June 26, 2012
SEATTLE - Madison Culp has now earned her stripes as a USA international.
The rising senior was selected for the USRowing women's eight that will compete at the Under-23 World Championships this summer in Trakai, Lithuania.
For Culp, this is a dramatic step in her growth as a talented oarswoman. The Seattle native has been a fixture in the Husky varsity eight since arriving on campus in 2010, but establishing credentials as an international competitor will only help the Huskies come next season. If you ask women's coach and rowing director Bob Ernst, Culp possesses the skill set to be the lynchpin of the varsity eight next year.
"Madison has all the tools to be a world-class rower," Ernst said.
Rowing on the U-23 team is also a reliable indicator of future success with USRowing. For example, current Olympian and Husky Adrienne Martelli ('10) progressed from U-23 competitor to USRowing stalwart. Now she'll scull a quadruple-oared boat at the 2012 Olympics next month in London.
Kerry Simmonds is another example of a Husky who is using her U-23 experience as a springboard towards a bigger role with the senior USRowing team.
Culp tried out for the U-23 team last summer but ultimately did not make the squad. Ernst said that moment is often make-or-break for collegiate rowers with national team aspirations. Instead of folding, Culp was driven to improve her skills in small boats. "She made a mature decision," Ernst said. "(Culp) worked really hard all year round. Part of accepting that is getting fitter, getting stronger and learning how to row better."
Culp is not the only Husky who will compete at U-23's this summer. Fiona Gammond and Ruth Whyman are still in selection for the United Kingdom's U-23 team. And there's a group of Husky oarsmen who are undergoing selection for the U-23's here in Seattle.
The U-23 Championships begin on July 11 at Trakai's Lake Galve.