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Penn heavyweight rowing failed to retain the Madeira Cup against Cornell this weekend, placing third in Varsity Eights race and second in the Second Varsity Eights on the Schuylkill River.

The Madeira Cup was first commenced by Crawford Madeira, a champion of Penn rowing, in 1956, and is bestowed to the winner of the Varsity Eights heavyweight race between Penn and Cornell. This years edition featured Georgetown as a guest. 

Penn's Saturday morning started with the Second Varsity Eights race, as the Quakers didn’t field a Varsity Four boat. The 16th ranked Penn boat finished second in 5:40.40, finishing about 15 seconds ahead of the Hoyas and only 1.43 seconds behind the 12th-ranked Cornell boat.

“We’ve struggled in the last three races and obviously that is a bit disappointing,” coach Geoff Bond said. “This race, we dealt with injuries and illnesses to key guys who pushed through, but with two weeks to go before EARC, I have full faith in the boys to get back up and deliver.” 

The Quakers were overwhelmed by the Cornell boat in the Varsity Eights race for the Madeira Cup, as the 12th-ranked boat finished third. In a light quartering tailwind and low flow, Penn finished in 5:42.93, almost five seconds behind Georgetown and 12.13 seconds behind the 16th-ranked Big Red boat.

“As a teacher, it is my duty to pulls us up in hard times and keep on preaching that hard work and trusting the process will get us back on track to where we need to be,” Bond said. “I have total belief in them.” 

The Red and Blue will be back in action at the Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges Sprints in two weeks at Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, Mass.