Yale Heads To IRAs In Search Of National Championship

June 3, 2008

CAMDEN, N.J. - The Yale men's lightweight crew heads to Camden, N.J. this week to the 106th Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) National Championships. Racing will be held over three days, beginning on Thursday, June 5, and culminating Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs are coming off a strong showing at the Eastern Sprints and are hoping to capture their third national title of the decade.

The Bulldogs are sending a number of boats to Camden this week. The varsity eight, which took third at Eastern Sprints, will be racing in the men's lightweight eight event. The second varsity eight, which took second place at Eastern Sprints three weeks ago, has been split into two fours without coxswain and will race in the varsity four without coxswain event. The Eastern Sprints champion freshman eight has been given a spot in the freshman heavyweight eight event. There is also a four with coxswain entered in the open four event.

Last year, the Bulldogs found success in Camden. The varsity eight finished fifth in their grand final. The second varsity entered into their eight in the heavyweight second varsity event and finished sixth in the petite. They also entered a pair which finished fourth in the grand final, and a freshman four which took silver in their grand final. Although the Bulldogs are entered in different events this year, their rowers have generally been successful at the IRAs.

The varsity eight will only race on Saturday. In their heat is Purdue, who took second at the Dad Vails Regatta, Columbia, Princeton and Georgetown. They will compete in a morning heat at 7:37 a.m. to place them in either the petite or grand final for the afternoon. The top three boats from each heat will be placed in the grand final.

The freshman eight will compete in their heat Thursday morning at 9:36 a.m. In their heat is Navy, Wisconsin, Harvard, Northeastern and George Washington. The top two boats in each heat advance to the semifinals. The other boats will be placed in repechages on Thursday afternoon to compete for the last spots in the top two semifinals. The winner of each repechage advances to the top two semifinals. The semifinals will be raced on Friday afternoon.

Both varsity four without coxswain boats will race on Thursday morning starting at 11:12 a.m. The boats will get the opportunity to race each other in their heat. Also in their heat is Georgetown, MIT, Minnesota and Boston University.

The open four will compete in their heat on Thursday morning starting at 10:24 a.m. Princeton A and B boats, George Washington and Penn will all be competing with Yale for a spot in the grand final.

The Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) is pleased to announce that live audio broadcast of the IRA National Championships will be available on line Thursday, June 5 through Saturday, June 7. Spectators will be able to listen to live racing by clicking here.

Report filed by Charles Moore `10, Yale Sports Publicity