California State University, Long Beach

A Good Weekend of Racing for the Women’s Team

Friday, 20. November 2015

Photo by Diana Mejia

Photo by Diana Mejia

Written Nov.1

By Ian Simpson

Women’s Head Coach

A good weekend of racing for the women’s team

The varsity squad had two days of racing, 850m sprints on Saturday and 4200m head races on Sunday. The format of the weekend’s races allowed us to try different combinations of rowers to see how they match up together, to gather information to assess what worked well and what we need to improve upon in training. We achieved so much more in these two days than we would have in two weeks of regular practices, where half the practice is conducted in the dark and the students need to rush away afterwards.

The varsity group had four sprint races on Saturday; there were no other women’s varsity teams, so we faced off against our own novice men and novices from the UCLA and USC men’s teams. Various combinations of the women’s eight performed well against the men, proving faster than USC and UCLA (who have been rowing for less than one month) and falling half a length short of the Long Beach men who look to have a strong team developing this year. In each of its four races, the women’s eight made significant improvement in the way they rowed technically and in the way they approached their races.

The varsity group raced the head races on Sunday; again with only men’s teams for competition. Using information from the previous day’s racing, the reshuffled eight had its best race of the weekend, rowing with consistency, long strokes and good rhythm for the entirety of the 4200m time trial.

After the eight we raced two fours and a pair. The pair and one of the fours hot-seated from out of the eight and immediately went back to the start to do the time trial again.

Against their respective world’s best times, the winning four was overall (men’s and women’s combined) the second fastest crew of the day, sandwiched between the two UCLA men’s varsity eights. The women’s eight was 4th overall, the pair 7th and the second four was 9th out of the 18 college boats that participated in the head races.

This was an invaluable weekend for the varsity women. Many lessons were learned, they rowed a lot of races and got in a lot of miles.

In Saturday’s sprints Long Beach had one novice eight competing against novices from Chapman, UC Irvine (3 eights) and Orange Coast College (2 eights). The novices had five races which gave us the opportunity to switch rowers around so that everyone got to race several times. Our novices are a little more advanced in their training than most of the other boats, several of whom were still at the rowing-by-sixes stage. The top OCC boat did race by all eight and was a good match up for the Long Beach crew, with Irvine’s sixes not too far behind. As always, the novice eights racing is sure to be fast and furious in the spring.

The novice women had a great time racing and all of them would have liked to have raced again on Sunday.

Everyone is looking forward to our next race in San Diego

Thank you to the alums who made this weekend of racing possible, and to the friends and relatives who came out to support the team this weekend. We hope to see you all in San Diego in two weeks.

Next up: San Diego Fall Classic, Sunday November 15th.

San Diego Fall Classic Report – Women

Friday, 20. November 2015

(Photo provided by Chloe Volz) Novice four, which included Chloe Volz, Hanna Anderson, Chamille Mendoza and Aimee Ramos, medaled in their race against ASU at San Diego Fall Classic.

(Photo provided by Chloe Volz) Novice four, which included Chloe Volz, Hanna Anderson, Chamille Mendoza, Aimee Ramos and coxswain Sarah Dresser (not pictured), medaled in their race against ASU at San Diego Fall Classic.

By Ian Simpson

Women’s Head Coach

The women competed at last weekend’s San Diego Fall Classic, with two boats in the Open Women’s Eight and one Novice Eight. The entire 1st varsity eight doubled-up into an Open Four, an Open Double-Scull and an Open Pair. Members of the 2V and novice eights also raced in the Novice Four.

The 1V eight recorded a time of 17:36 and finished 8th out of 15 boats, while the 2V which comprised 6 novices (including the cox’n) and 3 varsity rowers, had an interesting experience (20:48) and finished 14th.
The double-scull won its race in a time of 20:38 which was faster than all the masters doubles and all the junior doubles. The pair came 4th out of 5 boats in 21:47.

The varsity four was hit by a boat-stopping wave that deposited several pounds of water in the boat and destroyed the crews chances of having a good result. They recorded 21:11.

The novice four rowed well and won its race in 23:34.

Without doubt this was a weekend of lessons to be learned. It was good to have experience of rowing down the Crew Classic course. The rowers who rowed twice logged a lot of meters that was a challenge to their endurance. Some of the women said they were tired, having driven down from Long Beach at 3am that morning. Next year we should look into cost-effective ways to bring the team down the day before, so they can be rested and prepared to race well.

Full results:

Next up: Newport Chase Head Race hosted by OCC. Saturday November 20.

Daily 49er: LBSU’s Women’s Club Rowing Team Initiative Sparks Faith in Captain

Thursday, 17. September 2015


Photo courtesy of Mark Bledsoe

Miranda Andrade-Ceja, Staff Writer

Rowing a boat is hard when only one person is handling the oars.

Racing for the LBSU women’s team since 2013, club President Ariana Gastelum is ecstatic to see the club team go from having a single new recruit for the 2015 spring semester, to bringing in over 20 novices after weeks of diligent recruiting in the fall.

“They’re awesome, the novices,” Gastelum said. “Our goal is to mentor the novices not only for rowing, but for their lives.”

Unlike other LBSU students who can sleep in, the rowers must wake up at 5:30 a.m. to begin warming up for a long morning’s worth of strenuous practice consisting of full-body exercise, sweat, and team-building.

After finding that she couldn’t attend one of the weekly exercise sessions, new recruit and transfer student Chloe Volz organized for a group of novice girls to have their own training session. Volz was recruited by the team during the first week of school outside the recreation center, and is extremely excited and eager to be involved with the team.

“I’ve always had social anxiety, and I was really nervous about joining a team—it’s really intimidating,” Volz said. “But I have to say, I’ve just started to get to know the novice girls, and they’re really cool. The varsity girls are amazing, they’re so supportive and patient.”

The surge of support and initiative was what led Gastelum to place a huge amount of faith and trust in her team. Over her past two years of rowing for LBSU, Gastelum has worked tirelessly to provide the team with the support and attention she feels they deserve.

“I think those who commit to the team are already naturally determined to perform well,” Gastelum said. “So, the drive to take initiative has always been there—but now the execution is what can finally take place. Now that we’re a larger size, we have people from different backgrounds willing to help in any area they can.”

Gastelum said that with this growth, the officers would not be as overwhelmed with their responsibility for the club team. Now, the officers will be able to delegate day-to-day responsibility while being able to look towards the future.

“With this help, we can focus on opportunities that we’ve never taken before. We can’t say, ‘well, maybe next year we can do this.’ No. This is the year we finally have the chance to plan more events; this is the year we can beat our local rivals; this is the year we have something to show to CSULB and our community.”

Gastelum said she feels incredible pride for the growing team, having high aspirations for their future but wishing to focus primarily on team-building and mentoring for the fall semester.

The LBSU women’s rowing team will participate in their first regatta on Sunday, Oct 4 for the Bay Series 5k, where many of the novices will get their first taste of what it is to competitively row.