NEW LONDON, Conn. – The 147th matchup between the Yale and Harvard heavyweight crew teams brought the usual test of endurance to the waters of New London's Thames River on Saturday. The Crimson took all three races as well as Friday's combination fours race. With solid performances delivered by Yale against fast Harvard crews the Bulldogs will now move forward to next week's IRA National Championship Regatta.
The first race of the day was between Harvard and Yale's freshman eights. In the two-mile fixture, the Bulldogs stayed in contact with the other boat for the first mile, and the Crimson had only just started to break open when a wake came rolling in from the east side of the river, hitting the Yale crew first. The race was eventually restarted with approximately the same margin as the two crews had when the race was stopped. Yale pushed towards the line, but the Harvard eight maintained its pre-established lead to cross the line 8.5 seconds ahead of Yale.
The second varsity race was delayed as a result of the restart in the freshman race. Off the start the two crews were in contact for the first two minutes but from there on Harvard began to pull away. The Bulldogs crossed the line in 15:27, with the Crimson clocking in less than 15 minutes.
In the varsity eight event the Bulldogs kept within striking distance for the duration of the four-mile race. Harvard grew its lead steadily but Yale came on strong in the end to keep the margin within ten seconds. Yale finished with a time of 19:51.2 to Harvard's 19:41.3.
A combination four event was also contested on Friday. The Crimson fielded two boats, with Harvard A beating Harvard B by five seconds with Yale's four coming in third.
In just a few days Yale will travel to Camden, N.J., for the IRA National Championships. The Bulldogs will be back to racing 2,000 meters as they did at the Eastern Sprints two weeks ago. Last year Yale's top two boats finished the season strong at the IRA, with the varsity eight taking fourth in the petite to finish 10th overall and the second varsity winning the petite final to finish seventh overall.
Junior Varsity Eight
Combination Fours (Friday)
Harvard A 11:22
Harvard B 11:27
Report filed by Yale Sports Publicity