Friday, November 5, 2010

Finals underway in NZ

Today saw some extremely tough racing conditions for crews across the board, and while all countries had a tough time of it, it was still disappointing for several of our boats. To be honest, while watching the racing, it seemed as though the conditions might have been unfair, an idea that was also mentioned by the race commentators. That thought was more upsetting than thinking about my teammates having to slog through the wind and whitecaps, finishing with times a minute slower than the heats and semis a few days ago.

However, our four ended up recovering from a pretty gruesome crab, doing a great job by not only getting back into contention for a medal but actually ending up on the medal stand. Our women's quad and men's four both raced extremely well and finished fifth in their respective A-finals. In the B-finals this morning, our men's quad raced a gutsy race against New Zealand, finishing a close second. The light women's double was edged at the line by China, also finishing second. Our light men's pair held onto third ahead of Spain. The light men's double had a tough race, finishing fifth. Our crews racing in their A/B semis this morning also had some difficult races: Dan Urevick-Ackelsberg finished fifth in the light men's single, and our men's double ran out of race course in trying to catch France. Both will race in the B-finals on Sunday.

Everyone's wondering a bit what the conditions are going to be like for tomorrow. We have several crews racing tomorrow: the morning starts off with the B-finals for the light men's four, men's pair, women's single, and men's single. Racing will begin at 11:53am local time, or 6:53pm Eastern/3:53pm Pacific. After the lunch break, we'll have the finals for the men's coxed pair, the women's light quad, and the men's light quad, and finally, the women's pair. Those races will begin at 2:03pm local time, or 9:53pm Eastern/6:53pm Pacific.

You can watch all racing live streaming on World Rowing (the link will take you to the pages to watch racing).

If you're following anyone's racing on the team, now is a great time to reach out to them and let them know that you're supporting them. I was so impressed with all of my teammates' performances today--racing so well in such challenging conditions. No matter how fit you are, having to race for a minute longer than you've trained for, plus dealing with whitecaps and huge wind gusts, takes a lot of guts, and I think the USA showed today that they were up to the challenge.

Let's hope for improving conditions for the next two days of finals, and good luck to everyone racing tomorrow!

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