On March 4th and 5th, the Tulsa Youth Rowing Association competed at the Heart of Texas Regatta on Lady Bird Lake in Austin, TX. The event features over thirty different teams from many different states. This is the first sprint regatta that TYRA attends and gives our athletes and coaches a good benchmark for boat speed with two months to go before the regional championships in Oklahoma City.
This post focuses on one of our girl’s novice crews. When a rower enters their first year of competition they are permitted to race at the novice level for one year. After one year, the athletes must race at the JV or Varsity level.
On the Saturday racing schedule, one of our novice girls crews was entered in the novice quad. This boat type features four rowers rowing in what is called a quadruple scull. A sculling boat is rigged so that each rower has two oars (one in each hand). At TYRA, our athletes are taught how to both scull and sweep so that they can progress to row all the different types of rowing boats.
Our crew raced down the course moving well until the steering broke (this boat did not have a coxswain so one of the athletes steers the boat by using their foot which is attached to a rudder) and they caught a crab then the boat cut across 3 lanes.
Needless to say, our crew was devastated. They met with their coach Tamara Clayton to discuss how they were going to handle this disappointment for the next day of racing.
“After our traumatic boating experience in the women’s novice quad, we were all upset at first but really exited after, because we realized that after drifting over 3 lanes, at one point, we had actually caught up. So the next day, we thought “wow, this four could place!” said TYRA novice athlete Brita Faerber.
The same crew had a second chance the next day when they raced in the girl’s novice four. They raced hard but narrowly missed qualifying for the final.
“We came to find out we did better than we ever imagined! We didn’t make it to finals by .9sec, though we had one of the fastest times in all the heats combined, but now we have a goal. Not only do we want to beat our previous 4+ time, but we were 2 sec away from the TYRA varsity four. Our team supports and pushes each other. We may have varsity and novice, but at practice, we’re one.”
TYRA is offering 1-week long summer camps in the month of June. Click the graphic below to find out how you can get involved with the club.