April 7, 2009
The program started off the spring in winning style last weekend with the heavyweights posting a clean sweep and the lightweights and women each winning all but one of their races. Recaps are below a quick preview of this weekend’s racing:
The HEAVYWEIGHTS travel to Derby, CT to race Yale for the Olympic Axe. Racing starts at 12:00pm. Afterwards, they’ll pack up and head to Hartford to scrimmage Trinity.
The WOMEN travel back to Boston to face Yale and Boston University. Racing starts at 7am.
The LIGHTWEIGHTS also travel to Boston to race Harvard and MIT for the Biglin Bowl. Racing starts at 7:12am.
Sandy Hull ’09, offered the recap below, so I’ll offer a bird’s eye perspective. The Armstrong and the Grossman both debuted with wins, and the clean sweep against an Eastern Sprints rival was the first in a long time and a good day for the program. But both the team and I have higher expectations, so we’ll continue to test new combinations. It’s also worth mentioning that Holy Cross isn’t the same program of five or ten years ago. Former Dartmouth assistant Todd Pearson had them pulling like banshees all the way down the course. Good things happen to programs that do that. —Head Coach Topher Bordeau.
“We kicked off our spring with a sweep of Holy Cross in blustery conditions on Lake Quinsigamond. In the varsity race Holy Cross beat us off the line, but we reeled them in by the end of the first 500. A move in the second 500 put us up several seats. Unable to put Holy Cross away, we traded punches for the remainder of the race. In the end it was Dartmouth by two seconds. The tight finish left plenty to be desired and will provide good motivation for the coming week.
In the second varsity race Dartmouth used a speedy first twenty to jump ahead. The 2V saw an open-water lead after the first 500m and extended to two lengths of open water by the finish line. This was the first win for a Dartmouth 2V in recent memory and a sign of the program's progress. Our freshmen raced both the Holy Cross freshmen and a combined Dartmouth 3V/2F boat. The frosh seized a commanding lead they never relinquished while the 3V/2F walked through Holy Cross in the latter portion of the race and finished second.” Heavyweight Captain Sandy Hull ’09.
Given our lack of rough water experience, I was psyched to see our crews handle the 20mph headwind and downright nasty water better than our opponents. The 1V jumped out to an early one length lead and battled to hold that margin down the course. Strong headwind conditions should favor the bigger, stronger Northeastern women, but fitness and determination trumped sheer horsepower in a very long race (winning time: 7:37). It was true survival for all crews. Tough to say whether we won the race because we're faster or because we handled the conditions better; either way, starting off the season with 4 of 5 wins feels great. Our crews need to shift from caitious optimism to gutsy, confident aggression this week. As we prepare for defending national champions Yale and a speedy BU crew, we'll focus on finding more speed through the middle thousand of the race. Luckily, it's early, and there are plenty of places to look.—Wendy Levash, Head Coach
"I love the first race of the season because it's still anyone's game- we knew that we had done a lot of training over the winter and had made strides in Tennessee but we didn't know what to expect from Northeastern, URI and BC We more than held our own and I'm pumped to see what we can do next weekend back on the Charles...hopefully this time without the whitecaps."
-Kate Harney, Team Captain
The lightweights began the racing season versus Delaware and Holy Cross in Worcester this weekend. Conditions were a swirling wind and chop, making each race an adventure.
The Varsity managed the conditions better than Delaware. The Big Green got a length up on Delaware in the first 20 strokes. Delaware made several attempts to get back into the race, but the Green was able to counter. Dartmouth took a move after the half way mark to solidify their lead. Delaware tried one last effort in the last 500 meters to win the race, but Dartmouth was able to hold off a hard charging Delaware boat to win by half a deck in a time of 6:26.7.
The Second Varsity did not fair as well as Delaware jumped off the line to a length lead and held this margin as Dartmouth made several attempts to try and take the advantage. Delaware was able to hold their lead and push to about a seat open winning in a time of 6:35.3 with Dartmouth 6:39.4.
The Dartmouth frosh lights had both the first freshmen and second freshmen race the Delaware first frosh boat. The 1F found themselves even with Delaware in the first 500 while the second freshmen fell off the pace. Delaware took a 3 seat advantage at the halfway mark but Dartmouth countered and reversed the Delaware advantage. Delaware then faltered to the wind and caught a crab with 700m to go. The Big Green freshmen capitalized off the Blue Hen mistake and pushed to a 7.6 margin win by the finish.
The final race was the 3V four, which saw Dartmouth get off the line ahead of Holy Cross and lead the race from start to finish crossing the line in 7:47.5, 48 seconds ahead of Holy Cross.—Head Coach Steve Perry
Topher, Wendy, and Steve
REMINDER: Don’t miss this year’s Gardner Cup festivities! The finals of the Class Day Regatta will be held on the afternoon of Saturday, September 26th, with a Friends of Dartmouth Rowing meeting and the annual dinner to follow on Saturday evening. The first annual event was a huge success with almost 200 people packing the boathouse—we hope to see you a the second edition.