Hello and welcome to our Olympic Journey! As part of our Road to Rio we are on our way to compete at the 2015 World Championships in Aiguebelette, France August 30 - September 6th. This is an important year as the World Championships also serve as an Olympic Qualification Regatta.
A Little About Our Dynamic Duo (plus one)
Our stroke seat is Ellen Tomek, a seven-time National Team member and 2008 Olympian. Ellen is the veteran by experience (and age by 115 days, but who's counting), with five World Cup medals and a National Championship in the Women's Single under her belt. This is the year to add a World Championship medal to her growing collection. She hails from Flushing, Michigan and graduated from U of M where she first began rowing. GO BLUE!
In bow is the newcomer (and youngster...?), Meghan O'Leary who got her start into rowing late in life after Googling the sport just five years ago. Who knew Google would lead to an Olympic Dream? She's a three-time National Team member with three World Cup medals and is looking to add a World Championship medal to that bunch. She was a two-sport athlete (softball and volleyball) at the University of Virginia - WAHOOWA - and grew up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Jeremy Ivey has been our coach since the fall of 2013 when we left Princeton to move to the Oklahoma City Training Center. Although he's Canadian, he represents us and Team USA with the best of them. He's been everywhere with us from Oklahoma City to the Chula Vista Olympic Training Center, to Princeton and to Europe, ensuring we have everything from boat and oars to recovery snacks and a mediator when things get a little "feisty" in the boat.
This is our third consecutive year together representing the United States in the Women's Double Sculls event. In 2013, we won bronze at World Cup III and placed seventh at the World Championships. Last year, we took home silver at World Cup II and finished sixth at the 2014 World Championships. We've been trending right, but this is the year to take a bit of a jump into the medals!
This past April, we won the 2015 National Selection Regatta and recently took second at the World Cup II in Varese, Italy against a stacked field, finishing just 0.14 seconds shy of the gold medal. We're biased, but it was a pretty incredible race. You can watch HERE (W2x). We've worked harder in the past year than ever before, and have gone to great measures to ensure we've created the best environment for us to succeed.
The Women's Double is arguably the most competitive event internationally and yet, is not fully supported by USRowing. In 2013, the women's double was cut from funding and in result, from the Princeton Training Center. Determined to prove the naysayers wrong, we decided to stick together and show that we could put the United States at the top of the field. We've gone against the grain, taking on the high stakes challenge of formidable competitors and minimal funding and have proven that it can be done. But we need your continued support!
In the past year alone, we've spent over $15,000 in training costs. Your donation will go directly toward the funds required to support our travel, housing, and equipment that helps us remain one of the top women's double crews in the world. The United States has never won a World Championship or an Olympic medal in the Women's Double and we've set out to change that. You can help us put Team USA on that podium.
A little shoutout to our friends and family and the organizations who have helped us along the way. We are both proud members of the New York Athletic Club and represent the USRowing Training Center - Oklahoma City.
What You Can Do!
Give! Every little bit counts and is completely tax-deductible! Give your time, give a little mula, whatever it is you think you can offer. Share our Rally page via your social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.). Email your friends or anyone you think would be interested in supporting our journey! We're grateful for you and your contribution.
Meghan & Ellen
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$250Signed Racing Photo4x6 signed racing photo of the Women's Double (Meghan O'Leary, Ellen Tomek)