The undefeated Radcliffe lightweight crew showed its complete domination of lightweight competition in the East with a twenty second swamping of Smith yesterday at the Eastern Sprints on Lake Waramaug in New Preston, Conn.
Smith was the only other team competing in the prestigious regatta because of the lack of funding for lightweight programs. Many colleges, including Wellesley and Penn, recently dissolved their eights and threw their best lights into their heavyweight boats for the Sprints.
Because of absence of a viable opponent, the lights were forced to generate their own inspiration.
Coxswain "Helen [Lee] was creating opposition for us by calling out moves by imaginary teams," explained stroke and Co-Capatain Chris-Doye.
Smith presented a challenge to the lights only at the start of the 2000- meter course and was embarrassingly shortlived. They rowed stroke for stroke with the Black and White for the first 100 meters until Radcliffe settled into its smooth and relentless eythmn. The lights began increasing their margin by entire boatlengths, ultimately reaching four by the finish.
Radcliffe's K.C. Dietz is the only caochin the East to head a separate women's lightweight program. The exasperating absence of light teams has several roots, one being crew coaches' natural affinity for larger and taller women.
"The coaches want the 'big girls,'" said seven-seat Clara But. "We're not taken as seriously as the heavies."
In order to be taken more seriously and to find challenging competition, the lights may petition to compete in the junior varsity division at the National Collegiate Rowing Championships held in June.