The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


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Crew displays resolve at St. Andrews Regatta in Delaware

Rohan Honganoor
The Men’s 2V boat races in the St. Andrews regatta. “Jefferson crew athletes usually struggle with being smaller and lighter than the competition at other schools, so we have to make up for it by putting extra work into our technique to match other boats,” sophomore rower Rohan Honganoor said.

On April 1, Jefferson’s crew team competed in their second regatta of the season at Noxontown Pond at St. Andrews in Delaware. They competed against several schools including McLean High School, St. Andrew’s School and Woodbridge High School. Rowers arrived at the single-day event as early as 9 a.m. for the various races lasting until 5 p.m.

Jefferson boats competed in eight of the fourteen races at the event, placing respectably. The Men’s Varsity 4 (Men’s 4-person boat) boat placed 3rd with five minutes and 28.5 seconds. The Men’s Varsity 8 (Men’s 1V) and 2nd Men’s Varsity 8 (Men’s 2V) boats both placed fifth in their races, with respective times of four minutes and 47.9 seconds and five minutes and 19.3 seconds. 

Additionally, the Women’s Varsity 8 (Women’s 1V) boat and the 2nd Women’s Varsity 8 (Women’s 2V) boat both placed sixth with respective times of five minutes and 30.3 seconds and five minutes and 57.0 seconds. 

These times and placements especially stand out in comparison to Jefferson’s competitors.

“One of the biggest challenges at St. Andrews was that we were racing against year-long crew teams, whereas our school has only seasonal teams,” sophomore Fletcher Lee said. “Although we didn’t place super well, we showed a lot of improvement from last year. I believe we will continue to improve.”

Soon, Jefferson will display this improvement as they prepare to race against schools like Oakton High School, Langley High School and James Madison High School at the Ryz Obuchowicz Regatta on April 20, a regatta held at Sandy Run Regional Park in Fairfax, Virginia.

“During the week before the [St. Andrews] regatta, we participated in intense five-hour practices every day from 2 to 7 p.m.,” sophomore Rohan Honganoor said. “The first few days we focused on working out and building strength through intense workouts. Later in the week, we focused more heavily on our technical rowing, improving on things like our sprints and starts.” 

These intense practices no doubt helped the Jefferson teams improve their power and timing. A set in rowing is formed up of two main components, the handle height, and timing. When rowers are in the recovery phase they must maintain consistent handle height across the boat to ensure equal weight distribution. If a boat tilts, rowers must make minute adjustments to handle heights to recalibrate and balance the boat. A catch in rowing is when the blade is placed in the water, and the finish is the end of the stroke as the blade exits the water. To ensure proper coordination every person must catch and finish at the same time.

“I feel like we’ve improved a lot since last year, but in the future, I think our boat could continue to work on keeping pace with one another and setting the boat,” Lee said.

The event served as a social event and gave the team a bonding experience. When rowers weren’t racing, they socialized with one another and ate food from a cookout.

“The race was especially fun since it was so far from home and many families came to watch us race,” Honganoor said. “It was also really eye-opening and different from our normal races because we were racing against teams from other regions instead of the usual local teams we compete against.”

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