Dirigo Sprints

—by Marnie Read
• Jun 15, 2024

A group of parents from Massachusetts stood on the shore of Barrett’s Cove on Saturday, May 25th and wondered why all high school rowing regattas were not held on Megunticook Lake. Albeit a bit breezy to start, Dirigo Sprints, the season finale for the high school rowing season was a triumph for all. Hosted by Megunticook Rowing, four teams convened to contest in 14 events, ranging from doubles, to quads, 4s and 8s. Cowbells and cheers rang out as there were plenty of close finishes on the 1500 meter course that ran right down RT 52. The day ended with most of the teams taking a celebratory dip in Megunticook Lake followed by a picnic prepared by the parents of Megunticook rowers.Huge thank you to Erin Brainerd who led the incredible group of parents this year through the Manic May of competition. Another huge shout out to Jennifer and Fabrice Roux, of Union’s Alsace restaurant, who after seeing some of the spreads at other regattas upped the game and served up delicious grilled goodies for all.

Highlights for Megunticook juniors included First Place finish in the Girls coxed 8 and the Boys double of Jake Roux and Tanner Carson. The Girls 8+ coxed by Ruth Weiss with Flora Gurdon, Adella Brainerd, Marguerite Worner, Liana Talty, Leona Bournival, Tucker Beynart, Laura Riordan, and a gracious member of Waynflete in 3 seat surged at the finish to hold on to a one second finish over Maine Coast Rowing. Second place finishes went to the Girls and Boys coxed 4s, and the Girls and Boys Quads.

“These are very young teams,” said Coach Meredith Currier. “We are only graduating 3 seniors so I expect these teams to continue to be more and more competitive in the coming years.”

At the end of the day, it was Maine Coast Rowing who successfully defended their 2023 Dirigo Sprints title. Taking 1sts in eight of the 12 events in which they participated. On Saturday May 18th at the US Rowing New England Youth Championships, the Boys Double of Robert Wickenden and Jake Roux qualified for the Sunday finals with a time of 8:08.92. They crushed that time on Sunday with a stroke rate of 38spm and a finishing time of 7:47.20.

“This effort is so impressive,” said Coach Will Schaetzke. “Jake is a sophomore and Robert is in 8th grade. They were competing against Seniors.”

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