Men's Lightweights Qualify For IRA Championship With Strong Opening Heat
The Princeton men's lightweights earned the right to race for the national championship. And that race will come earlier than anybody expected.
The bronze medalists at the Eastern Sprints, Princeton finished second in its morning heat and will race from Lane 2 Sunday at Mercer Lake for the IRA title. The race was moved to 7:24 am Sunday, following the heavyweight and lightweight women's finals, but check with @PUTigers and @Tiger_Lights throughout the weekend for any more potential schedule changes.
Princeton, which has won five IRA national championships, including back-to-back titles in 2009-2010, will race from Lane 2 Sunday. The top two seeds, Yale and Columbia, won the two morning heats, but only a top-three finish was required to clinch a spot in the grand final.
In its respective heat, Columbia grabbed the early lead and won in 5:56.03, while Princeton finished second in 5:58.19. The Tigers held a comfortable lead on both Harvard and Navy for most of the race, so its place in the final was pretty secure throughout the 2000 meters. Ultimately, Harvard took third in 6:01.34, less than three seconds ahead of Navy.
The championship race will set up like this:
Princeton qualified for all three lightweight finals it entered. The lightweight four finished second in its heat and is scheduled for a 9:24 grand final Sunday, while the lightweight four without coxswain won its heat, and it will race at 9:48 for the title.
You can watch all of Sunday's racing by clicking the link above.