85th Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta Program Guide

25YEARSAGO Villanova claws their way to 1999 Dad Vail Eight crown When the Villanova women’s crew comprised of bow, Amber Kyle, two-seat Kelly Van Train, three-seat, Kelly O’Brien, four-seat, Kristin Bubnis, five-seat, Meghan Sarbanis, six-seat Maureen McCurry, seven-seat Hannah Moore, stroke Lindsay Walters, and coxswain Jennifer Smalltini returned to campus in the fall of 1999 they had a goal of winning Dad Vail gold. With six of the athletes in the boat fresh off the 1998 IRA National Championship Women’s Lightweight Eight, beating Princeton and Radcliffe, this boat was all business when it came to training. Working hard and pushing ourselves beyond our limits, we encouraged each other and made each other stronger and faster. Our coach Jack St. Clair kept telling us all year that we could enjoy the life as a college student, but we had to be ready each day when we got to practice. We had a strong fall season however we knew we had to be ready to go when it was time to hit the water in the spring. Fast forward six months and the start of the spring season, the Wildcats were ready to compete and that is exactly what they did winning the Kerr Cup, Bergen Cup and Murphy Cup in preparation for Dad Vail. Once they got to Dad Vail, they continued doing what they had done all spring. Evident that Temple was going to be their biggest competition, the two crews progressed through the heats and semifinals on their way to Grand Finale. In the Grand Finale, the Cats got off the stake boats clean and pushed to an early lead and were as ruthless as we had been all season. By the 1,000-meter mark, the lead was over a length. Knowing Temple was not going away, we continued to push and by the time we hit the 1,5000-meter mark the lead was open water and as much as the Owls tried, they were not going to catch a determined Wildcat crew. Winning the coveted Dad Vail Gold Medal meant so much to us and it still brings back great memories each spring.