November 5, 2004

Cornell Rowers Head to Princeton's Lake Carnegie

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Lightweight men”s rowing coach Todd Kennett has only one expectation for his crews competing in this weekend”s Princeton Chase — ‘that they go fast.’ Cornell”s crews hope to exceed Kennett”s expectations in Sunday”s race, a three-mile competition on Princeton”s Lake Carnegie.

In past competitions, only one or two boats from the heavyweight men, lightweight men and women had a chance to compete. This weekend, a full team will travel to Princeton for the races. The lightweight crew will send three full boats to the race in addition to the heavyweight men”s and women”s boats.

The men”s lightweight crews hope to improve upon a ninth place finish in Boston”s Head of the Charles Regatta.

‘We were six seconds behind the top collegiate team [in that race],’ Kennett said. ‘We”re looking to increase that time and go up quite a few [places].’

After a victory in the Head of the Ohio race on Oct. 2, the men”s heavyweight crews turned in a 15th place finish in the Head of the Charles Regatta three weeks later.

‘In our last race, there were only seconds between us and the collegiate crews ahead [of us],’ said heavyweight men”s coach Dan Roock. ‘I”m hoping to have a great race [on Sunday].’

Senior commodore Andrew Meyer would also like to have a great race for the heavyweight eights crew.

‘In last year”s [Princeton Chase] we finished second and fourth,’ Meyer said. ‘We were really pleased with that result, and we”d like to finish around there or better this time.’

In order to ensure a great race at Princeton, the heavyweight men have modified some of their workouts.

‘Since the last race, we”ve had two weeks to prepare,’ Roock said. ‘We”ve done workouts to increase both our cadence and intensity.’

After finishing second in the Head of the Ohio race, the women”s crew fell to 19th place out of the 32 collegiate boats competing in Boston three weeks later. With a strong performance, the women have a chance to get one of their teams finishing in the top ten, as they did during last year”s competition.

But, Cornell”s crews have their work cut out for them. Princeton looks to improve upon great performances in the Head of the Charles Regatta after placing their men”s heavyweight, men”s lightweight and women”s crews in the top ten.

‘Princeton will be the school to beat, not only are we racing at [Princeton] but they have an exceptional crew,’ Roock said.

In addition to the full boat races, the Princeton Chase will also hold a fours race. ‘The fours is a chance for the guys to compete against each other,’ Kennett said.

Splitting the eight-person boat into fours is great practice for the rowers in a competitive environment.

Besides the formidable competition, the crews will also have to deal with the weather.

‘It”s getting tougher with the colder weather,’ Kennett said. ‘More clothing makes the rowers less nimble.’ The Princeton Chase will be the second to last race of the fall season.

Archived article by Kristina Kovach
Sun Staff Writer