April 26, 2010
Setting the Scene: Windermere Cup
Windermere Real Estate and the University of Washington will host one of the most unique rowing events in the entire world - the 24th annual Windermere Cup - on May 1. Races are slated to begin at 10:20am with the featured races beginning at 11:05am. Joining the Huskies in the two Windermere Cup races are two marquee opponents in Oxford University and Syracuse University. Both Husky crews have won their last three Windermere Cup events.
Windermere Cup On TV/Radio
Regional sports network FSN Northwest, 950 KJR AM, Tri-Film Productions, Inc. and Windermere Real Estate will produce and televise a one-hour special featuring the 24th annual Windermere Cup.
The telecast will debut on FSN Northwest Saturday, May 1 at 7:30 p.m. with additional airings throughout the week. The event will also feature a live stream through the subscription-based Dawg Channel All-Access on GoHuskies.com and a separate broadcast will air live on the radio throughout the Puget Sound by 950 KJR AM, with play-by-play provided by Bob Rondeau. Also, the race will be broadcast live on a jumbotron at the Steward's Enclosure on the banks of the Montlake Cut.
The official Twitter page of the Husky Crew will also have live in-race updates: http://Twitter.com/UWHuskyCrew. Post-race recap will be available on GoHuskies.com
About The Windermere Cup
The Windermere Cup/Opening Day races are annually attended by thousands of spectators, both on land and in boats along Montlake Cut and Lake Washington. The featured races' sponsorship by Windermere Real Estate, Inc. began in 1987 and draws major national and international crews each year to the Windermere Cup races. The Opening Day Regatta has been a traditional part of the opening of yachting season since 1970 and women's intercollegiate races were added to the schedule in 1976. The regatta is the preliminary event to the annual yacht club parade, signaling the beginning of boating season in the Northwest. The Cup itself is European cut-crystal and is roughly 14" tall, weighing a little over seven pounds. The base of the Cup, engraved with the name of each winning crew since 1987, is granite and weighs around 25 pounds.
Huskies Coaching Staff
Now in his third year as coach of the men's program, Michael Callahan is coming off one of the most successful seasons the program has seen in its storied history. 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 a historic undefeated season in 2009.
The women's team is coached by the legendary Bob Ernst, who made the switch after a 20-year stint coaching the men's program. Ernst is no stranger to women's rowing, having shepherded the program to six National Championships from 1981-87. Ernst also has significant Olympics and International experience and has been involved with some facet of the UW program since 1974. In 1984, he coached the Gold Medal winning eight in the Los Angeles Olympic Games. Nicole Minett manages all coaching duties for the novice women.
Last Time Out
The white oars of Washington had a tremendous showing at the Redwood Shores, taking 6 of 8 races against archrival Cal. The men's varsity eight defeated the Golden Bears for the fourth season in a row, and set a course record in the process and capped a 4-0 sweep for the program. The women's crew split with Cal, winning the novice eight and the varsity four races. In the varsity eight race, the Huskies absorbed a fast start from the Golden Bears to pull nearly even after the 1,000-meter mark. The Cal Dual was the latest in a series of strong rows from both teams all spring. The men's crew remains undefeated, having swept Stanford, Oregon State and Washington State along with their archrivals from Berkeley. The women's program has enjoyed success as well, with a 15-4 record this spring.
The Huskies' home course is Montlake Cut, a 2,000-meter course that begins parallel to the floating bridge at Evergreen Point in Lake Washington and runs east to west through the Montlake Cut and to the finish line near the mouth of Portage Bay in Lake Union.
Each year after the Class Day Regatta, the Huskies select two captains to lead their program into the brunt of the spring season. This year, Ty Otto and Adrienne Martelli will represent their boats and sport the star on Washington's traditional white oars.
The Windermere Cup Field
The 24th annual Windermere Cup will feature a pair of elite opponents the for top-ranked Washington men - Oxford & Syracuse University. The Dark Blues are one of the founders of intercollegiate rowing, which traces its origins back to 1856 and the historic Oxford-Cambridge races on the Thames. This year, Oxford lost to Cambridge in the 156th annual Boat Race, allowing the Light Blues to come from behind to win in 17:35.
The Oxford Blue Boat is made up of a collection of postgraduates, many of whom reached incredible success at the collegiate level. Current freshmen coach Luke McGee rowed for Oxford, as did oarsman Ante Kusurin (`06). Syracuse brings an experienced boat to Seattle, and should present a formidable challenge. The Orange are ranked No. 10 according to the USRowing Collegiate poll. Their coach, Dave Reischman, is a native of the Pacific Northwest, having grown up in Arlington, Wash.
The same programs will be featured in the women's races for No. 9 UW. Syracuse has been a consistent performer in the Big East this season, placing third in the conference's championship event on April 25 in Worcester, Mass.
The Oxford women's boat club won the 65th annual Boat Race this year, defeating Cambridge on March 29.
The other schools included in the Windermere Cup are Oregon State, who will race in the men's Erickson Cascade Cup and Western Washington, who will compete in the women's Erickson Cascade Cup.
2009 Windermere Cup
It was a banner weekend for both crews at the 2009 Windermere Cup, which featured the first opponent from South America in the event's history. The men's crew topped Oregon State and Brazil, crossing the finish line in a blistering time of 5:39.5. On the women's side, the crew took control from the beginning and came through with a win in 6:29.4.
Where to Watch
Spectators are encouraged to view the Windermere Cup races from the shores of the Montlake Cut on Saturday, May 1. This is a free community event with parking available at surrounding University of Washington lots. Parking in the large Montlake Lot (E-1) is $7. Please note that the Montlake Bridge will be closed to traffic from 9:40 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The races begin at 10:20 a.m. and are followed by the boat parade. The Montlake Bridge will be raised and remain open during the boat parade.
Home Course Advantage
The Huskies have had extraordinary success in past Windermere Cup races, taking advantage of the home course and vocal support from the large crowds. Washington was victorious in 17 of the last 19 Windermere Cup men's competitions while the UW women won 14 of the last 18 titles.
Summer Camp Selections
In March, four Husky women were invited to the U23 National Team camp. Senior Jennifer Park, junior Kerry Simmonds and sophomore Ariana Tanimoto were all tapped to attend the camp, which will be held in San Diego and Princeton, N.J., this summer. Senior Adrienne Martelli was selected to join the elite camp. The rowers are competing for spots in the women's 8+ and 4x boats that will race at the FISA U23 World Championships in Belarus on June 22-25.