When war broke out in Europe many hopeful crew coaches in the country found themselves holding the proverbial bag. Many of them had built up combinations last season on the basis of Olympic trials to be held this year, and new unless Mars starts calling back his dogs, there aren't going to be any Olympics.
Perhaps this situation will throw the most consternation into the face of the two great West Coast crows, California and Washington, who went into their seasons last year with relatively green outfits, partially through necessity and partially through the hope of building up an Olympic crew. Now the climax of the coming season is nonexistent, and these two top notch crews are apt to suffer from anticlimax all through the year.
Possible East-West Race
However, the anticlimax is not likely to be so great as it might be because there is some talk of having a post-season race next spring between the Eastern and the Western crews. If this plan should come through it is still apt to be relatively unimportant compared to the projected Olympic trials and in many colleges it will probably not be the climax point of the season, particularly in the case of Harvard and Yale.
Whatever the situation in the country will be there is still the problem of the Eastern competition which will probably be stiffer this next year than last.
This next year it seems inevitable that the crew to beat will be Yale, who returns to the water with six veterans from last year captained by Bucky Byers their dynamic coxswain. They may have seven lettermen by spring if Fargo is scholastically eligible.
On the Charles, Tom Bolles has launched three boatloads that will probably be well mixed up by the end of another week's practice. Of the seven returning oarsmen who rowed together at Honley last year, Bolles has only kept six together. Sherm Gray has been put at stroke in last year's Freshan boat which has been kept intact. Gray was certainly one of the best, if not the best, oarsman of the Henley crew, and while he is a fairly large crewman, it seems logical that Holles should give him a try at stroke.
This fact also indicates that Holles is none too sure of Jack Wilson as the stroke of the 1940 varsity. While Wilson turned in a performance last spring that spoke well for his ability, especially since he only stroked sprint races, he certainly doesn't have the power of the rangy men that make up the rest of the crew.
The other two men who have been placed on Wilson's crew are Moffat and Pennoyer. Paul Pennoyer in a powerful and well developed oarsman who simply couldn't find a place on the Freshman crew last year. Moffat is relatively inexperienced, but he certainly pulls his weight and he is a conscientious worker.
Wagner Leads Another Crew
Colt Wagnor is stroking another crew, backed by Hinckley, Taylor, Riggs, Bremar, Simmons, Marshall, and Steilles. Riggs was on the powerful Freshman crew of two years ago, but he didn't row last year because of the press of scholastic work. Incidentally he is a high ranking scholar. Simmons rowed on the victorious Kent School Henley crew of 1938 but he was ineligible to row last year.