The U.S. women's eight was arguably the most dominant champion at the London Olympics, winning gold by almost a second and a half over Canada. This past weekend, it took an all-star crew of world-class scullers—a dream team of champions from eight nations—to give them a row for their money at Boston's annual Head of the Charles. Officially, the U.S. entry (below), with six of the athletes from the London eight and three from the bronze-medal-winning quad, won the women's championship eight by almost nine seconds, but only after a 10-second buoy violation negated what would have been a win for the so-called Great Eight. Indeed, the group the U.S. Olympic Committee named the 2012 Team of the Year, was forced to "reach down deep inside," said stroke Caryn Davies. "It's crazy that there were so many competitive crews out there," said Gevvie Stone, who organized and stroked the Great Eight, "more than 40 Olympians in that event." Competitive indeed—Canada finished eighth.
SPORT GRAPHICS (ROWERS)