The Cornell crews face a daunting task this weekend, as each squad will look to build on the collective success of last weekend’s outings against formidable competition on the water tomorrow.
After hosting last weekend’s races, the heavyweight and women’s crews will get back on the road with only two regular season races left until their respective championships. The lightweights will remain at home, hosting MIT and Columbia after two days of back-to-back competition last weekend.
With the success each crew found last weekend on Lake Cayuga, the expectations remain high for this weekend. But the crews continue to work relentlessly on their intensity and boat speed, even after top finishes.
“I think this will be a season where we need to peak several times,” said lightweight coach Todd Kennett. “It will be hard to maintain our intensity [from last weekend], but we are still in a hard training mode.”
Last Saturday, the lightweights took first in races against Princeton and Rutgers, crossing the line in 5:53.6. The rowers returned to the water on Sunday to host Yale and recorded the second victory of the weekend for the varsity boat. The boat finished in 5:50.9 with Yale just under four seconds behind.
In the same race against Yale, all of the Red’s boats finished ahead of the Bulldogs with the exception of the freshman boat which trailed by just over three seconds to take second.
“I think [those races] solidify what we’ve been doing,” Kennett said. “There are some spots we need to work on in the second half of the race, [but] we have better boat speed and more confidence.”
And confidence will be important for the lightweights against MIT and Columbia. Although the visiting crews have had trouble with strong finishes, the races could come down to only seconds.
Last weekend, MIT came in third against Harvard and Dartmouth. Columbia also recorded a third place finish against Yale and Penn.
The lightweights will race this Saturday at 9 a.m. on Lake Cayuga.
While the lightweights remain at home, the heavyweight rowers will head to New Jersey to take on Princeton and Yale.
In its last race, the crew fought to take second place against Navy and Syracuse at home. The varsity boat finished behind Navy by just under two seconds but well ahead of the Orange. The story was the same for the Red’s other boats with the exception of the third varsity, which came in first.
The freshmen found themselves frustrated after the Orange interfered with the Red’s boat at the 1000-meter mark. The Red fell into second place and Syracuse’s boat was disqualified. The freshmen will have another chance to show off their hard work this weekend, as they take on Ivy League rivals.
In a tough race against Harvard, Princeton took second in the varsity race, with its second varsity boat pulling out a victory. Yale found more success last weekend with victories over Penn and Columbia in a near-sweep of the event. The freshman boat was the only boat to finish out of first place.
The women will also be on the road this weekend, traveling to Providence, R.I., to race Brown and Columbia. Last weekend, the women recorded their first victory of the spring. At home against Penn and Rutgers, the varsity boat edged out both teams in 6:40.77. The second varsity and novice eight also went on to take first.
“We are making a lot of improvements,” said senior co-captain Sarah Greer. “Each weekend our performance is improving.”
In its last race, Brown swept the Gorton Cup, taking first in every event against Boston. The Bears won decisive victories in all of the varsity races.
Also last weekend, Columbia took first in all of its races against Northeastern with the exception of the varsity four.
With two competitive teams to race against this weekend, the women are looking towards teamwork and boat speed to help them come out on top.
“It is important to work together as a boat in order to have boat speed,” Greer said. “I think that is the most important thing. Brown and Columbia are both strong teams, and it will be a good race.”
Archived article by Kristina Kovach
Sun Staff Writer