Updated May 3, 2005
SEATTLE - Windermere Real Estate and the University of Washington have assembled another sensational field for the 2005 edition of the Windermere Cup regatta, including an appearance by men's and women's national teams from the Czech Republic.
The 19th-annual Windermere Cup takes place Saturday, May 7 at 10:20 a.m. on the Montlake Cut to start the Seattle Yacht Club Opening Day festivities. The racing schedule is enhanced by the addition of the Olympic Challenge Cup, a pairs race featuring four members of the 2004 U.S. Olympic men's eight that won the gold medal. Current Washington men's intern coaches Matt Deakin and Bryan Volpenhein are teaming up to take on Olympic teammates Daniel Beery and Beau Hoopman in the match race that will start immediately before the men's and women's Windermere Cup championship events. The races will be broadcast live in the Puget Sound area on KJR Radio (AM 950).
Windermere Real Estate will commence the festivities with a fireworks display over Lake Washington's Union Bay, Friday, May 6 at 9:30 p.m. The Windermere Cup's Sky Light Celebration will be arranged to music broadcast live on KMTT FM (103.7 "The Mountain").
Competing against third-ranked Washington in the men's eight-oared race are No. 9 Cornell University and the Czech Republic's under-23 national team. This is the inaugural opening day appearance for the Big Red of Cornell, their first opportunity to row the unique 2,000-meter Lake Washington course through the Montlake Cut that is typically lined with thousands of spectators in boats and on shore.
Joining the 12th-ranked Washington women's varsity eight are the national team from the Czech Republic along with Cornell. A crew from Czechoslovakia competed in the Windermere Cup in 1991 and won the women's main event.
The Windermere Cup races are the headline events of the 36th-annual Opening Day Regatta and are held in conjunction with the Seattle Yacht Club's annual celebration of the opening of yachting season. This year there are 20 events on the racing schedule, including races for masters and junior crews.
The Opening Day Regatta has been a traditional part of the ceremonies surrounding the beginning of yachting season since 1970, and the women's intercollegiate races were added to the schedule in 1976. The regatta is the preliminary event to the Seattle Yacht Club Opening Day Boat Parade. The theme for this year's boat parade is "Sentimental Journey."
The Windermere Cup regatta, along with the Seattle Yacht Club Opening Day Boat Parade, combine to produce one of Seattle's largest free public events of the year marking the beginning of the region's much-anticipated boating season. Large crowds annually line the shores of "The Cut" and position their boats along the racing and parade course to witness the stirring displays of competition and pageantry.
Spectators are encouraged to view the Windermere Cup races from the shores of the Montlake Cut on Saturday, May 7. This is a free community event with parking available at surrounding University of Washington lots. The Montlake Bridge will be closed to car and pedestrian traffic from 9:40 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. The races begin at 10:20 a.m. and are followed by the boat parade.
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 13 of the last 14 Windermere Cup men's competitions while the UW women won 11 of the last 13 titles.
"Windermere Real Estate has been the proud sponsor of the Windermere Cup for the past 19 years and we are once again honored to bring this regatta to the people of the Puget Sound," said Geoff Wood, Windermere Real Estate chief executive officer. "The addition of the Windermere Cup's Sky Light Celebration adds yet another layer of excitement to this event. It's a well-deserved tribute to the participating athletes who travel from around the world - as well the countless local fans who have made the Windermere Cup a tradition of their own."
For many visiting athletes, the Windermere Cup marks their first visit to the United States and Windermere Real Estate takes pride in providing a unique experience for these participants. As part of its generous sponsorship, Windermere offers transportation and accommodation for visiting teams along with sightseeing trips, mementos, and opportunities to give back to the local community through several programs, including a special visit to Children's Hospital.
Coinciding with the Windermere Cup celebration is the grand re-opening of the University of Washington's Conibear Shellhouse, which underwent a complete renovation. Located on the shores of Lake Washington, the shellhouse has served as the home for Husky Crew since it was originally constructed in 1949. The facility also houses UW's academic services and features an expanded dining facility with spectacular views of the water. Every area in the building was remodeled and updated, increasing space by 75 percent to 47,250 square feet. Over 19,000 square feet are dedicated to the rowing program with new team ergometer training rooms, locker rooms, improved offices and an additional shell storage bay. The architectural design features open, roomy spaces, with high glassed walls, natural lighting, and a larger balcony facing Lake Washington.
2005 Windermere Cup Field
Cornell University, Czech Republic, University of Washington
Viewing the Windermere Cup's Sky Light Celebration
The Windermere Cup's Sky Light Celebration will be launched on Friday, May 6 at 9:00 p.m. from the center of Lake Washington's Union Bay and will be visible from all surrounding areas. Windermere will host a free public viewing event at the University of Washington's men's baseball field. Located on the shores of Lake Washington, just north of Husky Stadium and one block from the new Conibear shell house, spectators are encouraged to fill the stands of the baseball stadium and enjoy the fireworks and choreographed music. Gates open at 8:00 p.m. and parking is available in the E-1 parking lot.
About Windermere Real Estate & Rowing
Windermere's heritage of supporting collegiate crew racing began 19 years ago when the company sponsored the first annual Windermere Cup regatta in Seattle. Held in partnership with the University of Washington, the Windermere Cup has become one of the largest community events in Seattle, welcoming national and international crew teams for exciting competition while commencing the official opening day of boating season for the waters of the Puget Sound. In 2003, Windermere expanded its involvement with the sport and launched, in conjunction with Stanford University, the Windermere Collegiate Crew Classic at Redwood Shores.
About Windermere Real Estate
Windermere Real Estate is the largest residential real estate brand in the West with more than 250 offices and 7,000 agents in eight Western states and British Columbia. Windermere has redefined the way real estate is practiced through its industry-leading agent tools and technologies and its commitment to the communities it serves. www.windermere.com