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Rowers, Coxswains Participate In World Indoor Championships

By Daniel Wang
Associate Sports Editor

The weather on Sunday made for a beautiful day of rowing, and some world records in rowing fell that afternoon. However, the rowing did not take place on the Charles River, but instead, in Rockwell Cage.

Several students, alumni, and faculty members of MIT were joined by competitors from across the nation and around the world for the Charles River All-Star Has Beens (C.R.A.S.H.-B.) Sprints, which featured the World Indoor Rowing Championships as the main event. Scores of people of all ages came to participate.

While the Open/Internation competition consisted primarily of collegiate athletes, the field featured past and future Olympians from places as far away as China and Russia. The field even included a Gold Medalist from the 1964 Olympic Games.

The races at this event look quite unusual for those who are unfamiliar to rowing. The athletes compete on ergometers and monitored their status, along with the enthusiastic spectators, by using a computer display of times and a simulation of the positions.

The rowers could gain only an idea of how they were doing compared to the rest of the field, by looking up at a screen in front of them. They were essentially racing against the clock. Each race took place over a simulated distance of 2,500 meters.

MIT had a number of representatives competing in the event with their best result coming from Liz Bradley '83. Bradley, who was on the United States Olympic team in 1988, won the Master Women's event -- for competitors between 30 and 39 years old.

The next best result from MIT came from Hartley Rogers, professor of mathematics. Rogers placed seventh in the Veteran `B' Men's competition -- for competitors over 60 years of age, with a time handicap based on age -- with a time of 8 minutes 57.20 seconds.

Rogers had placed fourth out of the entire field in the preliminary heat, posting a time of 8:44.00. Rogers previously won the Veteran `B' competition at the C.R.A.S.H.-B. Sprints six consecutive times between 1982 and 1987.

In the open women's competition, Maria Bradnin of Sweden cruised ahead of the field and broke the world indoor record, coming in with a time of 8:13.60.

In the open men's finals, world- and C.R.A.S.H.-B..-record holder Matthias Siejkowski won his third straight title, finishing in 7:23.10, to beat Jean Rolland by a little more than six seconds.

Among the women, Sarah Black '97 was MIT's top performer, posting a time of 9:28.80 finishing 44th in her field. Behind Black were Elizabeth Sebern '97 (9:37.90) in 55th, and Victoria Parson '94 (9:38.20) in 57th. The Engineers fielded 10 representatives for the competition.

In the open men's division, MIT had 18 members competing. Godard Abel G provided the best result for MIT, placing 53rd, with a time of 7:52.80. He was followed by Toby Ayer '96 (7:58.60), and Adam Cotner '96 (7:59.10), who placed 74th and 79th, respectively, in a field of 252 entrants.

In the coxswain men's event, Jason Yip '95 barely missed making the finals placing ninth with a time of 9:37.40. Yip captured the last spot for the final round of eight and had a time of 9:34.50 in the preliminary heat.

Sherry Hsiung '95 took ninth place in the coxswain women's event with a time of 11:21.80. Hsiung missed the qualifying for the finals by a little less than 15 seconds.

The Engineers had one representative in the lightweight women's competition. Renata Pomponi G placed 27th in the qualifying heat, covering the course in a time of 11:03.80.