The Dublin School rowing team traveled to the Merrimack River in Lowell on Sunday to take part in the 36th Textile River Regatta. Hosted by Merrimac River Rowing Association, the TRR is one of the larger local regattas in New England and a true fall classic. The regatta also serves as many program’s first fall regatta, as well as many novice rowers’ first-ever competition. This year was no exception and coming to race on the winding, 6000 meter course was a total of 607 entries across 84 clubs!
The 2015 regatta began harmlessly enough, with cool weather, partly sunny skies, and light winds. As the morning wore on, however, the wind began to intensify creating white caps and large swells on the lower stretches of the race course. By 1:00pm, several boats had swamped and the swells were reaching heights of 3+ feet, so the race officials decided to cancel the remainder of unraced events for the day.
Luckily, both of Dublin’s primary entries were able to get on the water, finish their races before the course was shut down, and return to the dock unscathed. The school’s first entry of the day was the Men’s Jr. 4+ with G.H. Werowinski (stroke), Will Stanhope (3-seat), Matt Coffin (2-seat), John Scriven (bow), and Joey Hynes (coxswain). The boys would be racing in a field of 26 boats and starting about halfway in the pack. Building on the last weekend’s strong result, the boys continued with an excellent race on the Textile course. Their rowing looked solid as they approached the final 1000 meters in spite of the wind and waves that were giving crews around them a hard time. Upon the completion of the course, our boys finished with a total time of 24:22 in 5th place overall! The boys finished just behind Greater Lawrence and right ahead of Wayland-Weston B.
The Women’s Jr. 4+ followed directly after, and racing for Dublin was the lineup of Tatum Wilson (stroke), Zoe Hewitt (3-seat), Michelle Zhong (2-seat), Lilly Campbell (bow), and Phoebe Glaude (coxswain). The race was a mere 20 minutes behind the boys’ event, but the conditions had rapidly deteriorated since. The swells on the last 2500 meters of the course were growing larger as the wind increased speed, making the water almost entirely un-raceable. Still, our ladies persevered and managed to reach the finish line without incident or taking on too much water in their hull. They finish 17th out of 29 overall with a time of 28:33 just ahead of Concord Crew, and right behind Arlington-Belmont B.
Minutes after the girls’ 4+ returned to the dock, officials decided that the conditions were becoming much too hazardous for racing and cancelled the remainder of the day’s events. This prevented our Women’s Jr. 2- and Men’s Jr. 2x from racing, but they will get another shot at competition at the following weekend’s regatta. The team will return to action on Sunday, October 11th when they travel to Pembroke, NH for the annual New Hampshire Championships Regatta which is held much further upstream from the TRR on the Merrimack River.