an endurance test! Two kilometers, 2000m, a mile-and-a-quarter - anyway you slice it you'll
be exhausted when you're through. There are three basic ways to lay
out a course, depending on the water body and timing capabilities. We
typically have a standing start like the rowing shells, and multi-person boats
have the stamina advantage (depending on the riders, of course).
Several boats racing around a rectangular course, typically defined as the
outside of four buoys arranged in a 100m long by 20m wide lane (see
There's strategy based on starting placement, and during the 10 laps there's
no shortage of jockeying for position, passing on the in or outside, and
tight cornering with a sprint at the end - if you have anything left.
If there is a point on the water that is 1 km away from the starting line, the
boats can race out to a buoy and back to the starting line. Another
option is to stretch the Criterium course and do as many laps as necessary
to complete 2 km.
Straight Run: Just like the name, it
is 2 km running a straight line, very similar to the rowers. The world record for a single rowing scull is
6:35.40 which averages to just over 11mph. Steve Hegg set a record time of
5:48 aboard the "Flying Fish
II" hydrofoil (just under 13 mph), whereas the record for an 8+ (eight man rowing shell) is
5:19.85 or almost 14 mph average.
Fish II" record quoted from the book "Human Powered
Vehicles", 1995 by Abbott, Wilson.
records quoted from
Some events have longer races. For example, the
Sound Rowers have races in the 5 to 7
mile range, with some as long as 26 miles! These races typically include a mix
of pedalers, paddlers and rowers, and take place on lakes, estuaries and open