The 2023 CRASH-B Sprints Takes Place March 5

Today, we are lucky to enjoy winters jam-packed with indoor events. From the annual Erg Sprints to the USRowing Indoor National Championships, there is something for everyone, at every level of our sport. But for many years, when it came to large-scale indoor rowing championships, there was only one name in the game, and that was the legendary CRASH-B Sprints. As a New England tradition, it will always hold a special place in our heart here at Rowing Pad.

This year, the CRASH-Bs returns to an in-person format in a new location: the Track at New Balance, in downtown Boston. Rowing Pad will be there as a sponsor—you should be, too! Sunday, February 26, is the deadline to register. (Head over to Regatta Central ASAP to sign up.)

A CRASH-Bs Primer

Each year the CRASH-B World Indoor Rowing Championships brings together rowers of all ages and abilities for a day dedicated to that beast of a training machine: the ergometer. The performances are often the stuff of legend, as athletes set new records and push themselves to the limit! 

For those who don’t know the backstory, CRASH-B stands for “Charles River All Star Has-Beens,” a group of 1976-1980 U.S. Olympic and World Team athletes who called the Charles River home and were always looking to inject a little fun into their sport. Following the 1980 U.S. boycott of the Olympics, the crew felt inspired to, as the group’s website explains, “break up the monotony of winter training” by forming a “fun little regatta of about twenty rowers in Harvard’s Newell Boathouse” all based around the ergometer.

“Although C.R.A.S.H.-B. as an organization maintains a nontraditional irreverence to all things that are not fun, nonetheless this ergometer has become serious business, threatening to replace fun with pain, unless you can equate the two.”

Words to Row by from the Crash-Bs Website

Today the “fun little regatta” draws thousands of athletes to go all-out for 2,000 meters on Concept2’s Model D ergometer. At stake? Records, medals, and above all, for the top winner in each event—the highly coveted hammer, the signature CRASH-B trophy. Despite location changes and the emergence of other major indoor sprint competitions across the country, the CRASH-Bs remains a rowing institution.

Stop by the Rowing Pad Table

We are proud to announce that RowingPad will again be part of the action for 2023. Stop by our table during the event to check out our ErgPads and Boat Pads in person. It’s a great chance to test our 30mm Triple Decker ErgPad, which is truly one-of-a-kind in the rowing universe: It is the only pad in the world to combine three laminated layers of polymer foam, providing maximum comfort for those long-haul erg pieces. We’ll also have pads from our new Soft ErgPad line on hand: You won’t believe how great the extra cushion feels on these double-layer soft-density pads.

Our founder Victor, left, catches up with former rowing mate and Crash-Bs top finisher Larry O’Toole

Our cheerful crew will be eager to swap rowing stories and help you determine which pad is the best fit for your needs. Planning ahead for spring on-water training? Scope out our boat pads, which come in a wide range of thicknesses and with our proprietary Non-slip Add-on layer to prevent slipping on the seat in those wet spring and racing conditions.

The action begins in just over a week and we are eager to be there bright and early in person. Best of luck to all the determined CRASH-B sprinters!