Saturday 18th February
The build up to the race at the competition was intensified at the team meeting on Saturday by Kim (Team GB manager) and Pete Marsden (Team GB Coach) who set the scene for those who had not been to the World Indoor Rowing Championships before.
We then ate a very generous plate of food (or couple of plates in Chris' case) at the competitors lunch. We were sat on a table of mainly lightweight rowers including another Chris (Wheatley) who found the pile of cakes and brownies calling him - but he was strong and resisted. We mingled with the rest of Team GB and listened to speeches from various US bigwigs from Concept 2.
After the C2 competitors lunch we met up Tim a mate (Chris' ex work colleague) who lives in Boston for a whizz around on bikes.
Sunday 19th February - Race Day
We had another early race so Chris and I set the alarm for 06:00 got up and started the preparation for the race at 10:10. I had an early breakfast but Chris held back until after the weigh-in at the Agganis Arena. We took a taxi to the venue so we had plenty of time to get warmed up and the chance for Chris to eat some fuel before his race.
The Agganis Arena do not let any outside food or drink into the venue (they confiscate it during the bag search if they spot it) so Chris and I made sure we had hidden our oats, sweet potatoes and chocolate in our bags.
Our warm up was OK making sure we followed the Eddie Fletcher recommended 20 minute workout that includes short sprints, UT1 and UT2 rates to prepare our bodies for the intense 2k to come.
Unfortunately, I haven't got any photos of our 2k races for the blog because we were both racing at the same time, although we have some video footage which I will upload soon.
I started the race with a plan of 2:08, 2:09, 2:09 and to finish with another 2:08. I started well and the first 1,000 metres I was on target (pretty much) but in the third and final quarter I noticed a couple of 2:12 and 2:13 paces popping up on the screen and despite what I felt like a huge effort my pace didn't seem to shift much beyond that in the last section of the 2k.
I pulled in a time of 08:44.9 which I was not very pleased with considering my 08:37.3 PB last Sunday. It was a worst than my 2011 WIRC time of 08:40.5. I finished 12th out of 16 30-39 Lwt females (which isn't too bad). I had a great time in Boston and I suppose I can learn from this and reassess my training program for the BIRC at the end of March 2012.
The photo below shows me ranked in 11th position. The list changed later in the day because it turns out that Jen Hause of Team GB was 10 metres away from getting the Gold medal when her C2 monitor packed in and she lost all her race information. The officials said that she could race again later in the day, which she did and pulled in an impressive time of 7:22.4, knocking Nell S into Silver medal position.
Chris said his race was a €#%$¥ car crash. Things didn't get off to a good start when his cox, Tim arrived one minute before the start time of the race still drunk from the night before warning Chris he could be sick at any moment. Tim got regularly distracted by chatting up the fellow female coxes and not keeping his eye on Chris. To keep things fresh (for Tim) he started to make up times and positions just as Chris was entering the last 1k of the race. Chris finished just short of a sub 7 with 7:02.3 and came in 4th position out of 14 rowers in the 40-49 Lwt male rowers.
After such early races it meant we had a reasonable amount of time to kill before our flight. We had a brilliant meal of fresh fish in Legal Seafood and managed to relax for a bit before heading back to the hotel to pick up our bags for the airport.