CAMBRIDGE, Mass. --- Colby College graduate Stephen Whelpley '05 beat an Olympic gold medalist in finishing second in the championship singles men's event at the prestigious Head of the Charles Regatta on Saturday.
Whelpley was not the only former Colby men's crew member to have success at the Head of the Charles. Peter Morelli '02 also finished in second place in the masters singles men's race Sunday.
Whelpley finished in a time of 17 minutes, 58.29 seconds to take second to winner Kjetil Borch, an Olympian from Norway who took seventh in the double sculls at the 2012 Olympics in London. Borch had a time of 17:56.53.
While Whelpley just missed beating Borch, he did finish in front of a stellar field. Tom Paradiso, a nine-year veteran of the U.S. National Team, finished third in 18:02.41. Lassi Karonen of Sweden is a two-time Olympian and finished fourth at London in the singles. Meanwhile, Mahe Drysdale of New Zealand won a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics and was the defending champion at the Head of the Charles. Karonen took fourth place in 18:02.42 and Drysdale was ninth with an 18:25.71.
Whelpley, who rows for the Penn Athletic Club Rowing Association, has competed in the Olympic Trials in 2008 and 2012 and has narrowly missed qualifying for the Olympic Games. He has had numerous international and national appearances in the boat since leaving Colby.
Morelli, who also has a number of fine international and national results, rows for the Riverside Boat Club and had a time of 19:20.91 in the masters singles race. Matt McCarthy of the Peterborough Rowing Club won the event in 19:19.37 in a field of 19 rowers.
Morelli, who helped win the lightweight eight race at the 2005 Head of the Charles, won the lightweight quadruple sculls at the 2010 World Rowing Championships Trials. He also won the lightweight quadruple sculls at the 2007 USRowing National Championships and was a three-time winner at the 2004 USRowing National Championships in the senior lightweight four, the senior lightweight four with coxswain, and intermediate double sculls.