row2k Features
Best of 2018
Top Regatta Stories of 2018: Upset at the Canal Cup, Erg World Records, 'Rogue IRA' and more!
January 1, 2019

Once again in 2018, row2k covered dozens of regattas around the US and the world. Read on for our ten most-read regatta dispatches from the past year!

Gevvie Stone wins again
Head of the Charles
1: Head of the Charles Saturday - Hometown Winner, Big Crowds, and Flips
October 20, 2018

“It's fun to race on my home course, it's fun to have the Charles River to row on, and have all the competitors come here. And it's fun to come out here and lay it down, and to pass by all of the people who are here cheering for me because they know me.”
Gevvie Stone

Gevvie Stone does not hesitate to say she has certain advantages when it comes to racing the Head of the Charles - the biggest being she grew up rowing on the notoriously difficult Boston course, just like her parents did.

The experience gained by training on the same water, having generational knowledge passed down by her coach dad, dealing with the same kind of changing weather conditions common to the Charles, and navigating through the same seven bridges most days of the week for years is something that Stone has turned to her advantage - and led to her unprecedented success in the women's championship single.

But that does not mean that just rowing the Charles everyday translates into easy wins. Stone makes a point of being ready for this race every year, no matter what else is going on in her life.Read the full story

Germany, GB, the US and the Netherlands contest the Canal Cup
2: Upset! US Men Win 'Hardest Rowing Regatta in the World'
September 24, 2018

“All it took was trust: trust in our rowing, our coxswain, and our base rhythm. The thinking before the race was that we wanted to get out strong, but know that our goal was to win for 12.7km. I couldn't tell you how we did it, as I really don't remember much of anything past 5km in. All I remember is the guys in front of me keeping a tenacious rhythm for a very long time!”
Tom Peszek

In somewhat of an upset, the USA Men's Eight shook off an early deficit to world champs Germany and worlds bronze medallists Great Britain to pass both crews and win the 18th running of the SH Netz Canal Cup going away. It was the US's first win since 2006, and only the fifth time that Germany has not won the event. GB was third and the Netherlands was fourth.

The 12.7km regatta, which bills itself as the 'hardest rowing regatta in the world,' is the traditional post-worlds romper room for the world's elite sweep-rowing men. Taking place over three days in Rendsburg, in northern Germany, the regatta puts the four invited crews through a 500m erg sprint on Friday, a 400m sprint in eights on Saturday, and culminates on Sunday afternoon with the 12.7k piece, which is run off starting blocks like a sprint race.

Off the start of the 12k, the US fell into fourth early, then overhauled the Dutch crew as the German and GB eights got into a pitched battle ahead of the field, throwing power moves at each other for much of the first 3000 meters. Nearing the halfway point of the race, the US crew then made what looked like a dramatic lane shift behind the two lead crews, opting to row a longer line into clear water in the middle of the channel, and then, when the GB started to falter, the US turned on the jets outside, passed the GB crew, then kept on going and overhauled the Germans enroute to the win.   Read the full story

Washington at the Gift Giving Ceremony
Henley Royal Regatta
3: Henley Concludes With Two US Champions and a Basket of New Records
July 8, 2018

“"That was incredible. It was just a culmination of all the hard work this past couple of months and it has always been our goal to come here and get to the final and get it done.”
Caroline Sharis, Y Quad Cities

The US had two new Champions in the 2018 Henley Royal Regatta Sunday on a day where the rising temperatures and afternoon tailwinds were met with falling records.   

Among the 23 new Champions, two were US crews - the junior women's quad from Moline, Illinois and Y Quad Cities Rowing, who had won the Diamond Jubilee Challenge Cup, and the men's eight from the University of Washington that had defeated Oxford Brookes to take the Temple Cup Challenge. Read the full story

Dressing warm was critical yesterday in Boston.
Head of the Charles
4: HOCR Sunday - Winding It Up in a Cold Wind
October 21, 2018

“We had a fast German boat in front of us and we just kind of focused on them and dug in and tried to row them down. We caught them somewhere around Newell and kept going. It was good to get the crew back together and wind things up again. Now, we will get back to training and get ready for next year.”
Tom Dethlefs, USA 8+

The 54th Head of the Charles Regatta wrapped up the two-day fall Boston rowing classic and closed out a typical weekend of constantly changing New England weather and a full schedule of fast racing.  

On any given HOCR weekend, the reputation of New England's fickle and quickly changing weather is amplified on a course as unique as the one in Boston, where over a three-mile stretch, it ranges from wide expanses of open water, to narrow tight sections while twisting and turning through seven bridges. The constant change of directions also means a constant change in the direction of the wind and its effect on the racers.

The race started in a cold and wet head wind and ended with a tail wind, with intense sprint to the finish - but one that was also lot of fun to be in.  Read the full story

Princeton four racing at the Rogue IRA Regatta
IRA Regatta
5: 'Rogue IRA' Completes a Weather Plagued Weekend
June 3, 2018

“The reason that the coaches were so cooperative is, we're very athlete-centric. It's all about these guys, especially with the IRA. Ninety-percent of those guys have been out of school for three weeks or more. You have to choose to participate in IRA training, especially because on the lightweight side of things, it's a different discipline,”
Marty Crotty, Princeton

An IRA race schedule that had already been flipped to accommodate the top five grand finals for the men's and women's eights events in the championship regatta had run out of room for delay as the winds began whipping the already rain swollen lake into a frenzy, and a committee of race officials and referees made the call that it was not safe to continue

So, the remaining races were officially canceled at 10 AM.

Princeton's Marty Crotty and Columbia's Nich Lee Parker were quick to move into a 'this can't be allowed to happen' mode, and they began cooking up a plan to move the remaining races over to Lake Carnegie and the Princeton University boathouse.

Within just under two-hours, a caravan of boat trailers, team busses, tents, food, parents, classmates, and two USRowing officials were over in Princeton and ready to go, and Crotty switched from concerned coach to regatta director.    Read the full story

Christine Cavallo on the way to a World Indoor Record
6: Finishing Where She Left Off - And Setting a New World Record
February 18, 2018

“This is super embarrassing, but whenever I would get down on myself in college and training, I would like to go back and look at what I did before, every now and then I would go back and watch that video, because it showed me how hard I worked to put that together, and to not lose faith in what I was doing.”
Christine Cavallo

Whenever Christine Cavallo needs some extra motivation, or a reminder that she can achieve the goals she sets for herself in rowing, she watches the video of a 2013 erg race she pulled when she was a junior at the C.R.A.S.H.-B Sprints in Boston.

It's the video of Cavallo setting the junior women's lightweight world record, the race where Concept2's British division spokesperson Alex Dunne stood behind her while calling the race over the public-address system. The one where Dunne predicted Cavallo was about to unleash an even faster sprint.

Cavallo never forgot that day. Not because she was upset at the record, she was proud of the piece and used it for motivation, after all, she set the world record, breaking the one she had set just two weeks before that.    Read the full story

Not the Worlds? Open Winner Andrew Raitto and his coach don't care.
CRASH-B Sprints
7: CRASH-B 2018: It's Still About the Hammer
February 27, 2018

“We had a fabulous group of athletes that came in, a really wonderful group of volunteers and new timing crew that came in, and they had a really successful day. I think everyone was really happy. ”
CRASH-B Commodore Amanda Milad

For those who follow rowing seriously, the 2018 CRASH-Bs took place under a shadow of no longer being designated the World Indoor Rowing Championships, that title having been bestowed upon a new FISA event that will begin to rotate to sites around the world after 2019. But for the casual observer, and for the over 1300 athletes who made the trip to Boston on a bleary Sunday in February, CRASH-Bs was (and still is) about pursuing the coveted hammer.

As a regatta, the 2018 CRASH-Bs was undoubtedly diminished; with almost 1000 fewer competitors than last year, fewer spectators, and fewer ergs on the racing floor (60 this year, as opposed to 96 in previous years), the regatta struggled at times to make BU's Agganis Arena feel full, despite the fact that 1300 people ripping on ergs is still a lot of people. All things considered however, the racing was once again as fierce as you might expect.  Read the full story

Steve Gennao rowed in the Temple seven seat
Henley Royal Regatta
8: A Philadelphia Brother Battle on the River Thames
July 4, 2018

“We were talking trash all week to each other, all year really, so the chance to go up against him for the first time in my rowing career was great. When I heard the draw results, I walked down a couple of tents to go see him and said some things that I shouldn't say in an interview.”
Steve Gennaro

Steve Gennaro was hoping his Temple University eight would get a chance to race the Yale University crew his older brother Mike was coaching. He got his wish on the first day of racing on Wednesday at the Henley Royal Regatta.   

Steve rows seven seat in the Temple University eight, and he wanted a shot at his brother's crew. Some of it was a brother thing. Steve is the youngest of three Gennaro boys who all grew up rowing on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. Read the full story

Montclair Mounties racing in the Wednesday heats
Henley Royal Regatta
9: US Crews Make the Best of July 4th at the Henley Royal Regatta
July 4, 2018

“This place is magical, you put any athlete out there, even the best athletes in the world get excited racing at Henley, so our kids light up as soon as they come over.”
Yale Coach Will Porter

Of the 19 US crews that raced in the UK on the 4th of July, 11 advanced into the next round, and of the nine that were eliminated, two were eliminated by other US crews.

On a perfect and a bit toasty early summer day in the UK, the first day of Henley racing was met by crowds that lined the banks of the river and fans that paddled out for a close look in row boats and inner tubes.   Read the full story

Bulldog heavyweight eight goes back-to-back
IRA Regatta
10: Yale, Columbia, Stanford, Washington Take Top Honors in Truncated IRA Championship
June 3, 2018

“But we reminded ourselves that it's just another race, and we're going to execute it the same as we have all year. The same as we did in the heat, and the same as the semi. There's nothing different. Psychologically, that's what we did.”
Yale V8+ cox Vlad Saigau

An unconventional day of finals were highlighted by wins for Yale, Columbia, and Stanford in the three varsity eight events at Mercer Lake, NJ.   

The varsity eight final is normally the final race of an IRA Regatta. But with weather conditions forcing schedule changes all three days and conditions going from fog, to rain, to wind, the Sunday schedule was flipped to ensure that the forecasted building wind would not derail the grand finals. Read the full story


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