Sunday, May 8, 2011

One Down, One to Go in Essen

R to L: me, Sarah Zelenka, Jen Kaido, and Sara Hendershot accepting our medals!
Yesterday was the first sculling race for half of our boat--and the first win for them, too! After having our exhibition race/race for lanes cancelled in the morning, we had a straight final in the afternoon. International races are always a bit touch-and-go in the warm-up area, and yesterday was no exception, especially with about half the crews competing here being Under-23 and almost entirely without coxswains. We made it to the line feeling ready to race, at which point we were told we were moving lanes because one boat had scratched--and because an EIGHT would also be racing in our event! The official's racing instructions included: "In the eight: pay no attention to the starting command or lights. You will be started ten seconds after the quads."

It was a bit crazy, and we couldn't help but relax a bit in our boat--your coach always says, "Be ready for anything out there!", but I'd never have guessed that would include racing an 8+ while in quads. Anyhow, we executed our race plan well, especially in some choppy cross-tail to cross-head conditions, and ended up with a 3.4 second win over the other USA boat. We were both well ahead of the third quad, a Swiss U-23 boat that was a little over 16 seconds back. All in all, it was a good first race for both boats--we were excited to finally be racing!--and fired us both up to come back this afternoon and race each other again.

B to S: Adrienne Martelli, Ashley Kroll, Desiree Burns, and Mara Allen.
Photos courtesy of Mara Allen.
This afternoon, we're racing another straight final, this one at 3:28 (9:28am EST). Results will be available soon after via the regatta website here. We are event #66: SF 4x- A. As of now, we will be lining up against a senior Swiss quad and the U-23 German quad. And, who knows, maybe even another eight or two!

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