Cafaro Wins Olympic Gold Medal with U.S. 8

Aug. 17, 2008

BEIJING - Former California rower Erin Cafaro won a gold medal with the United States in the women's eight on Sunday Beijing time in the 2008 Summer Olympics at the Shunyi Rowing-Canoeing Park. The U.S. eight posted a time of 6:05.34, as the Netherlands took silver in 6:07.22 and Romania claimed bronze in 6:07.25. The U.S. victory stopped the Romanians from claiming their fourth straight Olympic eight gold.

Mary Whipple, the gold-medal winning U.S. coxswain, who took silver with the U.S. eight in the 2004 Athens Olympics, is the twin sister of Cal women's crew assistant coach Sarah Whipple.

Along with the gold medal won by former Bear Jake Wetzel and the men's eight and the silver medal won by former Cal star Natalie Coughlin with the U.S. 4x100-meter medley relay on Sunday, Cal has now won 12 Olympic medals in Beijing and would rank 12th in the overall medal standings between Ukraine (14 medals) and the Netherlands (10).

A 2006 first-team All-American and All-Pac-10 team selection, Cafaro won NCAA and Pac-10 championships with Cal's varsity eight in 2005 and 2006 and was a member of the overall NCAA champions in both years. With the U.S. national team, Cafaro won gold in the four at the 2007 FISA World Championships, won bronze in the eight at the 2006 FISA World Championships, won silver in the eight at the 2006 FISA World Cup stop in Lucerne and won gold in the four at the 2005 FISA Under 23 World Championships. She won gold in the eight and silver in the four at the 2007 USRowing national championships.

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