Men's Varsity Eight Rowers 9th at Eastern Sprints; Earn Automatic Qualifier for National Championships
May 11, 2009
WORCESTER, MA - The George Washington University men's varsity eight placed ninth at Sunday's Eastern Sprints Championships in Worcester, MA. In the heats, the Colonials held off a strong charge from Pennsylvania to take fourth and advance to the Petite (2nd level) Final for the first time in GW's history. GW led the final nearly to the 1000m mark, pressing on to the finish line ahead of Navy, Dartmouth, and a resurgent MIT. The ninth-place finish earned the Colonials an automatic bid to the 2009 IRA National Championships in Sacramento, CA, June 4-6.
The Colonials' 2nd Varsity Eight fought an excellent battle in the heats, taking fourth over Navy and advancing to the Petite Final - another historical first for GW. In the final, GW raced extremely well, but came in a close sixth for the 12th overall spot in the field. Though this did not guarantee the 2nd varsity an entry into the National Championships, it leaves them in a very good position to receive an at-large bid.
GW's freshman eight got off the line well in the heat, but suffered a boat stopping collision when Columbia, having lost their fin, crossed into GW's lane. The Colonials gamely got restarted and completed the course, but had no chance of being in contention. After some deliberations, race officials offered GW a lane 7 berth in the Petite Final. In the final, the Colonials laid out a hard fought race, but in the end were not a match for the other six crews in the race. The Colonials' 2nd freshman eight, capping off a very nice season, raced their way into the Grand Final, where they finished a close sixth overall in the event. This marked the first and only time so far that GW has been in a Grand Final at the Eastern Sprints.
Next up for the Colonials: The 107th IRA National Championship Regatta - Sacramento, CA - June 4-6, 2009.
Varsity Eight Final Standings
9. George Washington