Final Answers at the 2012 Olympic Trials
June 13, 2012
WEST WINDSOR, N.J. – It’s been a very long, hard year of training and racing, more so for some than others.
But the answers to who will row in the Olympic Games in London in the final small boats not yet named to the U.S. team will be determined on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, N.J., when the finals of the 2012 Olympic Trials – Rowing take place tomorrow.
The winners of the three events – men’s pair, men’s single sculls and the women’s pair – will earn an automatic berth to represent the United States this summer at the Olympic Games in London, pending final approval by the United States Olympic Committee.
“I’m pretty stoked to have an answer,” said Silas Stafford (Santa Rosa, Calif.) who, along with USRowing Training Center – Oklahoma City teammate Tom Peszek (Farmington Hills, Mich.), won the first of two semifinals in the men’s pair to advance to the four-boat final.
Stafford, a three-time national team athlete who finished fifth in the four at the 2010 World Rowing Championships, has been training at three different USRowing training sites since last fall and was in contention for both the men’s eight and four, crews that have already been named to the Olympic team. The pair is the last possibility for Stafford and the others competing here this week.
“Between the four selection and eight selection, training in the pair, I’m definitely ready to have some security as far as what I’m going to do this summer and where I’m going to be,” said Stafford. “Once things are done, for good or bad, it’s going to be a big relief.”
That answer will come a little later in the day tomorrow than originally scheduled for the men’s pair.
While the first semifinal went off without a problem, and both Stafford’s boat and the USRowing Training Center crew of Michael Gennaro, (Havertown, Pa.) and Ty Otto (Seattle, Wash.) advanced; an injury in the USRowing Training Center crew of Jason Read (Ringoes, N.J.) and Nareg Guregian (North Hills, Calif.) resulted in the second semifinal being pushed back to noon. Read was taken from his shell returned to the dock and sought medical treatment. Read and Guregian did not race.
A decision was then made to reschedule the final from tomorrow morning to tomorrow evening at 5:00 p.m. to allow all four advancing boats to have ample recovery time between races.
Advancing from the second semifinal were the California Rowing Club crews of Ryan Monaghan (Pittsford, N.Y.) and Deaglan McEachern (Portsmouth, N.H.) and Brandon Shald and Brad Bertoldo (San Jose, Calif.).
In the morning semifinal, Stafford and Peszek finished with a time of 6:39.465 followed by Gennaro and Otto in 6:43.350. Monaghan and McEachern won the second semifinal in 6:49.836 followed by Shald and Bertoldo in 6:50.906.
“Today’s race went well,” said Gennaro, who with Otto won gold in the eight and the pair at the 2011 Pan American Games, and were in the mix at the eight camp at the University of California. “We did what we wanted to do, and that’s qualify for the final tomorrow. You can’t win the final unless you’re in the final so we did what we had to do.
“It’s good being back east,” he said. “I had a really good experience out west at the eights selection camp,” he said. “But it’s definitely nice being back home close to my family. Tomorrow I just hope everyone has a clean start and a good race. Conditions are never really ideal but obviously that is something you take into account while your training. I think the four boats that make the final will be ready for whatever happens.”
Men’s pair, semifinal 1:
1. USRowing Training Center - OKC (Silas Stafford, Tom Peszek) 06:39.465
2. USRowing Training Center (Michael Gennaro, Robert Otto) 06:43.350
3. California Rowing Club (Andrew Melander, Derek Johnson) 06:45.937
4. California Rowing Club (Paul Marcy, Evan Cassidy) 06:59.460
Men’s pair, semifinal 2:
1. California Rowing Club (Deaglan McEachern, Ryan Monaghan) 06:49.836
2. California Rowing Club (Brandon Shald, Brad Bertoldo) 06:50.906
3. University of Wisconsin/Stanford (Austin Hack, Dariush Aghai) 06:54.882
Racing will resume with finals at 7:30 am in the men’s single sculls followed by the women’s pair. A full schedule and results will be available at www.usrowing.org.
The finals of the 2012 Olympic Trials – Rowing will air on June 23 from 6-7:30 p.m. EDT on NBC Sports Network. A record 67.5 hours of event coverage – 43 on NBC Sports Network and 24.5 on NBC – will feature nine sports in addition to rowing – including live primetime coverage of trials for diving, swimming, gymnastics and track & field, as well as events for water polo and field hockey.
Members of the media interested in obtaining Olympic Trials – Rowing credentials should contact Allison Frederick, USRowing Communications Manager at Allison@usrowing.org or (609) 751-0710.
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