On Saturday, the men’s heavyweight and lightweight crew teams sliced through the waters of the Housatonic and Lake Carnegie in their first 2,000-meter races of the season. Results were mixed for the Bulldogs, but most boats came close to success in their first races and both varsity boats were within two seconds of a win.
“We’ll keep working hard and hopefully get faster in the coming weeks,” heavyweight head coach John Pescatore said.
The heavyweights bested Brown in three of five races on the nearby Housatonic River while the lightweights won two of their five at Lake Carnegie in New Jersey.
It was a warm day on the Housatonic when the heavyweights took to their oars. The freshman eight, third varsity eight and varsity four triumphed over Brown’s boats, but the top two varsity boats failed to win their competitive matches. Still, most races were close: The varsity eight lost by less than two seconds.
“Brown usually is near the top of the Eastern teams, so for the freshman boat to win was a good start to the season and we’ll have momentum going into our race this weekend,” said Viktor Romanov ’13, a rower on the freshman eight.
Meanwhile, the lightweights were enjoying equally good conditions in Princeton, N.J., on Saturday against Navy.
“Navy gave us some really tough racing in every event,” assistant coach Colin Farrell said. “We’re looking to take that experience and use it to be a smarter and faster crew the next time we race.”
Yale won the second and third varsity races by more than three seconds each, while the Midshipmen outpaced the Bulldogs’ freshmen and varsity boats.
“For the freshmen, a big highlight is getting to wear the Yale blue and white for the first time,” Farrell said. “Also, the experience gained from racing each week is huge for us.”
Farrell said the team is looking forward to the coming races and expecting improvement.
“The [difference] between the winners and the losers is less deeply felt than you might imagine,” lightweight head coach Andy Card said. “We are never satisfied after the first race, no matter the result. Externally, of course, we lost the varsity race for the first time in two years, and who likes to do that?”
The lightweights will have a chance to prove themselves this weekend when they race Georgetown and MIT for the Joy Cup in Cambridge, Mass., early Saturday morning. The heavyweights will race Dartmouth in New Haven on Saturday.
With the season opener behind them, rowers and coaches from both teams said they are looking forward to getting faster, stronger and better.
“At the end of the year, we want to confirm that we have met and even exceeded our own internal standards and graded out well,” Card added. “We can’t control how fast the other crews are, so we are focused on making ourselves as fast as we can be.”