Outdoor Center News
Head of the Charles 2018 Recap and Results
Last Updated: 23.Oct.2018
After a whirlwind weekend in Boston, the 54th Head of the Charles is complete! The entire rowing world converges on the Charles River every year during the third weekend of October, and Craftsbury is no exception. Blustery winds and (mostly) blue skies marked the event, which saw nearly 11,000 racers negotiating the bridges and turns of the infamous three-mile course.
Sculling staff and GRP rowers had a fantastic time both racing and working the tent in the bustling finish line area, handing out nearly 80 dozen cookies and chatting with tons of past and future campers. We also raffled off a free week of camp; we’ll be announcing the winner soon.
Now, to the racing:
First up on Saturday was Director of Sculling Troy Howell, racing in the Men’s Grand Master Singles. His seventh-place finish in a field of 52 easily secured him a guaranteed entry for next year’s regatta.
Also on Saturday morning, Dick Dreissigacker and Judy Geer raced in the Senior Master Eights categories, for Motley Rowing Club and 1980 Rowing Club, respectively. Motley finished 35th out of 62 crews, and 1980 came in 23rd out of 44 crews.
Saturday afternoon features the championship sculling events, which kicked off with the Men’s Champ Doubles. GRP’s Nathan Lado and Wes Vear kicked it off indeed, racing to a first-place finish. Their winning time of 17:02 bested the second-place finishers and GRP alums Peter and Tom Graves by five seconds. Also in the event was a double of Mats Terwiesch and Josh Bilchik, two of our 2018 U23 alums. They placed eighth overall, and earned gold medals as the top lightweight double within the event.
In the Women’s Champ Doubles, Jen Forbes raced with GRP alum Elizabeth Sonshine to a close second-place finish behind ARION, less than 1.5 seconds back. Jen also jumped into a Director’s Challenge Mixed 8+ on Sunday and a won a second medal, this time gold. (Important note: she was dressed as Olaf, the snowman from Frozen, for her victorious run down the course.)
The Women’s Champ Singles saw Alex Spaulding and new GRP rower Taylor Goetzinger race to 11th and 20th places, respectively. The field featured numerous top US and international scullers, but no one was surprised to see Charles River local Gevvie Stone taking her record ninth win in the event. Jenny McIlvane raced in the Women’s Lightweight Singles, finishing in ninth place.
The Men’s Champ Singles also featured a wickedly competitive field, with some of the fastest US men, including our own John Graves and Ben Davison (rowing for his school, the University of Washington) mixing it up with the biggest international names (Mahe Drysdale, Damir Martin, and Robbie Manson, to name a few). As the results started to roll in, it appeared that first place would go to local Andy Campbell, American lightweight sculler and course record holder, with John holding in second place. But this is head racing, and nothing is set until the last sculler has crossed the line. As the wakes settled, it became clear that Ben Davison had rowed through the field from bow #26 to take the win. Ben’s gold-medal time was 17:55, Andy Campbell went 18:00 for silver, and John finished in 18:11 for bronze.
Sunday was a quieter day on the racing front for Craftsbury, but Fleet Manager Erika Sloan raced to ninth place out of 22 in the Women’s Club Singles, and GRP sculler Lucas Bellows traded two oars for one to hop in with some New York Athletic Club athletes in the Men’s Champ Fours, placing 12th.
Congratulations to all who raced, including the myriad other Craftsbury-connected crews out on the Charles this weekend. Well rowed by all!
The GRP next races from November 3-4 at the USRowing Fall Speed Order, a chance to test speed on the erg and in singles before winter training begins in earnest. John Graves is currently in the lead for the Lotman Challenge, and will also head to Philadelphia to contest the final leg at the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta next weekend.