Three-time defending Intercollegiate Rowing Association champion Stanford lightweight rowing placed all three of its boats in Sunday's Grand Finals during the first day of racing Saturday morning at the IRA Championships in New Jersey.
The Cardinal eyes another team title as well as IRA crowns in the eight, four and double on Sunday. The eight will compete in Sunday's Grand Final. The IRA Lightweight Four Grand Final and the IRA Lightweight Double Grand Final follow.
The eight, racing for lanes on Saturday, took an early lead in its race. Georgetown pulled level with Stanford around the 750-meter mark, but the Cardinal surged back ahead and didn't look back from there. Stanford won the race with a time of 6:40.823, finishing a half a length ahead of Boston (6:42.799).
The Cardinal eight will take lane one in Sunday's Grand Final, competing against Boston, Princeton, Georgetown, Wisconsin, MIT and Harvard-Radcliffe.
The four, racing for lanes in Sunday's Grand Final, pushed its bow ahead early in its race Saturday morning. The Cardinal created an open-water advantage by the midpoint of the course and captured the race by more than 10 seconds with a time of 7:21.811. Wisconsin was second with a time of 7:32.351.
Stanford will take lane one in Sunday's Grand Final against Wisconsin, Georgetown, Boston, Princeton, MIT and Harvard-Radcliffe.
The lightweight double was the first on the course Saturday morning, placing third in its heat with a time of 7:52.437. The Cardinal moved on to the repechage, where it battled Wisconsin for most of the race. The two boats separated themselves from the rest of the field early on. The Badgers captured the repechage with a time of 7:52.081, with the Cardinal finishing in 7:59.327. Both boats advanced to Sunday's Grand Final.
Stanford will race out of lane five in Sunday's Grand Final against Princeton, Tulsa, Wisconsin, Georgetown and MIT.
No. 10 Stanford's varsity eight will compete in Sunday's Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships Petite Final following a sixth-place finish in Saturday morning's A/B semifinals under clear skies on Mercer Lake in New Jersey.
In very competitive A/B semifinal field that featured six of the top 14 boats in the nation, Stanford placed sixth with a time of 5:52.174. Washington (5:37.124), Brown (5:38.879) and California (5:39.057) captured the top three spots, with the Cardinal, Northeastern (5:46.239) and Wisconsin (5:49.056) moving on to the Petite Final. Stanford will face Northeastern, Wisconsin, Syracuse, Dartmouth and Boston in the Petite Final on Sunday.
The second varsity eight battled with Navy throughout the course in its semifinal Saturday morning. Three seats back, Stanford tried to take water away from the Midshipmen as the two boats entered the second half of the course ahead of the rest of the field. Navy held of Stanford, capturing the semifinal with a time of 5:58.327. The Cardinal was a length behind with a time of 6:02.781.
Stanford will race in Sunday's Second Varsity Eight Third-Level Final against Navy, Pennsylvania, George Washington, Bates and Temple.
Stanford completed a successful campaign with the program's second-best finish all-time at the the Gill Coed Nationals Championships this week. The Cardinal finished fifth, bested by a fourth-place showing in 2014.
Following the three Intercollegiate Sailing Association (ICA) spring championships, where Stanford also placed 15th in the Women's National Championship and fifth at the Team Race National Championships, the Cardinal finished fifth in the Fowle Trophy standings.
A culmination of all six ICSA National Championships (match racing, men's singlehanded, women's singlehanded, women's, team racing and coed), Stanford was fifth at the Match Race Nationals in November, while Luke Muller was 12th at the men's singlehanded championships, and Christina Sakellaris was Stanford's top women's singlehanded finisher (14th) followed by Sophia Sole (15th). Last season, the Cardinal finished sixth in the race for the Fowle Trophy. In 2016, Stanford was third after finishing fifth in 2015.
Stanford skippers Will La Dow and Romain Screve, and crew Kennedy Placek earned All-America status. Crew Taylor Kirkpatrick and Elena VandenBerg were honorable mention All-America selections.
In the final national championship of the year, Stanford finished with 225 points in the coed finals. La Dow and Taylor Kirkpatrick were sixth in the A Division with 109 points, while Screve and Placek were also sixth with 116 points in the B Division.
Stanford reached the finals with 120 points in the semifinals. The top nine advance and the Cardinal placed sixth. La Dow and Kirkpatrick were seventh in the A Division with 70 points, while skippers Screve and Jack Parkin, and crew Placek and Elena Vandenberg were fourth with 50 points in the B Division.