Photograph: Werner Schmidt

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Well Rowed, Harvard!

The results for the 144th Harvard – Yale Race ended with a clean sweep for Harvard. The freshman race was more or less sealed after one of the Yale oarsmen caught a crab. Yale’s second varsity chased Harvard down the 3-mile course in a thrilling race, but fell short to pass them. Harvard won with a 20 second margin in the varsity eight. The rain stayed away during the races, but the Thames water was rough and the wind hard. Harvard has now won nine of the 10 last races in the varsity boat, and it was the 40th win for Head Coach Harry Parker.

Not since 1999 have the races been rowed downstream, with the finish line just under the Gold Star Memorial Bridge. First, I had a problem finding my way down under the bridge on the New London side of the river, but after some turns here and there a parking area opened up. It was mostly Yale fans that had found their way to this spot on the shoreline. Among Yale oarsmen and their parents, brothers, sisters, and friends, I also caught a glimpse of rowing historian Tom Weil (Yale ’70) and local rowing celebrities. Weil wrote a very interesting history article about the Harvard - Yale Regatta programmes in this year's programme.

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