SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The No. 2 Yale lightweight crew team held their seed this past weekend, earning a silver medal at the IRA National Championships, held on Lake Natoma, in Sacramento, Calif. After finishing second two weeks ago at the Eastern Sprints, the Bulldogs held off their challengers and repeated their strong performance.
In the morning, the Yale varsity eight raced in its heat along with Cornell, Dartmouth and Penn. The Bulldogs used a strong start to be right with the other crews and then had a sharp second half to pull away, winning the heat by 1.1 seconds and qualifying for the afternoon final. Dartmouth finished in second and Cornell was third.
Then in the afternoon final, Yale used a strong start to be among the early leaders. Using powerful moves, the Bulldogs were in the pack at the halfway mark, just ahead of Columbia and Dartmouth, but behind Harvard. The Bulldogs' strong sprint proved to be too much for Columbia and Dartmouth, however it was not enough to close the deficit to Harvard, who won the race in 5:54.2. Yale finished one second back in second place, with a time of 5:55.2. Columbia just edged Dartmouth for the bronze, finishing in 5:55.7, .2 seconds ahead of the fourth-place Big Green. Cornell finished in fifth and Princeton was sixth.
Also racing was a lightweight four. In the morning heat, Yale finished second behind Cornell to advance to the finals. Then, in the finals, Yale was right in the pack, but faded down the stretch, finishing in a time of 6:53.8 for fifth place. The race was won by Harvard in 6:45.2, with Wisconsin in second and Cornell in third.
Report filed by Yale Sports Publicity