Winter Training Update with Shannon Winchell
Shannon Winchell

March 11, 2013

Greetings from Tampa! The Wolverines are finishing up their spring break in Tampa, Fla., racing against University of Miami (Fla.). Finishing our winter training season, we have come down to Florida for some water time in the sunshine. While we await our return to Belleville Lake, the coaches have us practicing twice a day in order to get ready for the upcoming spring season. Which reminds me: spring season is upon us! After our Saturday (March 9) afternoon scrimmage we roll into our regular season, anticipating our first double dual against Michigan State and Notre Dame.

While in Tampa, we've had time to watch some rowing footage, get some time in mixed boats and even fit in some team bonding. The seniors on the team are sorry to say goodbye to Tampa for the final time. On Thursday (March 14), the coaches took out the entire team; we did a long row to the notorious "Lighthouse" several miles upriver, and it was seniors Shannon Stief and Samantha Scholl's first time there since they have been on the team! Half way through the workout we took a break, and the coaching staff provided the entire team with popsicles and a few jokes.

In Tampa, we regularly see some wildlife while rowing. In the past, we've seen turtles, jellyfish and occasionally a family of dolphins will join us for several fast paced pieces. This trip we saw manatees! Imagine rowing along the river, looking below, and seeing a family of manatees swim by! Never again, in my life or anyone else's on this team can they say they have rowed alongside dolphins and over manatees. That was definitely one of the coolest team moments for me thus far. Some Michigan rowing alumni joined the coaches for practice on Wednesday, and we got to see some of our old teammates, which is always fun.

This trip has not been all fun and games, however, we have gotten a substantial amount of work under our belts and are feeling really good about our upcoming races. This week, due to some windy weather, the team did some competitive selection pieces two days in a row, and the results are pretty impressive and super fast. This first round of boat selection has gotten everyone into the racing mentality, and the Michigan spirit is in full force!

Not only are we getting fast on the water, we are also keeping up on our schoolwork. On our afternoon off, most of the team congregated in the hotel lobby, and we had a massive study session. Check out @umichrowing on twitter and see the homework party!

As fun as Tampa has been, we're all really excited to get back to Ann Arbor and get in some quality time rowing on Lake Belleville. Follow @umichrowing on twitter, keep updated with our day-to-day activities, and keep track of our race results!

It's going to be a great spring season of racing.


Shannon Winchell

Past Entry (March 1)