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Coaches


Patrick Kington -- SDRC Head Coach/Women's Varsity

Patrick started rowing in 1996 and has been coaching since 2004. He has coached at the scholastic, junior, collegiate, and international level. Kington has coached at SDRC since 2014, and has worked with the novice men, varsity men, and varsity women, becoming head coach of SDRC in 2017 and the varsity women in 2018

 
Peter Simeone – Varsity Men
 
Originally from the Philadelphia area, Peter rowed competitively for four years at Monsignor Bonner High School. During his time at MBHS, he and his crews earned medals at the Head of the Charles Regatta, Stotesbury Cup Regatta, and SRAA Nationals. Peter continued his rowing career at Northeastern University (Go Huskies!) and Penn AC. While competing with Penn AC, he stroked the Men's Intermediate 8 and the Men's Championship 8 to First and Second Place finishes at US Rowing Club Nationals and two Second Place finishes at Canadian Henley. After serving in the US Navy, Peter first came to San Diego Rowing Club as a volunteer on the Junior's Men's Varsity team and was happy to accept the role as the Men's Varsity Assistant Coach for two years. Peter is now fulfilling his first year as the Men's Varsity Head Coach.
 
Ryan Hemelt – Women’s Novice 

Ryan joined the coaching staff at San Diego Rowing Club in 2012 and is entering his seventh year as the Novice Women’s coach, previously having coached the Middle School team and assisting with the Novice Men’s program.  Ryan started coaching in 2010, and has coached for several clubs and teams, including the Mission Bay Aquatic Center, PennAC Rowing Association, Brophy College Preparatory, and was a co-founder and coach at the SW Scholastic Development Camp.  His Novice Women’s teams have had great success at local and regional regattas. In 2015, the Novice Women’s 4x+ won a Silver medal at the US Rowing SW Regional Championship.  In 2018, the squad had their best showing ever at the regional championships, bringing home two bronze medals (in the 4x+ and the second 8+) and a silver medal in the third 8+. In addition, in 2015, he coached the Penn AC Rowing Association's women’s 8+ and 4+ to bronze medals at the USRowing Club Nationals. Ryan graduated from University of San Diego in 2015 with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Business Administration.  Ryan has been certified by USRowing as a Level 2 Certified Coach. He rowed competitively in high school with Tempe Junior Crew and Brophy College Preparatory, where he was the team captain in 2009 and 2010.
 

Patrick Hurley – Juniors Program Director, Novice Men

Patrick is in his eighth year at SDRC and has been the Novice Men's coach for the past seven. He has coached several crew to top-three finishes at the Southwest Regional Championships. Patrick rowed in high school at Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio before rowing at Rutgers University in college. He also coaches summer learn to row and high performance camps at SDRC, as well as corporate team building events and Wounded Warrior Project events during the year. Patrick is also a somewhat active member of the Masters team here at SDRC and has won the Long Beach Christmas Regatta numerous times.

 

Sean Dougherty–Men's Assistant Coach


Sean was a coxswain for the Sacramento State Masters Rowing Club and Capital Crew from 2007 - 2011. During his tenure there he competed at the Masters National Championships and Youth National Championships, amongst other races held across the country. In 2010 Sean was named to the Junior Development National Team and won gold in the 8+ at the CanAmEx Regatta. The following year, he coxed the Men's 4 at the 2011 Junior World Championships and led his crew to an 8th place finish.

From 2011 - 2015, Sean was the varsity coxswain for UC San Diego. He was selected to be Team Captain by his teammates every year from 2013 - 2015.
Sean was the Novice Coach for UC San Diego during the 15' - 16' season, he then began coaching at SDRC in late 2016.

 

Bobbie Smith –Women's Assistant Coach


Bobbie joined San Diego Rowing Club after two years coaching at San Diego State University’s Women’s Team. Prior to that she was the assistant women’s coach at Marina Aquatic Center for five years and had another year as the head coach during the first year of California Yacht Club. 

As an athlete, she started her rowing career at UCLA, where she majored in Materials Science and Engineering and continued rowing post collegiately with an invitation to row at the Chula Vista Olympic Training Center in 1999. The same year she was named to the Pac 10 All-Conference Team. She continued to row as a lightweight post collegiately for several years, rowing for both Long Beach Rowing Association and Southern California Scullers Club.

Her proudest moment as a coach was when her 2016 Lightweight Women’s Crew at Marina Aquatic Center won at the San Diego Crew Classic. The crew went on to place second at the Southwest Regionals and seventh at US Nationals. 

A close second, and something for which she is incredibly grateful, was to coach our Women’s Lightweight Four to a 9th place finish at USRowing Youth Nationals in 2019.

She is happy to be a member of our Masters Rowing program and the Executive Director of the San Diego Crew Classic.



 

Catherine Sheffler –Assistant Coach


Catherine began coxing in 2011 as a walk on for UCSD's Novice Men's team.  As the Varsity 8 coxswain on the Women’s team the next 3 years, she led her team to a 3rd place victory at NCAA National Championships in 2013, and finished out her collegiate carrier with All-WIRA First Team honors, and the Coach’s award. She joined the SDRC’s Masters in 2016, and began coaching for the Novice Women in 2018.
 

Leslie Smith - Middle School Coach

Leslie began rowing in 2015 after having a complicated knee injury while playing soccer. She walked onto the University of Oregon's rowing team at the beginning of her freshman year. Leslie is currently a member of SDRC's Masters Team, which she joined after moving to San Diego to finish her undergraduate degree.  Throughout highschool she enjoyed assistant coaching youth soccer and is in her second year coaching the Middle School team at SDRC. Leslie is currently finishing a B.S. in Computer Science with Technical Applications and a minor in Computational Science Genetics at Point Loma Nazarene University.

 

Chad Cunningham - Middle School Coach

Chad started rowing his freshman year of high school at St. Paul’s School in Baltimore, Maryland after realizing his lacrosse career was over after middle school. He moved to San Diego and joined SDRC after obtaining his engineering degree from Hofstra University in Long Island, New York. Alongside coaching the middle school team at SDRC Chad is also a medical device safety engineer. Chad rows on the masters team at SDRC and has experience coaching and developing middle school athletes at various summer camps in Baltimore. 

Boathouse: 1220 El Carmel Place, San Diego, CA 92109 | Mailing address: SDRC Juniors, PO Box 99856, San Diego, CA 92169 | Boathouse Telephone: (858) 488-1893
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