Leading with their hearts with their tribute, our men’s freshman 8+ finished an impressive 4th place behind California, Princeton and Cornell while besting Dartmouth, Harvard Lightweights, Princeton Lightweights, Syracuse, Navy…and Georgetown.
GW Men’s Rowing once again found itself in familiar territory, with close competition against Syracuse as Syracuse Orange edged our V8 by less than 2 seconds over the three mile course. Silver linings were had, however, as GW’s A and B boats both bested Georgetown’s A boat – with our B boat coming in one place and four seconds ahead of the Hoyas.
Our men also had two boats in the 4+ event, with the “A” four trailing the winners by 1% and finishing with an admirable 4th place overall.
GW Women’s Rowing faced a deep field of 65 boats in the varsity eight event, with our A and B boat entries both finishing in the middle of the pack.
Also rowing a boat in the 4+ event, GW Women offered a shining spot with a greater than 15 second lead over the Georgetown women’s four.
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: “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.
Incredibly, for a third summer in a row, U23 National Team Rowing includes GW Rowing’s Jordan Tewksbury-Volpe. He will be competing at the U23 World Championships. This is a fantastic accomplishment! Every member of the GW Crew community should appreciate, applaud and enjoy Jordan’s success.
Jordan grew up in Naples, Italy where he had the fortune to row under the guidance of one of the best coaches in Italy, Antonio Colamonici. Jordan came to the United States in 2012 to study and continue his rowing at The George Washington University. Since that time, Volpe has been a staple of the first Varsity crew at GW.
Jordan and his pair racing partner, Zander Bonorris, wrote a marvelous testament of their ethic and enjoyment going into the competition, stating:
“The strength of this crew is centered in our ability as racers. We love training, we love working tirelessly on our technique to improve our efficiency and smoothness, but, above all, we love racing. There is nothing like lining up at the starting platform, taking a quick gander at your competition, and enduring the increasing flutter of butterflies as you await, ‘Attention. Go!’ Then you get the next six and a half minutes to burn off all of that nervous energy – and then some! – racing full out for ourselves, for each other, and for Old Glory.”
There is an extra level of exciting competition for this pair. Zander and the stroke of Great Britain’s crew, Tommy Marshall, have rowed together in the Harvard Lightweight Varsity for the past two years. Talk about a hunt for bragging rights!
More about each oarsman’s background, their racing and training can be read in their written piece, found here.
Great videos of Jordan training and racing can be seen below. Jordan’s event in the 2015 Trials video starts at 1:57.
Student-Athletes who devote so much to their athletic and academic pursuits encounter a new sacrifice come graduation time. Schedules for 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.