The new events to extend run that began in 2019
Sarasota County’s Nathan Benderson Park will play host to USRowing’s 2023 and 2024 Youth National Championships, “extending a run that began in 2019,” as a Benderson Park news release put it.
The park also was awarded the 2024 USRowing Southeast Youth Championships, “a regional qualifier to the Youth National Championships. The 2022 editions of both championships were held at the park, the release points out.
“This will make five consecutive Youth Nationals at the park, and seven since 2014,” the release adds. “It also marks the third time the park will welcome the Southeast Youth Championships. Prior competitions were held at the park in 2016 and 2018,” the release notes.
“The 2022 Youth National Championships was the largest ever, with more than 4,000 participants representing 210 clubs and teams participating in four days of racing,” the release points out. “The 2022 Southeast Youth Championships, which qualified rowers for the national championships, included nearly 1,350 participants” from across the Southeastern United States, the release adds.
“We are proud to have played a part in USRowing’s Youth National Championships’ growth over the years,” Stephen V. Rodriguez, president of the Nathan Benderson Park Conservancy, said in the release. “This is an amazing event for Sarasota-Bradenton and Nathan Benderson Park, and we are proud to partner with USRowing to provide a world-class experience for the athletes and spectators,” he added in the release.
The Conservancy previously was known as the Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates Inc., or SANCA.
“The Conservancy attracts events such as these championships as part of the park’s mission to be an economic and cultural generator for the region,” the release explains.
“Nathan Benderson Park is the nation’s premier rowing venue and provides a world-class experience for both our athletes and spectators alike,” USRowing CEO Amanda Kraus said in the release. “As a community, Sarasota-Bradenton has embraced the sport of rowing and has been a huge supporter of our mission to grow the sport,” she continued in the release. “We look forward to working with Nathan Benderson Park and the Sarasota-Bradenton community for years to come.”
In a letter to USRowing members, Chief Program Officer Rich Cacioppo noted the park’s “purpose-built infrastructure and commitment to partnership,” the release adds.