Martschenko takes sixth with U.S. four; Farooq coaches U.S. eight to gold medal
Yaz Farooq enters her seventh season as head coach of the Stanford Women's Rowing program in 2012-13. Under Farooq's direction, the Cardinal earned its first National Championship in program history in 2009, and has established itself as a force on the national stage with podium finishes the past three seasons at the NCAA Championships. The team has also placed in the top two the past four years at the Pac-10 Championships, where the I Eight and II Eight boats have three titles and eight medals over the four-year span. At the NCAAs, the top two boats have captured two national titles and six medals since 2008.
Under Farooq, ten Stanford rowers have gone on to compete at the Jr. & Sr. Worlds and Under 23 World Championships, as well as two Olympians - winning 19 total medals, 9 golds. And, eleven Stanford rowers have been named CRCA 1st-Team All-Americans. In addition, the Stanford Women's rowing program was honored by winning both the Pac-10 & NCAA Sportsmanship Awards in 2010.
Last year Stanford finished in a tie for first place in the NCAA team standings with Brown University, but lost the tiebreaker after Brown edged the Cardinal by .05 in the I Eight Final. Stanford's II Eight won its first-ever NCAA Title in 2011 and the Four took sixth. The II Eight also captured gold for the second straight year at the 2011 Pac-10 Championships, while the I Eight won silver and the team placed second overall.
In 2010, the II Eight captured its first PAC-10 Title in program history while the I Eight won silver to pace the team to a second place finish. The II Eight went on to finish second in the nation, and the team made it to the podium with fourth place in the overall standings.
The 2009 season was a historic year of firsts for Stanford women's rowing, as Farooq guided the Cardinal to the first team national title in school history, while the I Eight also claimed national gold at the NCAA Championships and set a record for the event with its winning time of 6:11.95. In addition, Farooq was named Division I National Coach of the Year by the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA).
At the NCAA Championships, all three of Stanford's boats reached their respective finals. Behind the I Eight's gold medal-winning run, in which it held off Virginia by .37, as well as a bronze medal finish by the II Eight, Stanford would win the national title with 88 total points, three points ahead of California and Yale.
The Cardinal swept the Big Row against Bay Area rival California for the first time in program history. At the Pac-10 Championships, Stanford set a Lake Natoma course record in the final, crossing the line with a time of 6:18.6.
In 2008, Farooq won Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors after guiding the Stanford women to a second-place overall finish at the Pac-10 Championships, the team's best mark since 1992, when the Cardinal finished second. The I Eight would also capture a silver medal at the Pac-10's, earning an at-large berth to the NCAA Championships. At the NCAA's, the Cardinal recorded the crew's best-ever national finish by taking second, coming within nine-tenths of a second of the national title-winning boat from Yale.
In 2006-07, Farooq's first season on The Farm, the Cardinal I Eight made it to the podium at the Pac-10 Championships with a silver medal finish. The boat also received an invitation to the NCAA's in Oak Ridge, Tenn., where they finished tenth.
Farooq left a successful career in sales and marketing to coach at Stanford. She is world renowned for her work as a coxswain coach and was a premier coxswain during her competitive career for Team USA. She has also served as rowing analyst for NBC's telecasts of the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the 2004 Athens Olympics, and the 2008 Beijing Olympics. She will call the action for the 2012 London Olympics this summer.
"As a member of the U.S. Team I rowed with several Stanford oarswomen and appreciated their commitment to being the best on the water and in life," Farooq said. "Stanford scholar-athletes are winners who make a difference in the world. Many life lessons are learned in the boat and on the racecourse. I am honored to play a part in the development of these very special women."
Farooq coxed the United States National Women's Eight from 1989 to 1996 and competed with Stanford rower Diana Olson at the 1992 Games in Barcelona. Four years later Yaz was selected by her peers to be Captain of the women's rowing team at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. A three-time winner of silver medals at the World Championships in 1990, 1993 and 1994, Yaz's career highlight came in 1995 when her eight captured the gold medal at the Worlds in Tampere, Finland. It marked the first time ever the United States women had won. Yaz started coxing at the University of Wisconsin in 1984. She was voted Captain and MVP her senior year.