Updated: Sep 19
By Kathleen Sailer. Photos and video by Emily Adams.
On a radiant morning in late July, RIRSC hosted Seattle guests Mike and Kathy Stanley from
Greenlake Rowing (AKA Greenlake Crew) for a club row in the Kathy Lazara Whitman. Mike
is president of Green Lake Rowing Advisory Council, and both he and Kathy are very active
with their club. This was their first time in the octuple and their first row on Port Townsend
Greenlake Rowing donated the wooden Pocock octuple, built in 1976, to RIRSC in 2014,
rowed and raced as the Sweet Sixteen that season. In 2015, the shell underwent extensive
renovation and was renamed and launched in a ceremony on Wooden Boat Festival
weekend. More on the storied history and renovation of the Kathy Lazara Whitman.
Eight experienced rowers comprised the crew, some never having rowed together.
After warm up sets for focus, engagement, segmentation, cadence and flow, a spontaneous
cohesion of body and spirit evolved, moving as one, seeking and feeling that elusive swing;
the rhythm of commands in sync with the rhythm of the rowers. Sixteen oars perfectly
positioned above the water – inanimate objects suspended in air, brought to life by the level
hands of each rower.
Adding power to the stroke and precision to the catch, the boat jumped into higher gear, faster speed, as crew maintained smoothness and flow. The beauty and mass of the octuple gliding through water and surging through waves was captured in photos ..... the feeling imprinted in memory.
Steve Chapin who rowed stroke seat shared, “Thank you to all my boat mates for the privilege to row with you in this special boat – what a nice row. Personally, that was my best row ever in the KLW. She felt light and fast; there may even have been one or two perfect strokes! It’s hard to define what it takes to make the right chemistry in a boat but when it’s right, you know it.”
It was a delight to cox this crew in this boat on that beautiful morning on Port Townsend Bay.
And a collective thanks to Ted Shoulberg for organizing the outing and driving the launch for
More photos from Emily Adams