Nick Caravias, left, and Ian Herdegen competed at the Midwest Youth Rowing Championship May 19-20 in Ohio. The duo won the lightweight double and are headed to the national championship June 8-10 in California.

Nick Caravias, left, and Ian Herdegen competed at the Midwest Youth Rowing Championship May 19-20 in Ohio. The duo won the lightweight double and are headed to the national championship June 8-10 in California.

Photo provided by Nick Herdegen


Local seniors hoping for success at rowing nationals

By: Edward Zilincik | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published June 4, 2018

BIRMINGHAM/BLOOMFIELD HILLS — Ian Herdegen and Nick Caravias are heading to the National Youth Rowing Championship June 8-10 in California.

The duo earned their spot after winning the lightweight double final May 19-20 at the Midwest Youth Rowing Championship in Ohio.  

They finished in 7 minutes, 12.09 seconds. The next-closest boat was more than three seconds behind.

The success hasn’t come without hard work and perseverance. The pair usually wakes up at a 4:15 a.m. before school to get to practice on Belle Isle at 5 a.m. They then return after school — Herdegen attends Birmingham Groves, while Caravias attends Bloomfield Hills High — at 4:30 p.m. for more practice.

“We’ve got it worked out to where we split up the driving. He does it in the morning, and I do it in the afternoon,” said Herdegen. “It’s definitely tiresome; we also can’t eat breakfast before our practice.”

Prior to having their driver’s licenses, Herdegen’s father, Nick, would often make the drive.

“That drive is really tough when you’re sleepy,” said Nick Herdegen. “My wife and I were so grateful when they got their licenses. There was no sadness at the thought that Ian was leaving the nest.”

Nick Herdegen added that the boys have kept an incredible, physical schedule.

“If there wasn’t ice out on the water, they were out there and often had to go into the boiler room to thaw out after practice,” he said.

The rowers plan on continuing their careers at the next level. In the fall, Caravias will be attending Bucknell University, while Ian Herdegen will be attending the University of Michigan.

But until then, they believe there’s a national championship waiting.

“We’ve been putting in a ton of extra work,” Ian Herdegen said. “We feel we have just as good of a chance as anyone.”