The Olympic trials last month were the first trials since the best-of-three format was introduced not to go to a third day; they remain the only trials not to go to a third day. As I mentioned yesterday, tomorrow is always another day; and perhaps not surprisingly, once again it is the single scullers who will be seeing a third final this week. By nature, a single will have greater variation from day to day than any team boat. Additionally, finalists in the single scull have often ben incredibly evenly matched in the United States; this is especially true in the lightweight single, where the weigh-in serves as the great equalizer.
Both the women's and men's light singles were won by someone other than yesterday's Final One winner; as a result, both go to a mano-a-mano two-boat third final tomorrow.
On the men's side, it was yesterday's third place finisher who took the top spot today, as Rich Montgomery powered through the field to take the lead with about 150 meters to go. One second behind, Andy Liverman placed second, with Jeff Anchukaitis in third. Only Andy and Rich advance to tomorrow's final final.
On the women's side, a late charge by Sarah Hirst paid off, as she slipped into the lead ahead of final one winner Rachel Anderson inside the red buoys marking the final 250 meters. Once it looked like Sarah was unassailable, at around 12-15 strokes to go, Rachel conceded the race, conserving her energy for tomorrow's two-woman final.
In other events, the light women's quad very nearly went to a third final as the Riverside boat stormed up from behind in the final sprint, but fell short by a few feet; yesterday winning crew wins the trial, and will head to Banyoles later this month. The morning also saw repeat winners, and thereby trial winners, in the men's coxed four, the women's four, and the men's coxed pair.
After a decisive win by Mike Altman and Simon Carcagno yesterday, the second-place NYAC pair, the only other entry in the event, conceded the trial today, and the second final was cancelled. Mike and Simon win the trial.
All crews were also racing to meet a time standard required to earn the right to represent the United States at Worlds; all but the men's coxed pair already made the time standard in yesterday's tailwind. The pair also failed to make the standard today, and will take another shot at it tomorrow morning at 10:45. The light men's eight took a solo shot down the course yesterday morning, and reportedly beat the time standard comfortably, and will be going to Worlds.
See also: Today's results
Today's photo gallery