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Local Rowers Go Big at World Championships

Three Alameda rowers have been selected to represent the United States at the upcoming World Rowing Under 19 Championships. Jack Hume and Cosmo Hondrogen of Saint Joseph Notre Dame High School, and Mattis Hevin of Bishop O’Dowd will be part of a four-man team for USRowing that will represent the U.S. in Paris, France on August 2-6. The fourth rower is McKeane McBrearty, an Oakland resident. All four row for Oakland Strokes, a rowing team based out of Oakland.

Alameda Post - rowers in the water off of Alameda
Photo Jacqueline Huebner.

“We are all extremely excited and honored to have this opportunity,” said Hume, a rising senior at St. Joseph Notre Dame High School. “As far as we know, there has never been a boat representing the USA with this many rowers from Alameda, so this is pretty special.”

All four athletes were a part of the Strokes’ recent success at the 2023 Youth National Championships June 8-11. In recent years, the Strokes missed the podium of the Men’s Varsity Eight, the premier event of Youth Rowing, and 2019 was the last time the Strokes medaled in this event. But, last month, these four rowers changed that, putting on the silver medal performance that brought the Strokes back to the podium.

“Every day we walk into the boathouse and are reminded of the rich legacy of Strokes,” said Hondrogen, also a rising Senior at Saint Joe’s. “It was really something special to bring Strokes back to the podium, and then qualify for the World Championships in the four [-man team] a few days later.”

In May of this year, the rowers raced at the Southwest Youth Championship, which included teams from California and surrounding states. The boat easily won the regional championship, cruising to a four-second victory. In June, the boat raced again at the U19 Trials, which took place in Florida. The boat had to match a certain time to qualify for the World Championships. Not only did the boys meet the qualifying time, they beat the course record by five seconds.

“All of the past few National Championships have taken place here,” said Hevin, a Bishop O’Dowd High School graduate who will soon start at UC San Diego. “It basically means we have beaten all the past National Championship times for this boat class, ever.”

The rowers are currently raising money to pay for the trip to Paris. USRowing, the governing body of the sport, does not provide financial support, so the trip will be funded by the rowers. Those who would like to help support the boat’s mission for Gold at the World Championships may do so on GoFundMe.

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