Washington's men's rowing program reached new heights Sunday, becoming the first program ever to win five consecutive Intercollegiate Rowing Association men's varsity eight national titles, while also sweeping all five heavyweight championship races for just the third time in regatta history.
The Huskies won the varsity eight, second varsity eight, third varsity eight, freshman eight and varsity four on Lake Mercer in New Jersey, marking the team's third five-race sweep in the last four years (the UW also did it in 2012 and 2013).
No other program has ever accomplished a five-race sweep in the history of the IRA Regatta, which was first run in 1895. Including heats and semifinals, Washington won 14 out of 14 races at the IRAs.
In the feature race, the varsity eight, Washington posted a boat-length win over rival California, winning with a time of 5:28.015, 2.783 seconds in front of the Bears
"I think we just nailed it," said seventh-year UW head coach Michael Callahan. "We wanted to take control of the race right away, and even if they were going to come with us, we wanted to press the pace of the race. I was surprised to see us with such a commanding lead so early."
The Huskies led from the start in the varsity eight. The crew sprinted the final 500 meters to hold of the Bears and Princeton, who finished a narrow third to Cal.