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Andrew Liverman: Living Single (6/22/2003)

By Heidi Visser

 

Andrew Liverman, 23, is finally getting a taste of the other side.

 

Literally.

 

Competing in the openweight men's single sculls at the Pan American Games selection races at Eagle Creek Reservoir on Saturday, Liverman has now raced twice as a heavyweight. So is the grass greener on the other side?

 

"I got food poisoning on Thursday night," said Liverman. Apparently not.

 

However, for a novice to the openweight field, the 2002 Yale graduate is certainly no stranger to rowing success. Liverman was not only part of the 2000 and 2002 Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) Championship lightweight eight but also won gold at two Eastern Sprints, two Head of the Charles, and the Temple Challenge Cup at the 2000 Henley Royal Regatta.

 

"I spent a lot of time in eights during college and high school. As compared to smaller boats, they're definitely more fun," said Liverman, who described the eight as a "traveling party."

 

Despite the single being a party for one, Liverman is finding it more to his liking. "As far as learning to row, I feel like small boats are more beneficial, a little more like the erg," said Liverman, adding, "and I do just fine on the erg."

 

While at Yale, he used summer and breaks to gain sculling experience. When the end of his collegiate rowing career came, so did the end of his sweep career. Liverman went straight from college to the national team, competing in the 2002 lightweight eight at the world championships in Seville , Spain . While he trains with many of the Princeton Training Camp boatmates from that endeavor, making the Olympic team is Liverman's new priority.

 

Since setting his sights on the Olympic Games, Liverman, while currently rowing solo, would also consider the double or quadruple sculls, as they are both Olympic events. "I want to keep rowing until it's not fun anymore -- definitely through this Olympic cycle and possibly through the next. I'll be 28 by then…maybe time to move on," explained Liverman, who began rowing in 1996 at St. Paul' s School in New Hampshire .

 

Now, he is based out of New York Athletic Club. By coming to the Pan Am selections, Liverman was able to experience not only his first heavyweight race, but the "whole trial experience: reps (repechage), heats, all the hoopla I'm trying to get used to that." After years of rowing, being able to change gears and find a new focus has fueled a desire to continue. The Pan Am trials are just the beginning; Liverman also plans on aiming for worlds in either the lightweight single or lightweight double sculls.

 

Sculling appeals to Liverman not only for its symmetrical nature but because it allows him to engage in new rowing experiences such as openweight racing, the trials process and best of all, traveling.

 

"Being able to travel more allows me to meet different people at different regattas," said an enthused Liverman, who has already competed in this year’s two national selection regattas. Meanwhile, the history major is debating whether or not to capitalize on his skills as a "quasi-investment banker" with his job at Wm. Sword & Co., or return to law school. Either way, his future is both simple and full of expectation.

 

"My major plan is to row. I just want to go fast."