October 7, 2008

Fall Season Preview: Heavyweight Crew Preparing For Opening Weekend

Oct. 7, 2008

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Yale's heavyweight crews hit the water this weekend with two exciting races: the Head of the Housatonic at home, and the Head of the Genesee in Rochester, N.Y. These two races mark the beginning of the fall racing season that will run throughout the month of October, culminating with the Princeton Chase on Oct. 26. For this opening weekend the team will split in two, with roughly one half going to Rochester and the other half racing at the Gilder Boathouse in Derby, Conn.

Andrew Collard '09 has been selected the captain of the 2008-2009 heavyweight crew and is excited to lead the team through a successful year. This year's team is one of the largest in recent memory.

"We lost only four seniors, but they were very important to our team. We hope to try to replace them as best as we can and improve on our performances of last year." said Collard.

Just one look at the roster verifies that the Bulldog varsity squad will have the manpower to field at least four eights this fall. The class of 2011, which took fourth at the IRA National Championship in the freshman eight, is returning all members and adding strength and competition to the varsity team.

"Practices are very competitive. With a team this big, everyone is fighting for their spots," commented Collard. "We hope this competitive spirit will carry over to our races," he added.

Yale crews will get their first taste of racing this weekend against crews from Brown and Western Ontario.

The pair of opening races this weekend will kick off three consecutive weekends of racing in four states. Following the Housatonic and Genesee regattas, Yale crews will travel to Boston, Mass. for the 44th Head of the Charles Regatta on Oct. 19. This is easily the most competitive race of the fall season and will feature most East Coast college crews along with national team and international crews. The following weekend will see the Bulldogs in Princeton, N.J. for the Princeton Chase on Oct. 26. Head coach John Pescatore has also mentioned the possibility of his crews racing in the Foot of the Charles in late November.

Report filed by Dominique Fenton `10, Yale Sports Publicity

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