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National Championship On The Line At 109th IRA Championships
Release: 05/31/2011
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May 31, 2011

IRA Championships Release Get Acrobat Reader | Watch the IRA Championships

INTERCOLLEGIATE ROWING ASSOCIATION (IRA) CHAMPIONSHIPS
Thursday - Saturday, June 2 - 4
Cooper River • Camden, N.J.

Racing Schedule (Pacific Times listed)

THURSDAY, JUNE 2 
5:00-30 am - Varsity 8 heats
6:00-30 am - Second Varsity 8 heats
6:45-7:15 am - Freshmen 8 heats
7:30-8:00 am - Open 4 heats
8:15-45 am - Varsity 4 heats

FRIDAY, JUNE 3 
6:30 am -Open 4 semifinal
6:45 am - Open 4 semifinal
7:00 am - Varsity 4 semifinal
7:15 am - Varsity 4 semifinal
8:15 am - Freshmen 8 semifinal
8:30 am - Freshmen 8 semifinal
8:45 am - Second Varsity 8 semifinal
9:00 am - Second Varsity 8 semifinal
9:15 am - Varsity 8 semifinal
9:30 am - Varsity 8 semifinal

SATURDAY, JUNE 4 
5:57 am - Varsity 4 Petite Final
6:09 am - Varsity 4 Grand Final
6:21 am - Freshmen 8 Third Final
6:33 am - Second Varsity 8 Third Final
6:45 am - Freshmen 8 Petite Final
7:00 am - Freshmen 8 Grand Final
7:15 am - Second Varsity Eight Petite Final
7:30 am - Second Varsity Eight Grand Final
8:15 am - Varsity Eight Third Final
9:00 am - Varsity Eight Petite Final
9:15 am - Varsity Eight Grand Final

Setting the Scene: IRA Championships
The No. 1 Washington men's crew team will take on the nation's fastest crews at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships on June 2-4 in Camden, N.J. On the line is the program's 14th National Championship, which would be the second in three years for the Huskies. The IRAs are the toughest test in collegiate rowing, a taxing three-day event in often steamy conditions on the Cooper River. The other 17 teams invited to the annual include Boston, Brown, California, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Georgetown, Gonzaga, Harvard, Navy, Penn, Princeton, Stanford, Syracuse, UC-San Diego, Wisconsin and Yale.

Live Results
A recap of each day of racing will be available on GoHuskies.com. The team's official Twitter feed (@UWHuskyCrew), will also provide on-the-scene analysis and updates from the Cooper River course. All three days of racing will be streamed live by Princeton: http://crew.princeton.edu/content/live_video. The stream is free but donations are encouraged.

Seeking Redemption
The Huskies won three of five Grand Finals at the IRA Championships in 2010, taking Gold Medals in the second varsity eight, freshmen eight and varsity four on the Cooper River. But it was the one they didn't that haunted the team throughout the offseason. Despite coming into the race undefeated, the Huskies lost to No. 2 California by less than a seat in the Grand Final, giving the National Championship to the Golden Bears. Nevertheless, the Huskies won their fourth straight Ten Eyck Championship (team points trophy), which was the eighth overall for the school. Should the UW win the Ten Eyck this season, it would set a collegiate record for most consecutive wins with five.

The Men's Trophies
The varsity eight competes for the Varsity Challenge Cup, which ultimately determines the National Champions. The silver trophy was first presented in 1898. Washington has won the Cup 13 times, dating back to 1923. The second varsity competes for the Kennedy Challenge Cup, originally presented in 1899. The Huskies claimed that award in 2004, 2005 and 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. The freshmen race for the Steward's Cup, first awarded in 1900. Washington won the 2006 freshmen eight championship, and then again in 2009 and 2010. UW completed a sweep of the three premier eights races in 1950, 1997, and then again in 2009.

Proving Their Speed
The No. 1 Huskies have established themselves as the fastest crew in the regular season, with the varsity eight bringing home wins against Oregon State, Cal, Stanford and Cambridge, in addition to their second straight Pac-10 Championship. The only UW crew to suffer defeats this season has been the freshmen eight, which lost to the Golden Bears in the Cal Dual, and then again to their archrivals in the Pac-10 Championships on Lake Natoma.

IRA Racing Format
Competition at the IRA Regatta consists of heats, repechage (second chance races), semifinals and finals. In the varsity eight heat, the two fastest crews advance to the semis. This is the same format with the freshmen eight and the varsity four. In the second varsity eight and the open eight, the top three advance. The rest are relegated to the repechage race, where the top three boats will gain entry back into the semifinals. The crews outside the top three will race in the Third Final. In the semis, the top three crews advance to the six-boat Grand Final. The remaining crews will race in the Petite Final.

Washington Boat-By-Boat Preview
> Varsity Eight - Ranked No. 1 ... Undefeated entering IRA for fourth time in five seasons ... Pac-10 Champion ... UW's last loss came in the grand final of the 2010 IRA Championships ... Huskies seek their 13th IRA title ... UW varsity lineup features four seniors, four juniors and a sophomore.

> Second Varsity Eight - Defending IRA champion ... Undefeated this season, culminating in a 2011 Pac-10 Championship ...The Husky 2V8 has won gold medals in the last four IRA Championships.

> Freshman Eight - Two-time defending IRA Champions ... defending Temple Cup champion at Henley ... picked up wins this season against Oregon State and Windermere Cup.

> Varsity Four - Undefeated this season ... looking to capture second straight IRA title ... UW won back-to-back IRA varsity four championships in 2003 and 2004, as well as 2008.

> Open Four - Coming off a bronze medal finish at the 2010 IRA Championships ... defeated Wisconsin by less than a second to seal UW's fourth win of the 2009 IRAs ... has not raced this season.

About The Huskies
The Huskies were ranked No. 1 and have continued to live up to their lofty billing throughout the season. Washington began the season with a win at the prestigious Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston, one of the pre-eminent fall distance races in the world. UW nearly set the course record on the Charles River, which was set in 1997 in an eight featuring current Huskies coach Michael Callahan.
Once the Huskies reconvened for the spring season, they continued their run of success on the water. Washington began with a victory at Oregon State, the Huskies first trip to the Willamette Valley to face their Pac-10 rivals. The program followed it up by taking three of four races against archrival Cal in the 100th running of the Cal Dual; the only loss coming in the freshmen eight classification.
After sweeping the 25th annual Windermere Cup (which saw the varsity eight pick up open-water victories against Stanford and international guest Cambridge), the team secured their biggest victory this season - a second straight Pac-10 Championship. On the 2,000-meter course at Lake Natoma, the Huskies won the V8, 2V8 and V4 races, the latter coming by a near 20-second margin.

IRA Regatta History
The Intercollegiate Rowing Association Regatta is the oldest collegiate crew championship in the country, and remains the premier event for national rowing honors for college men.
The first IRA Regatta, on June 24, 1895, was a four-miler between Columbia, the winner, Cornell and Pennsylvania. In 1923, Washington, coached by Rusty Callow, became the first Western school to win the IRA's featured varsity eight competition, followed by another victory in 1926. When Callow left Seattle to coach at Penn, he was succeeded by his assistant Al Ulbrickson, who continued the Huskies' winning ways with six IRA varsity eight titles in 1936, 1937, 1940, 1941, 1948 and 1950. His freshman, second varsity and varsity crews "swept the river" in 1936, 1937, 1948 and 1950. Bob Ernst ended a 20-year coaching run in 2007 with a national championship. Ernst, who now coaches the UW women, led his team to a modern-day sweep in 1997, when UW crews won all three races on the Cooper River.

About The UW Coaching Staff
Now in his four year as head coach of the men's program, Michael Callahan has continued the high level of success set by his predecessors. Last year, the Huskies captured their fourth straight Ten Eyck Trophy after taking three-of-five races in the Grand Finals. In 2009, Washington swept all three races at the IRA Regatta (and thereby earning the Ten Eyck Trophy), becoming the first team to accomplish the feat since the Huskies also did so in 1997. Prior to taking over the men's coaching position, Callahan served for three seasons as the Huskies freshmen coach. A 1996 graduate of the University of Washington, Callahan has also been an active member on the international level, where he's competed and coached. Luke McGee handles the coaching duties for the freshmen, who are coming off back-to-back undefeated seasons in 2009-10. Assistant coach Rick Gherst, a former assistant at Dartmouth, manages the varsity four boat.

Championship Experience
To say the Huskies have IRA pedigree is putting it mildly; 26 Washington rowers who made the trip have won gold medals. Outside of the 10 freshmen who are competiting at IRAs, there is just one oarsman who has not won a Grand Finals at IRAs. Washington's two-time IRA gold medalists include: Jeffrey Gibbs, Niles Garratt (three-time gold medalist), Michelle Darby, Robert Munn, Ambrose Puttmann, Jay Thompson, Nenad Bulicic and Valaree Fowler. Additionally, the Huskies have won at least one IRA event in the last 10 years.

PROJECTED WASHINGTON LINEUPS

Men's Varsity Four
cox - Seamus Labrum (Cape May, N.J. / Holy Spirit)
stroke - Ryan Schroeder (Thousand Oaks, Calif. / Thousand Oaks)
3 - Bede Clarke (Wallabi Point, Australia / Newington College)
2 - Jeff Gibbs (Cincinnati, Ohio / St. Xavier)
bow - Matt Zapel (Vashon Island, Wash. / Vashon)

Men's Open Four
cox - Valaree Fowler (Tallahassee, Fla. / Leon)
stroke - Casey Dobrowolski (Seattle, Wash. / University Prep)
3 - Niles Garratt (Lake Forest Park, Wash. / Shorecrest)
2 - Max Mannisto (Belmont, Calif. / Summit Prepatory)
bow - Andy Altig (Kirkland, Wash. / Bellevue Christian)

Men's Freshmen Eight
cox - Dennis Ferrer (Redmond, Wash. / Redmond)
stroke - Julian Svoboda (North Canterbury, New Zealand)
7 - Myles Neary (London, United Kingdom / Tiffin School)
6 - Sebastian Peter (Kassel, Germany / FG Kassel)
5 - Charles Herbert (Henley-on-Thames, United Kingdom / Pangbourne)
4 - Jack Shepherd (Weybridge, United Kingdom / Brooklands)
3 - Will Lytle (Seattle, Wash. / Roosevelt)
2 - Michael Thornton (Millbay, B.C. / Frances Kelsey)
bow - Jacob Grossman (Redmond, Wash. / Interlake)

Men's Second Varsity Eight
cox - Michelle Darby (North Andover, Mass. / Phillips Academy)
stroke - Dusan Milovanovic (Novi Sad, Serbia / Gymnasium Svetozar Markovic)
7 - Robert Munn (Redmond, Wash. / Redmond)
6 - Hannes Heppner (Berlin, Germany / Fachgymnasium Molln)
5 - Ambrose Puttmann (Cincinnati, Ohio / St. Xavier)
4 - Maxwell Weaver (Snohomish, Wash. / Snohomish)
3 - Mijo Rudelj (Kastel Ctalific, Croatia / Braca Radic)
2 - A.J. Brooks (Costa Mesa, Calif. / Newport Harbor)
bow - Jay Thompson (Boulder, Colo. / Fairview)

Men's Varsity Eight
cox - Samuel Ojserkis (Linwood, N.J. / Mainland Regional)
stroke - Nenad Bulicic (Belgrade, Serbia)
7 - Alex Bunkers (Maitland, Fla. / Winter Park)
6 - Hans Struzyna (Kirkland, Wash. / Bellevue Christian)
5 - Ty Otto (Seattle, Wash. / Thomas Jefferson)
4 - Conlin McCabe (Brockville, Ontario / BCI)
3 - Anthony Jacob (Vancouver, B.C. / Vancouver College)
2 - Mathis Jessen (Hamburg, Germany/Rudolf-Steiner-Hamburg-Bergstedt)
bow - Tom Lehmann (Rovershagen, Germany/Gymnasium an der Rostocker)

Washington Men's Crew
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