Oct. 17, 2009
SEATTLE -- The Washington crew program will race both a men's and women's varsity eight Sunday at the 45th annual Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston.
The men's varsity eight is the defending champion, and is looking to become the first consecutive winner since Navy earned four straight in 1983. The women's eight took sixth place last year, but finished second among NCAA teams.
The Head of the Charles is an experience unique to rowing. Billed as the largest two-day rowing event in the world, the regatta will feature 45 races on the Charles River, with more than 8,000 athletes competing. In the past, the event has attracted up near 300,000 spectators on the banks of the meandering 3.2 mile river course, which stretches from Boston University's DeWolfe Boathouse, under the iconic Eliot Bridge before finishing near Northeastern University's Henderson Boat House.
Both crews will race in the talent-rich Championship Eight portion of the draw, with the men taking the water first at 1:20 (PST). The women will follow at 1:35 (PST). The men's eight will begin their race first, which is an honor reserved for the previous champion. But rowers will have more than just the course to contend with as rain and wind are expected in much of New England on Sunday.
Last year, the men's eight defeated a field of 37 boats in 14:28.087, which included Pac-10 Conference rival California, along with other NCAA crews and boats from around the world.
For complete information on the regatta, check out the official site of the Head of the Charles.