The heavyweight and lightweight crew teams continued a winning streak with first-place finishes over Penn, Columbia and Cornell this past weekend. The heavyweights won three of five races on Saturday, while the Y150 won seven of nine races over the weekend.
“In this league it’s so difficult to come away from a regatta with universal success, so Saturday’s sweep of Columbia and Penn was something special for the team as a whole that we hope to build on,” lightweight team captain Brendan McCook ’10 said of the team’s performance on Saturday.
On Saturday, the lightweights faced off against Penn and Columbia at the Schuylkill River in Pennsylvania, winning all four of their races.
Despite strong winds and illnesses on the team, the lightweights prevailed, winning the first, second and third varsity eights, as well as the freshman eight. The first varsity eight was the closest race, with Penn finishing only 2.5 seconds behind.
“We had some strong crosswinds changing on us throughout the course,” McCook said. “Our strokes really stayed poised, which was good practice for the Eastern Sprints course, notorious for rough winds.”
Along with the win, the lightweights brought home the Dodge Cup, which they compete for against Penn and Columbia. Yale has taken the prize back to New Haven for 30 of the last 32 years; this is the seventh year in a row.
The lightweights hit the water again against Cornell on Sunday morning at the Cayuga Inlet in Ithaca, N.Y.
“The Schuylkill and the Cayuga Lake Inlet are tricky courses, with turns and bridges sure to challenge any coxswain,” lightweight head coach Andy Card said. “Neither race was particularly fast, but certainly they were thrilling!”
The Bulldogs beat Cornell in three of their five races, including the first and second varsity and second freshman races. The competition between the first freshmen boats was close; Cornell edged out Yale by three seconds.
The lightweights stay on the road next weekend, making their way to Dartmouth to race for the Durand Cup. The Y150 have no home races this spring season.
“These long weekends have a lot of traveling, rigging and logistics that can easily go awry,” McCook said. “In a sport where small details so often decide races, our coaches did a great job of keeping us organized and prepared to perform at the right moment.”
The heavyweights also defeated Penn and Columbia at the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia on Saturday in their competition for the Blackwell Cup, winning four of five races in the process. Columbia had taken the cup for the past two years prior to Saturday’s competition.
“We are proud of our racing this weekend and look forward to many more hard-fought battles against Colombia and Penn in the future,” heavyweight team captain Lucas Spielfogel ’10 said. “We always do our best not to let conditions dictate the race — pressure usually solves most problems brought by tough conditions.”
All three Yale varsity boats and the varsity four won their respective races, with only the freshmen unable to best Penn and Columbia. The first varsity beat Columbia by 2.5 seconds, while the second varsity had a more comfortable lead of 9.6 seconds. The freshmen, meanwhile, finished behind Penn by 14.3 seconds.
“It was our first away race, and we got kind of flustered in the really strong crosswind,” Grant Stegelmann ’13 said of the freshman race.
On Saturday morning the heavyweights will be back on the Housatonic, hosting Cornell and Princeton at a regatta in search of the Carnegie Cup.