Vancouver, WASH-- Pioneer Crew hosted the Northwest Collegiate Rowing Conference Invitational Saturday at Vancouver Lake, with eight schools competing. The Pioneers had a solid day of racing in challenging conditions, with several boats placing against conference competition. Strong winds were the main story of the race, with all racing shortened by half to 1000m after the first round of racing. "It's a shame to shorten the course but it was the right decision for crew safety," said Head Coach Sam Taylor, "Unfortnetly we didn't have a great start line at 1000 so the results from those races are probably a little suspect, but we were very happy to be able to give every crew that came to the event a race."
Both of the Pioneer's Varisty eights raced at the full 2000m distance, with the men finishing in 4th place and the women 3rd. The men's eight trailed University of Oregon, Humbodlt State, and Puget Sound. The women placed behind Puget Sound and Pacific Lutheran. "Good day for our eights, we had some real improvement on the men's side. We were 20 seconds down on Puget Sound three weeks ago, only three today," noted Taylor, "With the women's eight, unfortunately, we have a key athlete out with a minor injury and that cost us some speed today. We clashed blades at the start and they took a while to get into a rhythm. I was impressed with the middle of the race they put together and I think overall we're pleased with the row we had."
At a thousand meters, both of the Pioneers Varsity fours had highly competitive pieces. The Women's Four went bow to bow with Puget Sound down the course, finishing 2nd by only half a second. The men's four finished third in a very competitive field, pushing away from Oregon in the final 200 meters and holding close behind Humboldt State.
The Pioneers Novice Men's Four also finished third, and the 2nd Novice four won their dual race against Puget Sound.
"Huge thanks to the volunteers who helped out today and let us get all our racing in," summed up Taylor, "We're looking forward to making some improvements this week and hopefully having some cleaner races down at Covered Bridge."
The Pioneers have one more regatta of the main part of the season, competing next Saturday, April 13th at the Covered Bridge regatta in Dexter, Oregon.