CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Sammamish Rowing took the east coast by storm at the 53rd annual Head of the Charles Regatta with course records and two gold-medal finishes. The world’s largest two-day rowing event drew over 10,000 competitors to blue skies and blazing-fast conditions. Sammamish had six crews racing at the 2017 regatta.
The Sammamish men’s masters fours dominated the internationally-competitive race and brought home gold medals from the Men’s Grand Master Fours (60+) and Men’s Master Fours (40+) events – the first Head of the Charles championship ever for SRA. The grand master crew with coxswain and SRA alumnus Kate Grimaldi, Scott Merritt, Kevin Hansen, Mark Norelius, and Marc McGinnis set a course record of 18:04.515, beating the previous record by nearly 10 seconds.
In the master fours race, the crew with coxswain and SRA alumnus Lia Roberds, Jonathan Kallay, William Senenko, Tyler Simpson, and Andrew Lynch beat the previous course record by just over two seconds and finished over 30 seconds ahead of second place Zwolsche from the Netherlands with a time of 16:59.544. “I was very pleased with the results,” said coach Tom Woodman. “It was a huge accomplishment for SRA to win its first ever gold medal, and to do that in two events was outstanding. We have been trying for many years to find that level of success at the HOCR and it was nice to finally achieve that goal. The depth of this team is amazing - the way they push each other, fill holes when people were absent, and form competitive boats to do pieces against the HOCR group was critical to our success.”
The Women's Senior Master Fours (50+) and Men's Senior Master Eights (50+) also finished strong, placing 9th out of 46 women’s fours and 11th out of 57 master eights.
In the Women’s Senior Master Eights (50+) event, Sammamish finished in 6th place with a time of 18:26.33 and less than five seconds separating 2nd through 6th place. “The crew had a stellar performance at HOCR this past weekend,” said coach Molly Lawrence. “We have been working very hard in preparation for the regatta and the ladies stepped up and put down their fastest time yet. We are excited to build off this momentum and come back stronger and tougher next fall.”
For the final event of the weekend, Sammamish raced in the Directors' Challenge Mixed Eight for the second consecutive year. The crew finished 13th out of 40 amongst a deep field of national and international competitors. “This year’s weather and calm conditions made for a lot of new course records,” said coach Lee Henderson. “The Directors challenge Mixed 8 laid down their best race of the season and really rowed well, maintaining an average split we’ve been working towards. It’s been a great journey with lots of preparation and a very solid result to show for it against some of the best in the world.”
Sammamish will cap off the fall racing season on November 5 at the Head of the Lake regatta in Seattle, WA. For more on Sammamish Rowing, follow the team on Facebook and Instagram (@sammamishrowing).
Eliza Dickson comes to SRA following coaching stints at Oklahoma City University, Sarasota Crew, and the Pinecrest School.
Eliza Dickson will take over as the Sammamish Rowing Association Head Men's Coach for the junior program, SRA Executive Director Steven Freygang announced Tuesday. Eliza will join Sammamish following four years with Oklahoma City University where the team saw best-ever finishes at the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Regatta (SIRA) and Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA). Prior to Oklahoma, Dickson led Sarasota Crew to several state and regional championships as the varsity boy's coach, and a national championship in 2013.
"I am thrilled to have Eliza joining our team," Freygang said. "Her passion for the sport and commitment to developing successful student-athletes is really impressive. Eliza's resume speaks for itself, but it was really her alignment with our core values that made it clear she was the right fit for Sammamish. I was coaching in Florida against Eliza while she was at Sarasota Crew. I saw the program rising first hand. It was really amazing. Sarasota pioneered a new way of doing things, and I think Eliza will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to Sammamish."
Eliza was hired following a national search for a permanent head coach. Eliza rowed at Washington College under legendary coach Mike Davenport where she earned a degree in Political Science in 1996. Just after graduating, Eliza began coaching at Annapolis Rowing Club, followed by coaching positions at Miami Rowing Center, the Pine Crest School, and Sarasota Crew. Sarasota saw explosive growth and success under Eliza's direction, leading to multiple state and regional championships. From 2010 to 2013, the Sarasota Varsity 8+ placed 9th, 4th, 2nd, and 1st at the USRowing Youth National Championships.
"I am humbled and grateful for this opportunity and excited to lead the junior boys, as well as assist with our masters program and work to develop future programming with our senior-leadership staff. After 4 years learning and growing as a collegiate coach, and wonderful opportunities provided to me by the Oklahoma City Boathouse Foundation, I realized I truly missed both the challenges and rewards of coaching and developing junior rowers," Dickson said. "In just a brief visit to Sammamish, I saw a professional organization with supportive leadership from its board and senior staff who all share the same values, commitment, and passion that I have for rowing and coaching."
Dickson's background also includes High Performance and Development coaching at the Oklahoma City National High Performance Center, in addition to coaching masters and junior rowers at the Craftsbury Sculling Center in Vermont. In 2015, she was named the Women's Coach for the US Team at the World University Games in South Korea.
SRA GALA: THE RISE
HONOR THE PAST | CELEBRATE THE PRESENT | SHAPE THE FUTURE
February 10, 2017 | 6:30 p.m.
Register for the SRA Gala today to help raise funds for new equipment in 2017. Since 2015, SRA has purchased nine new boats with your support! Help expand the fleet and celebrate a monumental year at SRA with your teammates, friends, and family.
Registration Open Now: CLICK HERE to log in and purchase your tickets.
$100 Adults | $50 Juniors*
Prices increase on January 20
*Juniors must be accompanied by a parent
1730 10th Avenue NW
Issaquah, WA 98027
It has been a great couple weeks for Sammamish racing at both the Head of the Charles and Portland Fall Classic. At the Head of the Charles, we had 12 entries, with 7 of them placing in the top 10 in their event.
The Head of the Charles Regatta started in 1965 and has been a staple of fall racing season for many crews nationally and internationally. Over 11,000 athletes compete for top prizes in a 3 mile course on the Charles River. It is an incredible race, and Sammamish has 12 entries this year which include Men's Youth 8+, Women's Youth 8+, Women's Senior Master 8+ (50+), 2 Men's Senior Master 4+s (50+), 2 Men's Master 4+s (40+), Women's Senior Master 4+ (50+), Women's Master 4+ (40+), Men's Master 8+ (40+), DC Mixed 8+, and DC Mixed 2x. Keep up to date with the race and the results at www.hocr.org
We’re having a party … and everyone is coming! The Grand Opening of the boathouse on September 25 will be SRA’s biggest event ever, and we’re expecting well over 700 people. It will be a great, big, family reunion. Below are some logistics that will help make an event of this size go smoothly.
Parking at SRA
Parking at Marymoor
Junior Parents! Come join us for some great events this fall and get to know the coaches and other parents within the Sammamish Rowing community.