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by Vikes Communications

April 6, 2014 (ISN) – In a rematch of last weeks Brown Cup, the UBC Thunderbirds and the University of Victoria Vikes women’s rowing teams met yet again in a barnburner of a race, April 6 in the final day of competition San Diego Crew Classic.

“We uncharacteristically got off to a poor start, ” explained Vikes head coach Rick Crawley, “The cross wind threw the crew off and we came off the line in last place.”

After battling through the other crews in the race, the Vikes had established second place to UBC out front.

“We closed the gap and continued to attack, but the veteran UBC crew responded in kind and held us off,” stated Crawley. “Our final sprint was a wicked sprint and we moved on UBC significantly but it was just too late to catch them. One objective was achieved, and that was to come in the top two places and move on next year to the Whittier Cup where the top US crews come to compete. Based on comparative results I think we might have made that final this year, but we are likely a year away from competing with the lead crews here, so this works perfectly in the long term plan.”

The two-day regatta allowed the Vikes young crew to experience what it will take to compete at the highest level.

“This was an eye opening experience for us and will be an excellent motivator in the long winter months,” said coxswain Becky Wilder. “We learned so much about ourselves and how hard we have to race to be successful. I’m looking forward to the next season.”

With the entire Vikes team eligible to return next season and a summer program to develop further, expectations for the 2014-15 season include a considerably faster crew.

Summer club begins in May, with the Vikes frosh women competing in Opening Day against a Husky crew who won their event in San Diego.

“We have a pretty strong crew,” explained Crawley. “We will train as much as we can through April to prepare for that experience.”

San Diego Crew Classic results:
UBC                       6:53.92
UVic                       6:56.33
St Mary’s                7:02.94
Tulsa                      7:03.76
Iowa                      7:04.38
KSU                       7:05.60
CSUS                     7:05.60
Portland                 7:10.06