Rowing Club

GVSU Rowing

The Grand Valley Rowing Club has a longstanding tradition of excellence and building successful student-athletes. We compete at a high level across the country, providing lifelong experience and adding to the long tradition of rowing at Grand Valley.

Troy Harding - Head Coach
[email protected]

Eliot Van Pelt - Club President
[email protected]

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Grand Valley Rowing Team

GVSU Rowing Team at the 2023 ACRA National Championship

Join the GVSU Rowing Team


Campus Life Night

Sunday, August 27
6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Lot H1

Stop by the GVSU Rowing table at Campus Life Night to learn about the team, meet current athletes, try out a rowing machine, and check out a boat.
Look for the oars!

Open Boathouse

Wednesday, August 30
4:00 to 7:00 p.m.

Thursday, August 31
4:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 9
10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Groups will leave from outside Kleiner Commons and walk to the boathouse every half hour. Look for the oars!

Info Meetings

Tuesday, September 5
8:00 to 9:00 p.m.
Kirkhof Center, Room TBD

Monday, September 11
8:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Kirkhof Center, Room TBD


Rowing at GVSU is a great opportunity to extend a competitive athletic career beyond high school. No prior rowing experience is required. More than 70% of the athletes on our team had no prior rowing experience. Athletes who excel in endurance or team sports in high school can easily transfer their athleticism to rowing. The best rowers are those who are willing to work hard and crave competition.

Grand Valley consistently ranks among the best rowing teams in the country. GVSU crews have won more than 25 national championships and the team has won six team points national titles. 

Fall practices take place in the evenings after classes. In the fall, we attend two to three distance races and in the spring we attend four to five sprint races across the country. As a first year rower, you will be competing against other first year rowers

Year at a Glance:

  • Fall - You will learn the sport and are introduced to training and racing.
  • Winter - Indoor training at our dedicated facility in preparation for spring championship races.
  • Spring Break - Training trip to a southern destination.
  • Spring - Competitions around the country on weekends in April and May, culminating at the ACRA National Championship.

Team Schedule

Fall 2023

September 16: Family Day (GVSU Boathouse)

September 30: Head of the Grand (Lansing, MI) *varsity crews only

October 8: Head of the Rock (Rockford, IL)

October 21-22: Head of the Charles (Boston, MA) *select varsity crews

October 28: Homecoming & Alumni Row (GVSU Boathouse)

November 5: Bald Eagle Collegiate Invitational (Indianapolis, IN)

Spring 2024

March 1-9: Spring Break Training Camp (Location TBD)

March 8 or 9: Spring Break Scrimmage

April 6: Lubbers Cup Regatta (Grand Rapids, MI)

April 20-21: SIRA Championship Regatta (Oak Ridge, TN)

April 28: MACRA Championship Regatta (Location TBD)

May 11: Team Banquet (Alumni House, Allendale, MI)

May 16-19: ACRA National Championship Regatta (Location TBD)

Team History

Established in 1964 as Grand Valley's first sport, rowing has been a strong tradition for nearly 60 years and a long history of success.

Grand Valley Rowing challenges its student-athletes to reach the highest level to which they aspire both academically and athletically while continuing to build and sustain a nationally competitive intercollegiate rowing program.


ACRA National Championships Titles

2022 - Women's Varsity 8+
2022 - Women's JV 8+
2019 - Women's Novice 8+
2019 - Women's Varsity 4+
2018 - Women's 2-
2015 - Women's Varsity 8+
2014 - Women's Team Points National Champions
2014 - Women's Varsity 8+
2014 - Women's JV 8+
2014 - Women's Varsity 4+
2013 - Overall Team Points National Champions
2013 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2013 - Women's Varsity 8+
2013 - Women's JV 8+
2013 - Women's Novice 8+
2012 - Overall Team Points National Champions
2012 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2012 - Women's Varsity 8+
2012 - Women's Novice 8+
​​​​​​​2011 - Overall Team Points National Champions
​​​​​​​2011 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2011 - Women's JV 8+ 
2011 - Women's Novice 8+
​​​​​​​2010 - Overall Team Points National Champions
​​​​​​​2010 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2010 - Women's Varsity 4+
2010 - Women's Novice 8+
2010 - Women's 1x​​​​​​​
​​​​​​​2009 - Overall Team Points National Champions
2009 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2009 - Women's JV 8+
2009 - Women's Varsity 8+
2008 - Overall Team Points National Champions
2008 - Women's Team Points National Champions

2008 - Men's Lightweight 4+
2008 - Women's Novice 8+
2008 - Women's JV 8+

ACRA Honors

American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA) Awards:

90 All-American Honors, including:

  • 40 athletes named First Team All-American
  • 19 athletes named Second Team All-American
  • 10 athletes named Third Team All-American
  • 21 athletes named Freshman All-American

7 Coach of the Year awards

GVSU Rowing is a founding member of the American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA) which began holding the club national championship regatta in 2008. In 2022, ACRA named the team points trophy for former GVSU head coach John Bancheri who was instrumental in launching ACRA and led the Lakers to the first six ACRA team titles.

Dad Vail Championship Titles

2022 - Women's JV 8+
2013 - Women's Team Points Champions
2013 - Women's Varsity 8+
2013 - Women's Novice 8+
2010 - Men's Varsity 4+
2009 - Women's Varsity 8+
2008 - Men's JV 8+
2008 - Women's Novice 8+

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Page last modified August 17, 2023