Note: This story was last updated at 12:30 a.m.
The 2018 Big 12 Rowing Championships are in Oak Ridge on Saturday and Sunday.
The races will feature some of the top rowing programs in the country. The eight participating teams, including No. 3 Texas, will compete for an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships set for May 25-27 in Sarasota, Florida, according to TexasSports.com.
Besides Texas, other teams competing in Oak Ridge this weekend are Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma, and West Virginia, in addition to rowing affiliate Alabama, Old Dominion, and Tennessee.
The Big 12 Championships begin at 2 p.m. Saturday with preliminary heats. Final heats start at 9 a.m. Sunday.
All eight schools participating this weekend are eligible to win the NCAA automatic-qualifying bid, but only Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Kansas State, and West Virginia can win the Big 12 team title, according to TexasSports.com.
The championship is hosted by Tennessee for the fourth straight season, according to UTSports.com. It will be the final home regatta for 10 Tennessee athletes. The Volunteers joined the conference for rowing in 2015. In the 2017 championship, Tennessee took third place overall behind Texas and Oklahoma.
The eight teams will be divided into two four-team heats for a 2,000-meter sprint race on Saturday. The top three finishers in each heat will advance to the Grand Final on Sunday morning. The fourth-place finisher from each heat will compete in the Petite Final on Sunday, UTSports.com reported.
TexasSports.com reported that Texas has won seven of the nine Big 12 Championship regattas and claimed the event the last three years in Oak Ridge. The Longhorns swept all five grand finals races at the last three Big 12 Championships.
The Oklahoma Sooners posted on Twitter that they are seeking their third Big 12 title in their program history, in their 10th year of competition. Their last title was in 2014.
Admission is free for the entire regatta. Live video and results of the championship will be available at the Big 12 Conference Championship Central page, according to UTSports.com.
The Big 12 Championships were first held in 2009.
Besides being here for the Big 12 Championships this weekend, Kansas State was also in Oak Ridge for the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association (SIRA) Championship Regatta last month, on April 21-22, placing all five boats in the finals and earning medals for four boats.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
See the 2018 Big 12 Rowing Championships website here.
See the race schedule here.
You can follow race results here. A stream will be available on Big12Sports.com.
See a Big 12 Championship history on TexasSports.com.
Follow the race on social media at @BIG12CONFERENCE and #BIG12ROW.
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