Campbell Highlights Strong Weekend on Water
Those looking to find the top lightweight rowers in the country might want to peruse Harvard’s 2011 roster.
Sophomore Andrew Campbell, recently named the 2011 USRowing Man of the Year, and former team captain Will Newell ’11 combined to win the two lightweight men’s events at this past weekend’s USRowing East Coast Fall Speed Order.
Campbell took first place in the lightweight single event, while Newell won the lightweight pair while rowing with Jimmy Sopko.
“It was not a national selection [for me],” Campbell said. “It was an opportunity to figure out where I stood relative to the rest of the field. ... This weekend was a good step forward in the process of trying to make the 2012 Olympic team. We have a long way to go, but this is a good step.”
For all competitors, the weekend began with a 6k on Saturday, with the fastest ergers earning the privilege of starting Sunday’s races first.
Newell paced the entire lightweight field with a 19:38 on the 6k piece.
“Between 19:30 and 19:40 is Olympic standard,” Campbell said.
While Campbell did not win the event, he did manage to make a personal jump and finished third among lightweight scullers.
“It’s been quite a while since he tested,” said Charley Butt, who is coaching both the Crimson lightweights and the Olympic double. “He’s a minute faster, which is an enormous jump.”
“It was exciting to be in a room with a bunch of other highly motivated and fast athletes,” Campbell added. “There was an electric atmosphere to that event.”
Campbell was erging next to training partners Austin Meyer ’12-’13 and Will Daly, who graduated from Boston University in 2006.
Campbell’s 6k put him third in the starting order, behind Daly and Greg Ruckman ‘96, who had the fastest erg among scullers. Meyer started fifth.
“It was difficult coming back from such a difficult and long erg piece,” Campbell said. “I was pleased and especially against such strong competition that has the mental tenacity [to race back-to-back].”
Campbell won the single event by over 10 seconds, and only heavyweight winner Michael Sevigny posted a faster time in the single, though Butt noted that variable conditions make it hard to compare times from separate events.
Daly took second, Ruckman took third, and Meyer took fifth.