It had been awhile since Harvard claimed victory at the Head of the Charles Regatta. Not anymore.
The Crimson captured the men's championship eights Sunday with a time of 14 minutes, 17.68 seconds, edging the U.S Rowing Center in Princeton, N.J. and giving Harvard its first victory in the competition since 1977.
Harvard coach Harry Parker said in July he is undergoing treatment for a rare blood cancer that often leads to leukemia, and his team was more than happy to win for its leader.
"It means a lot to us to do so well for him," Patrick Lapage said.
Crews go off single-file in 15-second intervals, and Harvard started second, behind only Washington. The position was beneficial to the Crimson, who savored the win.
"It was a big help starting second," Harvard's Matt Edstein said. "It was much easier than having to pass crews."
Edstein said the win was "pretty special. It would have been nice to win last year but it's even more special this year."