SANTA CLARA, Calif. - While Santa Clara men's crew is still three weeks away from racing, the Broncos are gearing up for competition during their early morning training sessions at Lexington Reservoir. Crew is a demanding sport that involves not just the arms that row, but the legs that drive the boat and the rowers must get every muscle ready for a short race.
"Rowing is unlike any other sport out there," said senior varsity rower Daniel Calvillo '12. "We are constantly building up our maximum output for one five and a half to six minute race. Most people think that rowers use only their upper body during rowing when actually it accounts for very little of the power. What drives the boat is a rowers legs. In a sense it is like doing squats as fast as you can and by the end of a race or a workout, the legs are dead."
The Broncos are hoping that the hard work pays off and that they can meet the team goals they have set during the preseason. So far the results have been showing up in training and everyone is excited about the season starting on Mar. 3 at the UC Davis Invitational.
"Our goals in the weeks leading up to our races are to get in the best physical shape possible and execute the best technique on the water," continued Calvillo. "This year has been very demanding both on and off the water but it has made us stronger. Seeing this progress makes head coach Wieslaw Kujda and I very excited about how we will perform during our racing season."
Joining Calvillo are fellow seniors Abe Checkoway'12, Brent Michael Harvey Jr. '12 and Andrew Norell '12. The foursome is showing the 11 sophomores on the roster what it takes to row at the collegiate level. The camaraderie amongst the rowers should help the Broncos leave everything on the water and reach their potential as a team.
"The group of guys that we have this year, like every year, is very special," added Cavillo. "We have a small senior class of four who have all been together since day one and a large sophomore class that is learning what it means to be a varsity rower. Every person on this team is loves rowing but enjoys the guys they row with even more, which is something that is hard to find on all sports teams. I hope that their dedication and hard work will propel us into a winning season."
In early May last season, the Broncos finished 11th overall at the Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association (WIRA) Championships but there was only a 10-second difference between the first and 12th place boat. A major accomplishment, according to Kudja, was that the team was still contending for second place with only 500 yards to go in the Varsity 8 heat. In 2010 Santa Clara won the WCC Championship.
The Broncos schedule includes the Sacramento State Invitational and Stanford Invitational in addition to the UC Davis Invitational. The WIRA Championships will be Apr. 28 and 29 with the WCC Championships coming May 12 and 13.