The 2017 Canada Summer Games took place earlier this August in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The Canada Games is a special event that takes place every four years, functioning very similarly to the Olympics, rotating between Winter and Summer Games every two years. This year, on the 50th anniversary of the Games, New Brunswick’s best u21 athletes banded together representing one proud province, making their mark and competing against the rest of Canada. Many of these athletes have been putting in countless hours of training for years to qualify and reach the podium at the Games. Among these athletes is the New Brunswick Rowing Team, a closely-knit crew of 6 men and 6 women. They put their skills to the test at the Games’ rowing venue in Kenora, Ontario.
The week started well for NB, their first racer being Male Single Sculler Aiden Best, who raced his fastest time of the week in the heats, clocking in at 7:40 and keeping up for half the race with Ontario Sculler and recently crowned u23 World Champion Trevor Jones. He later joined stroke seat Daniel Seyffarth in the Men’s Double Sculls, a unique combination with a 40 pound and 20cm difference between crewmembers. The duo were quick over the course of the week, narrowly missing a win over Nova Scotia, missing the A Final by seconds. They breezed through the B Final, winning by a margin of over 20 seconds.
The men’s lightweight 4- and the women’s 4x were events to witness over the week. New Brunswick’s women’s 4x: Caroline Grant, Lucy Black, Jennifer Clarke, and Julia Hill, raced their personal best 2 kilometer race off the start with a smashing 7:06, placing first in their heat. They were met with quite a challenge in the Final and fought Nova Scotia throughout the race for 5th place. The men’s lightweight 4- : Ian Morrison, Keagan Rankin, Tim Lawrence, and Noah Hartery, also raced their best in the heats with 6:41, narrowly missing 4th in the Final over Saskatchewan by 1 second. The 4- transitioned into the open men’s 4x and also made the Final, despite being lightweights and significantly younger than the other crews.
The women’s 2- : Kendra Schmidt and Stephanie Pegler, as well as the women’s 2x : Lucy Black and Jennifer Clarke, also both made the A Finals in their events with respective best times of 8:18 and 7:56.
The week wrapped up with great victories for the athletes in Kenora. The Canada Summer Games was an experience like no other for New Brunswick’s Rowing Crew, and despite not having stood on the podium this year, with overall younger athletes, comparative times and scores reveal that there is serious athletic potential emanating from the Maritimes in the coming years. The 2017 crew owes many of its great successes as well as it’s journey to its wonderful and tireless coaching staff, equipment management staff, RNBA, supporters and donors, as well as countless others.