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MRRA at Henley Print E-mail

From Mike Poreba and the MRRA Thoroughbreds

The Merrimac River Rowing Association is a nationally competitive club located in Lowell, Massachusetts. Always looking for new challenges, we decided to send our top 4+ (four with coxswain) to the Royal Henley Regatta in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, England. This world-renowned regatta is famous for its world-class competition and well-dressed attendees. The MRRA crew is a true club team made up of Michael Poreba (UNH 2008), Rich Connell (Franklin Pierce 2007), Jon Dwyer (UNH 2012), Tim Cotreau (UMass 2006), and coxwain Sarah Ivey (UMass 2010), all holding jobs in engineering, education, and coaching fields.
As a tune-up race MRRA competed at the nearby Reading Town Regatta, winning the open 4+ event. We were awarded with pewter tankards, perfect for enjoying the local favourite Pimm's Cup beverage. After the race we rowed the 13 kilometers of the curvy Thames river back to Henley, passing through three locks before arriving. 
A few days later the Henley racing began. Based on prior racing experience, we were not required to race at the qualification regatta and were seeded top five in the Britannia Cup Challenge. The race format has only two crews racing at a time, sudden death elimination. MRRA advanced the first day, defeating City of Bristol. The next day we found ourselves in the race of our lives in the quarterfinals. It was a hard fight against the very evenly matched Taurus Boat Club crew. The race was an exciting one, both crews trading places for the lead and making effective moves against one another. In the end we couldn't match Taurus' speed and lost by a narrow 3/4 of a boat length. The rest of the week was spent watching incredible racing, notably including the Grand Challenge Cup where the Great Britain National Team narrowly beat the University of Washington. 

What an amazing trip!

> Watch the official trip video

Editor's Note: The members of the MRRA Open Sweep team racked up significant costs to make this trip and compete at the Royal Henley Regatta as a true club entry under the MRRA name.   Please consider making a donation by check or PayPal to help relieve some of the financial burden.  For PayPal, use the link below. And thank you.


Last Updated on Friday, 12 July 2013 08:31