Monday, October 08, 2007

First race of the season

Was yesterday. It went ok. We took second (out of 6), which is what we were supposed to have done. Our key rival club, the rolodex crew of ex-elites took first. It was their Head of the Charles lineup. We had about 20 seconds of age handicap advantage over them, but they still beat us by almost a minute (35 seconds after the handicap) over the 3 mile course, which is a sizable margin. My coach pointed out to me in an aside that my boat wasn't an "A" crew, which I understood, but my standards are high.

They haven't posted all the times yet, but from what I hear we beat a younger crew from another club on raw time alone, which is nice, and part of our plan. Some of our usual local competition didn't show up, though.

We did manage to hold the stroke rate I wanted (30), and the first half of the race was good. But as fatigue set in, folks got a bit shorter, and the rhythm was less fierce. I worked with the cox to take a ratio shift and then a power 10 at a few points, which worked, in the short term to re-set the rhythm and to drop our splits back to our pace from earlier in the race. But the fatigue settled in again and again and we'd lose speed.

Our sprint was good. I think I'll take us up from even further out in the next race. Our splits dropped appreciably for the duration of the sprint. It hurt, but we went faster, so I'll try it again.