Varsity Girls Assistant Coach Amanda Klaiber-Short offers this recap of Sunday’s events:

On Sunday, the Camp Randall team headed down to the Head of the Rock Regatta, In Rockford, Illinois for one of the last head races of the Fall season. The course is 5K in length, or close to 3.2 miles. The race conditions were far better than Milwaukee and Tail of the Fox, with little wind and a sunny sky for most of the day. The afternoon brought in the clouds and a bit of rain, luckily at the end of our races.

Rowing in a head race can be challenging; the first step isn’t racing, it’s getting to the start line 5,000 meters away! The rowers see just how far they will have to go before they cross the finish line, about 16-23 minutes later.

The novices are starting to feel more comfortable in the racing atmosphere, and many were excited to have two opportunities to show off the skills they’ve been working on. The novice women finished 12th and 16th after a minor run-in with a men’s 8 that pushed one of the boats off the course. One of the perils of head racing is passing other boats, and unfortunately some boats are not as courteous as others.

The varsity women and men’s 8 looked aggressive across the line, finishing mere seconds after their rivals. Even if they didn’t take the win this race, teams can measure improvement by looking at the times at previous races. Sometimes improvements come in seconds, but overall Camp Randall had significantly larger gains! The Varsity 4s had a chance to practice the lineups that are headed to The Charles next weekend, coming in 5th for the women and 2nd for the men! Our last races were the Mixed 8s.

This regatta we had 4 boats with even numbers of women and men. Our boats came in 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th; our teams are rowing incredibly well together! Our coaching staff decided to enter a mixed open 4 for fun, which got to the line late but managed to take home a gold medal (even with a 10 second penalty for being late)!

We have a few shout outs and thanks yous: First, our Masters boats had an incredible regatta! The amount of hardware they had at the end of the day was impressive, and I know the Juniors see this as an example of the success you can achieve through rowing no matter what your age. Second, our Grant Simmons agreed last minute to row with Crystal Lake’s mixed junior boat, without him the lineup would have been one person short and would not have been allowed to race. This is a fantastic example of the community spirit that is found throughout the rowing world. Last but not least, a huge thank you goes out to all of our parent volunteers and chaperones!! The tents and food are extremely important to the rowers, and even I went back for seconds on those meatball subs.

Thank you parents for your unwavering support! See you at the Boathouse!

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