Fraught with the challenges that the pandemic brought, Port Rowing rose to the occasion to continue its program closing the 2021 season nabbing top spots in the National and State Championships and making team history.
“We had a much different season with restrictions and regatta uncertainty. Instead of the usual regatta slate we were able to get into some traditional dual racing instead for most of our schedule,” Coach Isa Rahman said. “This season we were able to make steady progress as a program and improve our rowing each week, culminating in some program firsts at the State Invitational and sending the biggest Port Rowing Group to nationals so far.”
The New York State Invitational Regatta was the first major regatta for both squads since October 2019. Both Port Rowing teams had their most successful state championship in Port Rowing history with first place finishes on both sides. Port nabbed victories in the Boys’ 2nd Varsity 8+ and Junior 8+ as well as the Girls’ 2nd Varsity 8+ and Freshman 4+ both won their events. The team also had top finishes in the Varsity eight events with the girls finishing third and the boys finishing fourth.
After a successful State Championship, both teams traveled to Sarasota, FL for the US Rowing Youth National Championship Regatta. Port brought its biggest contingent of athletes ever to a Youth National Championship with all boats making a final.
“For the first time ever at this event, the Port boys team raced a varsity eight the premiere event placing 26/35 in a very tight “D” final (just 7 seconds separated places 20-26),” Coach Mike MacMinn shared. “The pair placed a solid 18/31 in the “C” level final. And, a major historic benchmark for the program, the boys Under-17 quad placed 2/19. The quad sprinted through a crew from California in the final 100 meters to a photo finish to claim the silver medal by just two tenths of a second. This is the first ever medal for a Port boys crew at Youth Nationals and we don’t plan on slowing down.”
Indeed, Port Rowing’s 10th anniversary season is well underway. Coming off these victories, Port Rowing has just had four boats accepted to compete at the prestigious Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston on Oct. 23 to 24.
For more information about Port Rowing and upcoming regattas, visit www.portrowing.org.
—Submitted by Port Rowing