March 12, 2013
BERKELEY - The California men's rowing program started the 2013 season with a successful Alumni Weekend March 3-5. Assistant Coach Scott Frandsen recaps an exciting three-day event that began with the alumni banquet on Friday, class races on Saturday, and finished with the Jog for Jill event on Sunday.
Overlooking picturesque views of the Bay at sunset from the University Club at California Memorial Stadium, cocktails started an evening with dinner and auction following. The evening offered a great opportunity for parents and alumni to connect with old friends and to hear from the coaching staff about the current squad.
The annual class day was held Saturday at the T. Gary Rogers Boat House with the format of the races changed to honor Cal rowing alum, Benson Roe. Benson was a member of the 1939 varsity and holds the four-mile record. With his passing this past fall, the crews decided to shift from the usual 2000m race to the first ever four-mile `Benson Row.'
It was a well-fought race between the classes with head coach Mike Teti saying that he was "really proud of the guys for the effort they gave and for how they handled the tough conditions." The finish order was juniors, sophomores, freshmen and seniors, respectively.
A few hundred alumni and parents came to watch the crews row past the dock to the finish line. Benson Roe still holds the four-mile world record!
To cap off an exciting weekend, many alumni weekend attendees participated in the Jog for Jill event on Sunday in honor of former Cal coxswain, Jill Costello who passed away from lung cancer in 2010. Jog for Jill is an annual fundraiser put on by Jill's Legacy and the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation.
Cal Associate Head Coach Luke Agnini ran with his six-month old son, Henry, and the entire freshmen team volunteered for the event, helping to set up and aid at various stations throughout the course.
The weekend was a great start to what should be a very exciting season for the Golden Bears. The racing schedule for the spring begins on April 6-7 with the San Diego Crew Classic. For a full list of the Golden Bears' 2013 schedule, click here.