Stanford's Vezie Wins Gold, Luczak and Roddy Take Silver At U23 World Championships
July 26, 2009
RACICE, Czech Republic - Stanford women's rowing boasted three representatives at the 2009 World Rowing Under 23 Championships this weekend, and all three made the medal stand in the women's eight (W8+) event. Michelle Vezie '11 earned gold with Great Britain's eight, while Grace Luczak '11 and Erika Roddy '11 took silver with the U.S. eight.
Luczak also competed in the women's pair (W2-) event with partner Mary Jeghers. The pair took fifth in the championship final Sunday.
'The U23 international field gets more competitive every year. To have three Stanford women on the podium in the women's eights race with gold and silver medals around their necks is an amazing accomplishment,' said Stanford women's head coach Yasmin Farooq. 'All three worked their tails off this year. Now they've taken those efforts and talents to the next level and represented their countries with honor. They've just added another chapter to what has been a dream season and I am extremely proud of them.'
In the women's eight event, both Great Britain and the U.S. advanced to Sunday's 'A' Final with victories in the preliminary heats. As the final got underway, Great Britain took the early lead and built a lead of 2.68 seconds over the U.S. boat, which sat in third position at the race's halfway point. The U.S. tried to make its move, catching the second-place boat from Poland just before the 1,500-meter mark, but its charge over the final 300 meters could not catch the British, who held on for the victory with a time of 6:20.71, 1.09 seconds ahead of the U.S. time of 6:21.80.
Luczak and Jeghers won the first preliminary heat of the women's pair event to earn passage straight to the 'A' Final, where the pair was in fifth after the opening 500 meters. The boat moved into fourth place by the midpoint, and held that spot heading into the final 500 meters, but was overtaken by the boat from Ukraine and finished fifth with a time of 7:29.37. Romania took the gold with a time of 7:16.74, followed by Germany taking silver and The Netherlands winning the bronze.
All three Cardinal rowers add their Under 23 medals to their 2008-09 haul which includes the NCAA team gold medal, and gold medals from the women's eight competitions at the NCAA Championships and the Pac-10 Championships.
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