Mercer Race Report
End of another season of SR races. Kevin reminded me to go to the SR annual meeting. which I never go to. But should.
Parking is such a bugger for this race I showed up at 7:50 and got the last spot in the nearest lot. Had to roll out at 5am to do it and I think lost a whole bunch of brain neurons in the process. Of course Duncan rolled in last minute and snagged a great spot by pure outrageous luck. Not only that I think he scored a ribbon in short course HPK. But must be present to win and he had bailed out early to go shopping for some new leather bedroom underwear. I know there was some heavy action in short course. At least one dragon boat and several SUPs. They had a harsh pounding against the wind for half, then due to lake geography didn't get good rollers coming back. Pretty hefty turnout for both long and short course. Lots of rowers and lots of OC boats. Not so many HPKs.
Conditions were lumpy with steady south wind. It was not big like last year. So naturally I did my WBMAC thing (Whining, Bitching, Moaning And Complaining). Maybe I was getting my excuses aired out early. Just can't seem to keep a sock in it. So we did the Big Mass start. Thought I was going to get eaten by a couple of dragon boats, but I pulled ahead of them. I had a good line where I was picking my way along the lee shore until I had to cross to Mercer. That's where Tony climbed over me in that stretch. I could see Tracy L. up ahead giving a clinic to a two seat rower. Way off in the distance I could see paddle splash from Greg B, Nicholas C. and Kevin. Tracy was flying the new Epic V-11 and it looked like magic for her body type and those water conditions. So Tony gapped me even more going around the rebound South side of Mercer. He stayed ahead as I tried to get something out of the short chop going north. I couldn't make it work for me and in fact a strong OC-1 guy flew by on the rides I could not get. Dang. So I settled in for that long pull across the north side chasing my fantasy way far ahead.
Kinda weird but the wind was blowing us back West across the top of Mercer so we were cruising pretty well. I could hear a dragon boat behind calling cadence and it made me pull a little harder. Soon we could see the last bridge and feel the south wind in our faces so the work got harder. I noticed the OC-1 guy push hard to get into the lee of the bridge, while Tony was staying direct line. This put Tony against the teeth of the wind and sure enough he began to sag. Just in the last mile I caught Tony. So of course I chatted with him calmly - the way David always does. I know that freaks me out when David does that, so what the heck. By golly it worked. Tony caved so then I started trying to reel in the OC-1. We had a heart attack finish, but I could not get past him.
That's my story. I guess Greg took down the four seat rower. They claim that he drafted then end-sprinted them. It was really cool to see so many OC boats and dragon boats. Not so cool to get schooled by one, but still worth it. Great looking boats, cool guys and gals.
Another great year in the books as they say. Everyone should go to the annual SR meeting.