October 15, 2004

Crew Competes For Prized Schwartz Cup

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The weather conditions may be miserable, but the skits must go on. Tomorrow, Cornell’s crews will compete in the Schwartz Cup Regatta, held at the Collier Boathouse on Cayuga Inlet. This intra-squad competition allows the heavyweight men’s, and lightweight men’s and women’s teams to compete in a timed race and skit competition. The Schwartz Cup, sponsored by Dick and Jean Schwartz, is a tradition known throughout the rowing community as a fundraiser which brings over 200 rowers and many alumni together. Originally held at the end of the fall, coaches moved the Schwartz Cup to October after the Ivy League instituted a mandatory 49 days off from practice. Now the event serves as a preview of the remainder of the fall season. The teams have big events coming up with the Head of Charles, Princeton Chase and Belly of the Carnegie races all within the next month. Unlike many other races, this event is very different. Cornell is the only team competing. “Everyone is in the race together. It is one of the times the entire boathouse is together,” said lightweight men’s coach Todd Kennett ’91.

The race, approximately four miles, will be held regardless of the weather. The results will give coaches an idea of how to train for the remaining races. “It’s a good dry run,” Kennett said.

All three crews have already demonstrated their rowing skills by finishing well in the Head of Ohio Regatta, held on Oct. 2 in Pittsburgh. The women’s and lightweight men’s teams came in second while the heavyweight men rowed to a first-place finish.

While timed races are the primary reasons for the event, many rowers look forward to the skit competition.

The event begins with each boat performing a skit in costume, and the winning team receives a pewter cup.

For novices, the Schwartz Cup reprsents their first event.

“I’m really excited because it’s my first race,” said freshman Sarah Griffin. “I [want to know] how I am going to do in a race environment.”

After the fun of skits and races is complete, the Schwartz Cup Regatta comes down to one very important element.

“Everything about crew is teamwork,” Griffin said. “This event is a chance for team bonding. And it’s fun.”

Archived article by Kristina Kovach
Sun Contributor