We had a great race this year! The weather was beautiful and the racing was very competitive. Aside from the run in with Johnny Law, the day went fairly smoothly. Let's continue to build on that momentum by planning a great race for next year.
The way this works is that you just send me an email commenting on one of the topics and I'll add it to the site with the rest. I know I haven't thought of everything so feel free to add your own topic. I actually do re-read this stuff from year-to-year to see how we can continue to improve. This is also the reason I keep it posted on the site so everyone can look back.
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This list is not meant to be exhaustive. If you have any additional topics just let me know.
If you're wondering what the logo next to my name meanse, I see myself as the referee so I gave myself black and white stripes. :-)
Next Year's Date
DOUG: Easter is April 8 and Passover is April 3-10, 2006. Click HERE if you want to see for yourself. I think the first week in April works for most, but may conflict with Passover and the Brandeis Spring Break.
CHRIS (Case): Easter weekend is really bad because much of Case's team goes home for the holiday and/or to someone else's house if their own home is too far way. I like the earliest date, because the mid-April one would conflict w/ at least one other of the events we usually attend.
WILL (Rochester): The Knecht cup (last year 4/7) and our race vs. Ithaca (last year 4/15) are the firm commitments I have. The dates MAY change, it is still too early, but we shall see. I love the April 1 date, but could even do the weekend before.
ELLEN (Brandeis): I think the only weekend we could possibly do is April 14-15--and it seems like some of the benefit of the race this year was that it early in the season. Also, we realized this year how great it was that the race ended up being on Sunday. I had a lot of kids who would not have been willing/able to miss class/work if the race had been on Saturday.
CAMERON (Wash U): 1st weekend in April (April 1st Sunday)
|Team||Spring Break '07||Mar 31-Apr 1||April 7-8||April 14-15|
|Brandeis||Feb 19-23, April 2-10|
Next Year's Location
DOUG: I like Lake Arthur. Johnny Law aside. It's relatively centrally located for everyone. Below is a grid of locations, average distance to each and a map showing the routes. I also see the benefit of switching the location from time to time. I will investigate and follow up with any site you, the coaches, decide upon. If there's another location you'd like me to calculate let me know. I did not include the distance I'd have to drive in the average. I just put it on the maps for my own reference.
CHRIS (Case): After the last Indianapolis experience, I had rowers who said they would not race if they had to go back to that site. Given the awful hassles usrowing experienced with the site this year (midwest matsers' actually was cancelled) it seems like a bad location. I'm a fan of Griggs, but it's awfully busy in the spring w/ other hs and collegiate events. Same for Harsha (I'm a fan, but it's also busy). Lake Lanier would be a hard sell w/ the case athletes because of the distance and cost involved. And we very very much like Lake Arthur. So, first choice Lake Arthur, 2nd choice Griggs, 3rd choice Harsha, 4th Oak Ridge.
WILL (Rochester): Lake Aurthur is my favorite, despite the fish and game commission.
ELLEN (Brandeis): In terms of locations, Lake Arthur is as far as we can realistically go in a weekend. We loved coming to the race this year--but with all of the constraints I've laid out--we will completely understand if it's planned for a weekend/at a location that we can't make.
|Location||Average Distance||Furthest Team||Click on map link|
|Lake Arthur (Pittsburgh)||405 mi||WashU (655 mi)|
|Harsha Lake (Cinci)||477 mi||Brandeis (874 mi)|
|Indy||495 mi||Brandeis (940 mi)|
|Griggs Resevoir (Columbus)||428 mi||Brandeis (759 mi)|
|Oak Ridge||583 mi||Brandeis (924 mi)|
|Lake Lanier||698 mi||Brandeis (1,039 mi)|
DOUG: I didn't hear too much about the regatta packet. People were looking for lodging, but many nearby hotels were listed in the packet. If someone would like to volunteer to look for larger group hotel discounts next year let me know.
CHRIS (Case): Seemed fine. Earlier starts are better for those driving longer distances.
CAMERON (Wash U): The schedule, points, packets and schedule were fine. I assume They will continue to be altered according to entries.
DOUG: I didn't hear anyone complain about the points system this year. The men's points trophy was extremely close this year. The only comment I heard was that it benefits teams that enter every race, but I think this is true of any points trophy. I think the use of medals for the individual races help.
DOUG: The schedule was much like last year's. The time between events was tight and we ended up rowing through breaks. There was a slight backup after some equipment breakage, but we didn't end the day too far behind schedule. The major hold up was with the fish & game commission before the final 8's race.
DOUG: The park was great letting us into the park earlier than last year. I think we got things rolling okay in the morning.top
Race Course Installation
DOUG: The GPS course helped loads this year. It was almost a non-event. It took just about an hour vs. nearly
three the previous year.
There are also rumors that Three Rivers RA is working to get a 6-lane buoyed course installed at the site, which would make the lake even more desirable for our event.
CHRIS (Case): Awesome. Fast and clearly marked.
CAMERON (Wash U): The race course could use a few more bouys to help define the course particularly for the races with 5 or more entries. Even if this was only in the first 200meters.top
DOUG: I didn't row this year, which seemed to help thing run a bit smoother throughout the day. At least people could find me to have their questions answered. Also, the hand held radios worked great (except Cameron's two radios). I noticed the radios worked as long as the engine wasn't full throttle causing electrical interference.
ELLEN (Brandeis): I think the logistics etc. were great.
DOUG: I didn't hear anything bad about the start. Having very little wind helped matters with radios to check the progress of crews from the launch area.
CHRIS (Case): I heard many positive comments about Will from the Case women (i.e. that he was calm and organized).
DOUG: There was almost an infinite amount of launching area, so there didn't seem to be an issue getting on or off the water. It wasn't as cold so I didn't hear as many complaints about the beach launch. If we continue to row on Lake Arthur it'll probably be a beach launch. Especially that early in the spring.
DOUG: Many stop watches and video tape make the finish pretty good this year. Close races were double checked and the final times should be very accurate. The key is many volunteers with clear instructions. Thanks to Chris & Brian from Case and Eric from Chicago for helping out.
CHRIS (Case): Having the video camera is key. Also having everyone at the finish know the designs of the various teams' blades before the race starts will help re accuracy. Having someone doing full-time entry was also key.
DOUG: I think people knew where they were stationed this year, and I think we had enough people. I think the radios helped a bit.
CHRIS (Case): Seemed fine.
DOUG: My wife bought coffee and bagels again this year. This is key!
CHRIS (Case): Coffee and bagels were key and MUCH appreciated. On the other end, as it were, if we can get the bathrooms opened earlier, or a porta potty delivered earlier -even the night before -that'd be a big help.top
DOUG: I hope the students liked having medals again this year. They were supposed to have different
colored ribbons like last year, but Crown Awards screwed up. I'm sure no one noticed or cared.
If one of the athletes would like to re-design the medals get them in contact with me.
Not many teams brought shirts to bet this year. I was personally disappointed about this, because it is one of the few things I like to see from the race. These kids need to meet each other, shake their hands, and congratulate each other for the good racing. Betting shirts and the end-of-day awards ceremony are the two things I'd like to see continue, but please let me know your thoughts.
CHRIS (Case): The kids LOVE medals. So thanks for having them in addition to the trophies. Re the shirts:
a. I think some confusion existed as to whether we were doing them this year (and, on our end, whether it was permissible vis a vis the administration). The earlier we can get a sense of whether shirts will be exchanged (i.e. by January) the better.
b. I agree, VERY MUCH, re the value of having the athletes get a chance to just sit down and hang out together. By the time Case started giving out our shirts, though, the day was pretty much over and people were kindof rushing to get packed and back on the road. I'm not sure how best to address this (build time into the schedule to have kids trade the shirts on the water; set aside specific shirt-trading time during the day, i.e. events 1-3, you have 10 minutes to trade shirts before launching begins, then, later, repeat it. Or, perhaps best, have everyone do the shirt exchanging BEFORE the medals are awarded, but while everyone is gathered together....). I'm sure there are other, better ideas.
DOUG: We might want to consider getting alumni involved. Either begin inviting local alumni clubs for each school to the race. Also, alumnni may consider sponsoring various aspects of the race or add more challenge cups.
CHRIS (Case): Alumni involvement: The more the better.top
The UAA (URA)
DOUG: I think people "get" the concept of the URA. It's our own little conference championship, but the question is whether or not to include other schools. Most races this year were full and fairly competitive. If we keep it up, there isn't any room to invite others.
CHRIS (Case): Let's keep it to URA schools.top
Teams to Invite
DOUG: There still seems to be consensus that as long as the UAA still exists, the race should be an invitational for only UAA schools. At this point, I tend to agree.top
I want to thank all of you again. Aside from the pilots of unregistered launches, everyone had a great day. If we can continue to have events like this, I think everyone will continue to look forward to coming.
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