SEATTLE, WA —Media reports suggest that the George Clooney-directed film “The Boys in the Boat” about the 1936 University of Washington rowing team currently is in production.
But Huskies fans, and fans of the sport, can get a glimpse of UW’s modern rowers this weekend at the Windermere Cup.
The 36th annual regatta will feature over 90 minutes of racing beginning at 10:15 a.m. Saturday on the Montlake Cut. The main events, the Women’s Windermere Cup (V8+) and the Men’s Windermere Cup (V8+), are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m., respectively.
This year, the UW men will row against the Netherlands national team, while the UW women will row against the national team from Great Britain. There also will be 21 other races in various divisions, including: juniors, masters and college crews.
This will be the first time since 2019 that spectators will be officially welcomed at the Windermere Cup, and fans are invited and encouraged to watch the races, free of charge, along the Montlake Cut. Details about seating and parking are available on the Windermere Cup website.
The annual Windermere Cup is held in conjunction with the Seattle Yacht Club’s Opening Day parade, which signals the beginning of the recreational boating season in Seattle.
“The Windermere Cup on Opening Day is a rite of passage for spring in Seattle,” said OB Jacobi, president of Windermere Real Estate, the title sponsor of the main events. “For the past two years, our community hasn’t been able to come together to celebrate due to COVID-19, so we’re elated to welcome everyone back down to the shores of the Montlake Cut to be a part of one of the greatest rowing events in the world.”
The Dutch men’s rowing team will be making its second appearance at the Windermere Cup after previously competing in 1994. Recently, the Netherlands won the bronze medal in the men’s eight at the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil and finished fifth last year in the Tokyo Olympics.
The UW men’s rowing team, meanwhile, swept all four grand finals at the 2021 IRA Championships, earning the program’s 19th national championship.
“We are looking forward to celebrating the start of boating season in the Pacific Northwest with the Opening Day Regatta and the Windermere Cup,” said UW men’s head coach Michael Callahan. “The Netherlands will pose a considerable challenge for our Huskies between the log booms.”
The British women’s team previously won the 1998 Windermere Cup, defeating the UW team that went on to win the NCAA title. Great Britain also competed in Seattle in 2002 and 2014.
The current UW women’s team enters the 2022 season ranked No. 3 in the nation, having finished in a tie for first (third after the tiebreaker) at the 2021 NCAA Championships.
“Our team is so excited to be able to experience this regatta in the way it’s meant to be,” said Washington women’s head coach Yasmin Farooq. “The last time we raced national-caliber rowers from Great Britain was at Henley (in England) and that was a race for the ages. The tradition of excellence they bring, makes it that much more special.”
The weekend’s festivities actually get underway Friday with the Windermere Party At the Cut, which promises “boats, bites, brews and bands.”
The 21-and-over event takes place from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. near the northeast corner of the Montlake Cut, near the UW Waterfront Activity Center. Tickets are available online for $25 through Thursday, and for $35 at the door.
The party also will coincide with Friday’s Twilight Sprints, which will feature Saturday’s Windermere Cup boats competing in a sprint from the traditional Montlake Cut finish line to the front of the old ASUW Shellhouse — where the Party at the Cut will be in full swing.
Saturday’s racing schedule, according to UW, is as follows:
10:15 a.m. – Men’s Masters 8+ 30+
10:17 a.m. – Men’s Masters 8+ 40+
10:19 a.m. – Men’s Masters 8+ 50+
10:21 a.m. – Men’s Masters 8+ 60+
10:23 a.m. – Women’s Masters 8+ 30+
10:25 a.m. – Women’s Masters 8+ 40+
10:27 a.m. – Women’s Masters 8+ 50+
10:29 a.m. – Women’s Masters 8+ 60+
10:32 a.m. – Men’s Junior 4x+ George Corkley Jr. Cup
10:35 a.m. – Women’s Junior 4x+ Dewitt Whitman Cup
10:38 a.m. – Women’s Junior 4+ Colin Sykes Cup
10:41 a.m. – Men’s Junior 4+ Sara Nevin Cup
10:44 a.m. – Women’s Junior 8+ George Corkley Jr. Cup
10:47 a.m. – Men’s Junior 8+ Colin Sykes Cup
10:50 a.m. – Women’s Collegiate Varsity 4+
10:53 a.m. – Men’s Open 4+
10:57 a.m. – Women’s Collegiate Open 8+
11:01 a.m. – Women’s Collegiate Third Varsity 8+
11:05 a.m. – Men’s Collegiate Freshman/Third Varsity 8+
11:10 a.m. – Women’s Cascade Cup (2V8+)
11:20 a.m. – Men’s Cascade Cup (2V8+)
11:30 a.m. – Women’s Windermere Cup (V8+)
11:45 a.m. – Men’s Windermere Cup (V8+)
Source: Bellevue Patch