International Rowing Results omit Potomac race

World Class athletes were seen in an epic crew race down the Potomac River on October 7, 2015. Boats representing Canada, USA and the world were engaged in a battle of power and will. The surprise, however, was not that this impromptu race was omitted from reports of international rowing results. The surprise came from that the rowers were hockey players – experiencing their first row in a crew shell!

Looking for a team-building exercise, the National Hockey League’s Washington Capitals made their way down to the Potomac for a row.

Row, row, row your boat ๐Ÿšฃ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿšฃ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿšฃ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿšฃ๐Ÿผ

A photo posted by Monumental Network (@monumentalntwrk) on

While raw power was not lacking, technique might have leave some room for building some more boat speed.

And, of course, there was no way to these crews were not going to race for some bragging rights…

Look at them go!

A video posted by Washington Capitals (@washingtoncaps) on

It’s great to see elite athletes branching out to try something new and willing to not look so elite for sake of some fun with their teammates. We’ll have to keep an eye out for GW Crew members this winter strapping on the skates and pads, carving edges and going top shelf!

Full Caps article, including the announced winner of the race can be seen here.


Nick Upton, “It’s all of us or none of us”

Nick Upton

Nick Upton

Nick Upton an admired and great GW Men’s Rowing teammate perished in a swimming accident off South Africa’s Wild Coast on August 30, 2015. The 19 year old GWU International Studies major studying abroad at University of Cape Town.

As described in the GW Hatchet article remembering Nick, Nick’s father Jim Upton pointed out that Nick was a “constant source of love and comfort to his family and friends.” The article continued, “Whether it was during a practice for the men’s rowing team or when he decided what weekend party to attend, Jim Upton said his son would always stress the value of teamwork and unity to the people around him.”

Coach Mark Davis and the team honored Nick’s memory attending his funeral services where Hawaiian shirts and bow ties were considered appropriate attire, given Nick’s penchant for both. Additionally, the university held a vigil for Nick and the team paid a special tribute to Nick while competing in this year’s (2015) Princeton Chase as the team traded their usual blue and buff racing garb in for Robin (of Batman and Robin) unisuits.

“Nick had a trademark unisuit that was a Robin suit; he just had it made at some point and wore it to practice all the time,” George Washington head coach Mark Davis said. “He was that kind of guy, a great teammate who was always there for everybody. I think he had a tuxedo unisuit as well, and would always grow a crazy mustache; a really funny kid.

“We wanted to pay tribute to him, so we decided we would all race in Robin unisuits this weekend.”

The backs of the unisuits also featured a quote from Nick:ย “It’s all of us or none of us.”

While Nick’s family, Kappa Alpha fraternity brothers, the team and the entire GW Crew community undoubtedly feel the loss of Nick, evidence shows that this young man and how he lived his life made a very positive and indelible mark on many.

The family requests that donations be made to Save The Children in Nicholasโ€™ honor.

Nick Upton powering GW Crew from the four seat in 2014

Nick Upton powering GW Crew from the four seat in 2014

Expectations after joining Eastern Sprint Schools

The progression from having a single top-performing crew to regularly expecting high performance at Nationals has been a steady one for GW Crew. That progression continues as GW Crew joins Eastern Sprint schools.

“Every year we’re continuing to up our standards,” junior Craig Helmstetter said. “The team mentality over the past few years has been to really push ourselves.”

“We’ve changed our standards from being glad we made it [to nationals] to feeling like, ‘Okay, let’s take some people down and show them what we’ve got,'” Helmstetter said. “We’re here to compete.”

Read the May 2010 GW Hatchet article here.

Seniors Get Special GWU Graduation Ceremony

Student-Athletes who devote so much to their athletic and academic pursuits encounter a new sacrifice come graduation time. Schedules forย end-of-season competitions oftentimes conflict with graduation ceremony schedules, with both happening at the same time.

In recognition of the hard work put into both of these pursuits – as well as the ways in which these student-athletes represent the university, 2015 once again saw a special GWU Graduation Ceremony held for graduating senior athletes.

George Washington University administration should be applauded for their establishment of this special graduation ceremony, created on behalf of the students and their families.

GW Crew athletes rowing at the 2015 IRAs were honored.

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