No. 5 Lightweight Crew Prepared for IRA National Championships

Photo courtesy of Zack Williamson
Photo courtesy of Zack Williamson

After winning back-to-back IRA National Championships, Harvard heads into the weekend ranked No. 5 overall.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – No. 5 Harvard lightweight crew travels south to West Windsor, N.J., and Mercer Lake for the 2014 Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) National Championships this weekend. The lightweight crews are set to battle starting Sunday, June 1 at 8 a.m. 

First Varsity
Bow: Jack Kelly; 2: Alexander Bonorris; 3: Matthew Podlesak; 4: Emanuel Ritschard; 5: Andrew Campbell; 6: Thomas Marshall; 7: Alexander Newell; Stroke: Nico Astrup-Wiik; Coxswain: Shane Bouchard

Varsity Four
1: Chris Wales; 2: Ian Klein; 3: Christopher Magnani; 4: Samuel Frum; Coxswain: James Dreben

Spares: Lucas Farewell, Ian Meyer

The Field
Harvard will join the five other Ivy League lightweight crews, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Princeton and Yale, at the IRA regatta along with MIT and Navy in varsity eight competition. In the lightweight men's fours event, all eight institutions with varsity eights will send crews on the water, as well as Georgetown, Wisconsin, Drexel and MSE.

IRA National Championships (nine): 1991, '94, '95, '97, '99, '01, '03, '12, '13

The 112th IRA National Championships
The lightweights have been rowing at the IRA Regatta since 1990, when the event became the national championship for lightweight crew. Prior to competing at IRAs, the Crimson competed at the Empire State Regatta for the national title. Harvard has won nine national titles since 1990 with the most recent coming last season. The Crimson also captured IRA national titles in 1991, '93, '95, '97, '99, 2001, '03 and '12 and has medaled in seven of the last eight years.

Sprints Recap
The Harvard lightweight crew put together a strong showing on Lake Quinsigamond, finishing third in the Jope Cup, which is given to the best overall team performance. The varsity eight took fifth overall in the marquee event, as the freshmen eight claimed silver.

In the Launch
Michiel Bartman, with the Radcliffe lightweight crew team for the last two years, moved across the river on Sept 7, when he was announced as the Friends of Harvard Lightweight Rowing Coach for Men's Lightweight Crew. An Olympic champion, a three-time Olympic medalist and a 15-year coaching veteran, Bartman improved the Black and White's performance in each of his first two seasons.

Last Season
Harvard completed its second-straight perfect collegiate season with the program's ninth national championship in 2013. The Crimson also won the lightweight four race for a sweep of the two lightweight events at the regatta. Harvard held off a surging Yale boat to finish the course in 5:54.221, just over one second ahead of the Bulldogs.