PRINCETON, N.J. – California men’s crew captured the varsity four and freshman eight races to highlight an encouraging performance in the Princeton Chase regatta this past Sunday, Oct. 27, on Carnegie Lake in Princeton, N.J. Sunday’s regatta wrapped up a productive fall racing slate for the Golden Bears.
“The team had a strong performance this past weekend at the Princeton Chase highlighted by the big wins in the Men's Four and Freshmen Eight,” California head men’s crew coach Mike Teti said. “We also had a solid race in the Championship Eight race, finishing a close third out of 57 collegiate crews from around the country. We've had a very productive fall season and we look forward to the spring.”
The first varsity four, consisting of Julian Venonsky (coxswain), Steve Tuck, Igor Lucic, Richard Walter and Niki Van Sprang, took home top honors with a time of 14:46.8 with a winning margin just over four seconds over second-place Northeastern (14:51.1). It was an outstanding race with Venonsky doing a good job of dealing with heavy boat traffic in front of him and the result is a big improvement over last year.
The Bears’ freshman eight, racing in Princeton for the first time, captured the freshman heavyweight race with a time of13:50.2, four seconds quicker than second-place Pennsylvania (13:54.2) and more than 15 seconds better than third-place Navy (14:05.9). The boat included Liam Whalen, Nathan Smith, James Alcorn, Justin Murphy, Kyle Flagg, Harrison van Andel, Jake Coert, Luke O’Brien, and David Diel. That same boat competed as Cal’s second entry in the varsity race earlier in the day, finishing with a time of 13:53.7.
Cal’s varsity eight (Erin Alexander, Steve Tuck, Igor Lucic, Richard Walter, Niki van Sprang, Christian Kader, Mike Bernerius, Luka Djordjevic, and Morgan Hellen) placed third by three seconds in their race with a time of 13:11.4 on the three-mile course.
The Bears received great support from Cal fans on the East coast who cheered on their Golden Bears throughout the weekend in Princeton.“We are grateful for all of the support from the Cal rowing family that we received in Princeton,” Teti said. “A special shout out to Beth Covin for organizing housing for our entire squad. We are also grateful for the hospitality we received from the Princeton and US Rowing coaching staffs. We wouldn't have been able to do the trip without all of them.”