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Twelve Men’s Crews Reach Semifinals in Fierce Racing at NSR I

by Ed Moran, ed@usrowing.org | Mar 22, 2016
In total, 12 boats advanced to the Wednesday semifinals at 2016 National Selection Regatta 1 - the first event of the year that will begin the process of selecting the 2016 Olympic team. Racing is being contested in the men’s pair, women’s pair and lightweight men’s pairs. The top performing crews will earn places in the “big boat” selection camps from which the men’s and women’s eight, men’s four, lightweight men’s four and women’s quadruple sculls will be chosen.
miller:coleCHULA VISTA, Calif. – The five crews had covered most of the distance on the racecourse on Lower Otay Reservoir at the United States Olympic Training Center. With the finish line coming up hard, there was not a lot of spacing between the men’s pairs in the last heat of racing Tuesday morning.

One crew from each heat would be eliminated from competition at the 2016 USRowing National Selection Regatta I, and none were going without a fight. The vocal calls for a move came from every boat and the pace jumped as the crews passed the final buoys to the finish line.

The first two crews—United States Training Center – Princeton’s Matt Miller (Fairfax, Va.) and London bronze medalist Charlie Cole (New Canaan, Conn.) and Nareg Guregian (North Hills, Calif.) and Tom Dethlefs (Lawrenceville, N.J.)—finished within a second of each other.

The finish for the third and fourth-place advancing crews, USTC – Princeton’s London bronze medalist Glenn Ochal (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Steve Kasprzyk (Cinnaminson, N.J.) and the Craftsbury Green River Racing Project entry of Parker Washburn (Andover, Mass.) and Andrew Reed (Wayland, Mass.), required a camera to determine which crossed ahead.

narg“It was really tough race,” said Guregian. “I thought we had the tightest heat. Every boat really sold it. Luckily, we just had enough to make it through. Now, it’s on to tomorrow. Hopefully it doesn’t hurt as much.”

In the end, Miller and Cole won the heat in 6:38.88. Guregian and Dethlefs were second in 6:39.41. Ochal and Kasprzyk were third in 6:40.06, and Washburn and Reed were fourth in 6:40.12.

In total, 12 boats advanced to Wednesday's semifinals. This is the first event of the year, beginning the process of selecting the 2016 Olympic team. Racing is being contested in the men’s pair, women’s pair and lightweight men’s pairs. The top performing crews will earn places in the “big boat” selection camps from which the men’s and women’s eight, men’s four, lightweight men’s four and women’s quadruple sculls will be chosen.

In addition, the winners in the men’s and women’s pairs will earn the right to compete at World Rowing Cup II in Lucerne, Switzerland in May and can earn a direct berth to the Olympic team with a top-three finish.

hack:In the first of the three Tuesday morning heats, USTC – Princeton’s Austin Hack (Old Lyme, Conn.) and Alex Karwoski (Hollis, N.H.) won with the fastest time of the morning in a 6:32.06. Seth Weil (Menlo Park, Calif.) and London bronze medalist Henrik Rummel (Pittsford, N.Y.) were second in 6:39.24. The composite entry of Hans Struzyna (Kirkland, Wash.) and Sam Dommer (Folsom, Calif.) from the California Rowing Club (CRC) and USTC – Princeton were third in 6:41. 52, and Seattle Rowing Center’s Ambrose Puttmann (Cincinnati, Ohio) and David Eick (Raleigh, N.C.) were fourth in 6:59.42.

:desantomunnAdvancing with a win in the second heat was the composite crew from USTC – Princeton and New York Athletic Club of Rob Munn (Redmond, Wash.) and Michael DiSanto (Boston, Mass.), clocking a 6:32.80. USTC – Princeton’s Dariush Aghai (Skokie, Ill.) and Mike Gennaro (Havertown, Pa.) were second in 6:35.19, and Vesper Boat Club’s Yohann Rigogne (Besançon, France) and London Olympian Tom Peszek (Farmington Hills, Mich.) were third in 6:35.79. London Olympians Grant James (DeKalb, Ill.) and Ross James (DeKalb, Ill.), who are rowing as a composite entry from the NYAC and USTC – Princeton, advanced in fourth with a 6:42.29.

“Everyone had a great day,” said Aghai. “There was a lot of close racing. We had a good time. We kind of paced off the faster boats and tried to stay close, so we can try and surprise them later in the regatta. I think everyone has a gear or two to go,” he said. “It’s good to finally get into this week and get to racing.”
 
Racing resumes Wednesday morning at 9 a.m., local time, with semifinals in all three boat classes. Finals racing is scheduled for Thursday and will be live-streamed on USRowing’s YouTube channel.

For complete event schedule and results, click here. Click here to see photos galleries of the event.

About USRowing
USRowing is a nonprofit organization recognized by the United States Olympic Committee as the governing body for the sport of rowing in the United States. USRowing has 85,000 individual members and 1,300 member organizations, offering rowing programs for all. USRowing receives generous support from the National Rowing Foundation and its corporate sponsors and partners.

For more information, contact: USRowing Communications, (609) 751-0710, media@usrowing.org.
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