Penn AC’s Erick Winstead is racing in the US Men’s 8 at the Pan Am Games in St. Catherine’s, Canada this week. Everyone at Penn AC wishes you well Erick! Here is Erick’s blog:
7/11/2015 – It’s the night before my first race here at Pan-Ams in St. Catherine’s, Ontario. I race in the 8+ tomorrow at 11:00 am. There is only one Heat with all boats advancing to the Final. Lane 1 – Canada, Lane 2 – Cuba, Lane 3 – Argentina, Lane 4 – USA, Lane 5 – Brazil. The Heat will determine lanes for Wednesday’s Final at 10:35 am.
Today was the first official day of racing with the US turning in some great results. You can view the results here: http://results.toronto2015.org/IRS/en/rowing/schedule-and-results.htm
Leading up to today, all energy has been devoted to preparation. We arrived in Toronto around 2:00pm on Tuesday, July 7. We went through team processing at a hotel near the airport and boarded the bus to St. Catherine’s around 5:00pm. It was a rainy 80 minute drive to the satellite athlete village at Brock University. The first thing you notice once arriving in the village is how tight security is. There are Police and Security guards at every turn within the village.
Most of us from the US, and obviously Canada, are very used to the course because we’ve all raced Canadian Henley multiple times. But it’s a bit of a different atmosphere with the added security, cameras, country tents, etc. Prior to today, most US crews got out to practice twice a day in their respective boats.
The Opening Ceremony happened in Toronto last night, but because racing commenced this morning, most rowers did not partake. Instead we had a viewing party in the dining hall at Brock U and it was very cool to watch.
Finally, after eagerly waiting, it’s time to race!