Iona College rowing assistant coach Colleen Ryan recently stepped back in the boat, and made some history while she was at it. Competing for the New York Athletic Club at the USRowing Club National Championship Regatta, Ryan earned a gold medal in the women's senior quad.
Coached by former Iona rower and alum Vincent Ventura, a former national champion of his own, Ryan and her teammates dominated the competition in the final, finishing with a time of 6:58.381, almost ten seconds ahead of the second place team, representing the Fairmount Rowing Association (7:08.256). Ryan also advanced to the finals of the womens' intermediate quad at the Regatta, finishing just outside the medal stand with a fourth place finish.
In the over-sixty year history of the Iona College rowing program, Ryan is just the 12th national champion. She joins Eileen O'Rourke '79, an inaugural member of the Iona College women's crew team, and Fiona Augar '99 as just the third female to claim a national championship.
USRowing is a nonprofit membership organization recognized by the United States Olympic Committee as the national governing body (NGB) for the sport of rowing in the United States. USRowing selects, trains and manages the teams that represent the U.S. in international competition including the world championships, Pan American Games and Olympics.
This year's Club National Championships were the largest championship hosted by USRowing to date with over 2,100 competitors. with the Championships allowing an opportunity for rowers of varying age and skill level to compete.