Men Win Club Eights at HeadBy Daniel Dunn
and Robert Bergan
The men's heavyweight crew led MIT's accomplishments at Sunday's Head of the Charles Regatta when it won the club eights event with a time of 15:33.73. This victory qualifies them for the championship division in next year's race.
The Head of the Charles is a timed race, with boats leaving the starting line -- the Boston University boathouse -- roughly every 10 seconds. The boats' different speeds means that fast crews pass slower ones in the race to the finish line, near the Northeastern University boathouse.
Several other men's crews also competed: the second eight placed 27th, a four placed 4th, the varsity lightweight placed 16th, and the second lightweight placed 23rd.
Lightweight coxswain Nancy M. Ho '95 earned a bronze medal as coxswain for the United States national team's lightweight four. Her crew finished in 16:38.33, just five seconds behind the Thames River Sculls' gold-medal performance.
In addition, Professor of Mathematics Hartley Rogers, Jr. placed third in the Veteran's Single. Rogers, who has been rowing in the Head since 1968, said he has placed in the top five for the past 10 years. "I was very pleased this year. The competition was very tough," he said.
The heavyweight eight completed the course in 15:33.73, beating 47 other crews in this international regatta. The next closest crew was Harvard, a second and a half behind.
MIT's boat passed three others during the course of the race, passing the first competitor shortly after coming through the Boston University bridge. MIT pursued BU's crew all the way up the course and passed them in a thrilling final sprint.
Team Captain Kevin J. Corgan '93 described the race as "the best Head piece that I have ever been a part of."
The four finished in fourth place, missing third place by a fraction of a second. The boat was moving well up the course, but was slowed down by a collision. Two boats entangled underneath Weeks Footbridge, and MIT's four was forced to stop rowing and glide through the accident.
The men's varsity lightweight crew had a respectable showing in the lightweight division, finishing 16th and 23th in a field of 40 crews. The competition not only had the nation's top collegiate crews, but the United States, French, and Canadian national teams as well.
MIT's first lightweight boat started ahead of Harvard's 2nd entry and rowed away from them throughout the race, finishing with a time of 15:39.08. The second lightweight boat finished thirty seconds behind in 16:08.30.
Co-Captain Steven P. Wiggins '93 said, "We were satisfied with our performance, realizing our time, just six seconds behind the heavyweight's, would have earned us a bronze medal in their event.