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Irish prepare for Dale England Cup at Indiana

| Thursday, April 21, 2016

No. 17 Notre Dame stay relatively local this weekend as they travel to Bloomington, Indiana, for the Dale England Cup.

Irish head coach Martin Stone says he is looking forward to the weekend as a whole.

“I think our teams really enjoy it,” Stone said. “It’s a wonderful atmosphere, and Indiana is a great host. Mr. England is there throughout the weekend, and they host a dinner Friday night that all the teams go to. It’s pretty cool. It’s fun, and there’s a lot of stuff outside of just being on the water and racing that goes into it. It’s a quality event, and quality teams so we’ll see.”

Last weekend at the Lake Natoma Invitational in Sacramento, California, Notre Dame raced against six ranked teams, which Stone said helped the team identify things it can work on.

“I think there’s areas we identified [to improve],” Stone said, “I think each boat identified some things in each boat and some things in our race strategy that we have to do. We’re still trying to process and maybe see if there’s a different combination for the varsity four lineup, but other than that I don’t think there’s any changes. We may make changes on Wednesday. We don’t know. There’s not any plan changes right now.”

At the Dale England Cup regatta this weekend, Notre Dame will face No. 14 Indiana, Duke and Navy. When Indiana last raced April 17 at the Clemson Invitational, they placed second in their first varsity eight (6:45.5), second varsity eight (6:51.9) and second varsity four (7:37.3). In their first varsity four, the Hoosiers placed fifth at 7:51.6.

In their last race on April 9, Duke lost in five races against then-No. 3 Virginia.

Also on April 9, Navy went 4-0 at the George Washington Invitational against MIT and George Washington.

“I think Indiana is ranked ahead of us nationally and did very well this past weekend at the events they were at,” Stone said. “Duke, conference foe, has shown some speed in some of their boats throughout the spring, so they’re always a challenge. And Navy’s gaining some speed it looks like, so that’s why it comes back to we just gotta do our thing. It’s not offense and defense or denying their water or anything like that so it’s all about making our boats be in the moment and not worry about what’s going on around us except our speed.”

Last weekend all of the Irish boats improved their times from Saturday to Sunday, and Stone again emphasized that their main goal for this upcoming weekend is progress.

“Our focus is more on the process and the effort and doing that and letting the results come from that,” Stone said. “So we put in max effort and believe in the process. Then we’ll be in good shape. [Our main goals] are to go as fast as we possibly can. That’s what it is. Whatever our max potential speed is, we want to get there. And we don’t know what that is. But when we’re done racing it’s like hey, we went as fast as we can for that day and in that race. And then we have to go from there.”

The Irish close out their regular season this weekend at the Dale England Cup regatta in Bloomington, Indiana, before looking forward to the ACC championships starting May 13 in Clemson, South Carolina. 

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