Eric Blood '13 wins at City Championships; Eyes Stotesbury title
Posted May 18, 2012
As a freshman, Eric Blood ’13 thought he was going to be a swimmer, first and foremost, and whatever activity he took on between swimming and schoolwork would be secondary. Fortunately for the GA rowing program, that was before he ever set his foot in a boat.
“Because of the two credit requirement here at GA I thought I'd try out crew, just to fill up a credit, but I ended up liking it a lot more than I thought I would so I just stuck with it to see where it went,” said Blood.
Three years have now gone by, and it is safe to say that his trial of crew has turned to a passion. Blood went from a novice rower to a varsity City Champion, a feat not many rowers can claim. With hard work, Blood captured those honors by winning the Boys Varsity Single event - a race that is typically reserved for seniors - at the City Championships on May 6.
"It felt pretty good,” said Blood, who won the JV Single race at last year’s City Championships. “City Champs is for people from all the over the Philadelphia area and parts of New Jersey. It's always good to get first place and know that all that hard work has paid off.”
Now Blood, who has already qualified for Nationals, is eyeing a title at the 86th Annual Stotesbury Regatta - the oldest and largest high school regatta in the world – this weekend. More than 5,000 rowers from roughly 200 high schools in North America are expected to be in Philadelphia for the ultra competitive event.
“I'm actually seeded second this year for Stotesbury,” said Blood, who came in fifth last year before earning a fourth place finish at Nationals. “If I can just beat this one person that would be awesome. He's this huge guy that's going to Harvard."
Blood’s success in crew is a prime example of a GA student taking advantage of one of the many extracurricular activities the school offers.
“GA definitely brought me to rowing,” said Blood, who still swims in the winter and is also a member of Frequency Club. “I don't know if I would have been able to do all these activities if I was attending my public school. The coaches here are just great. They really care about how well you do, how you row. They care about you as a person and I really think that helps me a lot.
"I have a lot of fun out in the water,” Blood continued. “It's such a great team. It's almost like a family. And when you get down to the finish line where all the crowds are, and you hear them cheering for you, there's this whole wave of ‘I actually need to go, I need to go fast, I need to win.’ It just washes over you and you just go for it. It's awesome."
Best of luck this weekend to Eric and GA’s entire crew team!