Ryan Sparks enters his second year at Yale after assisting Y150 to a silver medal finish at the IRA.
Sparks comes to Y150 from Bates College, where he helped coach both the men and women's first and second varsity boats -- including leading the men's team to a grand final finish at the ECAC National Championships and placing in the top three nationally in Division III, a first for the program.
Sparks has coached on every level of the sport from junior novices to pre-elites. He has worked with four different national rowing federations and held coaching jobs on three continents. Sparks led Yale to an international university regatta in China during May of 2009. He has also done consulting work in conjunction with the Chinese rowing community prior to the 2008 Olympic Games. He also worked as a coaching intern with elements of the German team prior to the 2004 Athens Games.
As an initial believer in the California Rowing Club and Tim McLaren, Sparks helped in the initial infrastructure development for the club and enjoys learning from the USRowing head coach from time to time.
A Bates graduate, Sparks also assisted with the men's program at Wesleyan, sweeping the silver medals at the 2007 New England Rowing Championships. Prior to his time at Wesleyan, he was the frosh coach at Bates leading both the novice men and women to top four championship finishes. He has also worked with pre-elite and Olympic rowers from New Zealand and the United States.
During his seven year career in coaching, 91% of the crews he has worked directly with have made grand final appearances in their respective championship racing. Sparks rowed at the Baylor School in Chattanooga, Tenn., before rowing and coaching for the University of Otago (New Zealand) and Bates College as an undergraduate, graduating with a degree in history.