The Canadian Women's National Rowing Team had three crews, all of whom made finals, competing in the first World Cup of the season. The regatta was held on the Penrith course in Sydney, Australia and wrapped up on March 30, 2014. The newly formed crew of Natalie Mastracci from Thorold, Ontario and Susanne Grainger from London, Ontario won bronze in the Women's Pair. They were followed by fellow Canadians, Christine Roper and Ashley Brzozowicz, in fourth place. In Women's Doubles, Carling Zeeman of Cambridge, Ontario and Antje von Seydlitz-Kurzbach of Smithers, BC were fifth. On the men's team, Brian Price, Canada's much decorated coxswain for the Men's Eight, has just announced his retirement. During his time on the National Team from 2001 to 2012, Brian coxed his crew to gold medals at the Olympics in Beijing in 2008 and to silver at the London Olympics in 2012. In all Brian has been a three-time Olympian and a three-time World Champion in 2002, 2003, and 2007. He now juggles working with the RBC Olympians program, public speaking, and working on a book. He lives in Orangeville with his wife and children.
Although Hanlan Boat Club has been closed for on-water rowing since mid- November, its members have been busy with any number of activities related to rowing and fitness. When the ice thaws and the docks are back in the water, Hanlan will be ready and raring to go for the 2014 season. No doubt it will be John Sherrick who will alert everyone to the status of the ice presently blanketing the bay in front of the Club. He is the one who knows that the bay froze over on December 9 and he keeps close tabs on the waterfront.
In the period between American Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve, two Hanlan members rowed their hearts out on the erg. Both logged more than 100,000 metres to complete the Concept 2 Holiday Challenge; reaching 100,000 metres meant funds were donated to charity by Concept 2 on their behalf. Brian Singleton reached 131, 280 metres followed by Jill Vandal at 130,855. Jill has accomplished this annually for over 10 years.
Meanwhile Masters sculler Avtar Dhanota was in Nepal climbing Annapurna. He says that he lost 8 lbs on the climb but put it back on (and a bit more) after returning to Kathmandu and then New Delhi. The temptation was Thai and Malaysian coconut-wrapped spicy and sweet noodles. If you know Avtar, it would be hard to imagine him losing 8 pounds!
As Avtar reports, "I climbed Annapurna IV which is at about 7,500 metres altitude. Annapurna I is the most difficult and technical of the 4 climbs and it has, proportionally taken more lives than Everest. Annapurna IV is considered a training peak for Annapurna I and for Mount Everest. However, the climb of any peak more than 6,500 metres in altitude can humble any climber - particularly a climber like myself who is at the upper end of the G category of masters scullers.
"I had to find my pace and just stick to it. Keep in mind that the pace at 6,000 metres altitude or higher has to be covered in slow steps of inches, not of feet or yards. And above all, a climber has to have a very realistic understanding of the need to come back down alive. This is more important than reaching the top of a peak".
Meanwhile Harry and Sue Vanderlugt are actively pursuing cross- country skiing. Both race with distinction on the masters circuit provincially, nationally and internationally. A group of 24 Hanlan masters scullers, organized by JC Marly, "pretend" they are still on the water by renting the indoor tank at Don Rowing Club for hour-long sessions. Eight seats are taken on Saturday and Sunday mornings as well as one evening a week.
Eight Masters scullers from Hanlan are pursuing certification as regatta associate umpires on January 20 and 27 at the Rowing Ontario offices from 6:30 to 9:30 pm. If others are interested please sign up on-line at the RowOntario website. The course is free but there is a $30 fee for workbooks.
Volunteers would also be welcome at the Canadian Indoor Rowing Championships to be held at the Hershey Centre in Mississauga. A few Hanlan members have already volunteered - Sue and Vic Gustavison will be umpires and Dave Cole will again be masterminding the wizardry of the computer system for the races. Anyone else interested in helping out either on Saturday February 1 for set-up or Sunday February 2 during racing would be welcome. Please consult the Canadian Indoor Rowing Championship website for more information and to volunteer your services.
Hanlan's annual barbecue supper held on Wednesday August 28 was the perfect occasion to highlight the very generous donation of a new trailer to the grounds. It was no secret that Hanlan's old one had long since passed it best before date. Kenaidan Contracting Ltd., the donor of the new trailer, did an excellent, efficient job of demolishing the old trailer and removing all the debris prior to delivering and installing the new one.
How did this fabulous donation come about? A number of years ago, Margaret and Shannon Flatley rowed in the Havergal College program whose home is Hanlan Boat Club. The Hanlan trailer, decrepit even then, caused their father Aidan Flatley to remark several times that he really should donate a new trailer from his company Kenaiden Construction Ltd to Hanlan. Meanwhile his daughters went on to row in university programs and he continued served on the board of Havergal along with Edwina Stoate, a Hanlan rower in the masters program. Well recently, Edwina reminded him of his promise of bygone years and the new trailer installed to the north of the east boathouse is the happy result, seen here with all those members enjoying the annual bbq.
That evening a plaque honouring the donor was affixed to the trailer. The trailer has a small room at each end with a larger space in the middle. Nick Matthews, club president, said that one small room will be fitted out as a first aid station. The second will be used as an office. The center area will be for storing the floater suits and other items as well as a meeting place.
The trailer is in good condition and only a few housekeeping chores remain to be completed. The interior will be repainted, the stairs need fastening to the trailer, and a power line will be installed along with a motion-sensitive light on the exterior to light the path for those who row in the dark, early morning hours.
Hanlan Boat Club is extremely grateful to Aidan Flatley and Kenaidan Construction for this very generous donation. The Club also very much appreciates Edwina Stoate's initiative in securing the donation. It will make a huge difference to Hanlan Boat Club and its new location has freed up space suitable for more boat storage. A huge thank you to everyone involved.