Rowing Report with Washington's Blaise Didier

The Washington men's and women's rowing teams compete Sunday at the annual Pac-10 Championships on Lake Natoma in Rancho Cordova, Calif. The Husky men's varsity eight crew won the 2007 conference crown and is seeking its first back-to-back Pac-10 titles since 2003 and 2004.

Sophomore Blaise Didier is one of five rowers in the current varsity eight who did not row in last season's Pac-10 and national championship boat. Didier rowed in UW's freshman eight last year, helping the Huskies place second at the Pac-10 regatta before collecting the bronze medal at the 2007 IRA Championships.

Blaise spent a few minutes this week with, talking about the season and the upcoming Pac-10 regatta. What are your thoughts on the season so far?

Blaise Didier: 'We're working really hard and I've put my hardest in and I know the other guys have too.'

How long did it take you to get adjusted to the new group of rowers in the varsity eight?

BD: 'I don't think it really took that long at all. The way Michael [Callahan] does it, we just go in small boats like pairs, fours, eights so we slowly build up to each other.' Before the last race, the Windermere Cup, you broke some equipment during warm-ups. Can you describe what happened prior to the Windermere Cup?

BD: 'We were coming back and we were doing a starting piece, warm-up, and I think on the second stroke I snapped the pin so we had to book it back and pick up the other racing shell and race back to the race course.' Have you ever broken a pin before?

BD: 'Once in high school.' What would have happened in a situation like that on the road, when you didn't have another shell available?

BD: 'I'm not quite sure. Since we were on warm-up and it was so close to start time I'm not sure if they would let us start late or if we'd come back and repair the boat.' How long would it take to repair a broken pin?

BD: 'If you were really fast maybe 20 minutes plus time returning and heading out.' What are your thoughts on Sunday's Pac-10 Championships?

BD: 'I'm excited, it's always fun to test yourself.' Is there any added pressure because Washington is the defending men's varsity eight champions?

BD: 'I wasn't in the boat last year so this is hopefully my first one.' Washington's varsity eight has been ranked No. 1 all season. Are the rankings significant to you?

BD: 'I personally haven't looked at the rankings at all. I don't do that.' What is your major?

BD: 'Philosophy,' What do you plan to do in the future?

BD: 'Hopefully, I'll use the networking that the alumni group has. I want to do some consulting, but if that doesn't work out maybe I'll get my masters and a Ph.D. and start teaching.' Thank you and good luck Sunday.

BD: 'Thank you.'

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