Bears Advance Three Boats to Semifinals

June 3, 2004

CHERRY HILL, N.J. - In the first day of racing at the IRA National Championships, Cal advanced three of its four boats into tomorrow afternoon's semifinals. The varsity eight, second varsity eight and freshman eight all won their heats, qualifying them for the semifinals. The varsity four placed third in its heat, sending it to the repechage tomorrow morning.

The varsity eight got out to a blistering start, building a five-seat lead by the time it reached the 500-meter mark. By the 1000-meter mark, Cal had open water between them and sixth seed Northeastern. With the open water the Golden Bears were able to back off a little bit to conserve their energy. Cal crossed the finish line with a time of 5:41.1, the fastest time of the morning heats.

The second varsity eight took the same approach as the varsity, getting out to a fast start and building an early lead. The Bears had a four-seat lead after just about 30 strokes, and after the first 500 they had built a large enough lead that they were able to take their stroke rate down a few beats. Yale and Wisconsin tried to make a move in the last 500 meters to try and avoid returning for the repechage, but could not catch the Bears, who finished with a time of 5:54.95. Yale finished four seconds behind Cal with a time of 5:58.21.

The freshmen looked strong in their race, finishing over five seconds ahead of second-place Yale. The Bears finished with a time of 5:56.16; Yale came in at 6:01.19.

The men's open four placed third in its heat, behind a pair of Harvard boats. Cal crossed the line six seconds behind Harvard A and just three seconds behind Harvard B. With their third-place finish, the Bears move on to the repechage on Friday morning where they will face Navy, Cornell A, Princeton and Michigan B to advance to the finals.

Thursday's Results

Varsity Eight Heat 41. California 5:41.12. Northeastern 5:45.213. Pennsylvania 5:47.964. Brown 5:49.085. Temple 5:54.616. Virginia 5:59.45

JV Eight Heat 31. California 5:54.952. Yale 5:58.213. Syracuse 6:02.584. Wisconsin 6:06.715. Virginia 6:20.99

Freshman Eight Heat 11. California 5:56.162. Yale 6:01.193. Northeastern 6:05.044. Georgetown 6:11.745. Marietta 6:17.596. MIT 6:43

Men's Open Four Heat 21. Harvard A 6:36.352. Harvard B 6:39.523. California 6:42.784. Cornell B 6:48.835. Brown 6:56.086. Navy 7:00.58

Friday's Schedule7:00 a.m.     Women's lighweight Heats7:24 a.m.     Varsity four Repechage8:00 a.m.     Open four repechage8:48 a.m.     Freshman four semifinals9:36 a.m.     Varsity four w/o repechage11:12 a.m.    Varsity eight semifinals12:00 p.m.    JV eight semifinals12:48 p.m.    Freshman eight semifinals1:36 p.m.     Varsity four semifinals2:24 p.m.     Women's lighweight repechage
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