K-State Heads West for San Diego Crew Classic

April 4, 2014

Schedule | Live Video (Live results available @crewclassic)K-State AthleticsMANHATTAN, Kan. – K-State Women’s Rowing heads to San Diego, Calif., this weekend for the 41st annual San Diego Crew Classic. The Wildcats will deploy three boats, the 1st Varsity 8, 2nd Varsity 8 and 1st Varsity 4 in the regatta against some of the top competition in the nation consisting of over 4,000 total athletes. Qualifying heats for the boats’ respective finals will take place on Saturday morning with the finals concluding action on Sunday.

Opening up competition for the Wildcats will be the 1V8 in the Cal Cup Final qualifiers against a field of 14 schools. The two qualifying heats will take place Saturday, April 5, with the Wildcats set to compete in first heat, starting at 9:50 a.m., CT. Competing in the opening heat with K-State will be San Diego State, Sacramento State, University of Victoria, Loyola, St. Joseph’s and Portland.  

Head coach Patrick Sweeney said the Crew Classic will be a great test for the rowers, as they will compete in championship-style racing for the first time this season. This style of racing, Sweeney said, will make it interesting to see how the younger rowers handle it, as between the top-three boats, the Wildcats utilize a total of six novices and four freshmen.

“This is one of the regattas where you’re going to get more competition,” Sweeney said. “It’s the first time that they’re seeing championship racing, six-lanes rather than the one-on-one. So for the youngsters in the boats, they’re going to see what it’s like to have all the noise of championship racing.

“They have to stay more focused and be more in tune with what they’re doing. It’s not so much just you and them as before. You’re racing your boat to go from A to B as fast as you can and you’re always going to have other [boats] moving. It’s a lot different, it’s noisier, everything is moving around you and it’s a lot faster.”

Sweeney said they plan to use the same line-ups for the three boats as they used from this past weekend’s Sunflower Showdown victory over Kansas.

In the 1V4 races, the Wildcats will compete for the Karen Plumleigh Courtney Cup against a field of 14 schools with their heat set to start at 11:10 a.m., CT Saturday. In K-State’s heat will be California, Washington State, San Diego, C-USA rival Tulsa, University of Victoria and Old Dominion.

Rounding out the first day of qualifying action for the ‘Cats will be the 2V8 in competition for the Jackie Ann Stitt Hungness Trophy against a field of 17 schools. Competing alongside K-State in its heat will be tough opponents in California, Washington State, Tulsa as well as Gonzaga and Loyola, with their heat beginning at 12:10 p.m., CT.

With the change in racing format, Sweeney said the race-to-race goals change for the team overall as well. With a deeper pool of competition, the focus will always be on winning, but accomplishments, such as advancing to the Grand Final for the 1V8, will be just as important.

“Championship season starts now and you’re always trying to win, of course,” Sweeney said. “The first job is get into the A Final, second job is get a medal and that’s really how you sort it.

“Get to the final, get a medal.”

Live results for the San Diego Crew Classic will be provided and can be found either by visiting the K-State Women’s Rowing schedule page and clicking on the event’s tab or going to www.crewclassic.org. Up-to-the-minute results can also be found via the Crew Classic’s Twitter handle, @crewclassic. Lastly, a live stream can be purchased on the Crew Classic’s website for a fee of $10. More information on this weekend’s action, including a full meet schedule, can be found by visiting www.k-statesports.com.