Memorial team rows to Regatta glory
By Jeff Green
Back (L-R) Dr. Axel Meisen, Jessica Bartlett, Tamara Smith, Erica Edison, Judy Thorne, Victoria Strange, Rhonda White and Hope Brock. Front (L-R) Betty Ann Lewis and Marion Cornish.
The Memorial University Womenís rowing team captured gold at the Royal St. Johnís Regatta crossing the finish line in a time of 6:04:14.
This yearís team ≠ made up of Memorial staff, students and alumni ≠ included Tamara Smith (stroke), Betty Ann Lewis (5th), Marion Cornish (4th), Erica Edison (3rd), Judy Thorne (2nd), Victoria Strange (1st), Rhonda White (spare), Hope Brock (spare), Jessica Bartlett (coxswain) and Jason Rose (coach).
The team competed in the aptly titled Memorial University of Newfoundland Female District No. 2 race, at 5 p.m. They rowed in stake No. 1 in the Good Luck shell.
Earlier on Regatta morning, Memorial hosted a breakfast and send off for the crew. Alumni, friends, colleagues and university representatives including Dr. Axel Meisen, president and vice-chancellor of Memorial, were at the event. Later in the day, people gathered near the boat house on Quidi Vidi Lake to cheer on the team.
The roots of the Royal St. Johnís Regatta date back to 1818 and it is one of the most popular events in the province. It continues to draw in excess of 50,000 spectators each year to the shores of Quidi Vidi Lake in the east end of St. Johnís.
Memorial University was a proud gold-level sponsor of this yearís event.
Memorial also had a connection to the top male team at the Regatta.
Memorial University term four engineering student Ben Stokes, work term one student Jeff Roche, and Jason Rose, a graduate of the 2005 class, were members of the crew of The Independent, which won the Molson Canadian Male Championship at the 187th running of the Regatta on Aug. 3.
The Independent crew took the menís championship in a time of 9:03.99, more than seven seconds ahead of NTV, which had won the 2004 crown and five of the last six. There were 118 crews participating in the annual Royal St. Johnís Regatta this year, North Americaís oldest organized continuous sporting event.