Some of the 19 UW alumni heading to London for the 2012 Olympics knew each other while they were students. A few even competed together. Volleyball teammates Courtney Thompson, ’08 and Tamari Miyashiro, ’09 were only on the UW team together for a only single year (Miyashiro’s redshirt freshman year coincided with Thompson’s senior-year run for the 2005 NCAA championship—Thompson took some time off to compete professionally before returning for her degree. However, these three Olympians rowed together for most of their college careers, and are now teaming up to race for the gold.
Giuseppe Lanzone, ’05, Rowing
Despite Giuseppe Lanzone’s hometown of La Punta, Peru, being a hotspot for rowing, Giuseppe Lanzone did not start rowing seriously until after he moved to Virginia at 14—he was more interested in surfing and sailing. Still, Lanzone was a quick study, in 2002 he helped the UW freshman eight take the gold medal at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championship Regatta, and in 2003 he helped row the varsity eight to its first Pac-10 championship since 1997. In 2006, Lanzone became a U.S. citizen just weeks before rowing with Team USA’s men’s eight in the World Championships. Off the water, he’s been seen in the pages of GQ and has done modeling work for Polo, and currently appears showing off the Ralph-Lauren-designed Team USA uniforms.
Brett Newlin, ’05, Rowing
Brett Newlin began rowing after receiving a flyer at his freshman dorm at Michigan State. He transferred to UW and quickly earned a spot on the varsity eight (alongside current Olympic teammate Guiseppe Lanzone). Newlin, Lanzone and Scott Gault were a core part of the rowing team at the UW and continue to be teammates on the National Team.
A native of Wyoming, Newlin graduated from the UW in 2005 with a degree in computer programming and runs his own firmware programming business—when he isn’t competing. In 2006, he was named US Rowing’s Male Athlete of the Year. Newlin competed in the Men’s Four in the 2008 Olympics, finishing ninth. “I’m happy that I get to have a second chance to go back,” he recently told his hometown newspaper, The Riverton Ranger. “I know what to expect this time.”
Scott Gault, ’06, Rowing
Rounding out this trio of athletes who competed together as Huskies before joining the national team is Scott Gault. From Piedmont, CA, Gault (along with teammate Guiseppe Lanzone) was recruited to row for UW and made his mark on the freshmen eight who went undefeated all season in 2002 and won a gold at the IRAs. In 2005, his varsity eight won both the Pac-10 and IRA Championships. He finished 5th in Beijing in the Men’s Quadruple Sculls and will compete in the Men’s four in London. A pilot and aviation insurance broker, Gault envisions his life after rowing with him as a professional golfer—jetting from match to match in his (personally insured) plane.
Ty Otto, ’11, Rowing (Alternate)
Eagle Scout…National Merit Scholar…Mary Gates Scholar… oh, and national rowing champion–Ty Otto excels both on and off the water. Elected captain of the men’s crew team as a junior, this Seattle native and 3-time Pac-10 All-Academic graduated in 2011 with degrees in Physics and Political Science. He has since won a gold in the Men’s Eight at the 2011 U-23 World Championships and in the pair and the eight at the 2011 Pan American Games. According to the US Rowing website, he decided to become an oarsman “because he wanted to eat with impunity.”
Coming up—Huskies around the world and at home