June 19, 2008
CHERRY HILL, N.J. - The MIT varsity lightweight eight traveled to Cherry Hill, N.J. to compete in the IRA Regatta from June 5-7. The Engineers finished comfortably ahead of Duquesne University in the petite final en route to eighth place in college rowing's supreme event.
The team began racing on Friday morning in a heat against Wisconsin, Georgetown, University of Central Florida, and Duquesne, with the top two finishers moving on to the grand final. Wisconsin and Georgetown, who eventually finished first and second overall at the championship, took the top two places in the heat. MIT finished fourth, behind UCF and 12 seconds ahead of fifth-place Duquesne.
The varsity eight raced in the repechage on Friday afternoon for a second chance to make the grand final of the regatta. Once again, MIT finished fourth with a time of 7:04.3. Only the top two places moved on to the grand final. Competing in the petite final on Saturday afternoon, MIT had a strong start, but could not match UCF through the race. MIT crossed the line second, to ultimately finish eighth in the national championship regatta.
According to head coach, Claire Kostrzewski, “this crew came along very well during the course of the regatta – improving with each race through the weekend. We are looking forward to next year with the return of five athletes from the varsity eight as well as our talented freshman class who came in third at the EAWRC in May.”
The IRA marked the final event of the 2007-2008 season for the lightweight women.