This past Saturday, the tiger lightweight women travelled up to DC to race Georgetown for the Class of 2006 cup. The Hoya teams race out of the Thompson Boat Center, on the Potomac River. Down in Princeton we're spoiled by Lake Carnegie- it's relatively sheltered compared to many Northeastern courses and has pretty even lanes, and better yet, it's only used by the Princeton crews. The Potomac course does not always tick those boxes. On Friday, when we drove up, the current was so strong that it took our girls twenty minutes to paddle to the start and something like ten to paddle back, an effect that was especially significant in the lane closest to shore.
Our Saturday morning racing also took place shortly before the Charlie Butt regatta, and so the boathouse (and later, the course) was totally swamped by high school students. Add in the fact that a couple of pleasure boats were parked smack bang in the middle of the course, and you have an eventful morning, to say the least. We eventually got the pleasure boats to move, and headed up to the start for the difficult process of aligning the crews. Due to the strong currents, Georgetown wasn't able to use stake boats, so we had to do a floating start. It took two tries to get all crews for the eights race lined up just passed the start line, and then we were off.
The first raced pitted our first and second varsity eights against Georgetown's 1V. The tiger 1V boat shot out ahead from the start and kept widening the gap, undeterred by a men's double that decided to row across the course mid race.
The tiger 2V was neck and neck with Georgetown's 1V for most of the race, fighting hard to keep even. Eventually, the 1V came in first place, 19 seconds ahead of Georgetown's boat, which in turn beat the Princeton 2V by a slim margin of just under half of a second.
Next up was a race between Princeton's 3V, split into fours, and Georgetown's V4. This time, the Hoyas were victorious, topping the tiger A4 by 27 seconds and the B4 by 37 seconds.
Overall, it was a positive day for the tigers, and a good step towards next weekend's Eastern Sprints regatta, where we will look to repeat our hard-won results from earlier this season and go for gold!