USRowing is pleased to announce that Oak Ridge Rowing Association will play host to the 2011 and 2012 USRowing Youth National Championships on Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge, Tenn.
The USRowing Youth National Championships features more than 1,500 athletes from high school and junior rowing programs across the country competing for national titles in 18 boat classes. The 2011 event will be held June 10-12, 2011, while the 2012 event will be held June 8-10, 2012. USRowing is still finalizing the locations for the 2013 and 2014 regattas as part of the current four-year bid cycle.
"USRowing owes a great deal of thanks to Cincinnati Junior Rowing Club, who hosted this event for its first 16 years," said Glenn Merry, USRowing's chief executive officer. "Cincinnati's LOC and venue have served the youth rowing community well, and we look forward to hosting future events at Harsha Lake. As we turn the page to 2011 and beyond, we are excited to partner with Oak Ridge Rowing Association to host this event. Oak Ridge has demonstrated its capability to run large regattas, most recently with the USRowing Club National Championships and USRowing Masters National Championships. The community has been extremely supportive and is eager to write the next chapter for the USRowing Youth National Championships."
In 1978, the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association (SIRA) moved from Stone Mountain, Ga., to an unknown, 3,000-meter straight stretch of water on the Clinch River in eastern Tennessee. With assistance from the City of Oak Ridge, Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and local businesses, the Oak Ridge Rowing Association has continued to conduct quality events ever since.
Located on the east side of Oak Ridge, the Melton Hill Lake Reservoir, which is fed by the Clinch River, is part of the TVA waterway system. The venue is protected by hills on each side, and the TVA regulates flow during competitions to less than 0.06-meters per second. The venue features a sheltered embayment with multiple docks for easy launching during events and a 2,000-meter, seven-lane, fully buoyed course. In August of 2007, The Rowing News called the course one of the worlds finest.
"The Oak Ridge Rowing Association is very excited to host the USRowing Youth National Championships," said Allen Eubanks, head coach and club manager. "Oak Ridge is honored to be selected as the first site to host this event after such a successful run on Harsha Lake. We view the USRowing Youth National Championship Regatta as equal to that of the NCAA Women's National Championship in size, scope and importance to the East Tennessee community. The quality of the course, a 32-year track record of hosting quality local, regional and national events, and a willingness on the part of the community to support events are prime reasons for hosting this prestigious regatta in Oak Ridge."
In addition to its four annual local regattas, Oak Ridge has hosted numerous regional and national championships. The venue has been the site of the SIRA Championship Regatta, the second largest collegiate regatta in the country, since 1978, and the Southeast Youth Regional Championship five times since 2002. It has hosted several NCAA collegiate women's events including the South-Central Regional Sprints Regatta, Atlantic Coast Conference Championship, Big East Conference Championship, Conference USA Championship, and the 2007 NCAA Women's Rowing Championship. Oak Ridge also has hosted the USRowing National Championships eight times, the 2009 and 2010 USRowing Club National Championships, the 2002 and 2008 SRAA Scholastic National Championships and the 2009 American Collegiate Rowing Association Championship. In addition, it served as the venue for the 1994 Pan American Games Trials and has hosted the Can-Am-Mex Regatta three times since 2005. For more information on the Oak Ridge Rowing Association, please visit www.orra.org.