Lake Natoma, Gold River, CA - May 7-8, 2016
Cloudy skies and uncharacteristically muggy weather could not dampen the Oakland Strokes as we once again finished another great season with strong racing at the Southwest Youth Rowing Championship. Held at Lake Natoma near Folsom, this regatta draws high school participants from California and beyond, including as far as Arizona and Utah. The 2016 edition of the regatta hosted 38 clubs in almost 600 races in the 3-day event. It also serves as the qualification regatta for the National Youth Championship in West Windsor New Jersey from 6/10-6/12. The top 3 winners for the Varsity and Lightweight Men’s and Women’s events will be invited to compete at National Youth Championship Regatta.
The Strokes were led by the dominating performance from the Men’s Varsity Squad. The team won the Men’s Varsity 8+, Men’s JV8+, and Men’s 3V8+, marking the first time the men have swept the three varsity 8+s in the Strokes history. On the second day of the regatta the Varsity Men added a gold in the Lightweight 8+ and a silver in the Men’s 4-. In one of the oddest races of the day, the Varsity Men’s thrown together quad managed a very respectable showing, sculling to a fourth place finish in the event in their fifth ever row in the boat.
The Women’s Novice squad ended their season on a very high note, winning gold in both the A & B Novice 8+ events. Both events were won in dominating fashion, underscoring the strong season they have had. The squad performed well top to bottom, adding a silver medal in the Novice 4+ and a bronze medal in the Freshmen 8+.
The other highlights of the weekend include a silver medal Novice Men’s 8+B, who added hard fought 5th place finish in the tough field of the Men’s Novice 8+. The Varsity Women raced to 4th place finishes in the tightly contested Varsity 8+ and Lightweight 8+ events, then capped off the weekend by winning a classy silver medal in the Women’s Varsity 4+.