Crews Have Strong Showing In Las Vegas, Newport Beach
LAS VEGAS – After having Saturday's races canceled due to high winds, the Cal men's rowing team showed up on Sunday. The Bears swept their races at the Las Vegas Invitational, adding to that Cal's other boats at the California Cup Challenge took on all comers on Saturday in Huntington Beach.
"I thought it was a really productive weekend for us and probably beneficial to do all the races back-to-back this morning," said head coach Scott Frandsen. "We used a bunch of different lineups with a bunch of different trips down the racecourse. Our first trip out was a little groggy at 6:40 in the morning, but all the guys improved as the day went on. I think the third race for all our boats was probably the best."
The Bears' top three boats all competed Sunday morning at Lake Las Vegas, and all three won their respective races, defeating boats from Drexel, Santa Clara, San Diego, and conference competitor Oregon State.
Cal's Varsity 8+ defeated Santa Clara by 28 seconds in the first race of the season, they followed that up by defeating Oregon State by 20 seconds. Cal's Varsity 8+ defeated Drexel by 38 seconds in its final race of the day.
The Second Varsity 8+ boat was just as dominant. The Bears 2V8+ defeated boats from Drexel and Oregon State by 18 seconds and 23 seconds respectively. Later that morning the Second Varsity 8+ defeated Oregon State and Santa Clara by wide margins. The 2V8+'s final race once again pitted the Bears against Drexel and San Diego with Cal defeating both boats by over 20 seconds.
The Third Varsity 8+ began its morning defeating Santa Clara by 21 seconds in a head-to-head race. They followed up their morning by defeating Oregon State by 19 seconds and finished their day defeating the Second Varsity 8+s from Oregon State and Santa Clara by 11 seconds and 19 seconds.
"The purpose of this event was to try out different combinations and to get the feel for racing competitively again," added Frandsen. "We started to see potential combinations of three or four or five of different lineups starting to gel, definitely have the starting point for strong lineups moving forward"
On Saturday Cal sent a Freshman 8+ and the Fourth Varsity 8+ to Newport Beach to compete at the California Cup Challenge at South Lido Chanel in the Marina Park.
"Another productive day of racing, the format allowed the crews to race multiple duel races," said Frandsen. "It was really good for our guys to get out and get three races in pretty tough conditions and gain some experience. It's too bad the Freshman 8+ didn't get to race the 4V 8+ in the final; that would be been a great intrasquad race."
The Bears will return to the water on April 9-10 when Cal once again splits its squad for two events. Cal will compete at the Elbright Invitational and the Pac-12 Challenge at Redwood Shores.
"Now we are back to work, we've got five weeks, a long block of training to prepare for the Pac-12 Challenge and Elbright Invitational," said Frandsen.