Last Sunday in Boston, Mass., men’s crew raced in the collegiate men’s eight event at the Head of the Charles regatta. The Head of the Charles is the biggest regatta in the world, drawing around 300,000 spectators each year. Boats start one after another at roughly 15-second intervals in a time-trial format: The goal is to get down the course as fast as possible. The men’s 1V boat took home fourth, while the 2V and 3V boats finished 15th and 28th, respectively. Drexel won the collegiate eights race at the Charles. On Oct. 12, the men traveled to the Head of the Housatonic, where the 1V took fifth in the IRA race and the 2V and 3V took second and fourth in the non-IRA race. Yale took first in the IRA race, while Fordham took first in the non-IRA race.
The Charles River is a challenge unto itself with its sharp turns and variable conditions, and Sunday posed an even bigger challenge, as wind speed hit 20 miles per hour by the time the men lined up to begin the race. The Charles is a long race; at 4.8 kilometers, it typically takes around 15 minutes for a men’s eight to complete, but across the board, crews put up slower times than usual.
The 1V boat, stroked by Erick Quay ’14 and coxed by Maggie Hughes ’15 started with bow No. 5 and finished fourth in 15:28.8. The boat not only beat last year’s performance, but also came within five seconds of the top three finishers: Drexel, University of Michigan and University of Virginia.
“While it would have been great to finish first, the result was encouraging in terms of the spring,” co-captain Nick Evert ’14 said. “We showed that we are right there with Drexel, [University of] Virginia and [University of] Michigan. We also did well compared to our traditional spring opponents.” These crews include Wesleyan (fifth), Hobart (sixth), Trinity (ninth) and Bates (14th), among others.
The 2V boat started the race at bow No. 13 and finished 15th in a time of 16:12.7. Coxed by Andrew Marsh ’14 and stroked by Michael Luciani ’14, the boat beat varsity eights from many schools and qualified for next year’s race by placing in the top half of the field.
The 3V came down the course in 16:51.2 with a lineup that included four rookies. While the boat finished 28th and did not qualify for next year, the crew had a solid race, beating varsity eights from other schools and demonstrating the depth of the program. Williams was one of the few crews in the collegiate men’s eight event to race three boats.
On Oct. 12, the men traveled to Shelton, Conn., for the Head of the Housatonic. The 1V raced against Div. I competition, placing fifth in 14:13.1. The 2V and 3V raced against Div. III competition, bringing home second in a time of 14:52.4 and fourth in a time of 15:20.2, respectively.
Next weekend, the 1V and 2V boats will race at the Princeton Chase in New Jersey against competition such as Harvard, Yale and Princeton. This race will be a new challenge for the men and an exciting way to end the fall season. The novices and 3V will race at the Head of the Fish in Saratoga, N.Y., to cap off their fall.
“We are looking forward to racing again this weekend at Princeton and are certainly fired up to train hard this winter,” Evert said.