Racing at the first National Selection Regatta is complete, following the finals of the men’s single sculls and the women’s pair on Friday evening at the United States Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif.
CHULA VISTA, Calif. – Racing at the first National Selection Regatta is complete, following the finals of the men’s single sculls and the women’s pair on Friday evening at the United States Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif.
After winning his semifinal earlier in the day, Beijing single sculler Ken Jurkowski (New Fairfield, Conn.) came back to win the final of the men’s single, crossing the line in 7:13.217 over USRowing Training Center’s Warren Anderson (Paso Robles, Calif.). Anderson crossed second in 7:17.012, with USTC’s Sam Stitt (McLean, Va.) in 7:25.594.
Jurkowski’s finish earned him the right to compete at either of the first two world cup races this spring. A top-four finish in Europe would then qualify him for a spot on the 2012 Olympic team.
“The racing was good; it was a good first step in the season,” said Jurkowski. “Obviously, fantastic competition with all the guys here, especially Warren, and all credit to their training. They train hard and they are fun to race, and I wish them all the best in their own rowing.
“This past winter’s training has been the best I’ve ever had. I’d like to thank Dave O’Neill for having me train with his team, and the light women’s double at Briones (Reservoir). Having Julie Nichols and Kristin Hedstrom, as well as the Cal women as training partners has really helped with obvious results. I owe them a lot.
“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to race in Europe. That’s the goal of all this training. I haven’t gotten all the details worked out yet, but I got the opportunity to race the world cup circuit last year and it was great. Practice makes perfect and more race opportunities really help me improve, so I’m looking forward to that experience again this year.”
In the final of the women’s pair, USTC’s Erin Cafaro (Modesto, Calif.) and Eleanor Logan (Boothbay Harbor, Maine) posted a 7:23.364 for the win. Cafaro and Logan, Beijing gold medalists in the women’s eight, swept the time trial and the semifinal en route to Friday evening’s final.
“I think it was a really good (training center) representation; it was a good race for all of us and a nice way to end our training trip here in San Diego,” said Cafaro, who will return to Princeton, N.J., next week to continue training. “Basically, I think we have a really, really good group of girls this year. We pushed each other hard this training trip and it’s kind of exciting because I feel like we’re miles ahead of where we were last quad, already. So it’s exciting to see what the next step will be, but I think this was a great first step for all of us.
“When you line up next to your teammates, you know that they’re going to be in the boat with you as well. You want to beat them, but you also want them to go fast. So I think it’s a sort of mutual appreciation. They were all pushing towards us at the end. You think, all right, let’s see how fast all of us can go. It’s more of a motivation thing.”
USTC’s Taylor Ritzel (Larkspur, Colo.) and Caroline Lind (Greensboro, N.C.) crossed second in the final, with a time of 7:25.116, followed by Esther Lofgren (Newport Beach, Calif.) and Amanda Polk (Pittsburgh, Pa.) in 7:27.322. Like Jurkowski, Cafaro and Logan also earned the right to compete at either of the first two world cup races this spring.
Complete event results are available at www.usrowing.org. In addition, race clips from the finals will be available to download at http://www.usrowing.org/Multimedia/VideoDownloads.aspx. Click the “Buy Now” link next to the race of your choice to be directed to payment and download information, powered by Amazon.
View NSR I photo gallery here.
Cole and Ochal Win Men’s Pair at National Selection Regatta I (3/16/12 at 10 a.m.)
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