BY ED MORAN
PHOTO BY ED MORAN
Looking to get in a tune-up regatta against international competition, the Schuylkill Navy/Penn A.C. men’s quad that won U.S. Trails II last month, showed promise racing in the final of World Rowing Cup I in Zagreb, Croatia, crossing fourth Saturday in a photo-finish sprint to the line against Germany.
The U.S. trailed early in the race, but pushed through into third driving through the final 500-meters, but missed the medals when Germany sprinted back and nipped the new U.S. crew at the line.
It took a few minutes for race officials to determine the outcome, but once sorted out, the U.S. had finished just a hair behind Germany — 5:49.65 to 5:49.76.
This was the final preparation race for the crew of Charles Anderson, Justin Keen, Eliot Putnam, and Sorin Koszyk, who will next travel to Lucerne, Switzerland, and attempt a top-two finish to earn an Olympic placement at the Final Olympic Qualification Regatta, May 15-17.
While the crew did not reach the medal podium, they felt that they had made progress and are encouraged by the racing.
“We feel good for now,” said Keen. “We improved every day and accomplished our goals for this regatta. Today we wanted to be in the mix for the medals at the thousand, economize for 500, then send the last 500,” he said.
“We were able to do that, but Germany was able to find a couple more feet at the line. Each stroke we take battling it out with qualified boats builds our confidence as a crew. We’re excited to get back into the boat and oars we’re used to and have a quality training camp in Linz, [Austria] before heading to Lucerne.”