Saturday Strength Training Schedule Change

Important scheduling change for varsity winter training:

SATURDAY STRENGTH TRAINING AT CROSSFIT HAMILTON WILL NOW BE FROM 7-8:30 AM INSTEAD OF THE ORIGINAL 11-12:30 TIME.  This will be the Saturday time for the entire winter season and will begin this Saturday, November 14 (no session on Saturday, November 21).  Optional open erg times (starting January 9) for the boys are at the coach’s discretion and will be announced at Friday’s practices..

Payment for strength training sessions can be made directly to Kaitlin Jackson.

MJRC Novice Winter Training – Development Squad

Novice Parents and Athletes,

We have made several time slots available in order to begin a winter training program for our novice athletes who are not training with the varsity this winter.  Below are the program details.  Please feel free to contact Coach Justin at jochal@rowpnra.org with any questions.

Program Dates: 12/9/15 – 3/5/16

Program Schedule:

  • Wednesdays and Thursdays, 6:00-7:15 pm
  • Saturdays 10:00-11:30 am

Program Overview:

The Mercer Novice Winter Training program is a three days per week co-ed program for novice athletes and is intended for those who are not participating in the varsity winter training. Due to limited erg room space, there is only availability for 30 participants.  Those spots will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

Cost and Registration:  $275 for the winter – To register, click here to go to Regatta Central, then click on “Memberships” and select “Join/Renew” in the box titled 2015-16 MJRC Winter Training – Development Squad.  As always we never want the cost to create a situation where an athlete cannot afford to participate. We can put together a payment plan and if needed, and we do have financial aid available. Please contact Kris Grudt or Coach Justin if you have any questions.  Also as always, everything is 100% confidential.

MJRC Varsity Winter Training Information – 2015-2016 – Revised 4:30 pm on 11/12

Mercer Juniors Varsity Winter Training – 2015-2016

Program Dates: 11/11/15 – 3/4/16

Program Schedule*:

Girls Varsity

  • Boathouse:  Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 5:45-7:45 pm; Thursdays from 3:45-5:45 pm (with the exception of the first week — see Coach Steve’s post about November scheduling)
  • Strength Training: Wednesdays from 4-5:30 pm and Saturdays from 7-8:30 am at CrossFit Hamilton
  • Optional open erg/row on Sundays at boathouse from 9:30-11:00 am.

Boys Varsity

  • Boathouse:  Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday from 3:45-5:45 pm
  • Strength Training: Thursdays from 4-5:30 pm and Saturdays from 7-8:30 am at CrossFit Hamilton
  • Optional open erg on Saturdays starting January 9; time TBD and announced by coaches at practice

* PLEASE NOTE:  Practice times are subject to change at the coaches’ discretion.

Program Overview: 

Winter training is the indoor continuation of our junior rowing programs.   Given space constraints in our erg room we cannot accommodate all MJRC athletes for this program, and therefore it is by invitation only.

Cost and Registration: $425 for boathouse workouts.  To register, click here to go to Regatta Central, then click on “Memberships” and select “Join/Renew” in the box titled 2015-16 MJRC Varsity Winter Training (by Coaches Invitation Only).  (Strength Training fee is additional — see below.)  As always we never want the cost to create a situation where an athlete cannot afford to participate. We can put together a payment plan, and if needed we do have financial aid available. Please contact Kris Grudt or Coach Justin if you have any questions.  As always everything is 100% confidential.
There will be a Winter Training Trip with separate registration and fees extended to a select group of athletes from the boys and girls varsity teams.  Two 8+s from each team will travel from 12/27/15 to 1/2/16 to Augusta, Georgia by bus and will train twice a day while there.  Coaches will notify invited athletes by December 1.
Strength Training:

Over the past two years the juniors have worked with physical therapist and collegiate rower Kaitlin Jackson to supplement the aerobic training we do throughout the winter with endurance strength training. This year we will again be working with Kaitlin Jackson, this time in space provided by CrossFit Hamilton. While our sessions will be held in a CrossFit gym, this program is not CrossFit but instead is one that has been specifically designed and tailored by Kaitlin for rowers. Every exercise the group does will simulate/reinforce the movement patterns we use to move the boat, and each session will include dynamic warm-ups and post-workout stretching.  While the coaches believe this training really helps with the development of the rower, the program is completely optional and operates independently of the Princeton National Rowing Association.

Strength Training Cost: $250 for the winter.  Payments can be made directly to Kaitlin Jackson via check. If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Kaitlin Jackson at kaitlin.jackson1@gmail.com.

Strength Training Schedule:  The weekday sessions will run from 4-5:30 pm. Athletes will be grouped by ability within each session based on relative ability/experience with strength training.  On Saturday both teams will train from 11:00-12:30pm.

Strength training will take place every Wednesday for the Girls Team, every Thursday for the Boys Team, and on Saturday mornings for both teams.

* CrossFit Hamilton is located at 92 North Main Street, Building 3A, Windsor, NJ  08561.

Strength Training Dates:

Girls

Boys

November

14,18, 25, 28

November

14, 19, 24 (Tuesday), 28

December

2, 5, 9, 12, 16, 19

December

3, 5, 10, 12, 17, 19

January

6, 9, 13, 16, 20, 23,

27, 30

January

7, 9, 14, 16, 21, 23,

28, 30

February

3, 6, 10, 13, 17, 20,

24, 27

February

4, 6, 11, 13, 18, 20,

25, 27

March

2, 5, 9, 12

March

3, 5, 10, 12

Kaitlin Jackson Biography:

  • Graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2008 (Bachelor of Science); rowed there from 2004-2008
  • Graduated from University of Pittsburgh in 2011, Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
  • Assistant coach for the University of Pittsburgh Crew team, 2008-2011
  • PT for RWJUH Somerset Sports Physical Therapy (working primarily with athletic population); currently studying to become a board certified sports specialist (SCS), to be completed in March
  • CrossFit Endurance trainer (strength and conditioning for endurance athletes)
  • Certified running coach (utilizing pose running technique)
  • Utilizes sport-specific training, strength work and mobility/recovery techniques in own training as well as with athletes
  • Competes in distance triathlon events and has completed two Ironman races

Novice Boy’s Lineups for Braxton

Novice Boy’s are to arrive no later 10:45AM on Sunday.  Our races are scheduled between 12:20-12:50PM, things can change with weather. If everything stays on schedule we should be finished by 2:00PM.  The lineups for the race is below:

Novice Boy’s Braxton Regatta
12:27 PM 12:33 PM 12:39 PM
Diana Annie Nicole
Joe S. Morolayo Alex B.
Andrei D. Ty B. John M.
Brady S. Connall O. Kevin G.
Enzo C. Chris T. Jake N.
Brain R. Shaunak K. Jackson I.
Chirs S. Christian M. Isaac O.
Spencer S. Aidan V. Michael J.
Will G. Akiel C. Curran F.

 

This WeekEND at Mercer: 11/7 and 11/8

Looking forward to seeing you at the lake this weekend! Just a few reminders about the Frostbite and Braxton Regattas:

  • For both regattas, athletes should bring their own meals and race food.  There will be fruit, drinks, and nutrition bars at the boathouse, but there will not be a separate food tent on the Caspersen side of the lake.  Racers are invited to join everyone at the Mercer tent on the opposite side of the lake after they’ve finished with racing and boat responsibilities.
  • Please double-check the signups for information about where and when to go to volunteer or to bring food for the Braxton.  (See links below:  times and locations may vary by job or food item.)
  • Braxton volunteers:  Please sign in at the volunteer check-in table (located near the timing tower) 15 minutes prior to your shift’s start.  Identify yourself as a Mercer volunteer when you pull into the parking lot (will be free to volunteers) and walk straight down the path from the parking lot to find the check-in.
  • Frostbite and Braxton spectators:  We will be cheering from the marina side of the lake — great view of much of the race and the finish line!  Look for the big blue Mercer Juniors tent just up from the finish line:  on Saturday, it will be a place to meet, and on Sunday, it will be a day-long food tent for all Mercer fans.

Quick links:

Mercer County Park MAP

Frostbite Stake Boat Volunteers

Braxton Volunteers

Braxton Potluck Signup (could still use a few items)

THANK YOU for all the support you give to Mercer and its athletes!  See you at the regattas!

If you have any questions about or during the regattas, please feel free to text or call:

  • Lorena Miller:  609-915-2219
  • Amy Lustig:  267-496-9282
  • Karoline Borup:  908-380-5257

Recognizing a Leader – PNRA is the 2015 USRowing Club of the Year

For the Princeton National Rowing Association, 2015 has been a year of highs and lows.

From a competitive standpoint, the PNRA Mercer Juniors program has been on a roll, taking second in the Women’s Youth Varsity Eight, third in the Women’s Lightweight Youth Eight and finishing 11th overall in the Men’s Youth Eight at the 2015 USRowing Youth National Championships and then bringing home nine gold medals later in the summer from the Royal Canadian Henley. Read more…

Call for Frostbite Stake Boaters

Mercer Volunteers, you are WONDERFUL!  With the exception of two launch boat driver positions, all Braxton volunteer jobs have been filled — thank you!  We still need a few potluck items for Sunday’s Braxton Regatta food tent, and there’s now an additional need for some stake boaters for Saturday’s Frostbite Regatta.  This is a great job for novice rowers — they can get an idea of what a regatta looks like from the water while contributing to family volunteer time AND earning community service hours (we will happily sign any school service hour forms)!  To sign up, please go to the Frostbite Stake Boater Signup page. Launch boat drivers are also still needed for the Frostbite — please sign up here if you are a licensed launch driver and can lend a hand that day.

To recap:

  • Braxton Potluck Signup here
  • Frostbite Stake Boater Signup here
  • Frostbite Launch Boat Signup here
  • Braxton Launch Boat Signup here

THANK YOU for all your help!

This Week at Mercer: 11/2 – 11/8

Welcome to the last week of the fall rowing season!  With the Frostbite and Braxton regattas this weekend, there’s a lot of info that will be available on this page throughout the week — please keep checking for updates from coaches and parent coordinators.  We still need some volunteers for the Braxton Regatta — know that if your child is racing during your volunteer time slot, someone will fill in for you during the race so you can go watch and cheer (you can ask any Mercer parent to jump in for a bit).  We will also have a food tent (located on the marina side of the lake just up the course from the timing tower) for breakfast and lunch the day of the Braxton — please sign up below to pitch in for the potluck.

Here are some links that will help you plan for the weekend:

Regatta Websites:

Volunteer Sign-Up Links:

  • For Braxton volunteer jobs, sign up here.
  • For Braxton potluck items, sign up here.

Licensed Launch Boat Driver Sign-Up Links:

  • For Frostbite launch boats, sign up here.
  • For Braxton launch boats, sign up here.

Upcoming Fall Regatta Info

The next two weeks hold a number of fun home events for Mercer rowers and their families.  MJRC athletes will compete in the Mercer Challenge, an intra-boathouse regatta on October 28 beginning around 3:30 pm, followed by the inter-squad Head of the Halloween regatta at 2:00 pm on October 31 (costumes encouraged!). For many of you, these will be your son or daughter’s first regattas.  Just a little regatta etiquette: while regattas are going on, please refrain from interacting with the athletes or their coaches and avoid the area between the boathouse and the water, as boats will be launching and returning throughout this time.  (Even though this is a casual regatta, this holds true for all regattas, home or away.)

Within these two weeks, Mercer Lake will also be home to the Collegiate Small Boat Regatta on October 30-31 and the Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta on Sunday, November 8.  These regattas will require varying degrees of Mercer volunteer staffing (limited for the Small Boat; more extensive for the Braxton) and some contributing to the food tent.  You can learn what each volunteer job entails on the Regatta Volunteer Job Description post.  When signing up to volunteer, please note that you should arrive at the Volunteer Check-In table 15 minutes prior to the job times posted.

Here’s what you need to know:

. . . for the Collegiate Small Boat Regatta, October 30-31:

This is a small women’s collegiate regatta, and there are limited volunteer slots to fill. Our athletes do NOT row in this event, which makes this a perfect opportunity for novice athletes to volunteer. (Their time counts toward your family volunteer commitment, too!)  In particular, stake boating is a good way for kids to get involved and earn community service hours.  Time trials will be in the afternoon on Friday, 10/30, with final racing in the morning on Saturday, 10/31.

Click HERE to sign up to volunteer for the Collegiate Small Boat Regatta.

. . . and for the Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta on Sunday, November 8:  

This is an all-day regatta that includes most of our novice and varsity athletes.  There will be a few varsity heats early in the day, but the bulk of Mercer’s racing will take place between 11:00 am and 4:00 pm. It’s a great way to close the fall season — we will spend the day volunteering and cheering for Mercer on the marina side of the lake – look for the big blue Mercer Juniors Rowing Club tent!

STAY TUNED:  More Braxton info and signups coming soon . . . 

Regatta Volunteer Job Descriptions

It takes many hands to run a regatta — here is a list of the volunteer jobs required and a brief description of each:

Volunteer Positions Include:

  • Parking (boat trailer, food trailer, upper marina, spectator)
  • MJRC Food Tent (set up, cleanup, grill master, worker)
  • Information (crew check-in, visiting team tent assignments, and volunteer check-in)
  • Hospitality
  • Race and sponsor announcer
  • Stake Boats
  • Dock Master (launch and return)
  • Timing
  • Courtesy cart driver (parents only)
  • Runner
  • Awards/medals
  • Marina Side Clean up
  • Launch Boat Driver*

Job Descriptions:

Parking:

We have many different parking jobs in different locations. Parking is incredibly important because this is where we make the majority of our income from the regatta.  Those who sign up for parking positions should check in at the volunteer table by the timing tower upon arrival and then head to your station.

  • Trailer parking and food trailer parking are two different jobs and are needed prior to the start of a regatta. Trailer parking directs team boat trailers to their spots for the weekend and is located by the marina at the midway point in the course. (You are directing coaches where to park their boats.)
  • Food trailer parking is in the lower lot closest to the timing tower. This is where the parents who are responsible for food tents for their teams park their food trailers. You will hand out trailer parking passes and help direct loading and unloading of food tent items.
  • Upper marina parking is not as much a parking job as it is a NO PARKING job. You will be stationed at the entrance to the marina parking lot with a park ranger. Only boat trailers and race officials will be allowed in. You will direct all other vehicles (coaches, trainers, parents etc.) to other lots.
  • Spectator parking is our primary source of regatta revenue. You will be responsible for collecting parking fees and directing cars where to park.

Stake Boat:

Stake boaters lie on the start platform, holding boats for the start of the race. Be sure to dress appropriately for the weather and bring a yoga mat or towel to lie on.

Food Tent:

  • Food Tent Set-up occurs the night before and morning of the regatta and involves unloading and setting up the tent, grill, tables, coolers, etc.
  • Food Tent workers set out the food and keep it replenished and moving.
  • Food Tent Grill Master works the grill.
  • Food Tent Clean-up cleans up and loads food tent supplies back into the trailer.

Dock Master:

All visiting teams launch from and return to docks on the marina side of the lake, while Mercer boats launch from and return to the boathouse side.

  • Launch dock checks off launching teams for their event, checks equipment, and manages the flow of traffic in and out of the dock area.
  • Return dock collects bow numbers and manages flow of traffic off the docks.

Hospitality:

Hospitality is located in the marina area and is responsible for feeding the race officials, launch boat drivers, and regatta volunteers.

Timing and Results:

Timing is an indoor job. You will sit inside the timing tower at the finish line and record official times of the races. You may also post the results on the scoreboard, run resultsto officials, or work the finish line flag.

Race and Sponsor Announcer:

Broadcasts the race from the roof of the timing tower, announcing the lane assignments, sponsors, and basic race info.  A familiarity with how to pronounce team and event names is helpful here.

Information:

  • Team and Volunteer check-in hands out regatta packets to visiting crews, checks in volunteers, calls volunteer no-shows and juggles volunteers (if necessary), hands out t-shirts and regatta volunteer vests, and answers all kinds of venue and regatta-related questions.
  • Team Tent Assignments:  Visiting teams will have pre-purchased tent spaces for their food tents. You will help them find their assigned spot (juggling if necessary), assign last-minute spots, and collect payments.  You, too, will answer all kinds of venue and regatta-related questions.

Courtesy Cart Driver:

Drives a golf cart to help transport people and food tent supplies for visiting teams as well as helps those with difficulty walking from parking to and from the course.

Runner:

Shares a cart with a partner and helps with all the odd jobs that pop up during the regatta (restocking TP in port-a-potties, driving regatta workers, delivering messages).

Awards and Medals:

Assists with the distribution of medals to rowers.

Marina Side Cleanup:

Picks up signage around venue and places results board in tower. Removes all stakes and tape from team tent areas and parking grounds. Provides general event cleanup.

*Launch Boat driving is staffed separately by Randy Borup. You must have a valid boating license in order to volunteer for this job.  If you have a license and are interested in driving but have not been in contact with Randy, please email him at Rborup44@me.com.

OTHER IMPORTANT VOLUNTEER INFO:

On the day of your shift . . .

Report to the Volunteer Check-In table 15 MINUTES BEFORE your shift begins.  The Volunteer Check-In table is located beside the finish line timing tower, which is across the lake from the Caspersen Boathouse.

DIRECTIONS to finish line timing tower:  Enter the park through either of the main Mercer Park entrances and follow the road until you see the signs for Regatta Parking.  Park in this lot — FREE to all Mercer volunteers — and walk down the utility road toward the finish line timing tower.

A MAP of Mercer County Park can be found here.

Mercer Rowers Medal at Boston’s Head of the Charles

West Windsor, NJ – Princeton National Rowing Association’s Mercer Rowing Club (PNRA/Mercer) women’s youth 8 plus coxswain crew won a coveted medal at the Head of the Charles Regatta (HOCR) on Sunday by finishing third out of 85 high school-aged crews in the event.  Known as the biggest regatta on earth, the HOCR attracts 11,000 masters, collegiate, and junior rowers from around the world to compete in a three-mile race.  HOCR is a head race, so boats start sequentially approximately 15 seconds apart and compete against one another and the clock. Crews start the race in the sequence that they finished in the previous year’s regatta.

EileenHu-EliseGorberg-RachelMumau-MiaBarkenbush-KatieLustig-CaitlinCleary-SaraHansen-KateHickey-ColleenGillis“We were able to start second this year and that gave us a great advantage.  We didn’t have any other boats around us,” said senior co-captain Caitlin Cleary (Princeton High School).”  The HOCR race course is notoriously difficult, full of curves, turns, and six bridges that boats have to pass under one at a time. Slower boats are required to yield to faster boats, but crashes sometimes occur as boats try to pass each other.

The course was made more challenging this year by wind gusts up to 12 miles per hour.  “We are used to rowing in windy conditions because we train on Mercer Lake so we didn’t get psyched out by the wind,” said Cleary.  The PNRA/Mercer girls finished the race in 17 minutes, 22 seconds and gave much of the credit for their good performance to their senior coxswain Colleen Gillis (Freehold Township High School) who skillfully navigated the course, taking tight turns to avoid adding extra distance for her boat to travel.

“Our exciting result at Head of the Charles will inspire us to train hard this winter to continue to be competitive with the top crews in the country in the spring,” added Cleary.  PNRA/Mercer is likely to match up against HOCR winner Saugatauk Rowing Club and second place finisher Marin Rowing Association at the USRowing Youth National Championship Regatta on Mercer Lake in June, 2016.

In addition to Cleary and Gillis, the crew included senior co-captain Kate Hickey (Notre Dame High School) in stroke seat, sophomore Sara Hansen (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), junior Katie Lustig (Council Rock North), sophomore Mia Barkenbush (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), senior Rachel Mumau (Millstone Township), senior Elise Gorberg (West Windsor Plainsboro High School North), and senior Eileen Hu (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South).  The girls are coached by Steve Baranoski in his first season with PNRA/Mercer.

JackGallagher-KevinBorup-TylerHarris-CarterLevine-JohnTanguay-JasonFleurial-AndrewHickey-DanielStoddard-NikhilModiThe PNRA/Mercer men’s youth eight plus coxswain crew also was impressive, finishing seventh out of 85 crews with a time of 15 minutes, 41 seconds.  Senior co-captain Kevin Borup (South Brunswick High School) was full of praise for his teammates and especially senior coxswain, Nikhil Modi (West Windsor High School Plainsboro South).  “Nikhil coxed a great race and his experience on this course really showed,” said Borup.  Modi’s coxing skill was particularly evident around the Elliott Bridge.  Another boat was gaining on PNRA/Mercer but fell back when the Mercer County crew came through the bridge in perfect position to take the next turn on the inside.

“We row together really well, whether Nikhil has us at a 33 stroke rate or a 39 stroke rate, like we were in our final sprint,” added senior co-captain John Tanguay (Hopewell Valley High School), referring to the boys’ strokes per minute.

In addition to Borup, Modi and Tanguay, the PNRA/Mercer crew featured junior Daniel Stoddard (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), junior Andrew Hickey (Notre Dame High School), senior Jason Fleurial (Princeton High School), junior Carter Levine (Princeton High School), junior Tyler Harris (West Windsor Plainsboro High School North), and freshman Jack Gallagher (Council Rock High School North).  The boys are led by head coach Justin Ochal in his second year with PNRA/Mercer.

Also competing at the Head of the Charles were crews from the Mercer Masters, Peddie and Lawrenceville schools.

About the Princeton National Rowing Association

The Princeton National Rowing Association, a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, New Jersey.  The Princeton National Rowing Association is dedicated to operating a world-class training site for our nation’s elite athletes, providing opportunities for area youth to excel in the sport of rowing and to expand rowing in the area through community-based programs.  PNRA runs the Mercer Junior Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for youth from over 30 area schools and the Mercer Masters Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for adults.  The center is a home to the USRowing National and Olympic Teams, as well as rowing clubs and schools. PNRA received generous support from University Orthopaedic Associates, Resolute Racing Shells, Swift Racing, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott.

For more information, contact Kristopher Grudt, tel: 609-977-1094, krisgrudt@rowpnra.org or visit www.rowpnra.org

This Week at Mercer: 10/19 – 10/25

Thank you to all who rowed and cheered for Mercer in last weekend’s Head of the Charles Regatta!

Here’s what’s coming up at Mercer:

Mark your calendars for the upcoming events (detailed information can be found on the Programming post):

  • 10/28  Mercer Challenge
  • 10/31 Head of the Halloween (time may be changed from what’s listed on “Programming”)
  • 11/7 and 11/8:  Frostbite and Braxton Regattas

We will need some volunteers to help out with these regattas — signups with be forthcoming.

We will also need launch boat drivers for the following events:

  • Small Boat Challenge (collegiate event):  October 30th, 1-6 pm
  • Frostbite Regatta :  November 7th, 7 am – 5 pm
  • Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta:  November 8, 7 am – 5 pm

If you have already expressed interest in becoming a launch boat driver, look for emails from Launch Boat Coordinator Randy Borup.  If you have a valid boater’s license and are interesting in volunteering for these events, contact Randy at Rborup44@me.com.

This Week at Mercer: 10/12 – 10/18

Hello!  There will likely be multiple blog posts from coaches and coordinators this week, so this entry is just to kick off the week with a couple of items:

Navy Day Recap

Mercer boats saw tremendous success on the Schuylkill during last Saturday’s Navy Day Regatta.  Here are the final results:

  • Men’s JV 8+:  5th and 14th
  • Women’s JV 8+:  1st and 6th
  • Men’s 4+:  7th
  • Women’s 4+:  1st
  • Men’s 8+:  1st
  • Women’s 8+:  1st

The Mercer Masters 8+ also took first in their event earlier in the day.  CONGRATULATIONS to all!

Thank you also to all who contributed to the prerace potluck pasta dinner — though the weather did not cooperate, the boats were loaded, and the bellies were filled!

College Recruitment Primer

Athletes and parents are invited to attend a college recruiting information session at the boathouse on Tuesday, October 13 at 6:30 pm.  This event, which will help to provide some guidance for the college recruitment process, is geared toward high school sophomores and juniors and their parents.

Head of the Charles 

Select varsity men’s and women’s rowers will be heading to Boston this Friday to compete in the 51st Head of the Charles Regatta.  Please check back regularly for information about lineups, travel, and racing information.

PNRA/Mercer Rowers Excel at Navy Day

Mercer's Lauren Miller, Jenna Kugel, Gwyneth Lavery and Eileen Hu at Navy Day.
Mercer’s Lauren Miller, Jenna Kugel, Gwyneth Lavery and Eileen Hu at Navy Day.

West Windsor, NJ – Princeton National Rowing Association’s Mercer Rowing Club (PNRA/Mercer) kicked off its fall racing season by laying claim to victories in five events at the Navy Day Regatta on October 10.  The regatta featured over 2,000 masters, collegiate, and high school athletes competing in head races on a 2.5 mile course on Philadelphia’s Schuylkill River. The Mercer Rowing Program boats won the Junior Womens 8 with coxswain, Junior Mens 8 with coxswain, Junior Womens 4 with coxswain, Junior Womens JV 8+ with coxswain and the Womens Masters 8 with coxswain events.

Senior co-captain Kate Hickey (Notre Dame High School) was pleased with the PNRA/Mercer girls’ first place finishes in three events.  “This is a great way to start our season.  Winning all three events that we entered shows that we have a lot of depth on our team.  I am looking forward to seeing how these three boats stack up against some of the best crews in the country next weekend at the Head of the Charles Regatta.”

The winning women’s high school 8 with coxswain crew included Hickey in the stroke seat, junior Celia Varga (Princeton Day School), senior co-captain Caitlin Cleary (Princeton High School), junior Katie Lustig (Council Rock North), sophomore Mia Barkenbush (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), senior Rachel Mumau (Millstone Township), senior Elise Gorberg (West Windsor Plainsboro High School North) and sophomore Sara Hansen  (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), and senior coxswain Sydney Holgado (Robbinsville High School).

The winning women’s high school 4 with coxswain crew featured junior Lauren Miller (Steinert High School) in stroke seat, senior Jenna Kugel (Montgomery High School), junior Gwyneth Lavery (Lawrence High School), senior Eileen Hu and junior coxswain Caroline Galati (both from West Windsor Plainsboro High School South).

The winning women’s high school junior varsity eight with coxswain crew included junior Sheila Kennedy-Moore in stroke seat, sophomore Bridget Parker, junior Isabel Roemer, freshman Sarah Closser (all four from Princeton High School), junior Ciara DeVenuto-Wyeth (Pennsbury High School), senior Kathryn Miller (Steinert High School), senior Glorianna Perrotte (Monroe High School), freshman Jackie Armetta (Villa Joseph Marie High School) and junior coxswain Lulu Herman (Pennsbury High School).  The girls are led by head coach Steve Baranoski in his first year with PNRA/Mercer.

In a field of 25 crews, the PNRA/Mercer boys won the men’s high school 8 with coxswain event with a time of 12 minutes, 55 seconds.  Senior co-captain John Tanguay (Hopewell Valley High School) believes that crew is rowing together very well.  “The number one thing that we are doing well is getting into a good rhythm as soon as we cross the starting line.  It feels like one oar going through the water which puts you into a good state of mind for a long race.”  Tanguay feels that the crew is ready to handle the longer, 3-mile race course at the Head of the Charles regatta next weekend.

The PNRA/Mercer high school 8 with coxswain crew featured junior Daniel Stoddard (West Windsor Plainsboro High School South), junior Andrew Hickey (Notre Dame High School), senior Jason Fleurial (Princeton High School), Tanguay, junior Carter Levine (Princeton High School), junior Tyler Harris (West Windsor Plainsboro High School North), senior co-captain Kevin Borup (South Brunswick High School), freshman Jack Gallagher (Council Rock High School North), and senior coxswain Nikhil Modi (West Windsor High School Plainsboro South).  The boys are led by head coach Justin Ochal in his second year with PNRA/Mercer.

The Mercer Masters Women’s eight with coxswain also won their event to take home the coveted Navy Day Trophy.  The Masters Women’s boat was composed of Caroline Gilati, Ellen Tormey, Cassandra Cohen, Judy Gorberg, Susan Voorhees, Rebecca Findlay, Kristin Appelget, Sharon Walters and Cheryl Baldino.

About the Princeton National Rowing Association

The Princeton National Rowing Association, a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, New Jersey.  The Princeton National Rowing Association is dedicated to operating a world-class training site for our nation’s elite athletes, providing opportunities for area youth to excel in the sport of rowing and to expand rowing in the area through community-based programs.  PNRA runs the Mercer Junior Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for youth from over 30 area schools and the Mercer Masters Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for adults.  The center is a home to the USRowing National and Olympic Teams, as well as rowing clubs and schools. PNRA received generous support from University Orthopaedic Associates, Resolute Racing Shells, Swift Racing, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott.

For more information, contact Kristopher Grudt, tel: 609-977-1094, krisgrudt@rowpnra.org or visit www.rowpnra.org.

Info for Navy Day Parents & Spectators

Just a few notes to help you plan your afternoon on the Schuylkill tomorrow:

1.  Coach Justin posted information about Navy Day below – please follow the links he provided for venue information and note the updated time changes below his “Navy Day Information” post.  The first Mercer race is now scheduled for 3:10 pm, and other race times have changed as well.  Please have your athlete at the trailer at least two hours prior to his or her race time.

2.  Since the race schedule is relatively short for Mercer, each athlete should bring his/her own food and drinks.

3.  It’s likely that you will not be able to park on Kelly Drive but will instead be directed to park up on the hill and walk or take the free shuttle down.  The Navy Day website currently reads that only coaches and athletes will be permitted to park on Kelly Drive, but be sure to print out this pass so you can drop your child off at the trailer next to St. Joe’s boathouse before finding a place to park.

4.  Mercer fans will be meeting near the grandstand again.  Look for the Mercer flag, not the tent this time.  We will try to set up in the same area as we did for IDR and the Philly Youth Regatta, but since there are more teams competing (Navy Day includes collegiate races), space may be at a minimum. You might want to bring a chair or blanket and, like for the rowers, whatever snacks and drinks you’d like for yourself.

5.  Mercer’s results can be found here (*Please note that the Men’s Varsity 8+ results have been changed from the initial Navy Day posting of 7th place — they actually got FIRST!)

Please feel free to call any of the parent coordinators if you have any questions, and GO, MERCER!

Navy Day Information

Parents & Athletes,

As you know the Navy Day Regatta is coming up this Saturday, October 10th.  Below you will find the preliminary list for both guys’ and girls’ teams.  This is a varsity only race, no novices will participate.

Registration: Registration is posted on Regatta Central . The fee per athlete is $20.

Parking/Directions: A parking pass is required for competitors and coaches wishing to park on Kelly Drive.  The parking pass can be found on the Navy Day website. Kelly Drive will fill up early in the day, so if you are an athlete driving yourself to the race please allow extra time to park. Spectator parking will be located on Reservoir Road, which is above the Strawberry Mansion bridge.  There will be a shuttle running down to Kelly Drive, or you can also walk down to the course. More details for spectators can be found on thespectator page of the Navy Day website.

The boat trailer will be in the Canoe Club parking lot, next to the St. Joe’s University boathouse on Kelly Drive.  There is a good map on the front page of the Navy Day websitefor those who have not raced at the Schuylkill before.  If you want to use an address for your GPS, use 2200 Kelly Drive, Philadelphia — it is the address of the St. Joseph’s (Gillin) boathouse — but be sure to approach the course FROM THE NORTH (not from the Art Museum end) to avoid the detour.

Racing Schedule:

4:04 PM – Men’s JV 8+

4:16 PM – Women’s JV 8+

4:28 PM – Men’s Jr. 4+

4:38 PM – Women’s Jr. 4+

5:08 PM – Men’s Varsity 8+

5:20 PM – Women’s Varsity 8+

Athletes should be at the trailer at least two hours before race time.

Regatta Website: http://www.thenavydayregatta.com

Live Results:  I believe results will be provided by Regatta Central at the following link –www.regattacentral.com/regatta/results.jsp

We are looking forward to a great start to the fall season!

Go, Mercer!

View PDF

Race Schedule Update

3:10 PM – Men’s JV 8+

3:26 PM – Women’s JV 8+

4:38 PM – Men’s Jr. 4+

4:54 PM – Women’s Jr. 4+

5:26 PM – Men’s Varsity 8+

5:38 PM – Women’s Varsity 8+

This Week at Mercer: 10/5-10/11

Before we get going, we’ve got to say a giant THANK YOU to all who planned for, set up for, cooked for, cleaned up from, and joined in the fun at Oktoberfest last weekend.  The boathouse and bay looked so festive; the food was delicious; the company was terrific, and a great time was had by all.  A special thanks goes to Kris Grudt for roasting the perfect pig and for providing such a great event to celebrate at Mercer!

———-

Here’s what’s coming up:

It’s race time!

Regatta season has arrived for the varsity team!  Select Mercer varsity rowers will compete in the Navy Day Regatta on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia this weekend (Saturday, 10/10) and in the 51st Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston the following weekend (Friday, 10/16-Sunday, 10/18).  Coaches and parent coordinators will be posting quite a bit of information throughout the week on this blog, so please check back regularly for boat lineups and regatta information.

To kick off the season, there will be an ALL VARSITY PASTA PARTY at the boathouse onFriday, October 9 after the athletes have finished loading the boat trailer.  That’s a lot of hungry mouths to feed, so we will need your help to make this happen.  Please check out the Lucky Potluck sign-up for information and please sign up to contribute a dish to the party.

Gear sale ends soon!

The gear sale ends on Friday (10/9) – all JL and Nike/Patagonia/Gamex orders are due by the end of this week.  Click here for all ordering information and forms.

Thank you again for all you do!

Summer Program Blog

Welcome to the Princeton National Rowing Association Summer Program Blog. This space will be used to provide timely updates on our programs. Participants in PNRA/Mercer’s Summer programs are encouraged to periodically check back for news and updates.

Sobolewski Nominated for US Rowing Junior Coach of the Year

Former Varsity Girls Head Coach, Ted Sobolewski has been nominated for coach of the year. As stated on the website, “Ted directly coached every boat for the PNRA/Mercer varsity junior women and, as director of rowing programs, oversaw the PNRA/Mercer junior men coached by Justin Ochal. PNRA/Mercer women won a silver medal in the W8+ and a bronze medal in the LW8+ at US Rowing Youth National Championships and seven gold medals at the Royal Canadian Henley Regatta in 2015.”

We congratulate him on his success.

To vote for Ted as well as others click here.

PNRA/Mercer Rower Carter Levine Breaks World Record

West Windsor, NJ – Like most rowers, Carter Levine of the Princeton National Rowing Club / Mercer (PNRA/Mercer) spends a lot of time training on the ergometer, an indoor rowing machine.  Workouts on the ”erg” develop the specific muscles needed for rowing and give rowers the opportunity for supplemental training when they cannot get on the water in shells.

Carter Levine rowing 2015Levine stands out among rowers when it comes to erging though.  He recently set two world records and one American record for indoor rowing.  The Princeton High School junior rowed 500 meters in 1 minute, 19.4 seconds, which was a world record for 15-16 year olds.  Two weeks later, he rowed 1000 meters in 2 minutes, 55.3 seconds, which also was a world record for 15-16 year olds.  In addition, he set an American record for most meters rowed in 30 minutes by a 15-16 year old male by rowing 8325 meters, narrowly missing the world record by less than 100 meters.

“It’s incredible to watch him,” said Kris Grudt, Executive Director of PNRA/Mercer who witnessed all three of the record-setting feats.  “He puts together the physical and the mental aspects of rowing.”

Levine also holds the Caspersen Rowing Center record for fastest 2000-meters on an erg by a high school-aged rower, which he captured by breaking his older brother Alex’s record.  Alex is now a freshman, rowing for Princeton University.

“Carter just keeps redefining what fast is for our club,” said PNRA/Mercer boys’ varsity coach Justin Ochal. “He keeps moving up and up and is a great leader by his example.  I can’t teach kids to want to go fast.  It has to come from within.  Carter has the internal drive.”

Levine began rowing in the spring of his freshman year of high school, choosing rowing over playing lacrosse.  The move paid off for him. By spring of his sophomore year, he was part of PNRA/Mercer’s varsity eight boat which competed at the 2015 USRowing Youth National Championships and finished eleventh in the nation.

At least one rower was inspired by Levine’s accomplishments on the erg and made his own attempt at breaking an indoor rowing record.  Freshman Jack Gallagher (Council Rock North High School, Newtown, PA) was successful in setting the world record for most meters rowed in 30 minutes by a 13-14 year old male by rowing 8115 meters.  All indoor rowing records are recorded on the website www.concept2.com/indoor-rowers/racing/records.

About the Princeton National Rowing Association

The Princeton National Rowing Association, a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, New Jersey.  The Princeton National Rowing Association is dedicated to operating a world-class training site for our nation’s elite athletes, providing opportunities for area youth to excel in the sport of rowing and to expand rowing in the area through community-based programs.  PNRA runs the Mercer Junior Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for youth from over 30 area schools and the Mercer Masters Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for adults.  The center is a home to the USRowing National and Olympic Teams, as well as rowing clubs and schools. PNRA received generous support from University Orthopaedic Associates, Resolute Racing Shells, Swift Racing, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott.

For more information, contact Kristopher Grudt, tel: 609-977-1094, krisgrudt@rowpnra.org or visit www.rowpnra.org.

This Week at Mercer: 9/28-10/4

Happy Monday!  Here’s what’s happening this week at Mercer:

  1. Please get all of your forms in to Maddie ASAP.  You can check to see if you’re missing any forms on the two preceding blog posts for varsity and novice athletes.
  2. Register here to be a part of the fun at Oktoberfest this Saturday, October 3 at 6:00 pm!
  3. Gear orders continue this week through October 9 — to learn more and to place your order, please go to the Mercer Rowing Club Gear Order Form.
  4. Mark your calendars for the College Recruitment Primer for high school sophomore and junior athletes and their parents!  It will be at the boathouse onTuesday, October 13 at 6:30 pm (changed from the original date, October 1).

Wishing you all a great week and hope to see you at Oktoberfest!

Baranoski and Alden Join Mercer Rowing Staff

For Immediate Release

West Windsor, NJ

September 5, 2015

The Princeton National Rowing Association (“PNRA”) is pleased to announce the addition of Steve Baranoski and Maddie Alden to the Mercer Rowing Program Coaching Staff.  Mr. Baranoski joins the program as the Varsity Girls Head Coach and Masters Coach.  Ms. Alden joins the staff as the assistant rowing coach.  Additionally, Justin Ochal will take over the role of Rowing Programs Manager filling the position vacated by Ted Sobolewski’s departure to Northeastern University.  Mr. Ochal will continue to be the Varsity Boy’s Coach.

steveSteve Baranoski joins the Mercer Rowing Program coaching staff after coaching at Old Lyme High School and the Blood Street Sculls Rowing Program where he was the Head Coach and Director of Rowing.  While at Old Lyme/Blood Street, Coach Baranoski’s junior boys 4+ finished in second place at both the 2014 Head of the Charles Regatta and the USRowing Youth National Championships in Sarasota, FL.

Coach Baranoski coached both the Men’s and the Women’s teams at Wesleyan University where he was also in charge of recruiting.  At Wesleyan, he worked both in the athletic department and as a graduate teaching assistant.  Steve has also coached at the Northeast Rowing Center, Craftsbury and the Hartford’s RiverFront Program.

Coach Baranoski began his rowing career in high school and continued it at Marietta College.  He continues to compete as a Master’s rower.

Maddie Alden began her rowing career as a coxswain with the Mercer Junior Rowing Program where she coxed the women’s varsity eight with coxswain.  She is a graduate of Princeton High School.  After her career as a junior rower with the Mercer Junior Rowing Program, Ms. Alden continued her rowing career at the University of California Los Angeles where she coxed the UCLA crew for 4 years.

PNRA is pleased to welcome our new coaches to the PNRA Mercer Rowing family.

About the Princeton National Rowing Association

The Princeton National Rowing Association, a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, New Jersey.  The Princeton National Rowing Association is dedicated to operating a world-class training site for our nation’s elite athletes, providing opportunities for area youth to excel in the sport of rowing and to expand rowing in the area through community-based programs.  PNRA runs the Mercer Junior Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for youth from over 30 area schools and the Mercer Masters Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for adults.  The center is a home to the USRowing National and Olympic Teams, as well as rowing clubs and schools. PNRA received generous support from University Orthopaedic Associates, Harry’s Army Navy, JL Racing, Resolute Racing Shells, Wells Fargo Advisors-Gould Group, Red Roof Inn, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott.

For more information, contact Kristopher Grudt, tel: 609-977-1094, krisgrudt@rowpnra.org or visit www.rowpnra.org.

A boathouse balancing act

MERCER COUNTY, NEW JERSEY — Looking back on my trip, I keep returning to the lake with the two boathouses. Mercer Lake is tucked inside a large county park several miles east of Trenton and

the Delaware River and wraps around the west side of New Jersey. It’s shaped like an amoeba, with a seven-lane rowing course that fits perfectly in its center. Read more …