July 22, 2009
BRONX, N.Y. - Fordham University head rowing coach Ted Bonanno will lead the U.S. women's double scull in action at the 2009 FISA World Rowing Under 23 Championships scheduled for July 23-26 in Racice, Czech Republic. This is the fourth time that Bonanno has coached a crew at the World Championships, the first time for the United States.
Cristina Felix (San Marino, Calif., New York RA) and Emily Eiffert (Honeoye Falls, N.Y., University of Michigan) who comprise the women's double scull, reached the World Championship by winning the 2009 Under 23 World Championships Trials on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, N.J., on July 9th.
Rowing for the New York Rowing Association under Bonanno's tutelage, Eiffert and Felix easily won the final in 8:08.265, crossing nearly 11 seconds ahead of Elizabeth Donald and Rebecca Donald. The duo competed at the 2008 FISA World Rowing Senior and Junior Championships, with Eiffert finishing 12th in the junior women's double sculls and Felix winning gold in the junior women's eight.
The Felix name is familiar to Bonanno, who coached Cristina's father, Juan, in the 1980 and 1988 Olympics Games when Juan Felix competed for Puerto Rico. She is the third second generation rower coached by Bonanno.
Bonanno, who just completed his 20th season as Fordham's rowing coach, also tutored Chelsea Smith, a competitor in the women's lightweight single. Despite being a novice, Smith just missed out on a trip to the Nationals, placing second behind Wisconsin's Dani Dewitt by 3.5 seconds.
"As proud as I am of the doubles skull and they way they dominated, I am extremely pleased with the performance of Chelsea Smith in the lightweight single," said Bonanno. "For a novice to come that close to winning at a national trail is an amazing accomplishment."
This will be Bonanno's sixth trip to the World Championships. He competed twice at the World Championships and has coached three teams prior to this year. Bonanno has also served as head coach of national teams for Puerto Rico, Guatemala, and India and has been selected to coach at four Olympic Games and two Pan American Games.