North America’s Best Courses – The best places to race. Period.
Rowing News, Sept 2014
The best courses for spectators – There’s no getting past the fact that our sport is pleasing to the eye. And these venues not only emphasize the spectator experience, they also encourage a deeper understanding of rowing through comprehensive on-site coverage and unique events. Large fields of highly competitive crews also make for great viewing along the shore.
The Charles River, situated in on elf the country’s most historic (and historically significant) cities, is also, without a doubt, one of the best places to watch the sport of rowing in the world. One need look no further than the riverbanks lined with hundreds of thousands of spectators for the Head of the Charles every October to understand the importance of this stretch of water to American rowing lore. But add to that the legacy of Harvard Crew; arguably the most influential rowing club in the country in Community Rowing, Inc.; and resurgent university programs at Northeastern and Boston University and you begin to truly understand the Charles’ significance. Grab some clam chowder in a bread bowl (after your race), and watch the parade at the 50h Head of the Charles this fall.
Out West, Mission Bay in San Diego, Calif., is the site of the annual San Diego Crew Classic. For many, this regatta signals the beginning of the sprint racing season and draws a tremendous number of teams and spectators every year. The California sun is a welcome sight to crews from the East and Midwest, while West Coast crews get their first opportunity to match speed with cross-country rivals. The additions of race commentary and live streaming coverage make the spectator experience second to none. Best of all, you can cheer on your favorite crews from the comfort of a lawn chair on the beach (or maybe even the beer garden).