By: Lauren Ayers
With the (questionable) arrival of spring, Riverside’s annual Crusher Casey race and boat dedication was held on Sunday, April 10. The event, serving as Opening Day for the club, is a time for the membership to gather and recognize those who mean so much to Riverside, and celebrate the arrival of spring with a mixed eights or singles stake-turn race.
The morning opened with breakfast (shoutout to Carson for sharing his amazing quiche) and dedications of the newest additions to the Riverside fleet. Nikolay Kurmakov, women’s sweeps coach and Simmons coach, and Sarah White, former Vice President, were both honored with new shells and stories from current members. Champagne was popped, poured, and drank to welcome the Nikolay Kurmakov 4+ and Sarah White 1x to RBC.
Next up was the racing. The men’s and women’s sweeps teams stirred up some fierce intrasquad rivalry, with two mixed eights (the Caro-Gray Bosca, and the Dick Garver) going head-to-head. For the first time in Riverside history, a master’s mixed eight joined the two open sweeps eights at the start line, leading to a particularly exciting three-across mass start.
The eights battled it out to the stake turn, with the Garver leading to the halfway mark. In an exciting twist (literally!), a perfectly-executed stake turn by the Caro allowed the trailing sweeps eight to snag the lead. Battling it out back down the powerhouse, the members of the Garver were unable to make up for lost time, with the Caro winning the Crusher Casey by seven seconds. The master’s eight followed the open teams just over a minute later.
Despite the cold and wind forcing many spectators back inside, three die-hard singles braved the weather to race for the title of Crusher Casey champion. In a tight race, Riverside President Mike Farry won the men’s single, with HPG’er Joe Hanna only ten seconds behind. Ilana Zieff chased them down to win the women’s single.
Learn about the long tradition of this event in our most recent RBC History post.
Congratulations to all, and here’s to spring!