Local team earns medals at nationals

Local team earns medals at nationals

The Peachtree City Rowing Club made its debut Aug. 19 at the US Rowing Master’s National Championships in Oak Ridge, Tenn. 

Club co-founder Megan Gradek (pictured in the orange visor), a collegiate rower and 1997 U.S. National Team member, won silver in the women’s Open C sculls, bronze in the Women’s Open B sculls, gold with a composite crew in the women’s Open B quad, and Bronze with a composite crew in the women’s A 8+.

As excited as she is watching the club’s novice and varsity crews grow and compete in their regattas, Gradek is equally excited about the emerging Master’s program. 

“This is the first time we’ve come to Master’s Nationals, which is fantastic,” Gradek said. “It’s a great experience for everyone involved.  We’re a very small club, but our Master’s program has been steadily growing.”

PTCRC is the only rowing club within a 60-mile radius of Peachtree City and was started with the primary goal of spreading the word about the sport of rowing in the area.  Though the club is only beginning to expand, the impact it has made on its existing members is profound.

PTCRC’s Beth Parker finished sixth in the women’s Open E single sculls and, while she did not medal, the program could not be happier about her making the final and gaining more experience in the sport.

“She just started rowing last summer when she found out we started a club,” Gradek said. “And now she made it to the finals of a national regatta which is phenomenal.  She was ecstatic and I was so excited for her.”

The club’s Novice and Varsity programs, consisting of middle and high school-age youth, begin the fall head racing season Sept. 30 at the Tail of the Tiger regatta in Clemson, SC.  The teams will also participate in the Chattanooga Head Race and the Head of the Hooch regattas in Chattanooga as well as the Head of the South regatta in Augusta.

Information about the club can be found at www.ptcrowing.org.