Photograph: Werner Schmidt

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Rowing in Circles

First copies in the delivery room! Photograph © Row360

Greg Denieffe writes:

Row360 is born at just the right moment. It’s written by rowers for rowers. We are well and truly on the road to Rio now, with an exciting two years ahead. Our plan is to present the sport in a new light; to excite, invigorate and enlighten.

So writes Fergus Scholes, publisher, in his introduction on page 1, issue 001, of the new global rowing magazine ROW360. Thousands of printed copies were given away free, gratis, and for nothing at Henley Royal Regatta. I spied rowing folk of all ages enjoying their copies over their early morning iced coffees, lunch time champagne and afternoon Pimm’s. Not me; my copy was safely tucked away, magpie like, for later indulgence when I had returned to my nest.

So what’s it like? Well it’s the classiest launch edition of a rowing magazine that I’ve come across. Its coverage is truly global with articles by the Australian High Performance Director, Chris O’Brien, Maclom Scholes on the Devon Boathouse and rowing centre in Oklahoma City and Rachel Quarrell AKA The Rowing Voice. In fact, Quarrell contributes four articles that cover this year’s U.S. Selection Regattas, Henley Royal, World Cup II in Aiguebelette and the Belgrade European Rowing Championships. 

There are, as Row360’s Facebook page suggests, ‘interviews, news, articles, chat, lifestyle and all the trimmings from the world of rowing’. The cover features a photograph by Ben Duffy of Pete Reed, who is interviewed by Pete O’Hanlon. Reed has had a torrid year but has gained even more respect (if that is possible) in the way he has handled the whole dog allergy affair and his commitment to the GB eight. There are some additional photos of the shoot on Duffy’s website.

Is Pete Reed about to do what many of us long to do with the ergometer? Photograph from Row360 © Ben Duffy.

There is certainly something for everyone in this edition, from coxswains to coaches and those they train. I particularly enjoyed the articles, “Blazer Glory” by Jack Carlson, “Fluid Dynamics of Rowing” by Carl Douglas and the “Performance section” with results from the 2013 World Rowing Championships set alongside those of the 2014 European Championships and the first two World Cup Regattas of 2014. The headings for the men’s pair and men’s double sculls results may be a bit muddled, but with the addition of a legend setting out the venues and dates of the events, this section could be a real boon for rowing statisticians who are short of time.

There is even a short historical piece (more please!) by Simon Rostron, “Henley: A View from the Banks, Hats off to Hansa”, about the day in 1989 that the HRR course record fell below the six-minute barrier (checks old programmes – yes, I was there).

The Row360 team are continuing to enthusiastically promote the magazine with copies available at last weekend’s World Cup Regatta in Lucerne and copies will be up for grabs at the U.S. Rowing Club National Championships being held on Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, between 16 and 20 July.

You can read the full 28-article, 112-page July/August edition for free here. The subscription rates for Great Britain and Europe will be released soon. At the American launch of the American edition of the magazine, which happened yesterday, the subscription rate for six issues for the U.S. and Canada is $79, which includes an e-magazine.

Perhaps the first 360 degree row as depicted by The Far Side.

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