have a lot of good things to focus on, and some mental toughness to get back.