Rowing (2019)Jake Wetzel was on the Canadian national cycling team when he was 17. He had drive. He could motor. But at 6-foot-4, he felt out of place.
“Too big for cycling,” he said. “What I realized by training with the national team is I have athletic ability.”
He shifted. He became a rower. Look at him go.
Wetzel was the engine on the eights crew at the University of California-Berkeley, winning the U.S. collegiate title for three straight years.
Because he has dual citizenship, he could compete for the U.S. national team. He won a world rowing title for the Americans in fours in 1999 and was seventh with the U.S. quad in the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
He joined Canada's national rowing program in Victoria.
Jake Wetzel and Cam Baerg, who are both from Saskatoon, were on the Canadian fours crew that won worlds in 2003, then a silver medal in the 2004 Olympics in Athens.
When Wetzel went to England to complete his Masters Degree in economics, he competed for Oxford in 2006 in the annual and historic dual race on the Thames River against Cambridge. Wetzel won. That figures.
Returning to Canada, he won a world title in 2007 with the Canadian eights and gold in the Canadian eights in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
“What do I bring?” he said. “I dig deeper. I don't back off.”