The Marionette

Row starts spring season strong

Isis Frazier, Reporter

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The OKC Riversport crew team traveled to Austin, Texas this past weekend to compete in their first race of the spring season at the Heart of Texas.

At the Heart of Texas, the rowers compete in a 1000m dash alongside competition that mostly consists of Texas teams.

The Harding students that competed were juniors Drew Servan and Aaron Van Horn. Senior Matt Gutierrez also competed as a coxswain.

In the first heat of the Men’s JV 4x race, Van Horn placed 2nd with a time of 3:21:00.  Servan rowed in the Men’s JV 4+ where he placed 1st, pushing past the finish line with a time of 3:24:09. The results of the regatta can be viewed here.

Altogether, Serven, Van Horn and Gutierrez are coached under Peter Brevick — a past rowing alumni of Washington State University.

During the winter, the rowers do a lot of land workouts and indoor workouts, such as erging and cardio to build endurance for spring. Because of intense workouts, the team was ready for the first spring race of the season.

“A lot of crews don’t work out a lot over the winter so what we did as a team was workout more than what we normally have over the winter. So during winter break, we were still going down to the boathouse, working out a lot more so that kind of helped our spring season and it got us started off a little earlier,” Gutierrez said.

The team is definitely happy about the results of the race.

In the past years, the races have not played out as they were wanted but this year, the team won by greater margins.

“We were ahead of most of the crews by a pretty good distance which we haven’t seen in a few years so that was nice for the entire team to start the season from there,” Gutierrez said.

Focus is a key element while racing.

“When racing, every thought is about the race,” Servan said. “You have to keep as perfect technique as possible, listen to the coxswain and also think that the crazy pain is worth it in order to win.

As the coxswain, Gutierrez’s plays the role of a coach inside the boat as he motivates the rowers as well as steers the boat.

“If I’m on my best it helps them think less so they can be right on what they need to do for their job. My job is to make their life easier so when I’m coxing, I’m trying to make their lives easier,” Gutierrez said.

Coach Brevick puts the race in the hands of the rowers.

“He doesn’t motivate us a ton. He already knows that we have the motivation we need so he really tries to just tell us to race our own race and not worry about other things and just stay as a team and do it together,” Gutierrez said.

Back at the boathouse, Brevick sets up the practices and workouts along with other coaches to ensure improvements in performance.

“The coaches always work with us to fix or polish technique. They set up the practices and the workouts so we always have to trust that they are having us do the right things so we can get faster,” Servan said.

Servan considers drive to be a great part of what makes for a successful race.

“If you’re behind, you have to push deeper into the well to get ahead,” Servan said. “If you’re ahead, you do the same to get farther ahead. Never let up.”

The team will be traveling to San Diego, CA. next weekend for the upcoming regatta.

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Row starts spring season strong