Women's crew second at Rutgers
By Karen Chenausky
The MIT women's varsity crew finished second to Columbia University in an away race on the Raritan River at Rutgers University this past weekend.
The race was called back after the start because MIT had jumped the command, but after the second start things went smoothly until the end of the race. There was confusion about where the finish line was, because the racecourse was curved. The stakeboats marking the start were staggered to make up for the curve, so it was difficult for coxswains to tell which boats were ahead until the very end of the race. Furthermore, although there was a line of buoys roughly marking the end, they were not actually on the finish line; they were about a half boat-length farther on.
Because of a mistake by the official on shore marking MIT's varsity boat actually paddled about a length before the finish line. Luckily it only affected the boat's time and not it's ranking. Columbia's varsity eight won with a time of 7:16.1 over the course, which was slightly shorter than the regulation 2000 meters. MIT was second at 7:24.1, and Rutgers came in last at 7:32.8.
The junior varsity boat also came in second in its race, this time to Rutgers, in a race so close even the coxswains involved could not tell who won. MIT came in at 7:21 to Rutgers' 7:20. Even though Columbia had a good sprint during the last 500 meters, gaining a few seats on MIT and Rutgers, they lost the race with a time of 7:28.8. Since the Columbia and MIT boats had bet their racing shirts on the outcome of the race, the JV rowers are now the proud owners of the Columbia JV's shirts for the second year running.
MIT and Rutgers also raced varsity fours without Columbia. Rutgers won by 4 seconds with a time of 8:32.7. All races before the varsity race were rowed against the incoming tide, which changed in time for the varsity race.
Columbia dominated the second novice race, beating the next boat down by 9 seconds at 7:44. Rutgers came in second at 7:55, and MIT lost to Rutgers by a boatlength at 7:59. The first novice eight, like the second novice eight and the varsity eight, lost to Columbia but beat Rutgers. Columbia's time was 7:21.4, MIT's 7:36, and Rutgers' 7:40.2.
The women's crew next races Mount Holyoke College and Simmons College on the Charles River Saturday morning.
(Karen Chenausky '89 is a member of the women's crew team.)