Updated: Sep 21
This 3-minute video tells why the story of the “Boats” (Pocock’s gold medal winning wood shells) stretched far beyond the 1936 victory of national bestseller, The Boys in the Boat.
“ There are fewer and fewer [Pocock] wood shells in existence each year – It was a special time in Northwest and American rowing which most likely won’t be matched again.” –George Pocock Rowing Foundation
The “Boys” are now gone but Pocock racing shells were an American Sports Icon for decades and decades, dominating the Olympics for almost half a century. Today they’re just trying to survive.
American Heritage – Pocock shells represent half a century of U.S. domination in championship rowing and the Olympics.
Northwest Culture. Western Red Cedar, Boeing Aeronautics, the UW. The ingredients that went into Pocock shells also shaped our entire region.
Less like a boat. More like a musical instrument. These shells are truly works of art. Their wafer-thin hulls are no thicker than a violin’s.
George and (son) Stan Pocock created a gold standard in the sport of rowing . We work to preserve that legacy in every shell and every stroke.
We have rescued 15 boats in 16 years.
These boats aren’t just rescued and restored, they’re rowed daily and actively raced by oarsmen and women from 18 to 80
A partial cast of characters (boats and their humans):
Steve Chapin – The Pocock Project
2007 Stan Pocock granted the entire Pocock Cedar Singles factory to master boatbuilder (and Rat Island Rowing Club member) Steve Chapin, who continues to build them “better than we ever did” according to Stan.
I have not been able to get out of my mind’s eye the picture of that beautifully-restored [quad] up there at Port Townsend, It was the kind of loving care evident in the restoring of that boat along with all the other excellent rejuvenating of old wooden shells…. Stan Pocock
Ted Shoulberg – The Story of the Hoh
Read the incredible journey of an Olympic Gold medal winner that became an old forgotten boat in a parking lot….. until Ted traded a box of donuts and restored the Hoh to her former glory – and rightful place of honor at The Pocock Center.
2005 Ted returning the beautifully restored Hoh to Stan Pocock, boatbuilder and coach of Olympic Gold medal crew.
2015 Ted selects a flower for Stan’s final resting place – the finish line in the Montlake cut where our wooden Pocock shells took place in the ceremony.
Jim Buckley – The Kathy Lazara Whitman
Rowing with Seattle’s Ancient Mariners brought Jim close to Guy Harper (UW Husky crew ’54) and Stan Pocock, which led to the donation of a very unique 16-oared sculling shell, the Kathy Whitman. In March we raised $10,000 to fully restore her.
Ancient Mariners Jim Buckley (left), Guy Harper (UW Husky crew under Al Ulbrikson) with Stan Pocock at the 30th Anniversary Brunch Celebration of the Pocock Foundation. (photo Pocock Foundation)
Stan Pocock with the brand new Kathy Whitman – one of the last ever built. (Photo courtesy Guy Harper)
Rat Island’s Jim Buckley (stroke) rowing the Kathy Whitman who took first overall by seven lengths in Ross island Regatta Portland 2014.
Tuf as Nails – The Husky Challenger
Since acquiring the Husky Challenger in 2004, the all-women’s Tuf as Nails has rowed the former varsity mens’ champion shell in races from here to San Diego, but the real challenge was the complete restoration they took on in 2011.
Stan Pocock with Tuf as Nails crew in front of the Husky Challenger
Dianne Roberts and “HuCha” during 2014 Wooden Boat Festival
Young UW Husky crew help “the Nails” carry the Husky Challenger and our other wooden shells during May 2015 Opening Day ceremony in Seattle.