Opening Day Regatta

Sunday, June 18, 2017 - By: Emma H, Allard ‘18; Photo by Brian Carr

While a Red Saturday may mean a weekend to go home for some, or a weekend when campus is quiet (and it's a good chance to get homework done), for 14 of our top senior rowers the Red Saturday in early May meant an opportunity to go to Seattle and race against some top US crews. At our Brentwood Regatta, the Jr A Men's 8+ and the Jr A Woman's 4+ qualified as the fastest Canadian crews which allowed them to race at the Windermere Cup / Opening Day Regatta in Seattle. 

14 athletes, 3 coaches and 1 boatman made their way down to Seattle on the Friday afternoon before their race. After a two hour ferry ride and a three hour bus ride everyone made it to the University of Washington to unload the trailer and rig up the shells.

After everything was squared away and ready, we all had lunch and headed over to Green Lake for a short scrimmage with the Green Lake crews. The stereotypical windy and rainy Seattle weather hit that day, so, with the water getting choppy, the Men's 8 went out and the Women's 4 chose not to fight the water and went for a run around the lake. After both crews were off the water and done with their run, we headed off to the hotel to clean up and go on to dinner. After a full team dinner and a short walk to digest the massive amount of food, we all went back to our hotels and slept well before our big race the next day. 

A 7 am wake up call for the coxswains and coaches and an 8 am wake up for the rowers saw nerves and adrenaline running through us. After the coxswains and coaches finished their meeting to learn about the flow pattern and race schedule, everyone met up, warmed up, and got on the water. 

The Jr A Woman’s 4+ was one of the first races of the day. They had an impressive finish placing first and beating the next crew by 7 seconds: the 4+ was very pleased. Soon after, the Jr A Men’s 8+ came down the course. Racing against some top US crews, they finished 3rd in an impressing time of sub 6 minutes. After each race, crews waited at the finish line for the last race to be over. While watching the last race of UW vs Chinese National Team, all crews turned around and paraded pack up the course to celebrate a great day of racing and the beginning of Seattle’s yachting season. 

Thanks to Warren and our coaches for providing this memorable opportunity.

Emma H, Allard ‘18

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