Competitive Sweep

Tryouts: August 23rd – 25th


The Capital Rowing Club Competitive Team, a nationally competitive club rowing program, is dedicated to intensive training and conditioning in pursuit of successful racing while fostering teamwork and participating in the positive growth of our community through service and outreach.


Rowers that have prior rowing experience and are in good physical condition are encouraged to contact the Competitive Men’s Program Representative, Craig McKay, or Competitive Women’s Program Representative, Lauren Cisek, so they may be evaluated for this program.  The rower should also have a solid understanding of rowing technique and boat issues such as set, run and timing. Age for competitive master’s rowers is over 21 (In 2016, the competitive team mean age was 39).

Capital’s Competitive Team is coached by two former elite-level rowers who won both Olympic and World Championship medals.


  • Competitive level program
  • Advanced boat concepts
  • Competitive level conditioning
  • Erg testing
  • High level competition

Admittance into the competitive program is done on an individual basis with no set guidelines. The decision to accept a rower into the competitive program rests solely at the competitive coaches’ discretion. Interested rowers must submit a 5K erg score before try-outs (Spring/Fall) or a 2k erg score before try-outs (Summer), including splits every 500m. Team try-outs are held the first week of practice in late March and the last week in August, however the competitive team will also consider individual try-outs mid-season. Please contact team reps for more information.

The Capital Competitive Men’s and Women’s programs enjoy a balance of racing and club spirit. Crews train hard but also pitch in to accomplish whatever needs to be done from loading trailers to repainting oars or helping out novice rowers. Being a part of the competitive program at Capital means joining a team of rowers that participate in community and club events as well as regattas and practices. Competitive rowers are expected to participate in a minimum of two Capital volunteer events per season.


The competitive rower is highly encouraged to attend all practices, regattas and erg tests unless the coach has given prior special exception.  We do understand that work and family obligations take priority, but ever effort should be made to maximize participation. The rowing season runs from the end of March through the first week of November.


Practices are held Monday through Friday from 5:20am until 6:50am (rain or shine). Erg tests are given periodically throughout the year and generally occur on the weekends.


Capital’s Competitive Men and Women row in both Sprint (1000m, with some 2000m) and Head Races (up to 5000m or 3.1 miles). Regattas typically occur on the weekends and are usually within a few hours driving distance from DC. Capital’s sprint season culminates in mid-August at the US Rowing Master’s Nationals which rotates locations every year. In 2016, the US Master’s Nationals Regatta will be held at Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge, Tennessee from August 17th-20th.

The Head of the Charles is the highlight of Capital’s fall head season and will take place on Oct 21st-22nd, 2017 in Boston/Cambridge, Massachusetts.


  • Vespoli 8 person coxed sweep boats (8+)
  • Vespoli 4 person coxed sweep boats (4+)