Race weekend (as a spectator) and 20 strokes on/20 off


On Saturday evening I watched “my” eight win the Masters B title at the Primatorky race. They copied the successful recipe of a year ago. For 750m they rowed in second position, took the lead under the railway bridge, and won by 0.36 seconds.

My name was announced when they collected their medals. I laughed at my replacement apologizingly. Apparently my name wasn’t replaced correctly in the program. To be clear, I was watching the race from the shore, first half on the big screen, then live. Beer in hand.

On Sunday, the main program was on. This is really a prestigious race, but since 1979 it has been won by only one club: Dukla. The reason is simple. The Dukla club is the main training center for the top athletes, and most of the national selection is training there.

Our club has won in 1940, exactly 75 years ago.

This year, we had a chance. On Saturday, we won the semifinals by 2 boat lengths, and Dukla has respect for us.

One could argue that there must be something wrong with the selection to the national team, when a club eight that has trained together for a week, can challenge the Dukla guys. To be honest, we have 2 the national lightweight pair rowing for us, and we have a couple of talented U23 rowers.

First, the Juniors. An eight with three rowers from our club won by 3 boat lengths. Great.

Then the main event. We were watching this anxiously on the big screens. Our guys were slow out of the start, rowing in third position, but about half way they mastered “the turn” very well and with 1000m to go they were half a length behind Dukla.

Unfortunately Dukla managed to keep this lead for 600m, so when they finally turned up under the railway bridge I knew we would be second. It is very hard to take over the lead in the waves in front of the fans.

So CVK Brno came second. Still a fantastic result for a club which has barely 100 rowers.


Today’s training was the familiar 20 strokes “on”, 20 strokes “off”. The session that was fatal two weeks ago. Again I was rowing against the double. Again the water wasn’t calm.

But this time I wasn’t rowing with the side camera, and the lake was slightly calmer.

It’s hard to get any statistics from this workout. I saw some 1:45 paces in the tailwind section. Rowed the tailwind set at 30-31spm, the headwind set at 32-34spm. Trying to get “swing” and keep the stroke rate high but “effortless”. Hard to explain. I think I succeeded pretty well.


chart (14)


I have also uploaded again the first video from last Thursday. Here it is: