By: Blake Donovan
Spring break 2007 saw a return to Oak Ridge, Tennessee for Grand Valley Rowing. Leaving campus Friday March 2, the team arrived in Oak Ridge the following morning. Training took place on Melton Hill Lake launching from the Oak Ridge Rowing Association boathouse.
Due to strong winds, the first day of training saw a significant decrease in the amount of rowing the team had planned on. Sunny, warm weather characterized the rest of the week, and the team took advantage of it picking up the slack from the first day’s delay. Athletes took to the water twice a day for practice, both morning and afternoon practices lasted upwards of two hours. Emphasis was placed on technique, mileage and speed work for the upcoming spring sprint races. Between practices rowers could be found nursing blistered hands and sore muscles, signs of the hard work everyone is investing in getting faster.
At the end of the week GVSU Rowing got the opportunity to show off the speed they had worked hard for all winter and spring break in scrimmage pieces against the University of Dayton. Men, women, novice, and Varsity eights all got to go head to head in four 1250 meter pieces. The speed Grand Valley gained during spring break was evident as the Men and women varsity eights beat Dayton all four pieces.
Looking forward to the spring race season, there is no doubt that invaluable time was spent training in Oak Ridge. The team rowed hundreds of miles and corrected flaws in technique. Rowers and coxswains alike got to preview the course for SIRA, one of the major spring regattas held on Melton Hill Lake. In short, Grand Valley Rowing gained a lot of speed that will help spearhead the successes we look forward to in the upcoming season