Michigan, Purdue are top boats in varsity eights at Dad Vail Regatta

Drexel's Peter Schmidt and Liam O'Neill won the men's varsity pair at the Dad Vail Regatta.
Drexel's Peter Schmidt and Liam O'Neill won the men's varsity pair at the Dad Vail Regatta.
Posted: May 16, 2011

Michigan and Purdue took the men's and women's varsity heavyweight eight titles and left the annual event on the Schuylkill River as the big winners at the Dad Vail Regatta.

The Michigan men covered the 2,000-meter course in 5:48.05, followed by Florida Tech (5:50.97) and Delaware (5:51.66) for its third men's varsity heavyweight title in program history. The Purdue women finished in 6:38.49, ahead of Old Dominion (6:38.82) and Grand Valley (6:43.43).

Purdue led overall with a total of 41 points, followed by Michigan (33) and Delaware (27). It was the Boilermakers' first title here since 2007.

Michigan led the men with 33 points - its first title since 2009 - followed by Virginia (24) and Delaware (22). The Purdue women led with 21 points, followed by Saint Joseph's (17) and Grand Valley State (13).

"It gets harder and harder to medal at the Vails and we are happy with all or races," Hawks women's coach Gerry Quinlan said. "We rowed a great race today and obviously are disaappointed at not getting a medal, but are proud of our performance. That was our best race, Purdue was just faster."

Drexel sent a record-tying five boats to the grand finals and won gold in the men's varsity pair and a silver in the men's novice eight.

The men's pair of stroke Liam O'Niell and bow Peter Schmidt repeated as champions in a time of 7:17.70.

The Dragons also won the second finals in the men's and women's varsity eights.

This year's event marked the return of the Philadelphia Challenge Cup, which was last presented in 1966. Iztok Cop, of Slovenia, won the men's single sculls event. Mirka Knapkova, of the Czech Republic, won the inaugural Women's Gold Cup.

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