BY MARLENE ROYLE | PHOTO BY LISA WORTHY
The portion of the race from the end of your start sequence to the beginning of your final sprint is mid-race. It’s easy to lose focus mid-race, so building in structure will keep your head in the boat and help your crew maintain the best average boat speed so they can respond to the moves of other teams.
Pay attention to how your competitors race so you can recognize the tactics they use on the race course. Notice whether they start fast then fade at midpoint. Observe whether they start in the middle of the pack and then hold their pace steady in the second half of the race. Check out whether the crew starts conservatively but uses power pushes to keep building speed over the length of the course.
Practice having a power focus and a technique focus mid-race so that you can use both strategies as you move down the course. Your power focus could be 10 strokes to push the puddles farther way from the boat or to move a seat on the next crew. A technique focus could be on clean bladework at the release or keeping the drive horizontal. Alternating the 10s will hold your attention and makes rowing down the meters effective.
Determine the tactics that work best for your crew and begin practicing those moves during trials.