VICTORIA – The 32nd Monster Erg returned to the CARSA Performance Gym for the second straight year, as the University of Victoria Vikes once again welcomed novice to elite athletes from across the country for an action packed day of indoor rowing.
The event, a qualifier for CRASH Bs, featured a number of strong performances from Vikes men and women alike, and both coaches ended the day pleased with their team’s performance.
“Today was an exemplary example of Vikes and Vikes Alumni coming together to facilitate the rowing community,” said men’s head coach Aalbert Van Schothorst.
“I think overall it was a good day for Vikes women,” added women’s head coach Rick Crawley. “On top of a number of strong performances, the Vikes also hosted a successful recruiting event with many of the top junior athletes coming up to the blue and gold room for a chat with myself and the team captains.”
The Vikes men took first place honours in all Senior events, including the novice event.
Patrick Keane led the charge with the Senior B lightweight men posting a substantial lead with a 6:19. First place in the combined Senior A and Senior B heavyweight event was shared by U23 gold medalist from 2015 Taylor Perry and Daan Arscott.
The day was rounded out by Alec Stapff, who paced himself for the first 1500m of his race and then started punishing the erg by dropping splits down to 1:16/500m into the finishing sprint.
Overall, the men posted a series of personal bests on the day – an important indicator of hard winter training ahead of the Brown Cup in March.
On the women’s side, the lightweights and Senior B’s were solid events, as Reba Kingston took the lightweight crown while Kirsten McKay took top honours in Senior B. The Senior A was a barnburner, with Olivia King edging out Layla Balooch for the title.
In the ever-popular coxswain crawl event, Vikes varsity cox Becky Wilder once again pulled away for the victory, making it a clean sweep in her final year having won the last four.
Crawley was pleased to see two of his novices go into the 7.20’s. The second place finisher in the novice event, Ashley McPhail, is also a UVic recruit, adding to the excitement surrounding the results.
Next up for both teams will be the Elk Lake Spring Regatta on March 4, followed by the 25th anniversary of the Brown Cup races between UVic and UBC in March.
Coxwains Crawl M (Final)
1. Jyot Saini (02:27.4)
Novice Men (Final)
1. Alec Stapff (06:20.9)
2. Mike Newton (06:36.6)
3. Hunka Damon (06:45.1)
Novice Women (Final)
1. Lise McCracken (07:25.3)
3. Samantha Coe (07:29.2)
4 Jennifer Syme (07:45.6)
Novice and Intramural Mixed Four Relay (Final)
1. Jennifer Syme (06:49.9)
2. Rachel Kalkman (07:04.2)