Category Archives: Erging

JVTC 2010 Wrap-up

So this year we had a total of 15 hard working participants who together rowed 1,230,579 meters! In all our team placed 94th out of 315 groups. Special props goes to Matt “Old Man River” Healy who blew all us younguns away with 325,235 meters and Albert “The Running Man” Bowers with 225,232 meters. I followed with a respectable 161,987 meters and dark-horse contender JJ Schrader clinched the fourth position with 137,200 meters.

It was an admirable effort from everyone. Sadly though we were unable to beat the Case Crew Alumni led by one of our own, the indefatigable Doug Rathburn. Next time everyone needs to start training by September to make sure we’re all in shape to beat them in the 2011 JVTC!

The complete list of participants included:

Matt Healy
Albert Bowers
Chris Noto
JJ Schrader
Ngiste Abebe
Memuna Khan
Sunit Singh
Patrick McElhone
Melissa Schwarz
Gregory Prince
Jeffrey Hreben
Susan Liebell
Miles Betley
Ann Marie Gawel
Andrea Chen

Awesome job everyone! I know some of you have not stepped on an erg in a while. Thanks to everyone for another successful team challenge.


One million meters!

Will lasers fit on a boat?

We have once again passed the one million meter mark! Currently standing at 1,013,358 meters. There are only 4 days left in the challenge, so keep up the good work everyone. Let’s squeeze out a few more meters from these old legs!

JVTC Update #2

Over two weeks down and over 700,000 meters so far! This leaves just 11 days to break 1 million. Let’s keep up the good work everyone!

Have you signed up yet?

The January Virtual Erg Challenge is underway! We have 8 people signed up so far. Let’s get a few more.

So the challenge is under way and the alumni team is boasting a respectable 8 members at present. If you’ve signed up to be on the team double check to make sure that you’re signed up for the challenge itself as well. This option is under the “challenges” tab on your logbook. If you’re not signed up for the alumni team, well, what’s wrong with you? Get cracking.
Last year we put together 750km. I think that this year we should aim for at least 1 million meters. We’ve got the numbers to do it, even with Matt Healy weighing us down. Right, best of luck to you all!


January Virtual Challenge

You know, it only comes ’round once a year. From the distinguished Dr. Bowers:

It IS THAT time. Time for the Concept 2 January Virtual Erg Challenge. Last year, with 15 people on the team, the alumni placed 50th/250 teams, beating the students by more than 700km. I think we can have an even more impressive showing this year if we can get 100% participation just off of this FB group. So create… a profile on Concept 2s website and sign up for the challenge. Our team is ‘open’ so you can add yourself on. Start logging meters on 1/1/10. This year we’ll kick off our participation with a 6k piece on the 1st and end it with a long piece on the 31st: your choice, an hour of power or a half marathon. Let the trash talk begin!

See the results from last year.

I’m signed up, are you?

Chicago crew takes medals at CIRC!



Miles Betley

UChicago Crew

UChicago Crew Competes at Chicago Indoor Rowing Championships

Chicago, Illinois, 02/28/09 – This past Saturday at Horner Park on the north side of Chicago, the UChicago men’s and women’s Crews competed at the 11th Chicago Indoor Rowing Championships (CIRC’s), the sole competition for their winter quarter. The Chicago Indoor Rowing Championships draws competitors from Chicago-area clubs such as Lincoln Park Boat Club to as far as Marquette and the University of Iowa, competing on indoor rowing machines to finish 2000m (a little over a mile) in as little time as possible.

Both the men and women’s teams acquitted themselves extremely well at CIRC’s. Garrett Allen, men’s captain Hayden Hudson, and second-year Sean Beyers placed first, second, and fourth in the always competitive Collegiate Open Men’s division. “Winning the Collegiate Open weight was fantastic,” said third-year Garrett Allen, who rowed his 2000m race in 6:26.4, a time that would have placed him 4th in the Open Men’s division. “Though what was even better was seeing that University of Chicago men took several of the top spots in both open and lightweight divisions.” Senior Luke Matthews took second in the Collegiate Lightweight Men’s division with a time of 6:41.4, and first-year John Kohler won the Collegiate Novice Lightweight Men’s division by over six seconds with a 6:54.1.

For the women’s crew, who ended their fall season with a top 15 finish at Head of the Charles, the world’s largest regatta, results were equally impressive. First-years Ariel Pomputius and Annabelle Gonzalez-Aranda placed first and second in the Collegiate Novice Lightweight Women’s division with times of 8:02.0 and 8:33.1, and women’s captain Ngiste Abebe and third-year Sonya Ringer placed third and fourth in the Collegiate Open Women’s division, Abebe just beating Ringer by three seconds with a time of 7:36.4. “It’s so great to see the women’s team having solid performances this year, particularly after last year,” Sonya Ringer said. “The women’s team seemed to be falling apart last year, and it’s exciting to be part of a young, but increasingly strong team this year.”

The men and women’s crews also competed in a 2500m relay, where each competitor rows a 500m leg in a fashion similar to Olympic 4×100 and 4×400 relays in track and field. Both relay teams did very well: the women’s relay team, consisting of Ngiste Abebe, Sonya Ringer, second-year Angela Hwangpo, first-year Chelsea Steffen, and first-year Diana Federova came in a heart-breaking close second in the final 500m after dominating the entire race, losing to the relay team from Marquette University by 0.7 seconds with a time of 8:38.8. Still, the women were optimistic: “I’m really pleased with our relay,” said captain and fourth-year Ngiste Abebe. “We haven’t placed as high as second since my first year.”

The men’s relay team rowed an outstanding race, but still ended up losing to the more experienced club team from Lincoln Park Boat Club, who medaled in the Club 8+ division at Head of the Charles this past October. Garrett Allen, Hayden Hudson, senior Miles Betley, Luke Matthews and Sean Beyers competed for the men’s relay team.

This year’s CIRC’s noted the conspicuous absence of one Chicago stalwart: UChicago’s cross-town rivals Northwestern University. “Not having Northwestern there definitely detracted from the feeling of intensity,” said Ringer. “It’s different having them there than having Marquette, for example, because we actually race Northwestern on the water.” Garrett Allen agreed, saying, “It was unfortunate that we didn’t get to see Northwestern this year, but between Iowa and Marquette there was still enough competition to go around.”

The men’s and women’s crew team plans to start rowing on the Chicago River for their annual spring training in two weeks, and all squads are looking to having a successful spring season. “It was rewarding to witness and be a part of our success this year at CIRC’s,” said senior Hayden Hudson. “This year was a testimony to the strength and promise of our program, and I can’t wait to show that strength off on the water this spring.”


The results are in!

This year saw one of the most successful virtual team challenges ever. On the alumni side we had 15 participants–much more than at any time before–who together rowed 1,477,852 meters, where we placed 50th out of 250 teams. Not too shabby for our little team! Big thanks again go to Matt Healy, Andy Soyring, and Albert Bowers, who logged the most meters for our team. Us old folks have drive. With only 702,380 meters the student team wasn’t quite able to match our total, but in all fairness they had far fewer rowers participating. Together both teams rowed 2,180,232 meters!

This year’s event was held with a fundraising goal as well. So far we only have a few people who have pledged support and we are a little shy of the $1000 fundraising goal I set for this challenge. I know these are tough economic times, so any small amount you can donate would be much appreciated. All procedes collected from this year’s event will be placed in the new Alumni Fund, which will help form a new financial basis for the team and provide money in support of the team’s activities, including events for alumni. Please send checks directly to the team, written out to “University of Chicago Crew”. Remember to write January Erg Challenge in the memo line so we know who to thank!  Al checks can be mailed to:

University of Chicago Gerald Ratner Center
5530 S. Ellis, Rm 141
Chicago, IL 60637

The team will also be participating in the the Chicago Indoor Rowing Championships on February 28th. If you’re in the area and can stop by to cheer them on or even provide goodies to the rowers, please do!

Thanks for all your support!