Essential information to help you understand the world of racing

Race data
This data set includes all racing data from each of the World Cup series regattas and World Championships and Olympic Games between 2001 and 2016 (and the European Championship data for 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017. The World Cup series for the current season (2017) is also included. The 2017 World Championships take place in Sarasota, Florida during October of 2017. The heats through to various finals and intermediate split times are included. More data is available via the FISA website.

Race profile
The key information in this data set is the race profile (the way a crew delivers their final time through the four 500m segments of a race), and this is often viewed as percentages of the average race split due to the large effect of environmental conditions on absolute time (e.g for a 6:00.0 performance, the average 500m split would be 1:30.0, and a 500m split of 1:25.0 would equate to 106%).

Rowing Organisation

  • The primary aim of an elite rower is the Olympic Games.
  • World Championships are held in the 3 years between Olympics.
  • Each year, a 3 regatta World Cup series precedes the Championships (attendance is not consistent, eg Southern hemisphere nations rarely attend the 1st World Cup)
  • The European Championships have featured intermittently at different times of year.
  • Rowing events fall into one of 2 main categories - sweep (1 oar per person) or scull (2 oars per person). There are also several Lightweight events where there is a limit on the average weight of the crew.

Race Structure

  • All international rowing takes place on a 2000m course with intermediate splits recorded each 500m.
  • Between 2001 & 2016 there were the same 14 Olympic boat classes (events included in the Olympic programme) and these are prioritised by nations, although others exist at non-Olympic events.
  • The time taken to complete 2000m varies widely between events due to the boat type, gender and weight category.
  • Rowing is significantly affected by environmental conditions (particularly the wind and water temperature), which makes intra and inter regatta comparisons unreliable
  • Crew members can change within boats within and across seasons (seat orders can also be manipulated)

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