MEN’S CREW | Elis finish strong at Head of the Charles

Yale’s two lightweight fours posted the top two collegiate times at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston on Sunday.
Yale’s two lightweight fours posted the top two collegiate times at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston on Sunday. Photo by Brandon Blaesser.

Both the heavyweight and lightweight crew teams posted strong results this past weekend at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston, Mass. One of the lightweight fours had a particularly stellar finish, clinching the second spot in the race.

The 48th annual regatta, the world’s largest two-day rowing event, brought together over 9,000 athletes to race in 55 events — all head races, or time trials. The 3.2-mile course on the winding Charles River is known for being a challenge to navigate.

On Sunday, Yale’s two lightweight fours posted the two top collegiate times in the lightweight four event, finishing in second and third place with times of 16:56.9 and 17:39.6. Yale’s top boat finished less than two seconds behind the New York Athletic Club boat, which also won the event last year. The lightweight 8+ improved on last year’s fifth place finish with a fourth place finish in a time of 14:59.7.

Lightweight captain William Ferraro ’13 said he thought the team handled the distractions at the large regatta very well, noting that freshmen raced in every boat. This year marks the first time in the history of college crew that freshmen can race on the varsity squad.

The Bulldogs’ heavyweight 8+ finished second out of 32 in the club eight event on Saturday afternoon, passing two boats along the way. Yale finished in 14:58.08 — the team’s best result since it won the race in 2009. Brown bested the Bulldogs in the event by 17 seconds.

Philippe Mastroyannis ’13, who rowed stroke in the club 8+ event, said he was “tremendously pleased” with the race, particularly since the team had only practiced the race line-up twice before.

“Our coxswain executed the race plan perfectly by making the right calls when needed and steering a perfect course,” he said.

Ed Reeves ’16 rowed in the 8+ club event, and was excited with the results of his first Head of the Charles race.

Sunday’s results were not as strong for the heavyweight team: The championship four and eight boats finished 15 out of 19 and 13 out of 18 respectively.

Heavyweight captain Jon Morgan ’13 said the championship 8+ put in a strong effort, but ran into some weeds which hindered proper steering.

“With a course as difficult as the Charles River, [this obstacle] had dramatic effect on the boat’s overall time,” Morgan said. The Yale boat finished in 15:13.33, and Washington won the event with a time of 14:37.27.

The lightweight crew team will race again at the Princeton Chase next weekend, but the Head of the Charles was the last race of the fall season for the heavyweight crew team. The heavyweights will start their spring season on March 23 against Brown.

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