CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – This past Saturday, the lightweight men's crew traveled to Princeton University as a guest in the Murtaugh Cup which traditionally features the host Tigers and the U.S. Naval Academy.
With only two weeks of water time to prepare for the race, athletes and coaches worked hard over spring break to tune-up boats and hone race skills. Despite the short time period in which to prepare, the Engineers' performance was undoubtedly bolstered by a strong showing during the winter training period, during which nearly 100% of athletes showed physiological improvement over past years, many making hard-won technical gains in the process.
Saturday morning found the three crews on the line facing a stiff headwind. In all three events in which MIT competed (1V, 1F, 2F), the Tigers and the Midshipmen jumped out to an early lead. Left trailing, the Engineers rowed hard, consistent races, but finishing times demonstrated how essential water time is in preparing for early season races.
"The guys did the things we'd practiced well," said Head Coach Will Oliver. "We certainly could have used a little more time to prepare, but Navy and Princeton are both extremely fast crews, so it's good to see what we're up against early. The team realizes that it has a lot of speed to pick up. Some of it will come from working on our racing skills; our starts, our sprints, and our rating. Some of it will come from just rowing together over the course of the spring. It's a young boat, and they still have a lot of speed to find and some good races to look forward to. When we see these two crews again at Sprints, we'll definitely be a lot faster."
Release Courtesy of Will Oliver, Head Coach