SEATTLE – On Sunday the fall season will come to a close for both of University of Washington rowing teams at the Head of the Lake Regatta host by the Lake Washington Rowing Club. The crews will take on the 3.1-mile course, starting at 8:00 am PT, which starts in Lake Union, continues through Portage Bay and the Montlake cut before finishing in Lake Washington.
This is the last chance for both the men and women to row head-to-head against strong competition before the season officially begins next spring.
The women are coming off of an excellent race day at the Head of the American Regatta where they took first through fourth place in the pairs race and with those top finishing pairs then took home the gold in the eight.
The process to decide the top boat for this weekend was much the same. On Wednesday the team conducted their last pair race to determine the boat lineups for Sunday.
“The top eight will be the same this weekend, but the second eight is going to be different than it was down in Rancho Cordova,” said head women’s coach Bob Ernst. “I think it’s a really good system. It’s a system that’s based on team development instead of just getting some certain result at Head of the Lake.”
That being said, however, the team is also really looking forward to getting and early look and shot at some excellent competition on their home course.
Ernst continued, “we’re all really keen on this race because it is our biggest home event in the fall and it’s a tradition for us to perform well there. And to have Washington State and Stanford coming this year, when both teams were in NCAAs last year, is really good for us. The kids are really excited about getting to perform in front of the home crowd and getting to perform against those other crews.”
The reigning national champion men, coached by Michael Callahan, are looking to continue the development of their new crews that begin the season in Boston at the Head of the Charles regatta. This is their last chance of the fall for them to show the hard work they’ve put in and to test where they are before heading into winter training.
"It's great to finally have everyone healthy and we are picking up momentum. Head of The Lake is the end of our autumn racing season. It's always fun to get the whole squad racing experience especially on our home water," Callahan said.
The men will also face cross-state rival WSU as well as boats from Gonzaga, Oregon State, the University of British Columbia and University of California, San Diego.
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