By Jeremy Rubin
Stanford’s women’s rowing picked up where they left off last season at this weekend’s Head of the Charles Regatta on the Charles River in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Varsity Eight finished first out of the collegiate teams in the championship and third overall, while the Varsity Four crew finished third.
With sophomore coxswain Caroline Ricksen at the helm, Stanford’s Varsity Eight finished a full five seconds ahead of fourth-place overall finisher Yale. Stanford’s time of 15:24.784 led the collegiate competition. The rest of the Eight crew is rounded out by seniors Emily Delleman and Meg Saunders; juniors Sarah Commesso, Kaitlyn Kynast and Grace McGinley; sophomores Kelsey McGinley and Ester Briz Zamorano; and freshman Annabelle Bachmann.
The crew held a three-second lead over the current second-place team, Princeton, before widening the gap as the race continued. This lead and eventual third-place finish meant the team clinched the same spot as last year’s crew at this same competition.
The Varsity Four bursted ahead at the start of the three-mile race before faltering in the middle. Their time of 4:01.814 after the first section, Riverside, was less than 0.2 seconds slower than Brown. The Cardinal slowed down during the second leg, however, and were passed by the eventual-champions, Washington, before ultimately finishing in third. Stanford’s final time was 17:46.662.
Comprised of freshman Lettie Cabot, sophomores Sophie Dixon and Eva Nates, and juniors Miranda Nykolyn and coxswain Tassica Lim, the Varsity Four was a strong force despite a lack of senior presence.
Within the collegiate competition, the Cardinal won both races at the Head of the Charles last year. This strong start carried over throughout the rest of the season, culminating with a team-wide second place finish at the Pac-12 Championships last spring a half point behind the Huskies. Fresh off a conference title, Washington shows no signs of slowing down. Their team won the Varsity Four race and finished 13 seconds ahead of Stanford.
Stanford’s next competition will take place against UC Berkeley, a prominent rival in the Pac-12 division. Last year, the Cardinal edged out Cal in the Pac-12 Championship by just half a point. Seeing these two Pac-12 heavyweights compete could be a preview for what is to come as the season picks up in the spring. The regatta will take place at Berkeley on Nov. 9.
This article has been updated to reflect Miranda Nykolyn is a member of the Varsity Four boat.
Contact Jeremy Rubin at jjmrubin ‘at’ stanford.edu.