National Selection Regatta 1 this year was a windy and cold affair. While all of the racing did take place, the weather did not want to cooperate. Racing was cancelled one day and almost all of the practice sessions were cancelled due to high winds. But despite all of that some great racing was had and the first step to the World Championships was taken.
We were able to talk to many of the winners and get some incite into how the races played out in their minds. We also asked them what was next and while some were surer than others they all said, “Get faster”.
Eleanor Logan and Felice Mueller were the first winners of the day in the women’s pair. Felice had this to say about the race and the regatta. “I feel good about the race. Every day we raced we continued to improve on things. We believe can be better.” Eleanor and Felice did not know what the future held for them, but they did say that they would be heading to Europe with a group of woman to race in the World Cup. Felice ended with this thought about the group she has been training with, “ I truly believe that with all the talent we have at the training center, there is no limit on speed.”
Matt Miller and Alex Karwoski won the men’s pair in what was a very competitive field. “We were happy with our race. We went in with a plan to get out quickly in the first 500 and then hold off the field in the second quarter without over working. The Weil/Cole pair made a great push through the middle of the race, eating into our lead. We made a few shifts in pressure just before and just after the 1000 and eventually regained our starting margin, which put us in a comfortable spot for the sprint. Alex called the race perfectly and provided great motivation,” said Matt about the race. Matt and Alex said they didn’t know what the rest of the summer held for them, but they haven’t ruled out racing the pair. Right now, however, they are “focused on making the camp boats, the eight and the four, as fast as possible. “
Ellen Tomek and Meghan O’Leary won the women’s double for the third year in a row. Their race plan was one that was used by many other winning crews in the rough water. They said, “We knew that everyone would start out fast, so we just stayed as relaxed as we could and made sure we pushed away with every stroke once we hit our base rhythm. The water was a bit bumpy, and we had one or two mishaps with our oars, so we just decided to cruise to make sure we held the lead that we had gotten in the first half.” As for their plans this summer, ”We are still finalizing our plans, but we are leaning toward racing at World Cup II. Neither of us has ever been to Varese, and we have heard it is a beautiful course. It would also give us more time to train between the World Cup trip and the World Championship trip or Trials if we don’t qualify at the World Cup.”
In the men’s double Ben Dann and John Graves made up the winning crew. These two had a better idea than most about what is next for them. They are planning on heading back up to Craftsbury to try and put together a quad.
This may have been the most exciting race of the day. 500m into the first running of it one of Michelle Sechser oars snapped and the race was stopped. All of the women rowed back to the dock and the race was rescheduled for the last race of the day. Michelle Sechser and her partner Devery Karz went on to win the event even after all the adversity they had to deal with. The two of them were not sure what the future held for them (as you can see this was a common theme), but they thought they would be headed to Europe to try and qualify the boat at a World Cup.
Will Daly and Edward “Mix” King won the lightweight men’s pair. Mix had these comments after the race. “I thought the final on Saturday morning was a solid race from start to finish. My partner and I were pleased with our individual finishing result, but what was more important was the strong performance of the entire lightweight sweep squad…As far as the actual race goes, it was partially driven by the weather conditions on Saturday morning – cold with somewhat choppy conditions as the course went on. This made it extremely important to gain a lead early on in the race so we wouldn’t be forced to make a comeback in the rough second 1000m. We stuck to that plan, got the lead, and were able to execute a controlled finish with only a few minor bobbles and still come out with the win.” The lightweights also were not sure what this summer had in store for them, but they both said the focus was making sure they qualify the boat for the 2016 Olympics.
Nick Trojan was the winner in the lightweight men’s single, “I feel really good now that the first race of the season is out of the way and that it started and ended on such a good note. I had trained for that race to get more speed out of the beginning and base of the race instead of relying on a sprinting tactic that is much more risky. So I was able to get an early lead in the final and relied on the fitness to keep me ahead for the rest of the race.” He said his plan is to head back to Seattle to join up with his coach Carlos Dinares and keep training the single with the ultimate goal of trying to represent the US in the lightweight single in the 2015 World Championships.
Katherine McFetridge won the women’s single and will be coming back to NSR 2 to compete in the same event. There were some noticeable absentees in this race since it was only a speed order event, among the absentees was 2012 Olympian Gevvie Stone.
William Cowles won the men’s single. He will also be heading back to Craftsbury with his club mates Ben Dann and John Graves to try and put together a quad. If that doesn’t workout however he could be back at NSR 2 contesting the single.