Heavyweights Bound for Head of the Charles

Owen Symington and Simon Keenan. (photo by Don Clark, Yale Sports Publicity)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – This weekend the Yale heavyweight crew team will race in the 48th Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston.  The Bulldogs will field crews in three categories: a club eight, a championship four and a championship eight, with each crew starting according to its finish at last year's Head of the Charles.

Yale's first boat to race will be the club eight at 1:20 p.m. on Saturday.  Last year's club eight started strong but wound up sixth in the event of 42 entered crews.  This year the Bulldogs will start sixth behind BU and in front of Northeastern.  Brown will start first as the Bears took this event last year.

The first of two Yale boats to race on Sunday will be the championship four at 2:32 p.m.  Last year's champ four finished 11th out of 17, and came in as the seventh-fastest collegiate crew in the event.  On Sunday the Bulldogs will have bow number nine and look to chase down the crew from New York Athletic Club, who starts eighth.  Wisconsin won the event last year and will come through the chute first.

Finally at 2:55 p.m. on Sunday the Bulldogs will take to the Charles for the premier event of the regatta, the championship eight.  Last year Yale's champ eight finished just in the top half of the field, coming in 17th out of 34 total crews and was the 11th-fastest college crew in the event.  This year 28 crews are entered and almost all of them are college teams.  The Bulldogs will start towards the middle of the field with bow number 16, behind Harvard's B boat and in front of Syracuse.  Bow number 2 this year belongs to a composite USRowing boat of Olympians from this year's U.S. men's eight and former U23 athletes.  Last year's captain, Tom Dethlefs '12, will be in six seat of this U.S. crew.  Close behind with bow number 4 will be the "Great Eight," a crew billed as Tideway Scullers but made up of Olympic scullers, all of different nationalities.  Starting towards the back with bow number 27 is California Rowing Club, a crew that will feature former Yale captain Derek Johnson '11 in bow seat.

"The Head of the Charles is one of our few racing events for the fall and while it provides a good platform for competition, our ultimate goal is winning championship races in the spring," said sophomore Simon Keenan, who will row in five seat of Yale's champ eight on Sunday.

For the third year now Yale will be taking part in Pull for a Cure, which offers competitors in the Head Of The Charles the opportunity to use their participation in the Regatta as a platform to garner financial support for breast cancer research.  The heavyweight team's fundraising page is available here for those who wish to help in this endeavor.

The Head of the Charles is the world's largest two-day rowing event.  The regatta draws in more than 8,000 athletes from around the world competing in 55 events.  It attracts roughly 300,000 spectators to Boston and Cambridge over the course of the weekend.

A live webcast of the regatta is available here. A schedule can be found here, and a full list of entries is available here.

Report filed by Yale Sports Publicity

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