By RENALDO DORSETT
AS they continue their effort of raising the profile of rowing locally, the national governing body of the sport recently hosted its annual general meeting and charted a course for the growth of the sport.
Jason Williams, president of Bahamas Rowing, said the sport has developed exponentially since the establishment of the organisation approximately five years ago.
“We need the word to get out there, we were formed in 2010 and have done some really good things. The BRA has come a long way and has done a tremendous job in implementing and growing the sports,” he said.
“Bahamas Rowing encouraged and saw the formation of the Nassau Rowing Club in 2012 and the Englerston Rowing Club later on that same year. Affiliate clubs of the association enjoy recognition by FISA which Bahamas Rowing is a member and is mandated locally and internationally to regulate the sport here in the Bahamas along with setting national selection documents and setting up of national regattas and selection of national teams.”
On the note of national teams, the year was highlighted by the performance of the duo that competed at the World Junior Rowing Championships earlier this month in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“Recent accomplishments include sending off a national junior doubles team of William Stanhope and Lex Fountain to compete at the World Junior Championships. Other accomplishments included attendance in the doubles lightweight men at the CAC games in November 2014 in Veracruz, Mexico and at the Youth Olympics Trials in Uruguay in April of 2014,” Williams said. “The AGM was to select new members to fill vacancies and to plan for the next Olympic and World Championship calendar along with setting up the strategic plan for the association. “
Bahamas Rowing is a non--profit membership organisation recognised by the Ministry of Sports and the Bahamas Olympic Committee as the national governing body for the sport of rowing in the Bahamas. Bahamas Rowing selects, trains and manages the teams that represent the Bahamas in international competition, including the world championships, Pan American Games and Olympics. Bahamas Rowing serves and promotes the sport on all levels of competition. Bahamas Rowing membership reflects the spectrum of Bahamian rowers – juniors, collegians, masters and those who row for recreation, competition or fitness.
Organisation executives see rowing as a sport with the potential to become entrenched in the Bahamian sporting community and suggests the Bahamas can also host competition.
“The Bahamas Rowing Association hopes to bid for an International Rowing Competition to be held in the next three to four years and is also working locally to develop their own boats just like the New Zealanders, Europeans, Canadians, Americans and Chinese and feels this path would see the most economical and speedy growth of the sport,” the organisation said in a press release.
“For the immediate future, grass root growth in Nassau and the Family Islands is of top priority and urges the government and other corporate sponsors to help with the development of the sport as it encourages nation building and teaches the youth important life skills.”
The next major competition for Bahamas Rowing is the World Coastal Rowing Championship in Lima, Peru, in November. For more information, contact the group at http://www.bahamasrowing.org