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GRP athletes Wes Vear, Jen Forbes, and Jenny McIlvane finding inspiration in Saratoga Springs, NY

Sculling Fall Speed Order Results and upcoming VO2 Max testing

Last Updated: 06.Nov.2017

This past weekend, the GRP sculling team wrapped up their fall season with a two-day Fall Speed Order in Saratoga Springs, NY. Typically, the East Coast Fall Speed Order is held in Princeton, NJ at the National Team Training Center; however, due to the unusually late occurrence of the 2017 Senior World Rowing Championships, which took place in September, USRowing did not host an official Fall Speed Order. 

The coaches and athletes of USRA’s Training Center Partner organizations took initiative to meet the desire for an on-the-water, final test of speed in singles. Their collective commitment to supporting the event, and Eric "Cat" Catalano’s  colossal efforts resulted in the execution of a professional and well-organized FSO that would have otherwise not taken place.

45 athletes (20 openweight men, 6 lightweight men, 1 male para rower, 11 openweight women, and 6 lightweight women) performed a 6000 meter ergometer test on Saturday November 4, 2017. Each athlete’s 6k time determined their starting order for Sunday’s ~3100 meter head race on Fish Creek. 

Coach Steve Whelpley and GRP athletes Jen Forbes, Nathan Lado, Jenny McIlvane, and Wes Vear departed the COC late Friday morning heading west for Burlington, VT to pick up former GRPer and current SoCal Sculler, Maggie Fellows. The athletes practiced on the race course in preparation for Sunday's head race, and settled into their respective sleeping arrangements later in the evening.

Thanks to the generosity of the Roberts Family, GRP athletes received food and housing accommodations Friday through Sunday. Cat took additional steps to ensure that any non-resident athlete that needed housing assistance  for Friday and Saturday were adequately placed. 

GRPers were split among three erg flights on Saturday. Lado raced in the first flight, and had the 12th fastest time of the day. Forbes and McIlvane raced the second flight of the morning, taking the 3rd and 14th place of both the open and lightweight women's categories, respectively. Vear raced in the third flight, and paced the 4th fastest erg score of the day. 

Coaches assigned bow letters (versus bow numbers) to athletes; and, Sunday’s starting order for the men’s open single category had Vear (bow D) starting 4th and Lado (bow L) starting 12th. In the open women’s category Forbes (bow CC) started 3rd. McIlvane (bow NN) started 3rd in the lightweight women’s category. 

Across the board, GRP appeared in the top half of the field for Sunday’s Head racing. Lado (12:15.3) and Vear (12:15.5) finished 3rd and 4th, respectively, behind PennAC’s Adam Randall (12:11.7), and Unaffiliated Thomas Phifer (12:03.3). Forbes (13:19.0) finished 3rd behind SoCal’s Maggie Fellows (13:16.7), and ARION’s Kara Soucek (13:04.0). McIlvane (13:45.6) finished 2nd behind GMS’ Michaela Copenhaver (13:31.0). 

The impromptu speed order was a useful utilization of time and resources; and, the GRP squad is grateful for the high-level of cooperation and organization set forth by the athletes and coaches that participated this weekend. 


As always, thank you to JLRacing, Concept2, and the hard-working staff at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center for supporting the Green Racing Project.

While the GRP Scullers have no more races for 2017, they will spend this week preparing for their VO2 Max 2k test that is scheduled for this weekend with Head GRP Ski Coach, Pepa Miloucheva.




Article contributor: Jenifer Forbes