These Ducks Have Crew Grit

Despite our Cal and WaSU laden teams here at the EBRC, it’s great to see these Oregon Ducks crushing it on the Willamette. They admit that just because they’re not the biggest boat in the race, they’re not going to give up on their teammates and let the boat down.¬†As my own University of Oregon experience was 15 years ago, hopping on a city bus at 5:00am, to go up to a frigid reservoir for practice is still hard core.

[youtube height=”305″ width=”520″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1dgyY4RL2A&feature=youtu.be[/youtube]

This video is a great introduction to how the boat breaks down from stern to bow, where the power, technique and pace come from within the boat. It’s interesting watching the team warm-up, prepare and race at the 2012 Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships. The cox-eye view of the race itself pumps me up, really is a great testament to the intensity needed to race, both as a cox and a rower.

Even at our practice, our cox had recorded their instructions to the boat for some small boat races one morning. It was such a testament to their craft, that they’d go back and review a recording of their own barking to see what made sense as instructional advice in the middle of a workout. It reminded me a bit of this documentary, a crew of constant improvement, trying to get better.

As a former duck crewbie, I can be proud of this documentary… but what’s with all the bird chirping?


Oxford vs. Cambridge Boat Race 2012

Great replay of the 158th annual Oxford vs. Cambridge Boat Race from earlier this year. Each turn in this long, 6.8k race is worth more than a length of a boat. One boat pushes the other to the bank, trying to edge them off the line and open a gap for a push. This looks like a nightmare race to cox. The headwinds are brutal, the whitecaps are present, and the course looks as loopy as a soccer hooligan.

The character of the two boats was really prevelant – Cambridge were expected to be the sprinters out of the block, with Oxford being the longer marathoners trying to hold off as long as possible. And oh, what the drama on the Chiswick Eyot with oars littering the Thames after a controversial interruption.

I love the commentary from the BBC crew, quoting approach of the Surrey Bend, Hammersmith Bridge and Harrod’s Depository. A majority of this race is within a single length of each other, until the incidents begin to occur. The deepest water is the fastest stream. Yes, sensi, for there I will steer.