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18th, 19th, and 20th July 2008

Men's Junior A Double takes Gold at USRowing Club National Championship, Quad takes silver...
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14th July 2008

Masters Women victorious in Boston at Cromwell Cup...
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5th, 6th, and 7th July 2008

Women return to Philly with season's best speed, Junior Boys Double wins...
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28th June 2008

Masters Women step into Open races for regatta at home...
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14th June 2008

Masters Women's Eight improves record to 7:1 in Philadelphia...
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7th June 2008

Masters Women's Eight takes first at Derby Sweeps and Sculls Regatta...
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25th May 2008

Andover Rowing Association travelled to Lowell today for the MPSRA Championship Regatta...
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18th May 2008

The Northeast/Mid-Atlantic District Championship was held today on Mercer Lake in NJ. Essex crews...
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11th May 2008

Essex Rowing swept Lowell High today at home on the Merrimack...
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Press Release

Essex Rowing Duo Wins Premier North American Event

MEN'S JUNIOR QUAD TAKES FIFTH IN FINAL

St. Catharines, Ontario – August 17, 2008 – For the close of its inaugural season, the Essex Rowing Junior Sculling Development Camp traveled to St. Catharine’s, Ontario to compete in the largest summer regatta in North America: the Royal Canadian Henley. Held on Martindale Pond at a course that has hosted World Championships (1999), Canadian Henley runs six days in August and showcases the best club rowing in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. In the Junior events, Essex showed that they were among the best around, placing two boats into the finals and winning the Junior Double by 0.18 seconds over South Niagara Rowing Club of Canada.

The Junior quad easily cruised through their two heats but faced both a headwind and more experienced Canadian crews in their final. Despite having two lightweight rowers, one of whom which had never sculled (rowing with two oars) before the summer, they finished in fifth place – and only six seconds behind local powerhouse St. Catharine’s Rowing Club. Of the four rowers: James Buckmann (Merion Station, PA), Donald Leatherwood (Fort Washington, PA), Corentin Morel (Pelham, NY), and Tom Mickler (Wynnewood, PA), three are young enough to row on the Junior level again next year. It was an excellent showing for the young boat and Essex looks to be the team to beat next summer.

In the Junior Double, however, Morel and Leatherwood continued their winning ways from the USRowing Club National Championship where they won the gold medal but placed second behind a duo from Mexico. This time, however, they executed a nearly flawless race and it paid off. Adding some extra power moves off the starting line, they pushed into a top-three position with South Niagara and the Mexican team at the five-hundred meter mark. The Canadian and Mexican teams had something to prove to each other, however, as they had faced off two weeks before at the CanAmMex regatta in Oklahoma City, OK. CanAmMex is nominally a summer showcase for the best junior rowing talent from amongst the three countries (that is, among those not competing internationally on their respective National team). In this case, however, the Essex boat made it clear that they possessed considerable talent. As the Mexican Rowing Federation faded, the Canadians of South Niagara and the Americans of Essex began pulling away from the field through the middle thousand meters with Essex holding a slight lead. Then, with about five hundred and fifty meters to go, South Niagara started an early sprint for the finish line and powered in front.

Knowing that they had a well-planned and effective sprint in store themselves, Leatherwood and Morel refused to panic and settled into their progression with exactly five hundred meters to go. At first South Niagara kept moving into the lead, but then Essex began to catch up. As Leatherwood and Morel began enter the final fifty meters, the grandstands at the Henley course began cheering even more loudly for the Canadians. The two boats traded leads in the final five strokes of the race, separated by less than a foot – and crossed the finish line in what appeared to be a dead tie. The announcers noted that they’d need to wait for the official results to be phoned in from the tower as the stands quieted. Neither boat on the water celebrated as the rowers waited, exhausted. Then, after several gut-wrenching moments for all involved, “Lane four, Essex Rowing Club” was announced. Essex had won by just under two-tenths of a second.

Over the course of summer, Essex rowers won medals at every regatta they entered and placed boats into the finals eight times over four events. Leatherwood and Morel only lost once in the Junior Double. Perhaps more importantly every rower and boat significantly improved their on-water times from the beginning of the summer to the end. “The main goal of a development camp is the development of athletes,” said head coach J. D. Bridges, “and I think accomplishing that alone would have made this first summer a success. But to win Henley in the double was definitely rewarding for everyone involved in the program. Every kid worked incredibly hard and Donald and Corentin have big futures ahead of them.”

“This is a remarkable accomplishment for everyone involved,” said Travis Gardner, Essex Rowing’s Founder and Executive Officer. “For those not too familiar with rowing, the Canadian Henley is kind of like what the BCS championship series is to football or what the Penn Relays is to track and field. To have Essex athletes win at this level even before the club’s two year anniversary feels surreal in a way. I’m very proud of what all of the camp's athletes and J.D. have accomplished this summer and look forward to the opportunity to repeat and build upon these accomplishments a year from now.”

Next summer the Junior Sculling Development program will move to the Essex Rowing Club facilities in Methuen, MA, with rowers in residence at a nearby university. The focus, however, will be the same. The rowers followed an intense practice schedule which incorporated two practices a day, weight lifting, and even yoga, and trained in singles, doubles, and quads throughout the summer. “Our goal is just to build on our success from this year and attract more athletes who want to improve their racing and sculling in 2009. We believe we have a really good thing started.”

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Pictures

Essex Rowing Club, Inc. Men’s Junior Double
Stroke; Donald Leatherwood, Fort Washington, PA
Bow; Corentin Morel, Pelham, NY
Men’s Junior Double on dock
Men’s Junior Double racing
Men’s Junior Double racing (2)
Men’s Junior Double finish
happy man's military press
Men’s Junior Double recieving awards
Men’s Junior Double recieving awards (2)


Full Results Here >


Press Contact
J.D. Bridges
jdbridges@essexrowing.org
(615) 975.4330

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