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Head of the Schyulkill

It was a big weekend for Duke Men’s Rowing as the Blue Devils raced the Head of the Schuylkill. Duke Men’s Rowing journeyed to Philadelphia for with a fleet of 5 boats including a V4+, a V8+, a Nov 4+, a Nov 8+ and Alumni 8+.

Congratulations goes out to the entire team, especially the novice who raced for the very first time this fall season. With Duke’s Nov 8+ placing 13th out of 26 and Nov 4+ placed 18th, the Novice team started their racing season strong. Duke’s V4+ placed 32nd and V8+ places 8th in the Heavy Championship 8. Finally the Alumni 8+ placed 22nd.

Great job boys. Duke Men’s Rowing travels to Virginia next weekend as they compete at the Head of the Occoquan.

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Duke Men’s Rowing Competes at Head of the Charles

This past weekend, Duke Men’s Rowing traveled to Cambridge, Massachusetts to compete at the two-day Head of the Charles Regatta. The world’s largest head race, the Charles, attracts thousands of competitors from around the world.

With a bid for a V8+, Duke brought its varsity lineup:

Parker Poliakoff, Jamie Schwartz, Andrew Gauthier, Andrew Welcome, Michael Lee, Ramsey Sabbagh, Dharanish Gollamudi, Jeremy Zhang, Caroline Ayanian(c)

Finishing with a time of 16:54, Duke placed 30th of the 41 crews competing in Collegiate Men’s Eight event. With a strong start to the Fall season, Duke continues on next weekend in Philadelphia with the Head of the Schuylkill. Let’s Go Duke!


Taking Home the Gold at the SIRA Championship

The devils traveled west to Oak Ridge, TN to compete in the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association’s Championship Regatta.  The regatta serves as a regional championship regatta for club and varsity programs alike. Duke Men’s crew fielded a Novice 8+, a Novice 4+, Varsity 8+ and Varsity 4+.

On day 1, the Novice 4+ dominated their first heat and semi-final to advance onto the grand finals. The Varsity 4+ placed second in their semi to also advance onto the grand final with all top 4 boats within 3 seconds of each other. The Varsity 8+ moved onto the D final and the Novice 8+ did not move on.

On day 2 the V8+ placed 5th in their D final. The V4+ placed 4th in their grand final. The Nov4+ wins the SIRA Championship, becoming the first Duke boat to ever win SIRAs.

Congratulations to everyone this weekend. Great Job. Duke Men’s Crew races at Aberdeen Dad Vails on May 10th.


Varsity Lineups:

Varsity 4+: Parker Poliakoff, Jamie Schwartz, Andrew Norwood, Nabeel Hyder, Rory Makhema(c)

Varsity 8+: Dharanish Gollamudi, Matthew Nehls, In-Young Jo, Sunny Gill, David Short, Ramsey Sabbagh, Joseph Sullivan, Kavin Vasudevan, Maggie Chu(c)


Novice Lineups:

Novice 4+: Andrew Gauthier, Andrew Welcome, Repton Salisbury , Thomas De Angellis, Jamal Edwards(c)

Novice 8+: Bennie Su, Michael Li, Sean Roget, Adam Petty, Ritchie Ge, Jason Oettinger, Francois Thelot, Bryan Liu, Katlyn Walther(c)



Duke Crew Competes at the John Hunter Regatta

Duke Men’s Crew started off its Spring race season this past weekend at the John Hunter Regatta in Gainesville, GA.  The 27th annual regatta was held at the Lake Lanier Olympic Course, a 2000m 8-lane racecourse that was the venue for the 1996 Olympic Games. The varsity fielded a Lightweight 4+, a JV 4+, and Heavyweight 4+ and Heavyweight 8+ entries. The novice fielded a Novice 8+ and a Novice 4+.

The Lightweight 4+ placed 1st in their flight and the Novice 4+ placed second. The Novice 8+ placed second and the JV 4+ finished in 3rd. Finally the Heavyweight 8+ finished in 6th as well as the Heavyweight 4+.


Varsity Lineups:

Lightweight 4+ : Parker Poliakoff, Jamie Schwartz, Repton Salisbury, Nabeel Hyder, Rory Makhema(c)
Varsity 4+: Dharanish Gollamudi, Ramsey Sabbagh, Andrew Norwood, Boying Shui, Maggie Chu(c)
JV 4+: Joe Sullivan, Kavin Vasudevan, Suny Gill, David Short, Maggie Chu(c)
Varsity 8+: Rory Makhema(c), Parker Poliakoff, Jamie Schwartz, Dharanish Gollamudi, Ramsey Sabbagh, Andrew Norwood, Matt Nehls, Repton Salisbury, Nabeel Hyder


Novice Lineups:

Novice 4+: Andrew Gauthier, Andrew Welcome, Adam Petty, Sean Roget, Rebecca Bartleson (c)
Novice 8+: Rebecca Bartleson, In-Young Jo, Andrew Welcome, Andrew Gauthier, Sean Roget, Bennie Su, Thomas De Angelis, Michael Lee, Adam Petty(c)

Next up, Duke Men’s Crew heads out to Occoquan, VA for the Occoquan Sprints on April 7th where they face tough competition from UVA, Grand Valley State, UNC and more. Stay tuned for more race updates.

Row for Humanity 2013

This past Friday, Duke Crew and Duke’s Habitat for Humanity raised over $200 in the second year of Row for Humanity. The public rowing event in the Bryan Center drew attention from people across the Duke community and helped create awareness of two great clubs.

Senior Nabeel Hyder working hard for both Duke Crew and Habitat for Humanity

2013 – 2014 Elections

This past weekend, the team voted on the 2013-2014 Executive Board. As we welcome the new officers to their respective roles, we would also like to extend our sincere thanks to the incumbent officers for their dedication over the past year.

The 2013-2014 Executive Board are as follows:

President: Parker Poliakoff
Vice President: James Schwartz
Secretary: Rebecca Bartleson
Treasurer: Dharanish Gollamudi
Webmaster: Ritchie Ge
Equipment Manager: Repton Salisbury
Safety Chair: Andrew Welcome
Safety Officers: Jamal Edwards, In-Young Jo

Contact information is given on the “Executive Board” page. Please feel free to reach out to any member of the board if you have questions.

Duke Crew Competes at the Head of the Hooch

Over the weekend, Duke Crew finished their fall season at the Head of the Hooch in Chattanooga, TN. As the second largest regatta in the United States, the Hooch allowed the team to compete in a variety of events. The varsity fielded a Club 8+, a Lightweight 4+, a Champ 4+, and two Club 4+ entries. The novice fielded a Novice 8+ and a Novice 4+.

The Lightweight 4+ won 1st in their event, and the Club 8+ won 3rd in their event. The Champ 4+ placed 16th in their event. The Club 4+ A and Club 4+ B placed 10th and 26th, respectively. The Novice 4+ placed 4th in their event, and the Novice 8+ placed 27th in their event.

Varsity Lineups:

Duke V8: Poliakoff, Schwartz, Norwood, Sabbaugh, Borrey, Shui, Nehls, Hyder, Makhema (c)
Duke LWT4+: Poliakoff, Schwartz, Borrey, Hyder, Makhema (c)
Duke Champ V4+: Poliakoff, Schwartz, Norwood, Borrey, Makhema (c)
Duke Club V4+ (A): Shui, Nehls, Gill, Sullivan, Chu (c)
Duke Club V4+ (B): Short, Vasudevan, Giudice, Prasad, Duan (c)

With the fall results serving as evidence of the their hard work, the team heads to the gym to transition to winter training.

Duke Crew Competes at Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta, Prepares for ACRA Club Championships

On graduation, Duke Crew took to the water in Philadelphia to race at the Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta. The Dad Vail is the spring’s largest intercollegiate regatta and features crews from all corners of the nation, as well as select international crews. The Blue Devils fielded a Varsity Heavyweight Four with Cox and a Coxless Pair in the race.

The crew in the Four was the same at the SIRA regatta with no changes, featuring Duke’s top four rowers. Duke fell to Fordham and the University of Western Ontario in heats – Western Ontario went on to easily win the final.

“I thought we had a good first 1300 but couldn’t close the race out. We were in position to move on Fordham but made the task too complicated.” Head Coach Paul Menson said, “That’s the way the Four event is at the Dad Vail, though – it’s an event with 54 entries and only two advance from heats. We happened to get Western and Fordham despite the seed given to us from our effort at the SIRA regatta and we knew they’d be fast, but you need to find the will to win.”

The Devils also entered the Coxless Pair, comprised of Matthew Nehls and Nabeel Hyder. The pair was also eliminated in the heats, but posted the eighth fastest time of the morning.

“Those races hurt the most but are actually a good sign.” Menson said, “It stings when that happens, but the pair now knows that they have the speed to be able to compete. While we were disappointed with the result I was very happy with the effort – they did exactly what I asked them to do, and we were able to see where we measure in the field.”

While Duke was disappointed by their failure to advance, Menson felt that the experience of attending the Dad Vail was worth it: “The Aberdeen Dad Vail is like the spring festival for rowing, so attending it is a must for any collegiate rower. Our boats definitely want to advance but we’re a young team, so it’s a learning process. They’ll remember this regatta for the rest of their lives. It’s great for our athletes to be able to see what rowing is like at the higher levels, it gives them perspective on what we are working so hard to achieve.”

The Blue Devils close their post-season schedule with the American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA) Club Championship regatta in Gainesville, GA on Memorial Day weekend. The ACRA Club Championships is a championship regatta attended only by other club teams, leveling the playing field for all competitors. The Four and Pair will be joined by Julian Borrey, who will represent Duke in the Men’s Single.

“I’m thrilled we will be attending the ACRA Club Championship regatta, for so many reasons.” Menson said, “As a coach, I’m excited for the chance to rank ourselves against other clubs in the nation by progressing through to finals. On a more personal level, I’m happy that these student-athletes are able to have this kind of experience in their life because they deserve it. All of these athletes earned the right to compete by training through the reading period, examination period and the weeks after commencement. That’s the kind of dedication and passion that this sport is based on.”

Duke Competes at SIRA Championships

Last weekend the Devils traveled to Oak Ridge, TN to compete in the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association’s Championship regatta. The regatta serves as a regional championship regatta for club and varsity programs alike, and marks the end of Duke Crew’s regular season. The Devils brought a Novice Four (J. Pfeiffer, K. Vasudevan, A. Aganbi, E. Chen, Z. Zaidi (cox)), Varsity Four (J. Schwartz, A. Norwood, R. Sabbaugh, P. Poliakoff, R. Makhema (cox)) and Varsity Lightweight Eight (M. Chu (cox), B. Shui, D. Gollamudi, N. Hyder, M. Nehls, J. Borrey, J. Sullivan, D. Short, J. Giudice).The Novice Four placed third in their heat and advanced to the event’s semifinals. Against a deep field, Duke struggled in the semifinals and was relegated to the C-level final. The Devils had a better showing in the final and placed 2nd behind Virginia Tech.

“I thought the novice looked the best in the final. It was good that they ended the regatta with a quality race, but I’m sure they’d like to re-race the semifinal.” Head Coach Paul Menson said, “Coach Urbanczyk has done a good job bringing the novice on board and getting them together, but it just didn’t pan out. Hopefully they remember this race when they return in the fall.”

The Devils’ Lightweight Eight was one of six boats, so the event was a final-only race on Sunday. Overwhelmed by the stage that comes as part of the day’s premier lightweight race, Duke fell to a field that included two nationally ranked crews.

“The lightweights were a little unprepared for their race mentally – it’s one thing to hear that the other crews will be fast out of the gates, and other thing to be next to them in the blocks.” Menson said, “They looked more confident last week against Emory, but it’s pretty clear they left it all on the course. It’s a little disappointing to be sure, but they were racing in the big-leagues this weekend. I’m glad they had an opportunity to measure themselves against established programs, and I’m sure they’ll learn from this weekend.”

Duke’s priority boat, the Varsity Four, advanced to semifinals by placing second in their heats. Similarly, the four placed second to Florida in the semifinals to make the event’s Grand Final. Duke executed in the final but fell to a last-minute charge by Grand Valley State University, who edged them into fourth place by less than a second.

“This four’s put in an unbelievable amount of work throughout the year.” Menson said, “At the beginning of the year I told the team I wanted our top four in the Grands at SIRAs – and these young men delivered. Missing a medal hurts, but this is an important step in their growth as men and as athletes. The effort was there but it was clear that they were a little jittery in the final. As the sting fades, I think they’ll start to understand what they’ve done for Duke Crew and the University as a whole.

“The whole team, really, stepped up and responded to my challenges all year. As the team grows we’ll begin to develop the depth and culture that forms of the core of a nationally competitive team. Above all, I’m happy that these kids enjoy the sport of rowing as much as they do – as a coach, that was my biggest goal.”

While the SIRA regatta marks the end of Duke’s regular season, select individuals have been invited to represent Duke at the Aberdeen Dad Vail and ACRA Championship regattas. Selection for these crews will be done throughout the next week and the boats will be announced when that process has been completed.