Before you have even made it to brunch, the Cal men’s and women’s crew teams will be across the country and competing in their first major races of the season. This Sunday, the Bears will be racing in the Head of the Charles Regatta. They will be sending athletes to compete in the men’s championship fours race and men’s and women’s championship eights races.
The Head of the Charles is an annual two-day regatta that takes place on the Charles River in Boston. Containing thousands of rowers at every skill level, this regatta is now the largest in the world. This rowing event uses the head racing style, which means that boats start at 15 second intervals and are timed over the three-mile distance. The times are ranked after everyone has completed the course to determine the standings.
“It is not necessarily the best boat or the best eight, but we came up with a couple lineups that we thought would benefit some of these guys as they start racing as adults,” said Cal men’s head coach Mike Teti. “We have a bunch of guys who were on varsity last year and we have some good new people, so I think it’s a good mix.”
With a solid balance of freshmen recruits and veteran varsity rowers, not only from California, but from across the country and all over the world, it seems like the men’s team will continue to be strong for the next few years. For the last six seasons, however, the men’s team has come in second to Washington in the Pac-12 Championships, which they will be facing this weekend in a chance for redemption.
“I think there is great parity within men’s rowing right now. There are six to seven schools that are at a very high level,” Teti said. “I think we will be competitive with all the other groups out there.”
As for the Cal women, their season looks equally promising, as they ended last season ranked second in the nation. Their biggest collegiate competition this weekend will most likely be Brown and the University of Virginia, who were ranked first and fourth in the nation respectively last season.
“Traditionally (the women) haven’t gone to the Head of the Charles, but it will be great to go there as a team,” Teti said. “We are really looking forward to it.”
Contact Lucy Schaefer at [email protected]