On Saturday we were given the opportunity to race "up" against a few Collegiate crews in Newport Beach, CA. We were invited to the Newport Sprints hosted by Orange Coast College and attended by U.C. Irvine, The University of Southern California, Loyola Marymount, and U.C. Los Angeles. Saturday also happened to be a High School testing day and we had to make the best line-ups possible while missing many of our key senior members.
Our 2nd Varsity 8 lined up against OCC (mixed Varsity 8+), Loyola Marymount (Varsity 8+), UCI (2nd Varsity 8+) and one of our own NAC Novice boats. The race ended after all crews completed the 3,000 meter course with OCC winning over UCI, LMU, NAC (2nd Varsity 8+) and NAC (Novices) in that order.
The final race of the day allowed our mixed Varsity 8+ to compete against the Varsity rowers of collegiate programs. All boats took off the line and settled into their race pace. Most of the crews based their race in the range of 32-35spm. Our mixed NAC 8+ started down to most of the boats for the first 1,000m and once they got inside of the protected channel really began to hit their stride. With 1,500m meters to go we began to push back the OCC Novice "A" 8+ along with the another OCC boat and USC. By 1,000m to go we worked through UCLA's Varsity 8+ and began to walk away trying to chase down a very quick mixed OCC boat and UCI boat. By the time we hit the finish line we had closed the gap to OCC but were out of reach of a very quick UCI boat. From my vantage point I could not tell who had finished with the lead between OCC and NAC but my rowers claimed to have finished up by a seat. While I did not see the actual finish line and no times are posted, regardless of the final result I was more than happy with the fight the boys put up all the way to the line.
Overall it was a great day of racing and we were all thankful for the opportunity to get to race against some very talented crews. We wish them the best of luck as we all head into our Winter training routine and take some time off the water for break. The following day we traveled to Long Beach, CA to race at the Long Beach Christmas Regatta. Look for a post with pictures and video soon.
Below is a video of the Newport Sprints taken from the Orange Coast College boathouse.