Besides guzzling beer and generally whooping it up, the 2,000-odd straw-hatted Regatta Day carousers who will crowd the banks of the Charles this afternoon will also witness one of the most exciting crew races of the season. It will certainly be one of the most decisive. All three varsity crews are undefeated, and two of them, Navy and Penn, frequently have been rated by sportwriters as Olympic material.
So this nine-crew, three-race regatta is much more than just just the main event of a Weekend. It includes the seasons first really crucial test for Harvey Love's varsity heavies. Not only is it the first time this year the Crimson oarsmen have entered a race as underdogs, but also the stakes are the highest yet--the crew which wins this one many experts feel may be the one to represent the U.S. at Helsinki in the '52 Olympics.
But Love has set his sights at more immediate achievements--in particular, winning the Adams Cup today for the eleventh consecutive year,. "We have an excellent chance to win," Love said, "but I expect a tough afternoon. Anyone could be third." If the conditions are right, it will be a great race for both the crews and spectators. "It may not be decided till the last minute," he stated.
Navy is definitely favored over both the Quakers and the Crimson. The Middies have defeated Yale and Princeton easily, and turned in the almost unbelievable time of 8:27 last week in beating the 1951 intercollegiate champions Wisconsin over a mile and three-quarters on the Severn. Rusty Callow's rowers were aided by a stiff tailwind and tide.
Navy has five sophomores in the first boat, while the Badgers in this, their opener, had seven veterans, but less practicing days due to the late spring. The Crimson beat Princeton last week by about as much as the Middies did, but the races cannot be compared because of the difference in racing conditions.
Penn has also turned in victories over Princeton and Yale, but neither of them so decisive as Navy's. Joe Burk's eight had an open date last Saturday.
Harvard has been making steady progress since its initial race against Tech two weeks ago, according to Love. "The men showed more zing against Princeton than Tech," he said, "and I expect them to be stronger this week." Because of bad weather conditions, there have been no conclusive set in trials. Love has made no change in his varsity since last week.
The junior varsity has lost seven-man Dan Simonds because of sickness, but Love moved Bob Webb into bow an Frank Huntington into Simonds' old seat. The jayvees lost to the varsity by two and one half lengths on Wednesday, and expect stiff opposition from Navy an Penn.
Bill Leavitt's freshmen are also up against a favored undefeated Platt eight. Leavitt has not changed his boating, and feels his crew has improves gradually since the start of the year.
Colors: Crimson Shirts; Crimson Oars with White Tips.
Varsity: Bow, Frank Peale; 2, Alfred Goodale; 3, William Geertsema; 4, Richards Higgins; 5, Peter Simonds; 6, Philip DuBois; 7, George Gifford; stroke, Louis McCagg (Captain); cox, Warren Clark. Junior Varsity: Bow, Robert Webb; John Sundqvist; 3, William Bliss; 4, Lincoln Boyden; 5, James Slocum; 6, Larry Rouner; 7, Frank Huntington; stroke, Lawrence Brownell; cox, Alan Lefkowitz. Freshmen: Bow, Alan Dann; 2, Edward Bliss; 3, Randolph Harrison; 4, Harvard Cushing; 5, Richard Darrell; 6, Edward Brookfield; 7, Michael Metcall stroke, Leonard Wheeler; cox, John Pratt.
Colors: Yellow Shirts with Blue Seabee Varniched Oars with Blue Tips. Varsity: Bow, Frank Shakespeare; William Fields: 3, James Dunbar; Richard Murphy; 5, Robert Detweller; Edward Worth; 7, Wayne Fry; stroke Edward Stevens; cox, Charles Manring.
Colors: Dark Red and Blue Checker Checked Shirts; Red and Blue Diagonally Striped Oars. Varsity; Bow, Daniel Piccone; 2, Robert Dempsey; 3, Irving Miller; 4, Stere Littauer; 5, William Mushake; 6, Thomas McDonough; 7, Paul McNamara; stroke John McCall; cov, William Chapman. Race Times: Freshmen, 4 p.m.
Junior Varsity, 4:30 p.m.
Varsity, 5 p.m. (Adams Cup)
Course: One and three-quarter miles upstream in the Charles River Basin. The Races will be broadcast from walkie-talkie in the launch.