A 40-mph tailwind and white-capping conditions met the competitors at Eagle Creek today, turning today’s racing into more survival test than rowing competition. By the time the last several races came down the course, officials had already announced that the lake would be closed for afternoon practice, and several coaches had raised objections to continuing the racing. Conditions were perhaps the worst seen for a major collegiate championships in the last decade or so since the IRA moved to the Cooper River.
The DIII championships were run at the beginning of the schedule to try to get the best water, and Colby rode the wind to an open water victory over the University of Puget Sound, followed by Coast Guard – these three crews also took the team championship win, place and show in the same order. We’ll be posting medals photos today.
The DII eights and fours and the DI 2V8 and fours reps followed; in the DI ranks, the results will find only Harvard with a crew in all three A finals; UW (V8 and 2V8), Michigan (V8 and V4), Cal (2V8 and V4), and Brown (2V8 and V4) each have two.
In the Varsity semis, rowed in perhaps the worst conditions, the field raced to yet another insanely tight placing, with 1.99 seconds separating the six crews that advanced to the grand final (Michigan, Virginia, USC, Harvard, Washington, and Stanford). The finals should be pretty spectacular.
The last race of the day was the DI V8 third level final, in which Michigan State ground out an open water victory over Boston and Washington State, who finished 0.13 seconds apart, with Tennessee placing fourth. It’s worth noting that, despite their final result, the young Tennessee program had a great run this year, and did an impressive job in Indy.
Conditions for Sunday are predicted to be much better, with a 5-10 mph tailwind.