Caryn Davies

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Caryn Davies
Medal record
Women's rowing
Representing the  United States
Olympic Games
Gold 2012 London Women's eight
Gold 2008 Beijing Women's eight
Silver 2004 Athens Women's eight
FISA World Rowing Championships
Gold 2007 Munich Women's eight
Gold 2006 Eton, UK Women's eight
Gold 2003 Milan Women’s Four w/o cox
Gold 2002 Seville Women's eight
World Cup
Gold 2012 Lucerne Women's eight
Gold 2011 Lucerne Women's eight
Gold 2008 Lucerne Women's eight
Silver 2006 Lucerne Women's eight
Bronze 2005 Munich Women's quad sculls
Gold 2004 Munich Women's eight
Bronze 2004 Munich Women's pair
Gold 2004 Lucerne Women's eight

Caryn Davies (born 14 April 1982) is an American rower. She won gold medals as the stroke seat in women's eight at the 2012 Summer Olympics and the 2008 Summer Olympics.[1][2][3] In 2012 Davies was ranked number 4 in the world by the International Rowing Federation. At the 2004 Olympic Games she won a silver medal in the women's eight.[2] Davies has won more Olympic medals than any other U.S. oarswoman.[4] The 2008 U.S. women's eight, of which she was a part, was named FISA (International Rowing Federation) crew of the year. Davies is from Ithaca, New York, where she graduated from Ithaca High School, and rowed with the Cascadilla Boat Club. Davies was on the Radcliffe College (Harvard) Crew Team and was a member on Radcliffe's 2003 NCAA champion Varsity 8, and overall team champion.[5] In 2013 she was a visiting student at Pembroke College, Oxford where she stroked the college men's eight to a victory in both Torpids (spring intercollegiate races) and the Oxford University Summer Eights races (for the first time in Oxford rowing history).[6] In 2013 she was inducted into the New York Athletic Club Hall of Fame. She is a Vice President of the U.S. Olympians Association[7] and athletes' representative to the Board of USRowing.

Davies has a degree from Harvard University (A.B. Psychology, 2005) and a J.D. (Doctor of Law) from Columbia Law School (2013). Davies is the most decorated Harvard Olympian in any sport.[4] During 2013-2014 Davies is serving as a clerk to Judge Richard Clifton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Early career[edit]

Davies was recruited into rowing at 12 years of age. She started rowing competitively a year later in Australia in 1996, at the Friend’s School in Hobart. A local rowing club also recruited her into single sculling, where groups of teenagers launched off a beach into tidal estuarine waters. Within six months she was the Tasmanian under-15 single sculls champion. Returning from Australia she continued with Cascadilla Boat Club and the Ithaca High School rowing team. In 1998, as a 16 year-old she competed in the world’s biggest rowing race, the Head of the Charles in Boston. Because she had already placed in the top three in a junior race at the Canadian Henley the summer before the race, officials insisted in placing her, as the only junior, into the championship category of top senior international rowers; she put up a creditable performance by placing 16th. The following summer (1999) she made her first national team, coming second in the US junior eight in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, followed by a gold medal in a four at the junior world championships in Zagreb, Croatia in 2000, the first gold medal ever by US Junior women.[2][8] She also won the prestigious Stotesbury cup regatta and the Scholastic Rowing Association single sculls in both 1999 and 2000, and the USRowing Youth invitational in 2000, placing her as the top US junior female rower at the time she left high school. Caryn's brother Kenneth also represented the USA as a junior rower, and well as rowing at Cornell University, achieving the position of Commodore of the Cornell Crew in his senior year and receiving All Ivy Academic Honors for all four years.

College and world championships[edit]

Davies rowed for Harvard from 2001-2003,[5] leading the team to an NCAA championship in 2003, and again in 2005, after taking a year off for the Olympics. She has again taken a year off from Columbia Law School to compete in 2012.[9] Most National Team training has been based in Princeton, New Jersey, where the US women’s team shares a boathouse and a lake with Princeton University, whereas winter training was based in San Diego.

Davies has the ability to row starboard, port, or scull at an international level.[10] At 6' 4" she is the tallest member of the U.S. Women's National Team. She was part of the U.S. Olympic women's eight that set a world record in the heat prior to a silver medal in the final in Athens, Greece. She was stroking the eight that repeated the feat in the World Cup in Lucerne in May 2012. As the most experienced oarsperson on the U.S. women's team she acts as a guiding figure: "Remember it's just like the World Championships - the same people doing the same thing - but with more flags."[11]

Davies has twice won the C.R.A.S.H-Bs, the World Indoor Rowing Championship, one of the world's most grueling competitions, first as a junior in 2000,[12] and then in the collegiate women open category in 2005. She serves as the athlete demonstrating rowing technique in video for the Concept II rowing-machine.[13] Davies also promotes youth fitness through World Fit and gives inspirational talks to youth groups.[14]

Davies’ hobbies include travel, sailing, downhill skiing, horseback riding, yoga, and ballroom dancing.[2][11] In high school she competed for several years in competitive downhill skiing, reaching a 7th place in giant slalom in New York State. As a senior at Harvard, she competed on the ballroom team.

Competitive history[edit]

International Results[edit]

2012: Samsung World Rowing Cup II, Lucerne, Women's Eight, 1st, rowing stroke; world record (5:54.17 in the heat)
2011: FISA World Championships, Women's Pair, 8th
2011: FISA World Cup, Lucerne, Women's Eight, 1st
2011: Henley Royal Regatta, Won the Princess Grace Challenge Cup (Women's Quadruple Sculls)

Caryn Davies after winning Gold in the Beijing Olympics

2008: Olympic Games, Beijing, China, Women's Eight, 1st (rowing stroke) Gold Medal

2008: FISA World Cup, Lucerne, Women's Eight, 1st
2007: FISA World Championships, Munich, Women's Eight, 1st (rowing stroke)
2006: FISA World Championships, Lake Dorney, UK, Women's Eight, 1st (rowing stroke)
2006: FISA World Cup, Lucerne, Women's Eight, 2nd
2006: Henley Royal Regatta, won Remenham Cup, (Women's Eight)
2005: FISA World Championships, Women's Quadruple Sculls, 5th
2005: Bearing Point World Cup, Munich, Women's Quadruple Sculls, 3rd
2004: Olympic Games, Athens, Women's Eight 2nd Silver Medal
2004: FISA World Cup, Munich, Women's Eight 1st
2004: FISA World Cup, Munich, Women's Pair 3rd
2004: FISA World Cup, Lucerne, Women's Eight 1st
2003: FISA World Championships, Milano, Italy, Women’s Four without cox 1st
2002: FISA World Championships, Seville, Spain, Women's Eight 1st

Junior International[edit]

2000: FISA Junior World Championships, Zagreb, Croatia, Junior Women’s Four without cox. 1st
1999: FISA Junior World Championships, Plovdiv Bulgaria, Junior Women’s Eight, 2nd

C.R.A.S.H.-Bs: World Indoor Rowing Championship[edit]

2005, C.R.A.S.H.-B. Indoor Championships, Women's Collegiate Open Weight, 1st[15]
2000, C.R.A.S.H.-B. Indoor Championships, Junior Women, 1st[12]

National Results[edit]

2013: Stroked Oxford University Women's Eight to a win in the British University Rowing Championships
2013: Stroked Pembroke College Oxford Men's Eight to wins in Oxford University Torpids and Summer Eights
2006: Australian National Championships, Women's Senior A Four, 2nd
2006: Australian National Championships, Women's Senior A Quadruple Sculls, 3rd
2005: Head of the Charles, Women's Double Sculls, 1st
2005: NCAA Championships, Women's Varsity Eight, 3rd
2003: NCAA Championships, Women's Varsity Eight, 1st[5]

Junior National[edit]

2000: USRowing Youth Invitational, Junior women's single sculls champion
2000: Scholastic Rowing Association of America women's single sculls champion
2000: Stotesbury Regatta (juniors) women's single sculls champion
1999: Scholastic Rowing Association of America women's single sculls champion
1999: Stotesbury Regatta (juniors) women's single sculls champion
1997: State of Tasmania (Australia) under 15 girls single sculls champion

See also[edit]


  1. ^ U.S. Wins Another Gold in Women’s Eight, New York Times. By Juliet Macur. Published 2 August 2012. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "USRowing Athlete Bio Caryn Davies" accessed June 24, 2012
  3. ^ accessed June 24, 2012
  4. ^ a b accessed August 2nd 2012
  5. ^ a b c Harvard Magazine: “Golden Girl at Full Power: Caryn Davies” accessed June 24, 2012
  6. ^ a b accessed May 31, 2013
  7. ^ accessed June 24, 2012
  8. ^ a b c accessed June 24, 2012
  9. ^ “LA Times July 13, 2012: Rower Caryn Davies puts career on hold for return to Olympics”,0,6529462.story accessed July 14, 2012
  10. ^ Boston Globe October 17, 2006: "Davies rows in Head of Charles” accessed June 24, 2012
  11. ^ a b Row2K "Interview with Caryn Davies 2008” accessed June 24, 2012
  12. ^ a b Crash B 2000 Rowing News February 2000 accessed June 24, 2012
  13. ^ Concept II technique video: Caryn Davies accessed June 24, 2012
  14. ^ Caryn Davies: The Team Machine Video TEDxYouth@Bruce accessed June 24, 2012
  15. ^ Crash B 2005 Rowing News April 2005 accessed June 24, 2012