On the weekend of July 14 & 15, 2018 we hosted our 22nd annual Lake Champlain Challenge Race. 200 spectators and rowers showed up from all over New England for a full weekend on the water. Saturday kicked off with a ¾ mile race between six of our gigs built right here joined by a few kayakers and canoers. They raced across the lake to Barn Rock Cove on the New York side, where the rowers had a chance to swim, hang out and catch up with old friends from out of state. The row back quickly escalated into another spirited race to our docks and a delicious lunch served on the lawn.
After lunch many rowers returned to the gigs for a relaxed and exploratory row. For many of us who travel for gig races hosted by other clubs we miss the opportunity to really appreciate the stunning locations these races are held. It was a pleasure to be able to host visiting rowers on the lake in a format where they really get a chance to see and enjoy it—and swim in it. We hosted boats from Mass Bay Rowing Club and Gloucester Rowing Club and were joined as usual by our local rowers. All in all about 70 people came out on Saturday.
Sunday was the main event; a three mile triangular course beginning in North Harbor just off our docks, heading west to Barn Rock, north past the Palisades and back across the lake. In all there were 78 competitors in everything from the 32’ Cornish pilot gigs built here at the museum to an 8’ fiberglass dinghy, the rule is if you move it, you can enter it. Jim laid down the fastest time of the day in his surf ski, crossing the finish line at 28:04. Among the big boats the most tightly contested race was between the gigs, with the visitors from Gloucester Rowing Club taking home the gold in Endeavor, followed at a boat length by our local club in second rowing freshly built Frank Beckett in her first race. In third place were the alumni of the museum’s high school rowing programs which operate in nine local schools. The seven rowers in Maple were rivals in high school but came together on Sunday with a third place finish.
A big thank you is owed to the United States Coast Guard for providing traffic control on the course and emergency assistance—thankfully not needed—without them the race would tough to put on. I’d also like to thank our rowing club spearheaded by Lisa Percival here at the Museum for providing tireless effort to bring the rowing community together. They volunteered their time to logistics and brought together a terrific spread of food to feed the two hundred in attendance on Sunday after the race. We’re very proud to be able to share our lake and community with the local area and beyond, and they put our best foot forward.
Congratulations to all of the competitors, and if you’d like to see more we’re on Facebook and Instagram @lcmaritimemuseum and the rowing club is on Instagram @lakechamplaincommunityrowing, you can also find the story and video on wcax’s website.
6 Oared Gigs:
- Gloucester Leftover Dogs in Endeavor 31m 2s
- LCMM Gigolos in Frank Beckett 31m 24s
- LCMM Wake Makers in Maple 32m 20s
- Hull Pier Pressure in Triton 33m 54s
- Gloucester Annie B’s in Red Wing 34m 2s
- LCMM Golden Oakers in Golden Oak 34m 34s
- Gloucester Old Dogs in Osprey 35m 9s
4 Oared Skiffs:
- Mass Bay Fab Five in Perseverance 35m 20s
- HLM/GGR/LCMM Bonnie Lads and Lassies in Kate Walker 37m 7s
- Hull JFP in Wysquaqua 37m 41s
- LCMM Four Oars Power 38m 24s
- Fastest race time-Jim Fredericks 28m 4s
- Lea Coggio 38m 19s
- Ivor Hughes 38m 31s
Single Sliding Seat:
- Marc Shattuck 33m 36s
- Gregory Moore 48m 11s
Other- Honorable Mentions:
- Kevin McNally and Julius Loeper in dinghy
- Carissa Leeper and Devon Burger in canoe
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