HOCR: Setting up for Weeks

Previously: Getting to the starting line || Steering through the bridges || Landmarks along the course || Steering around the turns || Race plans || My general race plan || Yaz Farooq’s coxswain clinic || Race plan “hacks” || The course in meters || Weeks, Lowell House, and “the turning tree”

Two years ago Pete Cipollone was on the Rowing Illustrated podcast talking about how to take the Weeks turn. I’ve talked about Weeks before in a previous post but if you’re looking for some last minute tips, here’s a few from the guy who’s won HOCR seven times and whose course record still stands (13:58.9, set in 1997 if you’re curious).

Related: Pete Cipollone’s 1997 HOCR Recording

Setting yourself for the turn is easier than you think, provided you give yourself plenty of room to execute it and position yourself in the middle of the course coming down the Powerhouse stretch. Despite what you’ve probably heard from your coach about staying tight to the buoys, this is one spot (of many, tbh) where you don’t want or need to do that. If you’re confident in your rudder system and the strength of your bow and 3-seat then you can hug them a little tighter but the “ideal” position is about a full boat length off the buoys.

Related: Taking the Weeks turn with a new/better fin on the Empacher

There are two ways to know if you’ve nailed the turn – the first is if you’re done steering before you hit the bridge. If you’re going through the bridge at an angle and you’re pretty much completely off the rudder already, you nailed it. The other visual cue is if your port side’s blades miss the abutment by a foot or less. I’ve talked about this before but for me personally, I know that when I have the momentary feeling of “oh shit I’m gonna hit the bridge”, that’s how I know we’re right where we need to be.

Related: Weeks, Lowell House, and “the turning tree”

The last part of managing the turn is thinking ahead to Anderson, which you should be doing before you even enter Weeks. Coming out of the turn, provided you started it early enough and are done steering before you go through the bridge, you want to be pointed straight ahead at the outside abutment of Anderson Bridge (the one between the Boston arch that contains the traveling lane and the center racing arch).

Related: Steering through the bridges

A lot of coxswains, particularly those who are racing at HOCR for the first time, have a tendency to wait too long to start their turns which then throws them super wide coming through Weeks, which then means they’ve gotta do an S-curve to get back into position to be lined up for Anderson. You can save yourself a lot of stress and steering by thinking a bridge or two ahead so that you’ve got plenty of time to get set up and make adjustments to your course if necessary if there’s other crews in your way.

Video of the Week: That time a boat sank at HOCR

Legend has it that the coxswain of this eight (from a university in China) got held up at customs and wasn’t allowed into the United States. None of the rowers spoke English which meant not only did they have to find a coxswain, they had to find one that spoke Mandarin. Luckily they found someone at MIT who spoke Mandarin and could cox but they later found out (too late, of course) that she and the rowers spoke different dialects of Mandarin which meant they could barely understand each other. This proved particularly problematic when they collided with another boat and eventually sank two miles later. It also produced what is probably one of the greatest photos of a coxswain ever. Good luck this weekend!

Taking the Weeks turn with the Carl Douglas “AeRowFin”

I posted a clip of this on the team’s Instagram earlier but wanted to share the full video to highlight the new fin on our Empacher. If you’ve emailed me at any point in the last four years about not being able to take tight turns with your normal Resolute or Empacher fins, have your coach check out the Carl Douglas “AeRowFin”.

Not to take away from Riker’s steering here because he did a great job but compared to what Weeks looks like with the normal Empacher rudder, this was so much tighter and smoother. Before, even with the rudder all the way over and one side powered down, the turn would take longer and you could still end up on the opposite side of the river which was obviously super frustrating for both the coxswains and the coaches. This Carl Douglas fin though is magical. Definitely recommend checking it out.

Related: HOCR: Weeks, Lowell House, and “The Turning Tree”

Some context for the video – we were doing 3′-2′-1′ steady state at 18-20-24spm through the Powerhouse and then built to 30spm at full pressure for 20ish strokes through the bridge.

Also, special shout out to the Radcliffe coach in the launch at the end. 👍🏽

HOCR: Weeks, Lowell House, and “The Turning Tree”

Previously: Getting to the starting line || Steering through the bridges || Landmarks along the course || Steering around the turns || Race plans || My general race plan || Yaz Farooq’s coxswain clinic || Race plan “hacks” || The course in meters

You can’t talk about Weeks without talking about the Powerhouse Stretch or Lowell House because how you’re positioned relative to both will have a pretty big impact on how efficient your turn through the bridge is.

Related: HOCR: Steering around the turns

If you’re unfamiliar with Harvard’s campus, Lowell House is an undergrad dorm that is frequently used as an HOCR landmark due it’s tall steeple and bright blue dome that stands out above the tree line along the Cambridge shore. When someone says “point at the blue dome”, this is what they’re talking about. In the picture below they are just to the right of center.

As you come up the Powerhouse Stretch, ideally you’ll be coming through the center arches of the River St. and Western Ave. bridges. You can use the Cambridge arches (the ones on the far right) but the center arches are “standard procedure”. Going through the Powerhouse your point is going to be on the center of the center arches (again, ideally) but as you come out of Western the next big landmark you should be aiming for is Lowell. (There is a “mini”-landmark that you can check yourself on immediately out of the bridge and that’s your position relative to the buoy line – you want to be pointed at the outermost buoy as it begins to turn around Weeks. This should take half a second to spot-check before you shift your focus to Lowell.) If you’re in a good spot then you won’t really need to adjust your point much but if you come out pointing at something else (the bridge, the Cambridge shore, etc.) you’ll have to do a little steering to set yourself up for Weeks.

As you get closer to the bridge you’ll start to see the dome disappear behind the horizon. This is normal and is supposed to happen. Too many coxswains freak out because they lose sight of Lowell, which I don’t really get because … what else did you think was going to happen? As it goes behind the trees, your focus should shift to “the turning tree”. If you go to Yaz’s clinic then you’ll probably hear her talk about this.

Related: Yaz Farooq’s HOCR Clinic

The turning tree is in the photo up above (in the center of the picture on the very far right hand side), although because the leaves haven’t changed yet it still blends in with the shoreline. Usually by HOCR it’s the only tree along that whole stretch of shore that has changed colors (usually to a bright yellow) so it’s pretty easily identifiable. It’s not hard to pick out regardless of what color it is though just because it sticks out over the water a bit, as you can see in the picture.

As you’re rowing towards Lowell you want to stay straight until you get even with the tree and then begin your turn to port to go through Weeks. Some coxswains go when their bow is even with the tree, some go when they are even the tree. I’ve personally found my turns to be more effective when I wait until I’m even with the tree but I think a large part of that has to do with how well your boat responds to the rudder. The start of the turn is pretty easy (AKA it should all be done on the rudder) so you shouldn’t be using pressure from the rowers quite yet but if you wait too long to turn (like until you’re past the tree) then you’ll need to use a lot more pressure from your starboard side to get you through cleanly.

Below is some video I took during practice last week of our two coxswains going around the turn during our most recent “5k Friday” piece. Both did a pretty good job steering through here so this should give you a good idea of how the turn should look.

Coxswain Recordings, pt. 18

Part 1 || Part 2 || Part 3 || Part 4 || Part 5 || Part 6 || Part 7 || Part 8 || Part 9 || Part 10 || Part 11 || Part 12 || Part 13 || Part 14 || Part 15 || Part 16 || Part 17

Here’s some HOCR recordings for you guys to listen to as you finish prepping for this weekend.

University of Wisconsin Champ 8+ 2013
That audio is slightly out of sync with the strokes so just FYI…don’t let that throw you off as you’re watching.

Right off the bat, I like how she calls the pressure up and perfectly times “half, three-quarter, full pressure, you’re on” with when their bow crosses the starting line. Something that caught my eye too that I wish she would have made a call for what 6-seat coming out early every stroke. Make sure you don’t get so focused on executing your race plan that you forget to check the blades and make little reminder calls when necessary. Obviously this is harder (verging on impossible) to do in a four but in an eight there’s no excuse.

2:16, “we’re right on the buoy line, starboard side…” This is something I talked about with all of our coxswains when we went through their evaluations last week. Use your steering as quick little bursts of motivation for the rowers. If you’ve got a good line, your riding the buoy line, etc. tell them. Let them know that you’re nailing the course right now so let’s capitalize on that and focus on XYZ. If they know you’re taking care of your responsibilities as far as steering a good course goes, that’s one less thing they have to worry about and more focus they can give to just rowing their asses off. If I’ve learned anything from my own coxing experience and coaching coxswains for the last two and a half years, few things matter more to rowers than their coxswain’s ability to steer a good course. If you’re doing that, don’t be afraid to say so and use that to keep your rowers engaged and on their game.

2:27, “we’ve got a 1:58, we’re gonna push it to a 1:55…” If you’ve got a SpeedCoach with you this is a great way to work the splits into your calls.

Throughout the rest of this section here before Magazine Beach she does an awesome job of telling her crew where they are on the other crew (“we’re walking”, “two lengths of open behind and closing”, etc.) and how they’re doing (“right on rate”, etc.). Keep an eye on her course throughout the whole race too – she nails it.

If you notice them starting to row it in a bit, just make a quick call like she did around 6:57ish (“blades in on this one, GO“) to sharpen things back up. Don’t waste 5-7 strokes by calling for 5 to get the blades in or something like that when you can sharpen it up on this one, particularly if you’re an experienced crew. If you’re a high school crew then go ahead and take a couple strokes to get that focus and sharpness back but college crews … you guys can get that on one stroke. I also liked her call at 7:12ish – “hold your fucking blades in now” or something like that. A coxswain after my own heart… 😉

At 7:31 she tells them that whoever is in front of them is “moving away” and she follows up with “…and we’re responding right now“. THAT is how you get your crew going. Telling them another crew is walking away from them isn’t a bad thing – you should do that – but THIS is how you follow it up so you can get competitive with that other boat again. She immediately calls for a five for something (I couldn’t hear what) and then finishes it off with “1:49, that’s what I’m talking about!”. Perfect perfect perfect.

Her line coming into Weeks is gooorrrgeousss. I also like how she preps her starboard side (“alright starboards, get ready…”) and then counts it down (“here we go…that’s 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…on this one“) before bringing it around. She started her turn about three strokes too early, which is why she said she needed “even” for a couple but it didn’t hurt them at all – the overall execution and calls to the starboard side throughout the turn were pretty much flawless.

18:05, “bigger fucking puddles…” Love it.

College coxswains, this is the A-standard. Hands down one of the best college HOCR races I’ve listened to.

FIT Champ 8+ 2011
I’m fairly sure this is FIT but if it’s not, let me know and I’ll change it.

So this coxswain is a little calmer (initially, at least) than the Wisconsin coxswain but still sharp (so sharp) and intense with her calls. At 2:51 she does a good job of telling her crew that they’re about to pass MIT and she’s moving to the outside. It might seem insignificant but that’s a good thing to tell your crew (see what I said about using your steering as motivation up above), despite her move here being a little early considering they were still behind them through the Powerhouse. Remember though, you don’t have to pass on the outside. If you want the inside line, the coxswain of the crew you’re passing has to give it up.

7:14, “it’s time to go through them…” I like this call to let them know you’re both sitting on each other and it’s time for us to make a move.

7:56, “I’m taking Weeks Bride before them…” If my coxswain said that to me while I’m rowing as confidently as this coxswain did I’d be thinking “fuck yea you are…” and then I’d be laying into that drive to help her out.

Coming through the turn, the angle definitely could have been sharper and that’s mostly on the ports to help the starboards out there by backing off so they can bring it around while the coxswain is on the rudder. Ports. I beg of you. When your coxswain says “ease off”, “back off”, etc. DO IT.

At 15:55, I like how she called the shift – the build into was calm and then the call for “we’re going for it” was a great way to start the final stretch. I also liked the “now we move” call a little bit later.

Well coxed, well steered.

Middlebury College Collegiate 8+ 2013
So the start was a little slopping in terms of telling them when to build, where they’re at on the build, etc. I also feel like I would have been confused as a rower because they did two builds…one way before the start and right right before the start. Their stroke rate was a little wonky too. I think the build was supposed to be to a 33 but they were at a 31 and then did a “build” under the bridge to get to a 33…but then a few strokes later she said “32, good…”. It was just kinda all over the place and not as “on point” as it should have been.

So through the first two and a half minutes I’m already tuning out because all I’m hearing is the coxswain embracing her inner cheerleader and making a lot of “you can do it!”, “let’s go!”, “show them what you’ve got!”, “here we go!”, etc. calls. There’s also a lot of “build in two” calls to get the rate back up to a 33 because it keeps falling down to a 31.

The turn at Weeks could have been sharper – she had room – but she started it about three strokes to late. If you wait until you’re under the bridge to tell your starboards to power it up, you’re going to end up taking the turn really wide and then having to snake back over to get a good line through Anderson (which ultimately adds unnecessary seconds and meters to your course).

9:45, when she says “don’t let them walk” … I mean, it’s going to happen. It is happening. Accept it and focus on rowing well, maintaining your rhythm, holding a solid line, etc. Stop talking so much about the other boat and focus on your own.

15:20, there’s definitely not under 500m to go (from the Belmont dock to the finish line). It’s more like a little over 800m. Also, that is not what half a length of open looks like. A length and a half maybe but not half a length.

16:28, “under 500m to go…” You said that a minute and 300ish meters ago.

So yea. This one wasn’t the best coxed and wasn’t the best steered. Overall I’d say it was mediocre. Of all the races you go to in the fall, HOCR is not the one you want to be a cheerleader at (unless you’re on land, in which case … cheer away). Have a plan, know you’re plan, and try not to make the same calls over and over throughout the race. Don’t spend so much time focusing on other crews either. Your head has to be on a swivel, obviously, but at the same time you’ve also gotta keep your head (and focus) in your own boat.

PNRA Senior Women’s Masters 8+ 2013
This is a pretty good example of how to cox masters crews. If I didn’t know this was a senior masters women’s 8+ I probably would have assumed it was a youth or club eight.

3:45, I like this “power train” thing they do where the coxswain calls a ten for each pair. It’s pretty much the same thing that the Marist coxswain did in the first recording from this post (scroll down to 5:15). How she draws out her numbers kinda annoys me a little but that’s more of a personal thing than anything else. Some people don’t mind it, others hate it. (I don’t like it as a coxswain because I feel like it translates to sloppy/soft catches.) Alternatively, you could do 3 or 5 strokes if ten seems too long.

10:27, when she’s telling Style Driven to yield it sounds like they’re not yielding so her telling her bowman (I assume it was bow…) to tell them to move is a good call on her part. Make sure you talk to your bow beforehand so they know you might ask them to do that and let them know that all they have to do is yell over at them “[Team name], yield!!”. Saying “yield or you’ll get a penalty” like this coxswain did can also be pretty effective since it’s like a 30 60 second penalty for not yielding to the faster crew.

At 11:39 when she tells them she’s going to make a tight turn she does the smart thing by telling her starboards to be prepared to lift their handles up to counterbalance the boat (since it will naturally tip the side she’s steering to, which is port). I definitely recommend doing this so that the boat stays stable throughout the turns.

Resilient Rowing Youth 8+ 2013
This is just a short clip of one of the men’s youth eights from last year. I’m mainly sharing it because none of the other videos showed a crash and the whole point of HOCR is to see which youth eight is going to have the best crash. (That is the point of the regatta … right?)

At 2:04 when he says “I can’t get through, coxswain, yield…” I guarantee you that no one past his like, 4-seat heard that. If you want another crew to yield you need to yell and yell loud. Don’t assume that just because you’re talking to a (relatively small) mic that anyone outside your boat can here you. I honestly think that if he’d just stayed directly behind Duxbury and then had the starboards hit it hard they would have been fine and not collided but youth eights = inexperience so there’s not much you can do. The “fuck you Duxbury” comment though from one of the rowers was pretty unnecessary and definitely would have earned a penalty if an official had heard it.

HOCR: The course in meters

Previously: Getting to the starting line || Steering through the bridges || Landmarks along the course || Steering around the turns || Race plans || My general race plan || Yaz Farooq’s coxswain clinic || Race plan “hacks”

Over the last week I’ve gotten a few questions about whether anything exists that tells the distance that each of the landmarks are from the starting line or from one another and since I wasn’t aware of anything and those of you that asked weren’t able to find anything, I figured I’d just make something.

Related: HOCR: Landmarks along the course

I used RowDistance, a site made by Andrew Campbell, so the numbers aren’t exact but they should be fairly close. You could also do this using Google Earth. I did this three different times and where I found the biggest discrepancy in meters is from the start of the Eliot turn all the way to the finish. My numbers were about 100m different from each other depending on how I laid out that part of the course, which just goes to show how much things can vary depending on what line you set yourself up for.

I also rounded everything up to the nearest -00 or -50 just for the sake of simplicity (although during the race I’d probably just round up to the next closest 100m because otherwise it becomes way too much effort). The first row is the only one that you should ideally know, the rest are just there because I figured “why not…”.

You can either click to enlarge the image above or check out this spreadsheet to see everything.

Coxswain Recordings, pt. 17

Part 1 || Part 2 || Part 3 || Part 4 || Part 5 || Part 6 || Part 7 || Part 8 || Part 9 || Part 10 || Part 11 || Part 12 || Part 13 || Part 14 || Part 15 || Part 16

Here are a couple of head race recordings from Head of the Ohio, Head of the Rock, Head of the South, Head of the Fish, and a quick clip from Head of the Charles. Fair warning, none of them are spectacular “OMG you have to listen to these” kinds of recordings, rather they’re just your average run of the mill ones that I’m posting simply to give you guys more options of things to listen to. I’ll be honest, I didn’t listen the entire 15-20 minutes of each one because after listening to so many recordings they all start to blend together and what I could say about each recording is what I’ve probably said about five others already. For better or worse, the standard for what actually grabs and holds my attention has significantly gone up over the last two years. Plus, the majority of head races are really, really boring no matter who you are or what race you’re coxing.

Head of the Ohio Coxswain Recording 2013
Something that I’ve talked about before and talk about a lot with the coxswains I’m coaching is knowing when to call things in three, in two, “on this one”, etc. At 1:47 where she wants to increase the pressure she calls for them to do it “in two”. Now granted, during a head race you’ve got plenty of room to execute your moves and you don’t have to worry quite so much about running out of space like you do during a 2k but some things, like calling for an increase in pressure, don’t need that “prep period” that those two strokes give you. Instead it should be an immediate thing where the coxswain says “let’s bump up the pressure, getting it with the legs…on this one…leeeegs BOOM…leeeegs BOOM” … or something like that.

Most if not all of you know this but just a reminder – make sure you’re giving your crews regular updates as to your position on other crews (especially if you’re making a lot of calls about pushing them back, walking away, etc.), how far into the race you are (either distance-wise, if you know and/or time-wise since you have a timer on your cox box that you should have started at the beginning of the piece), etc. We just did evaluations with our coxswains last week and this was one of the most commonly made “requests” by the rowers so just keep in mind that little things like this are important for them to hear throughout the race and it requires absolutely no effort on your part to give them that.

Clips from practice on the Potomac, Head of Occoquan, and Head of the Charles
The first minute or so is from this boat’s practice (pretty standard overall but listen to how he calls for the settle at 0:42…) so skip ahead to the 2:00ish mark to hear the clip from HOCR.

I like what he says at 2:22… “Our bow deck is on 71’s stern deck, let’s go. 70’s gone, time to make the next move. You don’t pass one boat then stop, you keep pressing…”. That’s a great call to make after you pass a crew, particularly if you’re close to the next crew in front of you. Another call that I really like (from Pete Cipollone’s recording) that would work well in this context too is “do not sit, do not quit”.

The call at 2:43 is what I’m officially referring to from now on as “the Chelsea Lucas bowball call”. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, check out this post and listen to her recording.

2:48, “bowball on the Charles, nothin’ better, let’s go baby, enjoy it…” This is a motivational call. This will get your crew fired up and ready to shift into that next gear. Not every motivational call is “yea guys you can do it woooo”, sometimes it’s as simple as pointing out that you’re passing crews at Head of the Charles because dammit, that is cool and that should motivate you.

Head of the Rock V4+ (2013)
So this wasn’t something I ever considered doing before but I really like how she calls half, three-quarter, and full pressure during the build. It’s just another way to get everyone to bring up the rate and pressure together instead of some people going from zero to full pressure right away and others building the pressure over the course of the three strokes while you’re also building the rate. I’ve had that happen to me before and it always messes with my point for a stroke or two. You know how during racing starts when you call “half, half, three-quarter, full” with relation to the slides? I’d probably call the build like that except the half, three-quarter, etc. would be the pressure and in between I’d say the stroke rates … i.e. “half 24, half 27, three-quarter 29, full 32, we’re on…”.

1:22, just gonna throw it out there that I have doubts that you closed the gap on another crew (that’s four lengths ahead of you) by one full boat length over the course of five strokes. Just a hunch.

“Catch and hang” seems to be a fairly regular call for this coxswain and, in theory, it’s a decent call (because you want the rowers to feel that hang on the first part of the drive) but where it falls short is by the time you say “hang” that part of the stroke is over and you’re making that part of the call closer to the finish than the catch where the hang actually happens. A better way to call this would be eliminate the “catch and” part of the call and instead say something like “haaang send…haaang send“, that way you’re actually saying it when it should be happening and for the entire duration of it rather than back near the finish as the arms complete the stroke. (Does that make sense?)

I liked the end of this piece from the sprint to the end. Her intensity is great, she does a great job of telling them where they are on the crews around them, and she also does a good job of calling for each girl to go after her seat on the other boats.

Same with the first recording, this one is pretty average but still a decent example of a high school race. One thing in particular that I want to remind you guys of is that you’ve got to make sure you’re varying your calls. “Catch and hang”, “jump off the foot stretchers”, etc. all lost their meaning to me pretty quickly with this piece because they seemed to be the only calls the coxswain was making. I know that it can be hard to think of things to say in the moment but that’s why I constantly tell you to make sure you  have a race plan. You should also be planning some of your calls ahead of time so you can incorporate them into practice, find out what does/doesn’t work, and get used to saying them so that on race day they come naturally and you don’t fall into that endless loop of stale, recycled calls. Obviously there are basic filler calls that you’re going to repeat and that’s fine but those can’t be your only calls.

UGA Rowing Men’s Novice 8A Head of the South 2013
This is a novice race so obviously there are a lot of things that I could point out because, well, #noviceproblems but the main reason I’m sharing it is to point out what happens at 2:45. I’ve talked about what to do when someone catches a crab but not about when they lose their seat. First off, what causes this to happen (in most cases) is the rower driving with uneven foot pressure, meaning one foot is pushing off harder than the other which causes your hips to rotate slightly. This causes the seat to then twist a little and if there’s enough force, to pop off the tracks and/or get stuck. If that happens, that rower (obviously) and their pair partner should drop out (this allows the coxswain to avoid having to steer a lot to counter the extra rower on one side) and everyone else should just keep going like nothing’s wrong. If your stern pair goes out then the coxswain should make a quick call to the 6-seat to maintain the pace/rhythm, etc. since they’re stroking now.

3:17 – 3:24, no. Six novices are going to have a hard time rowing with the pressure of eight people, particularly when their rowing isn’t that great anyways, so saying “I need pressure”, “you’ve gotta make up for eight people”, and “I know it hurts” are all useless calls to make. Instead, take a big 10 for legs and power on the drive and get really into it when you call it. Don’t sit there and and say “I know it hurts” because let’s be honest, you don’t really, and that you need pressure like it’s somehow the other six people’s fault that there was a noticeable drop in pressure when two people suddenly stopped rowing. Keep coxing them like you would if you still had all eight people rowing and don’t say things like “you’re actually gaining on another boat”. Even if that’s actually happening, don’t act surprised by it. Say things like “yea bow six, we’re walking on [whoever you’re walking on], that’s how you power through…” and other things along those lines so that they know that you know they’re working their asses off to keep the boat moving. If you’re actually walking on another crew, take a 10 or 20 and cox your crew through the other boat like you would in any other race while giving them extra shots of motivation and letting them know that they’re killing it by rowing through a crew while going by sixes. That can be a huge confidence boost for them so run with the opportunity.

Also, I know getting a seat back on in the middle of the race isn’t the easiest task but maybe don’t flail around like a fish on land while doing it. That doesn’t make things any easier for the six guys behind you. This coxswain did a (relatively) good job of getting them back into it once the stroke got his seat back in by having them join in “in two” so if there’s one positive to take away from this, it was that. I was prepared to be horrified if they tried to join in mid-stroke or something. Right after they add back in though you’ve really got to get on them and take an all out, balls to the wall 20 to get back into it. Forget about walking on other crews, forget trying to “gain some c-raaazy ground”, forget about everything else – this is for you guys to regain your focus, reestablish your rhythm, and get yourselves back into a competitive mindset. In the immortal words of T-Swift, “shake it off”.

Burnt Hills Rowing Head of the Fish 2012
I haven’t raced at Head of the Fish but … is it really as straight and boring as it looks?

The only thing there really is to comment on with this recording is the coxswain’s voice throughout the race. For what looks to be a dull-as-hell race, I think his tone/volume was fine given the fact that they were completely alone for the entire thing. If he coxed another race where there are crews all around and the atmosphere is just more intense overall and coxed like this, then I’d say he needs to do something different but for what this was he did fine. At the beginning he reminded me a bit of an auctioneer with how fast he was talking and spitting out numbers but that leveled out as they got into the race and wasn’t really an issue.