Crews achieve goals at the Head of the Charles

Monday, October 20, 2008 - By: Brian Carr

The Head of the Charles Regatta is the largest rowing event in the world with 8,000 competitors competing over a three-mile course. For the first time in Brentwood's history, three crews represented the school in the Youth Eights for men and women and the Youth men's coxed four. Since this was the first time we have sent crews,  the club was placed far back in the pack. The first crew to race was the Youth Men's coxed four. Starting 34th the crew was held up in traffic for the first 1000 meters before they were able to get up to full speed. The five Grade 11 students had a great race and finished 33rd out of 71 crews. The goal going into the event was to finish in the top 50% and they achieved that goal. The next crew to race was the Youth Men's eight. Starting 47th, they had to row through a number of crews to keep up with the pace of the top crews. Four seconds separated the crews finishing from 4th to 11th. Less than one second separated crews from 7th to 11th. Considering there were 66 crews in this race, finishing 11th was a fantastic result. The goal was to finish in the top 15 crews and that goal was achieved! The final race for Brentwood was the Youth Women's Eight. Starting 48th, the crew had to also steer around slower crews to get clear water and get into their race pace. The goal was to finish in the top five high schools in the event. Finishing 5th out of all high schools and 19th overall is an incredible achievement for the girls crew! All three crews have qualified for the 2009 Head of the Charles Regatta! This is what we were hoping for and all three crews achieved what they set out to do. There were many Brentwood alumni racing and coaching at the regatta. Noah McColl (Grad 2006) won the Championship Lightweight coxed four, rowing for Yale University. Spencer Crowley (Grad 2007) was fourth in the Championship eights, rowing for Cal-Berkeley. Josh Hollenberg (Grad 2006) was fifth, rowing for Harvard in the Club Eights. Greg Hughes (Grad 1992) coached the winning Championship Lightweight eight for Princeton University. Alumni Chris Burkmar (Grad 1996), Harold Backer (Grad 1980), Greg Hughes (Grad 1992) all raced in the Masters eights and achieved personal goals. Now that Brentwood has sent its first crews to this regatta, we can – hopefully – build from these results in future. The next regatta for the club is this weekend as we take part in the Head of the Gorge in Victoria.

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