By virtue of their outstanding competitive achievements on the water and on the rowing machine this season, CMA Rowing's Savas Koutsouras ’20 (fourth from left) and Charles Jones ’20 (second from left) earned spots to compete against the fifty best rowers in the United States under 19 years old. They competed for a spot on the U19 National Team this summer at the United States Olympic Training Center outside of San Diego, CA.
Both rowers were members of the recent Culver Men's Varsity 4+ SRAA National Championship boat in May.
Koutsouras in particular has excelled during the past intensive month-plus of training and competition, and won a seat in the United States Men’s 8+ that will be competing at the U19 Rowing World Championships in Tokyo in August. To view final boatings, click HERE.
“Participating in the US Rowing U19 selection camps and then becoming a member of the team has been a great and valuable experience," said Koutsouras. "In many ways it resembles Culver. It’s similar in the way that we have this group of young, driven athletes that come from different backgrounds. We all share this one goal -- to be our best -- which can only be accomplished by leaning on each other and supporting one another. We are able to create a strong bond in such a short amount of time that I expect will last for years after.”
That drive and support for one another is important, as the US Men's 8+ boat will draw the attention of many and its expectations are high.
"The boat has been described by its coach Jesse Foglia, who coaches at Harvard University during the school year, to be the fastest U19 8+ the United States has had in years," said Culver Rowing Head Coach Nathan Walker. "Which is notably impressive, as the US regularly medals at Worlds in the 8+ event," he went on to add.
More impressive, perhaps, is that both Koutsouras and Jones were among the younger national team camp invitees, and both will still be eligible to compete next summer for a spot on the U19 team, the feeder program for the eventual Olympic Rowing Team.
Koutsouras will be competing August 7-11 in Tokyo. To stay up-to-date with the U19 8+ boat's performance and all things Culver Rowing, be sure to follow them on Twitter!