October 30, 2007

Rowing Competes in Princeton Chase

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With the fall season nearing its end, the men and women’s crews traveled to New Jersey to participate in the Princeton Chase returning with mixed results. The best performance came from the lightweight men’s rowers, whose A boat finished in second place in the 8-race right behind Navy. The heavyweight 8-boat finished in fifth place and the women rounded out the trip with a 14th-place finish.
While the performances were not good enough for first place, the Red saw the Princeton Chase — and better yet this fall season — as a good tune up for the more important Spring season.
“We have been playing with our lineups,” said senior heavyweight rower Preston O’Connell. “We are trying to find out our best mixture for the Spring. … Our season is so long, a lot of our guys just look forward to the spring season.”
In addition to finding the winning lineup for the spring, the Red had to battle with unfamiliar conditions. According to O’Connell, the Red faced very fierce winds, approximately ranging at 30 miles per hour.
“We are kind of protected at Cornell,” O’Connell said. “We don’t have winds like that so were not used to the those conditions at Princeton.”
Hosting the contest, Princeton came away with the win in the men’s heavyweight division. Despite the victory, O’Connell stands firm in his team’s ability to beat the Tigers in the upcoming season.
“They really didn’t show us anything,” O’Connell said. “It wasn’t too impressive when you consider they had the home field advantage and didn’t win by too much. We are pretty fit. It’s more about the lineup of our guys, its really easy to win if you are in perfect unison.”
The lightweight crews, on the other hand, was only 1.641 seconds from winning its race. For the lightweights, the performance was very telling of the team’s ability to replace a standout unit from last year.
“After losing a lot of guys, they have shown that they have the young talent that can fill some big shoes on that boat,” O’Connell said. “It would have been nice to finish first or second. … But we are pleased with results and are happy and hungry to do well in the spring.”