See You in Sarasota: Meet the Women’s Double Sculls
By Dan Brauchli • September 8, 2017
Selected for the 2017 U.S. National Team through the trials process, the crew is set to take on their latest world championship race, having competed on several national teams in years prior. Returning from a sixth place finish at the 2016 Olympic Games, Tomek and O’Leary are ready to tackle the international racing scene once again in Florida.
- Meghan played two varsity sports in college— neither of them were rowing; she first found the sport at age 26
- Ellen previously played the alto saxophone, proving herself to be talented in and out of the boat
- Meghan worked at ESPN for five years before leaving to pursue the 2016 Olympic Games
- This is Ellen’s ninth U.S. national team appearance
Follow Meghan and Ellen on their continued journey to the 2017 World Rowing Championships in their preparations and competition as they vie for a spot on the medal stand: @meghanoleary1 and @ellen.tomek
Q: What does it mean to you to be able to represent the U.S. at Worlds in your home country?
MO: It is a true honor to be able to represent the United States on home soil. It will be wonderful having so many friends and family in Sarasota cheering us on.
ET: I am very excited to be able to race in my home country. Many family members and friends are coming to the regatta to cheer me on. It would be even more special to be on the medals’ stand and have the U.S. flag on display while standing on home soil.
Q: In what ways has rowing helped you in your life outside the boat?
MO: Rowing literally changed the course of my life. The sport has given me a world of opportunities, new experiences and introduced me to so many great people. It has also challenged me to grow and learn more about myself than I could have ever imagined.
ET: Rowing has taught me to be patient and resilient. Throughout my rowing career, I have experienced many ups and downs, but I have learned not to take either to heart and to stay focused and on a steady path that will lead me to my end goal.
Q: What do you wish you would have known as a novice rower?
MO: Don’t step in the bottom of the boat.
ET: As a novice, I wish I would have known that Pop Tarts were not an ideal pre-race meal.