In three days of racing from June 12-14, 2015, the women of Founders Rowing Club competed at the 2015 USRowing Youth National Championships, held, at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota, Florida! Top crews from across the nation competed in various regional championships to earn the right to compete this year’s National Championships.
Founders Rowing Club earned two bids to compete at this year’s premier National Championship Regatta, on the basis of their performance at the 2015 Central Youth District Rowing Championship, held on May 2 & 3, 2015, and on the basis of their record of speed & success over the course of the 2015 spring racing season.
The contingent of 6 women is one of the youngest groups to compete at this year’s Youth National Championships, with one senior, three sophomores, & two freshmen.
The Women’s Youth Quadruple Scull of Taylor Toudouze ’17, Julia Mitterer-Claudet ’18, Anna Glasgow ’18, & Emily Royal ‘17, raced to a 3rdplace finish in their heat on Friday, advancing to a second stage of racing. On Saturday, in their second race of the weekend, the girls faced more tough competition, and again finished 3rd, earning a spot in Sunday’s C Final. Late in the morning on Sunday, the women faced their most fierce competition yet; after starting strong, the quad remained embattled in 5thplace for a majority of the first 500 meters; in the second 500 meters, the crew advanced their boat with great effort, moving into 4th place; in the third 500 meters, they fended off tactical moves from several other boats, all the while continuing to close the gap to the race leaders.
The young women of Founders showed their strength in the final 500 meters of the race, digging deep to reach new levels of speed! Grinding down the course, the quad advanced into 3rd place & closed the margin to the race leaders, from over 8 seconds early in the race down to a mere 1.5 & 2 seconds to 2nd and 1st place respectively.
This race showed the grit and character of these young athletes!
The Women’s Youth Lightweight Double of Kendall DeSantis ’15 & Katherine Fraser ’17 raced Friday, coming from behind, and rowing decisively through two other crews to win their heat. Advancing directly to the semi-final, the double raced again Saturday afternoon against a field of highly competitive boats. Our young women fought down the course, and despite severe interference from another competitor (witnessed and certified by race officials) the double placed 4th and earned a spot in Sunday’s A Final. In the A Final on Sunday, racing in an outside lane, the women of Founders faced strong crosswinds, which they fought down the length of the course. Starting strong the girls raced side-by-side with three other boats battling for 4thplace. At the 1000 meter mark, the crew faced strong pushes from their competitors, staying poised and strong. After a gut-wrenching push from the women of Founders, the girls crossed the line in 7th place for a truly impressive finish.
The crew of DeSantis and Fraser was undefeated this season until the Youth National Championships. Both Founders crews were the fastest representatives of the Central region, in their respective boat classes.
With this being the final youth competition for Ms. DeSantis, she leaves behind a rooted and lasting legacy of dedication and excellence that all of our girls will strive to achieve. With no rising seniors and a roster of continuing members comprised entirely of rising juniors and sophomores, the future is bright for Founders Rowing Club. We are so proud of our girls!