VIP's Cheer at Final Home Regatta

May 1, 2006

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - This past weekend marked the last home and regular season regatta for the MIT Openweight Women's crew. Present for the day's races against Boston University and Radcliffe were MIT President, Susan Hockfield and Director of Athletics, Candace Royer.

"It is so important to the student-athletes to have these very influential women come down to the boathouse and cheer them on," said men's lightweight coach Ted Bedford. "Early morning regattas don't attract a lot of attention or attendance from either the student body or administration. So when President Hockfield takes time out of her busy schedule to come watch the races, it sends a strong message of support to the entire program."

Women's Novice Eight
Radcliffe               6:58.0
Radcliffe 2N           7:06.5
BU                       7:12.9
MIT                     7:14.3

Women's Varsity Four 
BU "A"                 7:33.2 
Radcliffe NCAA 1   7:39.9 
MIT "A"               7:50.0 
Radcliffe NCAA 2   7:56.9  

Although the novice eight fell to both Radcliffe and Boston University, the margin between BU and MIT was less than two seconds.

Novice coach, Elizabeth Bond noted, "from our first race on April 1 when we beat BU by less than a second, it has been obvious that BU and MIT were very evenly matched. Throughout the race the two boats battled back and forth. Today BU won but we are looking forward to seeing them again at the Sprints."

The varsity four ran into some tough competition and rough water during their final event. They came off the line and stayed with the Radcliffe NCAA 1, Radcliffe 2, and BU "A" fours for the first 500 meters. By the 1000-meter mark the Engineers pulled ahead of the second Radcliffe boat, but were unable to stay up with either the BU A or the first Radcliffe boat.

"It may seem a disappointment to finish third out of four but for it was a terrific accomplishment," said head coach Alison Derrick. "All of last year these women placed last in every race that they competed in. To be able to say that they did not lose a single race this year is an important step in building the confidence of the crew and the future of this program."

The women's openweight and lightweight squads will travel to Cherry Hill, N.J., to compete in the EAWRC Sprints Championship on Sunday, May 14th. Final events begin at 1:00 PM. Alumni, parents and friends are encouraged to come out and cheer. Check this website for a schedule and directions.