Q & A with Kara Farquharson

May 4, 2005

The Washington men's and women's rowing teams host the annual Windermere Cup regatta, Saturday, May 7. Racing begins at 10:20 a.m. on the Montlake Cut. The Huskies are joined by elite competition from Cornell University and the national teams from the Czech Republic.

The Windermere Cup is a spectacle unrivaled in collegiate crew. It is among the premier regattas in the sport of rowing with thousands of spectators lining both sides of the course for its entire 2,000-meter length.

Sophomore Kara Farquharson (Mississauga, Ontario) rows in Washington's varsity eight crew. She spent a few minutes with GoHuskies.com, talking about the season and describing her thoughts on the upcoming Windermere Cup.

GoHuskies.com: How have things gone so far this season?

Kara Farquharson: 'We're a young team, so we've had a lot of learning experiences, but each race we're getting better.'

GoHuskies.com: Your crew has been resilient all year, rebounding from both losses with impressive victories. To what do you attribute that?

KF: 'I think that losing gets us really fired up. All season we've known that we have another level and that helps us find it. A lot of people in the boat are really passionate and we all take it really hard, so our way to retaliate against it is to go out and kick some butt in the next race.'

GoHuskies.com: How do you think you performed in the Oregon State duel?

KF: 'It was definitely a step forward, but that's what we have to look at it as, a step. We have more steps we have to take.'

GoHuskies.com: You are in a stretch of five straight weeks with high-level races. Do you like having weekly races against tough opponents?

KF: 'I love it. That's what we train all year for, racing. That's why we're here all year, waking up early. This is the time that we can show all of the work that we put in. I think it's a good venue for us because each week it gives us the chance to prove if we've really improved that week.'

GoHuskies.com: What are your thoughts about the upcoming Windermere Cup regatta?

KF: 'I'm excited. I've been racing since I was 13 and this is the most amazing race ever. It has more people than I have ever seen with all of the boats and yachts. It's so exciting. It's the place to be.'

GoHuskies.com: What were your emotions during your first Windermere Cup?

KF: 'It was so exciting that I couldn't believe it. Having all of those people cheer you on. I've never had fans from the start, right to the finish line. It made me realize how cool it is to be at Washington and have this race the next three years.'

GoHuskies.com: Why is this such a unique event?

KF: 'I think being able to have fans line the entire course. Usually there are fans in the last 500 meters, but having people the entire 2000 meters makes it great.'

GoHuskies.com: Do you think you have a home-course advantage at Windermere Cup?

KF: 'Definitely. We're used to it and we're expecting it. I think for anybody coming in to picture what it's going to be like. It's kind of shocking at first.'

GoHuskies.com: Will it be difficult to turn around and compete in the Pac-10 Championships the week immediately after Windermere Cup?

KF: 'I don't think so. I think this is a good way to test a high-anxiety race. The crowd really gets us riled up. So even if it's not as nerve-racking, the crowd adds the pressure that the Pac-10s bring.'

GoHuskies.com: You are competing against Cornell and the Czech Republic this week. How do you prepare for a crew that you have never seen race?

KF: 'We just go out like any other race and try to have the best race that we can and focus on our boat. If we go out and have our very best race and they still beat us, then they're a good crew. If we can go out and have our best race, they're going to have to race.'

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