Virginia Opens Fall Season with Head of the Charles Sunday

VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM Elle Murray (l) and Hemingway Benton (r)
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM
Elle Murray (l) and Hemingway Benton (r)
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM

Oct. 18, 2013

 Head of the Charles
 Date/Time  Sat. - Sun. Oct. 19-20, 2013
 Location  Boston, Mass. | Charles River
 Multimedia/Game Info  Head of the Charles Website | Live Webcast
 Additional Information  Twitter | Facebook

CHARLOTTEVILLE, Va—The Virginia rowing program opens its fall season at the world’s largest regatta, the Head of the Charles, in Boston on Sunday (Oct. 20).

The 49th edition of the Head of the Charles will feature 2,083 crews from 36 states with 20 competing for medals in 55 events. 300,000 spectators attend the two-day regatta yearly.

The Cavaliers will send four boats to Boston this year. Virginia will have two entrants in both the Championship Eights and Championship Fours. The fours will start at 2:39 p.m., while the eights will begin at 3:06 p.m. UVa will look to have the top collegiate boat in the Championships Eights for the third consecutive year.

Virginia will be competing against some familiar faces in the Championship Eights as former Cavalier standouts Susanne Grainger (’13) and Christine Roper (’11) will be competing for London Training Center’s crew, which is made up of Canadian National Team members. Inge Janssen (’10) will be competing for Cambridge Boat Club, a crew made up entirely of Olympic and World Championship rowers.

The Head of the Charles course is 5,000 meters along the Charles River, which features seven bridges, multiple turns and passing in a head race format. In head races, each crew starts single file about 10-15 seconds apart and the results are based on time. All three of the Cavaliers’ regattas this fall are in this format, which differs from the spring season, where boats line up side-by-side and race down a straight 2,000-meter course.

On Saturday, nine Cavalier alums including Kristine O’Brien, Keziah Beall and coxswain Sydney Thorsten, who were all in the UVa Varsity Eight that finished first at the 2012 NCAA Championships and clinched the team national title for Virginia, will comprise a boat and compete in the Alumnae Eights. UVa assistant coach Brett Sickler will compete for her alma mater, Michigan, in the same race.