Rowing opens season


John Freitag

The WSU crew team launches a four during an afternoon practice on the Snake River, Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013.

With the National Championships coming up, Washington State University women’s rowing will travel to Priest River, Idaho to begin their 2013-14 season at the Head of the Pend Oreille Regatta Saturday.

The Pend Oreille is a unique race and a good event for the community, Rowing Coach Jane LaRiviere said.

“First of all, in order to raise awareness of rowing in the community,” LaRiviere said, “they have a really beautiful barbeque that the community puts on for us and the competitors.”

After the barbeque, there will be a row-by at 5:30 p.m. for an up-close rowing observation of the team.

“Prior to that, the teams will row down in front of the Priest River Yacht Club, sing their respective fight songs and then row back for dinner,” she said. “The whole town seems to come out.”

The first step toward the Championship begins Saturday. The WSU boats will compete in a 5-km race open for all classes of rowers. The competition is a timed-trial competition where the boats race against the clock.

At the Regatta, the women’s rowing team will compete against crews from Gonzaga University, Coeur d’ Alene High School, Coeur d’ Alene Rowing Club, Palouse Rowing Club, Spokane River Rowing Association, and Nelson Rowing Club.

Beginning her 12th year as head coach, LaRiviere said the team is ready and excited to play out of town.

“The team has been training hard, and I think everyone is excited to change the venue and get on a bus to go race somewhere,” she said.

The Regatta will begin at 10 a.m. and will consist of sweep and sculling style rowing.