June 28, 2000
SEATTLE - After nearly two weeks to prepare, the Washington women's varsity eight-oared crew nears its historical first race at the Henley Royal Regatta in Henley-on-Thames, England. The Huskies departed Seattle June 19 and will begin racing for the Henley Prize Saturday, July 1. Quarter and semi-final races take place Saturday, followed by the grande final Sunday. The official regatta began June 28.
For the first time ever, Washington has sent a women's varsity eight crew to compete at the Henley Royal Regatta in Henley-on-Thames, England. This year marks the introduction of a women's open eight race in the historical men's regatta. During the previous two regattas, there has been a four-boat women's exhibition race, by invitational only, for national teams.
This year marks the first time the field has been opened to include eight women's boats. Because the field included more than eight crews, a race-off was held June 23 to narrow the field. The qualifying heat was a "do or die" evening for those crews required to race. For the women's Henley Prize, nine crews competed in a single shot time trial from which five crews were eliminated and sent home. Crews placing in the top four of the time trial who have advanced to first round racing include: the University of Virginia, Molesey Boat Club, Avon County Rowing Club/Worcester Rowing Club, and the Thames Rowing Club. They join pre-seeded crews: Upper Thames Rowing Club/Kingston Rowing Club, University of Victoria (Canada), and the Huskies in first round racing that Saturday.
The Henley Royal Regatta was founded in 1839, with rowers from all over the world competing at the annual affair. Unlike all other major international regattas, racing at Henley is on a knock-out basis, with crews rowing two abreast over a course which is one mile, 550 yards (2,112-meters) long. The women's race will consist of quarter-finals, semi-finals and a grande final for the Henley Prize.
Henley Prize Quarter-final Pairings, Saturday, July 1 (seeded crews are in italics)
Upper Thames R.C./ Kingston R.C.
Avon County R.C./Worcester R.C.
Univ. of Victoria, Canada
Univ. of London/ U.L. Tyrian Club
Univ. of Washington, USA
Univ. of Virginia, USA
Race Note: The Huskies travelled all the way to England to meet a crew they faced twice during the regular season, the University of Virginia. Washington beat the Cavaliers at the San Diego Crew Classic, April 2, and also at the NCAA Championships over Memorial Day weekend.
The Huskies will race in an Empacher shell, which it will borrow from the British National Team.
Washington's varsity eight is coming off a silver medal performance at the NCAA Championships May 28 in Camden, N.J. The Huskies, who were ranked No. 1 the country nearly the whole season, suffered their lone loss, to Brown, in the grande final of the NCAA Championships. The Husky team finished second overall at the year-end regatta.
The Washington men's program has sent several crews to compete at Henley, with the first in 1958 under coach Al Ulbrickson. Fifteen years later in 1973, Dick Erickson's varsity crew lost to the Soviet eight in the Grand Challenge. They returned in 1977 and became the first U.S. crew to win the Grand Challenge when it beat the British National Crew. Recently, current head coach Bob Ernst has taken crews in 1991, '95 and '97.
Washington Women's Crew at Henley Royal Regatta
WHO: Washington women's varsity eight crew.
WHAT: Henley Royal Regatta. The Huskies will compete for the Henley Prize.
WHEN: The regatta runs June 28-July 2, 2000. The women's race for the Henley Prize will be July 1-2.
WHERE: Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, England
WHY: This year marks the first time a women's open eight race has been held in the men's regatta that was founded in 1839.
THE FIELD: Molesey B.C., Upper Thames R.C. & Kingston R.C., Avon Country R.C. & Worcester R.C., Univ. of Victoria, Univ. of London & U.L. Tyrian Club, Thames R.C., Univ. of Washington, USA, Univ. of Virginia, USA.
Washington Varsity Eight
cox: Mary Whipple 5-3 101 So. Sacramento, CA (Adventist Academy) stroke: Sabina Telenska 5-10 172 Sr. Prague, Czech Republic (Sedondary Hotelier) 7 - Nicole Borges 5-11 176 Jr. Mississauga, ONT (St. Paul's) 6 - Rika Geyser 5-11 165 Jr. Pretoria, South Africa (Waterbof) 5 - Vanessa Tavalero 5-8 167 Sr. Sacramento, CA (Del Campo) 4 - Anna Mickelson 6-0 187 So. Bellevue, WA (Newport) 3 - Lindsey Horton 5-7 175 Sr. Olympia, WA (Olympia) 2 - Theresa Nygren-Birkholz 5-11 159 Sr. Seattle, WA (Garfield) bow - Nicole Rogers 5-8 154 Jr. Larkspur, CA (Redwood)
Head coach: Jan Harville (13th year at UW) Assistant coach: Erin O'Connell (third year at UW)
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE HENLEY ROYAL REGATTA, VISIT THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE: http://www.hrr.co.uk/