February Monthly Bulletin

As noted in past bulletins the ARA will be hosting a winter camp from Monday February 20th through to Thursday February 23, 2017 in Tempe, Arizona.

Invites have already been extended to athletes who have met the qualifying erg standard.

While the standards were aggressive the ARA notes that 23 athletes to date have hit the aforementioned times with another 10 athletes within 15 seconds of these times.  The ARA commends all athletes who have achieved / progressing towards these times and are encouraged with all of the great scores that are being recorded all across the province.

To all athletes, it is important to note that an invitation to the 2017 Winter Camp should in no way infer that an athlete has been selected to the 2017 CSG Team.  The 2017 CSG Team will be finalized at a Selection Camp tentatively scheduled for June 3 and 4 in Calgary, Alberta.  The selection camp will be by invite only and will be granted to those athletes who have achieved the qualifying erg standards.  Final selection to the team will be based on water performance in a 1x or 2-.

All athletes declaring interest in the Games should familiarize themselves with a number of dates that are now published on the ARA’s webpage.  Do note that dates are subject to change.  http://albertarowing.ca/funding/2017-csg-calendar/

ARA Erg Championships
For the last three years the writer has challenged athletes across the province to register for the ARA Erg Championships.  If enough athletes registered, the provincial technical director agreed to pull an erg himself.  With age, the writer unfortunately has to say that those days have passed but acknowledges that it would be truly spectacular to see over 100 athletes register for the ARA Erg Championships once again in 2017.

This year’s event is slated to take place on Saturday March 11, 2017 at the Blackfalds Field House just north of Red Deer.  If you have not already registered but plan to do so simply inform your club coach and they will take care of the rest.  The cost to register is $25, which includes an incredibly fashionable ARA T-shirt.

Those who need one last piece of motivation to get off the couch and start training for the 2017 season are reminded that attendance at the ARA Erg Championships is a requirement in qualifying for ARA Henley Funding.  In addition results from the 2017 ARA Erg Championships may be utilized to qualify for the 2017 CSG Selection Camp and as well the 2017 Spring Camp in Invermere, British-Columbia.

RCA Coaches Conference
At the 2017 RCA Coaches Conference in Vancouver, British-Columbia conference attendees were hosted to a unique opportunity to hear from some of the world’s brightest minds in the sport of rowing.  The event concluded with an awards banquet where Alberta athletes and officials seemingly stole the show.  The event started by recognizing individuals for their long service in the sport of rowing; here Alberta’s own Linda Huebscher was recognized for her 30 years of service to our sport. Linda Huebscher was president of the ARA for over a decade and helped create a number of the programs that are in effect here in Alberta today.  Well-deserved Linda!

Moments later Jessie Loutit was presented with the Tony Zasada award.  For those that don’t know the history of this award, Tony was an athlete at the Regina Rowing Club and rowed with Alberta’s own Brian McGuigan.  Tony went on to represent his country at the 1984 Olympics and upon his return home was killed in a car accident.  To commemorate Tony’s life and his contributions to Canadian rowing, the Saskatchewan Rowing Association, Rowing Canada Aviron, and the Zasada family established The Tony Zasada Memorial Award.  This award is provided annually to an athlete who best emulates Tony’s character and determination. Many of Canada’s National Team and Olympic Rowing Team members are former award recipients.  Congrats Jessie!

The awards ceremony was capped with Nicole Hare winning the U23 Athlete of the Year.  In 2016 Nicole represented Canada at the Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil and then went on to win gold at the U23 World Championships.  Congratulations on a great year Nicole!

Upcoming Events

  • ARA Erg Championships – Saturday March 11, 2017 – Blackfalds Alberta

In signing off I want to personally thank all the athletes and coaches who once again nominated me for RCA Coach of the Year.  It was quite an honour to receive such an award and have so many of my fellow coaches in attendance with me.  Thank-you.  Michael Simonson
Provincial Technical Director