BIR Masters and alumni race well at Head of the Charles

BOSTON, Massachusetts – Bainbridge Island Rowing was well represented at the recent 2017 Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston, Massachusetts, according to BIR spokesman Patrick Batson, with competitors from both the masters program competing in their own event and BIR junior alumni rowing for several colleges, too.

“Entries are chosen by lottery, with boats finishing in the top half qualifying for an automatic entry the following year,” explained Senior Masters Womens 4+ bow seat, Sue Entress. “It’s very hard to train for such a competitive regatta with only five weeks notice, so our goal was to row well enough to secure an automatic entry for 2018. We were proud to be able to make that happen and need to credit all of the rowers in our masters program for their help and support.

“Our hope is to increase the number of guaranteed entries, so that many of our Bainbridge Island rowers can share this fantastic experience.”

Entress’ boat mates were Kirsten Fitzgerald, Susan Haines, Chelsea Vessenes and coxswain and BIR junior alumni Tom Steckel.

“Tom did a stellar job,” she said. “As bow number 45 of 46 boats, we had to work through an incredible amount traffic without adding time. It takes brains, a cool head and a very loud voice to successfully cox that course. We saw enough crashes and penalties to really appreciate Tom’s talent.”

After their race, Entress and company had the weekend to soak up the event’s inspiring energy, Batson said, and cheer on a group of former BIR juniors now rowing for collegiate crews.

Among those alumni, both Will DeRubertis and Alex Derry were rowing for MIT, Sam Subbukumar was in action for the Colby College 4+, Sophie Townsend was in the bow of the Wesleyan University 4+, and Samantha Dore helped surge the Stanford lightweight 8+ to an impressive first-place finish.