Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Flashboats (cont'd)

Vicky at The Rowing Company in Falmouth, who imports Heritage rowing boats from the US, writes:
"Delighted to see flash boats on the front page - I used to row flash boats! They are wonderful! Strangely though, my boats are more stable - flash boats are very tippy. I used to race them when I was about 12 - 14yrs old (a little while ago now!). I gave up because even at that age I really disliked racing of any sort. That's my problem with gig rowing too, unless you want to race, no-one's interested. Same with the local sliding seat club. I went up there for some training and explained that I wanted a boat to row on my own, when I wanted, to go where I wanted, and they just kept asking 'why???' it was as if I was speaking some strange foreign language!"
I so agree. It is a shame when clubs can't accept that some people just want to enjoy messing about in boats, though the Globe Rowing Club at Greenwich, where I was a member for some years, seemed perfectly happy for me to borrow a tub and go for a paddle, as long as I at least made the effort to join a four for club races every so often. It can be a problem if recreational rowers hog boats that could be used for training serious competitors though - perhaps clubs should consider setting up recreational sections with suitable boats.
Vicky's boats, the Heritage range made by Little River Marine in Florida, are traditionally styled skiffs in modern materials, and seem ideal for fun rowing. The picture shows the Heritage 12, with a guy doing something you can't do in a shell! Though I am sure that if a club bought two of them, they would start racing before the first day was out....

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