Finally, we've made it to Rotterdam. Fist impression: it's so HUGE! There are boats as far as the eye can see, alphabetically ordered by nation.
However, if you look around the venue, it becomes clear that if any venue is able to host such a mega-event, it's certainly the brand new Willem-Alexanderbaan in Rotterdam. Besides being in the middle of nowhere and thus featuring a lot of space around for boat storage, car park etc, it is also offering a lot of room on the water: The venue features 10 lanes as well as a seperate 3-lane canal for warm-up and cool-down. So during training, once you've made it to the water, you can actually row quite well. If you can cope with all the wind.
Making it to the venue, however, has proven to be a little difficult during the first days. Somehow, we managed several times to book shuttles that did not exisit in the official schedule. Consequently, we waited half an hour for the actually scheduled bus. But as known from Amsterdam, the shuttles are always punctual, fast and have friendly drivers :-)
So... exhibition race today...
As mentioned above, the wind is a big factor here. To say it in the words of the regatta course homepage:
The rowing course as a whole is open under the sky, surrounded only by small reed beds. The wind can admittedly take its course, but affects all lanes equally. It makes the Willem-Alexander Baan rowing course to a fair race track.
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