Photograph: Werner Schmidt

Sunday, September 30, 2012

2012 Zurich City Sprint Regatta

Photo: FISA
Here is a press release from FISA on the 2012 Zurich City Sprint Regatta, last Saturday.

Top international crews from the Czech Republic, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland took part in the regatta in the four boat classes on the international programme: the men’s single sculls, the women’s single sculls, the lightweight men’s four and the men’s quadruple sculls.  

Switzerland’s Olympic lightweight men’s four of Mario Gyr, Simon Niepmann, Valentin Gmelin and Simon Schürch were the strongest crew in the Round Robins, winning three of the three races that they competed in. In the A-final, however, the Czech crew of Miroslav Vrasti, Martin Slavik, Ondrej and Jan Vetesnik took the upper hand and, in the tightest race of the day, finished one hundredth of a second ahead of Switzerland in gold, to the great disappointment of the local crowd. “It was fun,” said Jan Vetesnik of the Czech Republic. “We enjoyed racing, and the city is beautiful. The racing was not about style or technique but big muscles and power so it worked for us and we did it - we won! We haven’t trained as a four since the Olympics – this was fun, and we hope to race again next year.’

Germany and the Czech Republic qualified for the A-final in the men’s quadruple sculls. The German crew, including World Champions Eric Knittel and Stefan Krueger raced to the line, claiming gold less than one second ahead of the Czechs. German athlete Mathias Rocher said: “It was very nice and it was a great experience for us. The sprint format is great – it’s free for the audience, everyone can watch and I think it will do good things for rowing.


In the men’s single sculls, Switzerland’s David Aregger and Germany’s Marcel Hacker finished with an equal score in the Round Robins – two points each. Aregger, aged 22, has been competing internationally at the junior and under-23 levels since 2008, while Hacker is a four-time Olympian and Olympic bronze medallist. The two athletes went head to head, finishing just a bit more than one second apart in the A-final, with Hacker claiming the gold medal. “It’s a nice format,” said Hacker. “It’s very short, close finishes and interesting racing. I like Zurich as a venue – it is so close to the city and even though it’s raining, there are so many people. I like it. The race was very short, so I had to concentrate for the final. I had the luck to win.


Mirka Knapkova is the 2012 Olympic Champion in the women’s single sculls. Here in Zurich she competed against experienced scullers Chantal Achterberg from the Netherlands (2012 Olympic bronze medallist in the women’s eight), Julia Lier from Germany (three-time under-23 World Champion and two-time junior World Champion) as well as Switzerland’s Jeannine Gmelin. Knapkova, Achterberg and Lier won two points each in the Round Robins, with the fastest times going to Knapkova and Achterberg. In the A-final, Knapkova finished a full two seconds ahead of Achterberg in first. Winner Knapkova said: “It was fun. It’s so different from normal racing so I really enjoyed it. I’d like to race again next year. This is my second sprint regatta. It’s short and rowing in the city can maybe be more objective for the public.


The universities of St. Petersburg and Zurich as well as the Swiss Federal Institutes of Zurich and Lausanne lined up to race each other for the Thomas Keller invitational university men’s eight challenge. St. Petersburg University won each of the three Round Robins it competed in, with the University of Zurich winning two. In the A-final, St. Petersburg just managed to cross the line in first, less than one second ahead of Zurich.

The University of Zurich and the Federal Institute of Technology of Zurich (ETHZ) went back to the start line one hour later to compete yet again in the “Uni / Poly Rudermatch” men’s eight challenge. In the 61st traditional university race that these two establishments have staged annually since 1945, the University of Zurich beat the Federal Institute of Technology to the line, bringing the historical ranking to 24 wins total for the university and 35 for ETHZ.

The 2012 Zurich City Sprints is part of a concept of city sprint regattas intended to develop into a sprint series sanctioned by FISA over the coming years. “Our aim is to bring the sport of rowing to the centre of cities, to the public,” explains FISA Executive Director Matt Smith. “By organising the 2012 Zurich City Sprints, we hope to establish a new, first-class international sports event in Switzerland.”

Here are the results (different links depending on which results you are looking for). Below is a short video clip how it looked last year, in St. Petersburg:

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Hot List Teaser...

Oh, my, it’s almost that time again…. when Megan Kalmoe, American Olympic bronze medallist, is publishing her List! List of what, you may ask? Of the Hottest Male Rowing Athletes of 2012, of course! Here is a teaser:

Friday, September 28, 2012

Stan Pocock Awarded 2012 USRowing Medal of Honor

Stan Pocock. Photo: USRowing
Yesterday, USRowing announced in a press release that Stan Pocock, an innovative boat builder, oarsman and life-long collegiate and international champion coach, has been awarded the 2012 USRowing Medal of Honor.
Given in recognition to a member of the rowing community in the United States who has accomplished extraordinary feats in rowing, it is the highest honor USRowing can bestow. Pocock, 89, will be honored at the Golden Oars Awards Dinner on Wednesday, 14 November, at the New York Athletic Club in New York City.

“It is impossible to think of rowing without considering the contributions that Stan Pocock has made to the sport,” said USRowing Chief Executive Officer Glenn Merry. “From the evolution of equipment to training Olympians to grass root clubs, Stan embodies the essence of rowing. It is with great pleasure that USRowing recognizes his leadership, passion and love for rowing with the Medal of Honor this year.”

“How about that,” said Pocock. “What a way to end up a life. I just can’t believe how good I feel about this. I really appreciate the honor very much and I’m very excited. I think it’s a culmination of my life in rowing,” he said. “I’ve been in it for a lot of years now, starting when I was a little boy. I went all though rowing at the University of Washington and coaching at the University of Washington and coaching the graduate oarsmen that took me to far places with the crews that were developed at the Lake Washington Rowing Club and then to row with Ancient Mariners (masters rowing group) when they formed in the mid-1980s.”

Stan Pocock was born into a rowing family, the son of George Pocock, who founded the Pocock Racing Shells boat building company with his brother, Dick, in Seattle, Washington, in 1913. Pocock’s father introduced him to rowing when he was a teenager and then taught him the art of building boats.

Read the whole press release here.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

World Rowing Launches New Environmental Section

In a press release published today, the International Rowing Federation, FISA, announces a new environmental section on its website. In the press release it says:

The new Clean Water Video, produced jointly by World Rowing and WWF, is a main feature of this new sub-site. It was filmed during the 2011 World Rowing Championships in the surroundings of the pristine mountain water lake in Bled, Slovenia. The video sends a clear message on how all rowers are responsible for safeguarding their rowing environment and how the sport of rowing is reliant on clean water.

This new web section also includes links to articles about clean water and rowing, as well as environmental tips for rowers and boathouses. It also gives rowing clubs the opportunity to share their story on how they have positively impacted their rowing environment. Links to World Rowing publications including the updated Environmental Sustainability Guidelines Policy and other guidelines are also provided. And, most importantly, this new environmental web page gives suggestions on how rowers can become an active part of the Clean Water Movement.

FISA and WWF, the World Wide Fund for Nature, have been partners for the promotion of Clean Water since the spring of 2011. The aim of this strategic alliance is to educate rowers and fans about the importance of the sport to the global environment. The alliance is also about establishing new best practices in sustainable sports event management and making environmental impact a more significant criterion in the event-bidding process; we have a responsibility to take to ensure that rowing events do not have a negative impact on the water courses.

Speaking on behalf of World Rowing, FISA President Denis Oswald said: “Rowers have an intimate and intense relationship with water. Naturally, they are interested in ensuring that the water bodies on which they row are protected and maintained, not just for their own use, but for the many other groups and communities who also rely upon it. This new Clean Water video illustrates our relationship with water and, our new environmental web-section features a Call for Action to all those in the Rowing World who want to improve the aquatic habitat on which they conduct their sport. We are convinced that this strategic alliance with WWF International is the most effective way that we can help raise global awareness for the need to preserve this most precious resource.”

Stuart Orr, Freshwater Manager, WWF International said: “The rivers and the lakes where competitions are held are an integral part of much larger, often threatened, ecosystems. To be able to work in an innovative way with FISA allows us to be able to reach new key audiences who can help us to deliver on our conservation goals.”

WWF is the world’s largest and most respected independent nature conservation organisation, with more than 5 million supporters and a network active in more than 100 countries across all continents. One of the main priorities of WWF is to protect freshwater ecosystems and improve water access, efficiency, and allocation for people and the environment, which is why our partnership is a perfect fit in promoting clean water.

Go to the new website here.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Australian Inter-University Rowing

Louis (on the right) and yours truly
HTBS is happy to introduce Mr. Louis Petrin, an Australian rowing history buff, whom I have actually spent some pleasant hours with this summer when Louis passed through Connecticut. We managed to squeeze in quite a lot about rowing those few hours we spent in the rowing exhibit and boat storage place at Mystic Seaport. In an e-mail, Louis writes about HTBS: “You need some Aussie stuff to give a global view of rowing, which I am happy to gather for you.” And I can only agree. So here it is, Louis first contribution to HTBS. May there be many more to come! He writes,

This week sees virtually all the universities of Australia competing in 30 different sports at the Australian University Games in Adelaide, South Australia. Of interest will be the rowing. Finals are raced on Friday, 28 September.

The earliest race between two of the Australian universities, Sydney and Melbourne, was rowed in 1870. This was the first race of an interstate or international nature known to have taken place in Australia, although the Parramatta River is known to have been the site of races as early as 1863.

The University of Melbourne met with great success in these early races, for not only did it win the first race, but when Sydney challenged Melbourne the following year on the Parramatta, Melbourne once again finished first. Melbourne’s contentment and Sydney’s disappointment might have been responsible for the abandonment of the race until 1888, as an “official” reason is not known.

The revival of a boat racing contest between the universities in 1888 was due to a suggestion made by Dr. W. Fleming Hopkins, a member of the Melbourne University Boat Club. Dr. Hopkins was deputed by Mr. C. H. Freeman (Hon. Secretary of the M.U.B.C.) to speak to the Adelaide University rowing men on the subject of sending Melbourne a challenge to row a race. This challenge for a race in eight-oared boats on the Yarra River was received from Adelaide University by Melbourne University rowing men, bearing the date 27 January, 1888. Sydney University Boat Club was approached, and decided also to send a crew.

So, it was that the first eight-oared race between Australian universities was conducted on 6 October, 1888. Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide Universities met on the Homburg reach course of the Yarra River, a distance of just over 4 kilometres (2 ½ miles).

Melbourne was recorded as having won by four lengths over Adelaide in a time of 13 min. 5 secs. and six lengths to third placed Sydney.

Adelaide achieved its first win on 21 December, 1889, at their home course on the Port River, and again in 1896. Sydney’s first win was on 16 June, 1890, by five lengths. Here is a short note about the race in a newspaper:

It was not until 1893 that a significant trophy was first competed for, the Oxford and Cambridge Challenge Cup.

The Oxford and Cambridge Challenge Cup

This fine trophy was presented by Old Blues of Oxford and Cambridge Universities Boat Clubs. Dr. Edmond Warre, later headmaster of Eton College, was mainly responsible for securing the handsome and interesting trophy, which is held as a perpetual trophy for the race, and is kept by the winning boat club for the year in which it is Head of the River.

Frederick Halcomb (Captain of the Adelaide University Boat Club) had rowed against Warre in earlier years. As a good friend of Warre, Halcomb wrote him a letter with an account of the inter-university race that had just begun. A proposal was laid before the university boat clubs at Oxford and Cambridge, and both signified their approval and added a substantial donation. In addition a very large number of past university “oars”, coxswains, and coaches joined in subscribing to fund the trophy. In looking over the list of sympathisers it is pleasant to recognise names of men who made their mark between Putney and Mortlake so long ago as the 1850s, as Judge (Joe) Chitty, Elers, Hornby, Lonsdale, Meade King, and others for Oxford; while the Cambridge’s subscription list includes the name of Tom Egan, who was coaching and steering Cambridge in the 1840s, and who in a memorable year transferred his services to Oxford. In view of such generous sympathy and support from the old universities of England, it was hoped that this tangible show of empathy would foster rowing in Australia. In an 1890 letter, Warre wrote to Halcomb stating that “the idea was accepted by them with alacrity” and that they were “proud of the opportunity afforded them of showing their brotherhood, goodwill and interest in the welfare of their kinsmen in the antipodes”.

The Oxford and Cambridge Challenge Cup was sent out to Australia in time for the 1893 competition, where it was competed for and won by Melbourne.

The Cup has scenes of both Cambridge and Oxford engraved on the sides, pictures of rowing along with floral emblems of the countries of England, Scotland and Wales. The Angel on the top is pictured in the traditional pose of the Toast to Rowing. This long standing and traditional toast is afforded the winners of the Challenge Cup.

The Women’s Eight Champions compete for the Professor Godfrey Tanner Cup. The first winners in 1978 were University of Melbourne.

The Professor Godfrey Tanner Cup

Whereas in the beginning, only three universities competed, nowadays all the other Australian universities send crews for the Cup.

Louis Petrin lives in Sydney, Australia, and enjoys all that the good waters there offer. He rows for the Drummoyne Rowing Club and is part of a crew called the Grumpy Oar Men. The crew started 4 years ago joining fathers rowing at a corporate regatta to raise funds for their daughter’s school rowing programme. Louis is also became a Boat Race Official to give back something to the sport that has given his daughter, Nicole, six memorable years as she continues to row for Sydney University. Louis has a love of history which has lead him to collect books on rowing (300) as well as trophies and memorabilia.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Vogalonga

The Vogalonga

We will not hurry
The race.
In fact, we will make
A day of it,
Pull in our oars
When the mood dictates,
And hoist one with
Whomever we meet.

Ah!  For this one day
No waves!,
From the motor launches
Eating away
At the foundations
Of the Serene One,
Only the happy slapping
Of our oars on the storied water,

The Great Serpent of a canal
Essing past palaces and hotels,
Essing under the Rialto,
To the lagoon and beyond,
To Burano, Murano, Sant'Erasmo.
Only oars will resound,
And the cheers of celebration
Floating out on the air of the floating city.

We will not hurry the day.
We will luxuriate in the luxury city.
We will row through the glittering
Sun on the water.
Sun on the serene water.
We will be one
With the Great Fish swimming beneath us.
We will mark Eternity.

Philip Kuepper
(September 2012)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Home International Regatta 1962 – 2012

HTBS’s Greg Denieffe writes:

On 6 September 2012, Göran Buckhorn wrote about the rowing events at the British Empire Games of 1950 held in Auckland, New Zealand. In 1954, the Games were renamed the ‘British Empire and Commonwealth Games’ and were held in Vancouver, Canada. Rowing was included in the programme, as it was in the 1958 Games that were held in Cardiff, Wales. The rowing in 1958 was held on Llyn (Lake) Padarn in Snowdonia, Gwynedd, North Wales, where the necessary stretch of water – 2,000 metres long with four lanes – was available. The decision to award the Games to Wales gave the Welsh rowing clubs the impetus to form the Welsh National Rowing Club whose main object was ‘to sponsor Welsh entries in international events and regattas’. 

Railway poster for the 1958 British Empire & Commonwealth Games.

A fortuitous draw in the eights event of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland at those Games in 1958 was thought to be something to be continued and in 1962 the first Home Countries International Match was held, as part of the Serpentine Regatta. At the time the News of the World sponsored a sprint regatta on the Serpentine in Hyde Park, London and from 1962 to 1964 this included a four countries International for men in eights, fours, sculls and a relay race. Unfortunately, sponsorship was dropped, and the regatta ceased. The Welsh National Rowing Club was keen to revive it and challenged England, Scotland and Ireland to compete at Monmouth on the River Wye in 1966. Only Scotland accepted and the following year they hosted the event at Loch Lomond over 2,000-metre course when all four countries participated once again and the series as we know it today truly began. A team event for juniors was added to the programme and Ireland won both this and the men’s match.

Enamel badge for an Official at the ‘News of the World Tenth Serpentine Regatta’, 1962 which incorporated the first Home International.

In 1968, Ireland hosted the event for the first time in Blessington. England, by far the strongest of the participants, won both matches. In 1970, a women’s match was introduced when England was the host and Molesey the venue; the host duly winning all three matches. The venue continues to rotate annually between the four nations.

Races for junior women were introduced gradually between 1982 and 1984 (the first official junior women’s match) and since then all four matches have been held annually apart from 1986 and 1994 when only the junior matches were contested.

Over the years household names in rowing began their international careers in the Home Internationals. Steve Redgrave, Peter Haining and Sean Drea all took their first international strokes for England, Scotland and Ireland respectively at the ‘Quadrangular’.

Essentially the Home International is made up of four team competitions for senior men, senior women, junior men and junior women. The winners of each race are awarded medals and four points towards the team event. The runners up in each race get three points followed by two points for third and one point for fourth. The team with the most points in each of the four matches is Home International Champions and awarded the following trophies; senior men, The News of the World Cup; senior women, The County of Renfrew Rosebowl; junior men, The Duncan Trophy and junior women, The Irish Travel Agency Cup.

The statistics bear out England’s superiority in the senior events but they have not had it all their own way in the junior events. Following the 2012 regatta the overall match results are as follows:

Senior Men 48 matches: England 32, Scotland 8, Ireland 7, Wales 1.
Senior Women 42 matches: England 32, Ireland 7, Scotland 3, Wales 0.
Junior Men 46 matches: England 27½, Ireland 16½, Scotland 1, Wales 1. (England & Ireland shared the 1999 match)
Junior Women 29 matches: Ireland 13, England 9½, Scotland 6½, Wales 0. (England & Scotland shared the 2005 match)

The 2012 regatta was held over a 1,500-metre course in Cardiff Bay, Wales, and the host nation made it a memorable one winning their first senior match with 36 points with England second on 25 points. England won the three other matches with Ireland runners-up in both senior and junior women’s matches and Wales taking the runners-up spot in the junior men’s match. The full results of this year’s event can be found here.

On the left: Winner’s medal from the 2012 regatta. Photo, Kevin Coughlan (Ireland Senior Men’s 4x).

There has been one exception to the above arrangements. In 1999, The Irish Amateur Rowing Union (now Rowing Ireland) celebrated their centenary and over three weekends in July, held a national and international festival of rowing consisting of the National Centenary Rowing Championships followed by the Home International and finishing with the Coup de la Jeunesse (European Junior Championships). Belgium was invited to take part in the ‘Homes’ and the following year hosed the event in Ghent.

The HTBS entry of 21 April, 2012, mentions the 1989 Home International and has a photo of the crest used on the ties that the participants, coaches and team managers are entitled to wear. To read the entry, please click here.

Programme from the 1969 match held in Monmouth, Wales.

The 50th Anniversary Programme from 2012.

Winners ‘pot’ from the 1989 regatta. Photo, Dean Abraham (England, Junior Men’s 2-).

Serpentine Regatta 1962 – Bill Barry at the raft with Tom Peters, the Quintin and Polytechnic boatman.

The photograph above appeared, among other places, on the front cover of now defunct Rowing magazine of June 1964 with the caption ‘Tom Peters on the Serpentine Raft with British Amateur Champion W. L. Barry (Quintin B.C.)’, but was in fact taken at the Serpentine Regatta in August 1962, two years before Bill won the Wingfield Sculls. The regatta incorporated the Home Countries International, in which Bill triumphed for England as the single sculler. Photo and details from Quintin Boat Club can be found here.

There is a photograph of Ray Penney, England Team Manager, being presented with a trophy by Sir William Carr, for the International Match at the Open Sprint Championship Regatta, Serpentine, Hyde Park, London on the River and Rowing Museum online collection here.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Thomas's 'Backwards' is Out!

Slightly more than a year ago, 19 August, 2011, HTBS wrote about Sarah Megan Thomas and the making of her rowing movie Backwards in and around Philadelphia. Not only was she playing the lead role, Abi, but she had also written the film script and produced the film. Last Thursday, the film opened in Philadelphia, with some of the members of the U.S. women’s rowing team present at the premiere (see photos from Row2K here).

Above you can watch a video how the film was made, while below is a trailer of the film ~ enjoy!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Dodd and Searle Holding Court

On 7 May, 2012, HTBS posted a review about Chris Dodd’s book Pieces of Eight: Bob Janousek and his Olympians (March 2012). About this masterpiece HTBS wrote:

'Pieces of Eight: Bob Janousek and his Olympians is indeed a must-read, must-have book. If you would like to understand how British rowing has managed to reach its high level of today – when we are only weeks away from the Olympic Games in London where the British yet again will meet glory on the water – this book will tell you how it all started, how one man taught the ‘bloody English’ how to row again.'

Read what HTBS has written earlier about Pieces of Eight here.

Dodd’s book will be featured on three occasions coming up soon:

Saturday 29 September
Dodd will hold court at Henley Literary Festival – River & Rowing Museum, between 3 and 4:15 p.m. (coffee from 2:30 p.m.). For reservations please call: 01491-415600.

Saturday 29 September
An evening with Bob Janousek, Chris Dodd and others who are featured in Pieces of Eight at Leander Club, 7:30 p.m. Tickets £47.50 to include canapés, dinner, wine and coffee, please contact Hannah Jones 01491-415623 or

Monday 8 October
Greg Searle and Chris Dodd debate Great British Rowing at Cheltenham Literary Festival, from 8:45 p.m. to 10 p.m. (code L121). Featuring Searle’s newly published book If Not Now, When? (September 2012) and Pieces of Eight. Tickets via Cheltenham Literary Festival, please go here.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Canon Noel Duckworth: An Extraordinary Life

On 27 August, 2012, HTBS’s Tim Koch wrote a long wonderful piece about a most astonishing man, Noel Duckworth, who was a Cambridge and Olympic cox, and, during the Second World War, a strong unconquerable prisoner-of-war in different Japanese prison camps.

Duckworth’s biographer Michael Smyth has just come out with a book about him, Canon Noel Duckworth: An Extraordinary Life (September 2012). Copies are available from Churchill College, Cambridge, via their website, here. The book is £8.99 + pp.

In the blog post Noel Duckworth: ‘Small of Stature, Great of Heart’ Tim wrote:

“‘Hear The Boat Sing’ has in the past written about rowers with outstanding war records. The sort of personal qualities that are needed to be successful as an oarsman are also those that can produce great soldiers. But what of coxswains, people who need very different qualities to those that pull the oar? Coxes are physically small but need to gain the respect of those who are much more powerful than they are. They have to get the best out of people without alienating themselves from them. They need to remain calm and thoughtful under pressure. I have recently discovered the story a man who used the personal attributes that enabled him to be an exceptional cox to incredible effect in the full horror of war. His biographer, Michael Smyth, says this of him:

[He] was one of those rare men who will always be remembered by everyone who ever met him. He had enormous charisma, great strength of will, but above all dedicated his life to the needs of others.

To read Tim’s whole article, please click here.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Drygalla gets the DRV Support

Nadja Drygalla
After a several hour hearing conducted by the German Rowing Association, Deutscher Ruderverband, the organisation’s president, Siegfried Kaidel, told the media on Tuesday that the Association stood behind Nadja Drygalla. She made the headlines during the Olympic rowing event when she was sent home after it was revealed that her boyfriend Michael Fischer – an ex-rower – had ties to the neo-Nazi movement in Germany. A spokesman for the German Olympic Committee also made a comment, saying that the investigation on the 23-year-old female rower had cleared her from having any links to right-wing political groups.

In a press release on the German Rowing Association’s website it says: ‘In a friendly, constructive atmosphere Siegfried Kaidel confirmed that the Association stands fully behind its athlete.’

Already last year, Drygalla had to leave the police force because of her relationship with Fischer. A lively debate broke out in Germany when Drygalla was forced to leave the Olympic Village in London. The rower received support from the German Defence Minister Thomas de Maizière, who told the magazine Der Spiegel: 'Must we demand that sportswomen and sportsmen reveal who they are friends with, what they think? Where does one draw the line?'

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Rotown in Motown

HTBS’s Tim Koch writes:

A trawl through YouTube can often be an uninspiring experience, housing as it does many pointless and prosaic video clips. However, gems are there to be unearthed such as these home movies uploaded by ‘katbaleu’ in September 2011. They are best viewed mute. Katbaleu writes:

An excerpt of film footage that my grandfather and family took over the years. This is footage of The Detroit Boat Club’s Rowing Team sometime around 1948-1952 when my uncle, Richard Langs, was on the team. I unfortunately don’t know what regattas are shown here or have any exact dates but perhaps some others might know. Please leave any info you may have about this footage in the comments. Thanks!

I take it that most of this was shot on the Detroit River but between 3min 6secs and 5min 45secs there is film of the DBC rowing in Philadelphia with some nice shots of Boathouse Row. The scene changes again at 7mins 32secs but I do not know where this is.

I confess that I knew nothing about Detroit Boat Club and was surprised to find that it was founded as long ago as 1839. The website for the club’s sailing section (which is now separate from the rowing club) proudly proclaims:

Sixty-three years after our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, twenty-two years before the Civil War and two years after Michigan became a State, while Abraham Lincoln was still a 30-year-old lawyer in Illinois, the Detroit Boat Club was founded. Organized by oarsman on February 18, 1839, it is the oldest continuous rowing club in the world, the oldest boating club in the United States and the oldest social club in Michigan.

I am afraid that I must question the claim to be ‘the oldest continuous rowing club in the world’. Without doing any research I can think of three British clubs that are older (Leander 1818, Eton Excelsior 1829 and Royal Chester 1838) and also there are various pre 1839 college boat clubs at Oxford and Cambridge Universities. Outside of Britain, I know that Hamburg’s Der Hamburger und Germania Ruder Club dates from 1836. However, I have no wish to be churlish, a founding date of 1839 is very impressive and the exact definition of ‘continuous’ may be important here.

DBC’s Wikipedia entry gives a history of the club which still thrives today. My attention was especially taken by the Spanish Colonial Style boathouse on Belle Isle which was built for the boat club in 1902. Some wonderful pictures of this once grand building were posted here in February 2010.

Clearly it was once an important sporting and social centre for middle classes of Detroit. However, the city’s population shifts and enormous economic and social problems of recent years mean that neither the rowing and sailing clubs or the city government are able to raise the money to maintain the crumbling boathouse. The Wikipedia entry states:

In 1992 rent on the Detroit Boat Club property jumped from $1 to $100,000. Utility payments fell behind and membership continued to drop. The club filed for bankruptcy citing a $1million debt. The city announced plans to take over operation of the building. In 1996, the (yacht) club members voted to move out of the city. Since (then) the historic building has fallen into disrepair. Current assessments put the needed repairs over $20 million. The club has around 200 members who pay $400 in dues a year...  The organization that runs the rowing program, Friends of Detroit Rowing, are currently looking into building a better boathouse and structure for competitive rowing.

The website ‘detroit1701’ subtitled ‘Detroit: The History and Future of the Motor City’ claims some shocking background to this story concerning racial politics in the city.

I suspect that the old boathouse will soon be lost to rowing forever. The Friends of Detroit Rowing must think so as they have produced these impressive plans for a new boathouse (though I do not know if funding is in place). In September 2012 it was announced that there are grand plans for improving all of Belle Isle including the ‘reopening of the boathouse’. I hope to be proved wrong but I think that the ‘reopened boathouse’ could be a shopping mall rather than a boat club, something which is not ideal but is preferable to losing the building altogether. Perhaps someone from Detroit could keep HTBS up to date with developments?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Going to the White House...

Photo from Susan Francia’s blog.

On 14 September, 400 American Olympians and Paralympians were invited to the White House in Washington D.C. to meet the President and the First lady. One of them, the Olympian Champion in the women’s eight, Susan Francia, was one of them. Here is her enthusiastic report on her blog.

Monday, September 17, 2012

The 2012 European Championships have Ended

Photo: Claudio Cecchin. (Photo not from this year.)

The European Championships ended yesterday with a record number of 36 nations taking part. The host nation Italy took most of the medals to the delight of the 10.000 spectators, FISA reports on its website. Read the press release here.

Here are the results.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

2012 Coastweeks Regatta

Today was the 21st Annual Coastweeks Regatta in Mystic, Connecticut. It was a sunny, but somewhat blustery day at certain spots both on land and on the water, and some rowers had problems maneuvering their boats. Here are some pictures I took....

For one of the earliest head races of the season in New England, slightly more than 160 rowers came to compete on the Mystic River, which is a little less than last year. It was still crowded to get down to the dock to launch your boat...

You had to watch out so you did not get bonked on the head by a rigger or an oar..

And then, when you were out on the water, you had to watch out for other boats which also were on their way to the start...

 Wonderful to see a very young crew of oarsmen rowing to start, taking it very seriously...

Another crew of boys in a bow-coxed boat. The cox is sitting up to get a better look, which is good because in front of them a young lady has just capsized in her single scull...

 however, she is not panicking, she is taking it easy and slow to be able to adjust her sculls and shell...

then she slides up, trying to keep her balance...

and she is quickly back in her boat again, sitting up-right, putting her feet in the foot-stretcher...

so when the motor launch arrives, she is already correcting her course, going up to the start - well done!

Here is a little trick question: which set of blades are placed the correct way? Well, your answer might depend upon which country you are from. For years and years, I was taught that the blades were supposed to point up. Then the Swedish Olympian oarsman Hasse Svensson told our club coach that he always put his blades down, so the rubber handles would not get gravel and small rocks inside. Since that day, we were also putting blades down and handles up.... After all, it was an Olympian who gave the advice and he ought to know what he was talking about.... No?

The 2012 Coastweeks Regatta results are here.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Thoughts on the Battle Between the Bridges

Hart Perry
For nine years now there has been a fun rowing regatta in Downtown Mystic on the day before the so called Coastweeks Regatta, which is tomorrow, Sunday 16 September, at Mystic Seaport. The Saturday regatta that I am referring to is the Battle Between the Bridges, which HTBS has written about before. The BBB, as it is commonly known, was created by Hart Perry in 2002 as an American 'Henley Sprint' on a 500-metre course with room for two scullers match racing between the Railroad Bridge and the Drawbridge in Downtown Mystic. BBB would, thanks to Hart's contacts, attract America's top female and male scullers. They would come from all around, and some of them would come directly from the World Championships or even the Olympic Games to compete on the river in the tiny little village of Mystic.

As it was founded in 2002, today it was supposed to have been the 10th annual regatta. It was not to be. When Hart suddenly died on 3 February 2011, some of the institutions that he directed, or was an important part of, faltered, as his colleagues did not really know how to proceed or what to do. BBB was one of those events of which Hart was truly at the helm. BBB was organised last year, but not without difficulty.

Before I knew that the regatta was called off, I thought that, for the 10th anniversary races, I wanted to honour Hart in a special way. Many fine things have already been said about Hart on the web and in print in newspapers and magazines, but no poem has ever been written in his honour, if I understand it right. Of course, I am not really a poet, not even a versifier, but, alas, I decided to have a go. It took me quite some time to get it the way I wanted. Struck by hubris, I thought that my verse could even get published in the regatta programme. Well, with a no-show and no programme, I decided to throw it on HTBS instead. So, here it is, a poem about a regatta that was cancelled and about a great man, who is still very much missed by many of us.

Thoughts on the 10th Battle Between the Bridges in 2012
In fond memory of William Hartwell “Hart” Perry, Jr., 1923 – 2011

So, it’s time again
To walk down to the Mystic River,
On a beautiful September day, when
The sky has clouds with edges of silver,
And the leaves sway calmly in the trees.
Men and women in their boats will row;
While the beams of the sun will glow
Over the riverbanks – only to be cooled off by a quiet breeze.

A river scene:
Rowers racing from bridge to bridge
Is an annual view, we for years have seen.
Thanks to one man’s dream, an image
Of gathered scullers with bodies strong;
Two scullers rowing side by side, abreast –
Pulling, getting those oar handles to the chest
On a course five hundred metres long.

The sculler’s muscles flex
When she races on the water betwixt
The bridges.  No rower neglects
To keep her eyes steadily fixed
On an invisible point behind the stern.
Effortlessly the scullers go on their slides –
The victor’s shell under the drawbridge’s darkness glides,
Leaving the fighting opponent astern.

These athletes display
A finesse to scull in colourful shells,
Appearing as an Impressionist painting by Monet.
The solemn knell of a church’s bells
In the distance,
Remind us of one man: Hartwell Perry, our Hart,
Who turned his life in rowing into a fine art –
Today we honor him in his absence.

There was only one such man,
It was said when he died:
A coach, an umpire, a Henley Steward – a gentleman;
Calling him a friend, we still do with pride.
Again and again we asked for his advice,
It might have been about a boat, a crew, or Henley fashion;
His might came from within, a warm passion,
Which he is using now, I bet, coaching crews in Rowers’ Paradise.

Göran R Buckhorn

Friday, September 14, 2012

2012 European Championships Start Today!

 Photo: Claudio Cecchin/FISA

Today the 2012 European Championships begin in Varese, Italy. There is a record number of nations competing, 36, and FISA has posted a press release about whom we should watch during these championships. On FISA’s website it says:

Watch out for a huge representation at the beautiful Varese rowing venue in Italy for the 2012 European Championships.

A record 36 nations from throughout Europe are getting ready to race from 14 to 16 September. They will race in the 14 Olympic boat classes with a stack of London Olympians, including some of the medallists, lining up. Read on for who you should watch out for at this exciting European Championship regatta. To read the press release click here.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

2012 World Rowing Awards

In a press release, FISA, the International Rowing Federation, announces that public nominations are open for the 2012 World Rowing Awards, and it continues:

This is a chance for the general public to have their say in who they believe had an outstanding performance in rowing in 2012 and who they would like nominate for the 2012 World Rowing Awards.

Nominations can be made in the following award categories:
World Rowing Coach of the Year
World Rowing Male Crew of the Year
World Rowing Female Crew of the Year
World Rowing Adaptive Crew of the Year
World Rowing Distinguished Service to International Rowing Medal

One nomination can be submitted for each award category. A crew can also be an individual rower in a single boat.

Once all of the nominations have been received the next stage will be a review by the FISA Council who will select the finalists. The finalists will then go to FISA's Executive Committee who will select the winners in the four categories by 15 October 2012.

 Alla Lysenko

Last year's winners were: 2011 World Rowing Female Crew of the Year: Christina Giazitzidou and Alexandra Tsiavou (GRE), Lightweight Women’s Double Sculls (LW2x)
2011 World Rowing Male Crew of the Year: Eric Murray and Hamish Bond (NZL), Men’s Pair (M2-)
2011 World Rowing Adaptive Crew of the Year: Alla Lysenko (UKR), AS Women’s Single Sculls (ASW1x)
2011 World Rowing Coach of the Year: Gianni Postiglione (GRE)
2011 World Rowing Distinguished Service to International Rowing Medal: Ricardo Ibarra (ARG)

To view all winners to date, please click here.

Nominations for the 2012 World Rowing Awards should be submitted here by 28 September 2012 at midnight CET.

The award winners will be publically announced and the winners presented with their awards at the 2012 World Rowing Coaches Conference Gala Dinner on 2 November 2012 in Limerick, Ireland.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Golden Oars Awards

Time for awards. NRF's website writes:

USRowing is pleased to announce the second annual Golden Oars Awards Dinner, presented by One Equity Partners. The dinner is scheduled for Wednesday, November 14 at the New York Athletic Club in New York City.

Co-hosted by USRowing and the National Rowing Foundation, the dinner will honor excellence in our sport during 2012 and serve as a fundraiser for USRowing’s national teams and its diversity, inclusion and adaptive programs. The celebration will feature the presentation of many of USRowing’s annual awards including the Fan’s Choice Awards, and will honor 2012 Olympians, Paralympians and U.S. national teams.

Read more here.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The First Henley Regatta Programme

Earlier this summer, Tom Weil, famous rowing historian and collector, rowing writer and aquatic connoisseur par excellence, donated a real gem to the River and Rowing Museum in Henley-on-Thames: a copy of the first Henley Regatta programme from 14 June 1839 (when the regatta was not yet 'Royal'). Weil had bought the one-page programme from the estate of Hart Perry, together with a copy of the 1840 programme, in March when there was a fund-raising event at the Rowing Hall of Fame in Mystic, Connecticut. I was present when he bought it, and one could really feel that an important rowing history act was taking place.

A British lady, Philippa Ratcliffe, has elegantly written about this important donation to the River and Rowing Museum, you can read her piece here.

Monday, September 10, 2012

HRR in T&C

Now and then, HTBS stumbles across a piece about rowing in a 'non-rowing' magazine, and, of course, we would like to share our find with you readers (despite that it might be a terribly poor written article, which we then tell you...). This time, it's a small, well-written 115-word piece in the September Town & Country, America's oldest magazine. For those of you who is not familiar with this publication, it's something like the British the Tatler.

In the Town & Country section called 'Social Network', the magazine writes about 'The Trio of Events' comprising the English social season (Ascot, Henley, and Wimbledon)...' It's clear that the writer of the article, Gillian Hearst Simonds, T&C's society editor (and yes, of the family who owns the magazine and 15 daily, 38 weekly newspapers and more than 300 magazines around the world), has talked to a rowing-knowledgeable person before writing the little piece. And, no, it was not HTBS this time...

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Results 2012 World Rowing Master Regatta

The 2012 World Rowing Master Regatta held in Duisburg, Germany, which started on 6 September, ended today.

You will find all the results are here.

Below is a list of the age categories:

A    Minimum age 27 years or more
B    Average age 36 years or more
C    Average age 43 years or more
D    Average age 50 years or more
E    Average age 55 years or more
F    Average age 60 years or more
G    Average age 65 years or more
H    Average age 70 years or more
I    Average age 75 years or more
J1   Average age 80 years or more
J2   Average age 85 years or more

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Ethel's Gold Medal goes for £17,500!

On 3 September, at Christie’s in London, an Olympic gold medal which was won by Raymond D. Etherington-Smith, the captain of the Leander eight which became Olympic champions in 1908, was sold for an astonishing £17,500 ($27,738). This solid gold medal, 25g, 15 carat gold, auctioned off by his family, was estimated to sell for £5,000 – £7,000 ($7,600 – $11,000).

Raymond Etherington-Smith (1877-1913), called ‘Ethel’ by his friends, studied at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he proved to be an incredible oarsman. He won the Colquohoun Sculls, the Lowe Double Sculls, the University Pairs and Fours, and rowed twice in the Head of the River. In 1898, Ethel rowed in his first Boat Race, and the following year he became President of the C.U.B.C., which was the same year he and his crew managed to break the Dark Blues’ nine-year winning streak. The 1900 Boat Race was also won by the Light Blues with Ethel in fifth-seat. He was Captain of Leander in 1903, 1905, 1906 and 1908, winning the Grand Challenge Cup in 1901, 1903 and 1905, and was the runner-up for the Diamond Challenge Sculls in 1902, racing against the mighty F.S. Kelly.

Ethel was a fine specimen of an oarsman, and Leslie Wars, ‘SPY’, wrote about him: ‘The finest and handsomest young athlete I ever drew as an under-graduate’.

In an article published by the Daily Mail about the auction at Christie’s, Ethel is likened to Sir Steven Redgrave. Read the article here. Incorrectly, the paper writes that Leander’s opponents in the Olympic final race in the eights, the splendid crew from Royal Club Nautique de Gand of Belgium ‘sunk and capsized’ during the race, but that is not true. Following is an account of the race in Henley Races (1919) by Sir Theodore Cook:

‘This proved a magnificent race. The Belgians, who had twice won the Grand Challenge Cup at Henley, and at this Regatta had defeated Cambridge University, were thought likely winners by many people. […] Along Temple Island both were rowing 38 a minute, Leander forging slowly ahead and having half a length to the good at the first signal-box. They gained another quarter length  by the time the second box was reached, in spite of a fine spurt on the part of the Belgians. […] At the Henley mile post Leander were rowing 35 a minute, and were a length and a quarter in front. Both crews rowed in to the finish very hard, Leander at 36 and the Belgians at 38 a minute, the former winning by a good two lengths’ distance in the very fast time of 7min. 52sec.’

The Leander eight had been Great Britain’s ‘second’ boat, and many of the oarsmen had their active rowing career behind them. Due to their age they were called the ‘Old Crocks’. So at age 31, Ethel jokingly told his crew mate Guy Nickalls who was 42 years old: ‘I suppose they have asked me because I am about half-way down the line between yourself and Bucknall in age’ [Henry Bucknall, the stroke, was 23 years old].

Sadly, Ethel, who became a doctor, died five years later, a week after he had turned 36, contracting peritonitis during an operation.

Friday, September 7, 2012

View the 1950 Empire Games in New Zealand

After I had posted yesterday's piece about the 1950 rowing at the British Empire Games in New Zealand, I received an e-mail from Tim Koch who happily reported that he had found an interesting film on YouTube about the 1950 Games (see above). Tim writes that there is six minutes of rowing in this film (and it starts at 4min 25secs into the film). Tim says: 'It's great stuff though the close ups must have been filmed during practice. It shows that England were never in contention in the eights and that Australia won on the very last stroke.'

The film also shows the single sculls, the doubles, pairs and the coxed fours races. As I neglected to mention the results in the doubles, pairs and coxed fours in yesterday's post, here you are: Double Sculls: M.T. Wood and M.S. Riley, Australia, beat D. Simonson and J. Schneider, New Zealand, and J. Brown and J.W. Tinegate, England. Pairs: W.J. Lambert and J.W. Webster, Australia, beat H. Gould and D. Gould, Australia. Coxed Fours: New Zealand (bow W. Carroll, 2. W. James, 3. J. O'Brien, stroke E. Johnson and cox K. Fox) beat Australia (bow K.T. Gee, 2. C.W. Winkworth, 3. E.E. Elder, stroke L.E. Montgomery and cox D. McGonagle).

Tim also left a comment in yesterday's blog post: 'A footnote for rowing nerds: This crew used "fixed pin" (as opposed to "swivel") rowlocks at Henley and in New Zealand. They were the last crew to win the Grand using these.' In Swing Together: Thoughts on Rowing Dickie Burnell discusses the merits of fixed pins and swivels in an Appendix. While many believe that fixed pins were used by 'Orthodox' crews and the crews rowing 'Fairbairnism' used swivel rowlocks, it is not the case. In the beginning, Fairbairn had crews using fixed pins and Orthodox crews later used swivels. Before the English eight went to compete on Lake Karapiro, the crew debated if they were going to use fixed pins or swivels. As Tim writes, they came to use fixed pins in the race on Lake Karapiro.

For those of you who might be uncertain what a 'fixed pin' is there is a great film showing a Cambridge practice for the 1948 Boat Race where the Light Blues are using fixed pins while they are 'tubbing' and training in the boat.


Thursday, September 6, 2012

British Empire Games Rowing in 1950

The combination of oarsmen from Leander and Thames RC represented England at the rowing regatta at the 1950 Empire Games: bow A.S.F. Butcher (Thames RC), 2. P.A de Giles (Leander), 3. W.A.D. Windham (Leander), 4. H.W. Rushmere (Thames RC), 5. R.D. Burnell (Leander), 6. P.C. Kirkpatrick (Thames RC), 7. M.C. Lapage (Leander), stroke P. Bradley (Leander) and cox J.P. Dearlove. Photograph by G.F. Louden (in Dickie Burnell's Swing Togther).

On 31 August, Tim Koch wrote on HTBS about Jack Dearlove, ‘The Indefatigable Jack Dearlove’. Jack, who had lost a leg in an accident, showed the same fighting spirit as today’s rowers at the Paralympic Games in London. Jack coxed the Great Britain eight to an Olympic silver medal in 1948 and a bronze medal at the Empire Games in 1950. This is a short story about the 1950 Empire Games’ rowing regatta on Lake Karapiro in New Zealand.

The first British Empire Games (now called the Commonwealth Games) were held in 1930 in Hamilton, Ontario, by, as Hylton Cleaver writes in his A History of Rowing (1957), “a group of keen sportsmen and great believers in the Empire”. That year’s winner of the Grand Challenge Cup at Henley, London RC, beat a strong eight from New Zealand by half a length. Bobby Pearce, then still sculling for Australia, became the first Empire Champion in the single sculls, beating Jack Beresford of Thames RC. There seems to have been an Empire Games in England in 1934, but without rowing! So, at the next Empire Games where rowing was included, in 1938, a combination eight of oarsmen from London, Thames, Oxford and Cambridge overpowered an eight from Australia. And then came the War.

After a successful race in the 1949 Grand Challenge Cup final at Henley Royal Regatta, Leander captain Richard ‘Dickie’ Burnell was asked to gather a crew for the British Empire Games, which were to be held in Auckland, New Zealand, in February 1950. Knowing that not all of the members of the Grand Cup winning Leander crew would be available, Dickie began looking around for other ‘outstanding men elsewhere’, as he writes in “The Empire Games Crew, 1950”, which is a chapter in his book Swing Together: Thoughts on Rowing (1952). He did not have to look very far. In 1949, Thames RC had taken the Grand Cup at Henley, and some oarsmen from that crew were eager to swap out the English winter for a much warmer climate on the other side of the world.

In the beginning there had been 17 oarsmen invited to the practise, including also two each from London RC and Kingston RC, but on 23 October, 1949, the selected eight looked as follows:

Bow A.S.F. Butcher (Thames RC)
2. P.A de Giles (Leander)
3. W.A.D. Windham (Leander)
4. H.W. Rushmere (Thames RC)
5. R.D. Burnell (Leander)
6. P.C. Kirkpatrick (Thames RC)
7. M.C. Lapage (Leander)
Stroke P. Bradley (Leander)
Cox J.P. Dearlove (Thames RC)

Added to these nine men were two spare rowers: A.D. Rowe (Leander; who was also in the single sculls) and M.H.N. Plaisted (London RC). Team Manager during the trip was Jack Beresford.

At first, the crew had been coached by Wing Commander Hellyer – of ‘syncopated rowing’ fame – but his doctor put a stop to him participating in winter coaching, and instead ‘Gully’ Nickalls stepped in to coach the eight. Dickie writes that Nickalls’s approach to coaching a crew was, ‘that a crew should first achieve a true rhythm and length in its paddling, and then translate this into its rowing’. However, Dickie states there was not really the time to work this way. He writes:

‘A certain amount of speed has got to be achieved in order to race, and if a crew is held back in order to perfect its length and rhythm in paddling, there is a distinct danger that it will not be ready in time to race. […] When we left England our paddling was really good, and on numerous occasions we disappointed the critics by paddling beautifully and then becoming rushed and scrappy in our rowing.’

The 1950 Great Britain Empire Game crew. Dickie Burnell, sixth from left in a dark scarf, kept a ‘captain’s log’ during the crew's practise in England and later on Lake Karapiro. Picture © John Dearlove.

Dickie kept a ‘captain’s log’ during the crew’s practise at Henley, the trip to New Zealand and the practise there, and parts of it are published in “The Empire Games Crew, 1950”. The team left England on 23 January, 1950, and when they arrived they heard that their boat had not arrived yet, so they had to borrow an old Sims. The long trip took its toll on the English crew, who also had problems with the diet. Eventually, their own boat arrived and also the riggers. But at the race, on 6 February, it did not really help, ‘the race was naturally a bitter disappointment to us all’ Dickie states. The Aussies won – ‘they were strong and well together, and rowed in something very like our own English Fairbairn style’, Dickie writes.

In the Australian boat rowed: bow R.N. Tinning, 2. P.A. Cayzer, 3. A.P. Holmes, 4. B.H. Goswell, 5. R.L. Selman, 6. E.O. Longley, 7. E.O. Pain, stroke A.W. Brown and cox J.E. Barnes. New Zealand’s crew was young, a little inexperienced, but ‘exceptionally tough’ and had rowed on Lake Karapiro for several weeks. They raced hard and almost overcame the Aussies. New Zealand’s crew: bow E. Smith, 2. B. Culpan, 3. D. Rowlands, 4. G. Jarratt, 5. M. Ashby, 6. W. Tinnock, 7. K. Ashby, stroke T.C. Engel and cox D. Adams. English sculler A.D. Rowe came in second after M. Wood, the reigning Olympic Champion from Australia. The bronze in the single sculls was taken by I.R.G. Steven of South Africa. T. Hegglum of New Zealand came in fourth.

There were some lessons to be learned after the Englishmen’s trip to New Zealand, which Dickie also recognises in a follow-up chapter in his Swing Together.

More about the British Empire Games Rowing tomorrow, 7 September.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Ottobock will Fix it!

Danny McBride was the only oarsman representing New Zealand at the Paralympic Rowing Regatta at Lake Dorney.

While we admire the athletes competing at the Paralympic Games in London (and where the Rowing ended on last Sunday), it is easy to forget that these sportsmen and -women might be in special need of repairs, maintenance and technical support for their equipment. In rowing, it might be the rower’s boat or his or her wheelchair that he/she uses to get to the boat. Here is where Ottobock Healthcare steps in. This company provides technical service to the 2012 Paralympic Games, the website SourceWire writes in a interesting article. The website states that Ottobock Healthcare so far, after five days of competing, has completed 1,761 repairs.

One of the Ottobock Healthcare team members, Emily Harrison, tells SourceWire:

“The majority of the equipment we have repaired comes from athletes who are spending lots of time by the water. Damp conditions at the rowing means we have to provide regular maintenance to prostheses and wheelchairs such as wheel bearings and puncture repairs. As Technical Service Provider to the Games, our role goes beyond wheelchair, prosthetic and orthotic repairs. For example, we built an interface for a double amputee to prevent friction burns whilst rowing.”

Technical service by the numbers:

Total repairs to date 1,761

Orthotic: Day five 15, total to date 101

Prosthetic: Day five 18, total to date 247

Wheelchair: Day five 194, total to date 1,413

Number of athletes serviced: Day five 162, total to date 1,282

Number of countries serviced: Total to date 121

Read the full article here.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Results 2012 Paralympic Rowing Regatta

Great Britain takes gold in the Mixed Coxed Four (LTAMix4+) at the 2012 Paralympic Rowing at Eton Dorney: Lily van den Broecke (cox) [hidden], Pamela Relph, Naomi Riches, David Smith and James Roe.

Here is a link to the Results in the 2012 Paralympic Rowing Regatta at Eton Dorney. Click here.