The 30th Annual Head of the Weir River Race, hosted by the Hull Life Saving Museum, was held last Saturday, October 29th. 71 boats were entered in the 5 1/2 mile race, setting a new record for attendance and increasing the competition. As a result, the VCB crews did not bring home any Golden Clamshells this year.
VCB sent one youth crew, rowing Warrior, a Stretch Gunning Dory built in 2012 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard by Rob Buchanan and a team of students from Benjamin Banneker High School. Warrior’s lines are based on plans by the late John Gardner but stretched from 18 to 25 feet in order to accommodate four rowers. Warrior is very light (less than 250 pounds?), very fast, and very easy to get in and out of the water. Also very traditional, in that its basic shape harks back to the ‘bateaux’ of the French and Indian wars. Those boats were sometimes built in a day.
The VCB adult crew rowed Notorious G.I.G.,a Whitehall Gig. The name is an homage to the late great rapper Notorious B.I.G. Whitehall gigs were first made in the U.S. at the foot of Whitehall Street in New York City to be used to ferry goods, services, and sailors on and off the boats coming into New York Harbor. The hull shape is characterized by a nearly straight stem, and slight flare to the bow, rounded sides, with a keel running the entire length of the bottom and a distinctive wine glass transom with a full skeg. Considered one of the most beautiful row-boats, they are designed to handle the harbor chop and yet track straight. Speed was the issue with these boats, as the first to the ship with the goods generally received the lion’s share of the sales. Later the shore patrol used these boats for customs, police issues, water taxi, and newspaper reporting.
VCB Coxed-4 Youth crew rowing Warrior finished in 0:55:47, 1 minute, 42 seconds behind the winning crew Youth Dharma Voyage Mariner.
Warrior Crew: Coxswain Kenny Lin, Leo Au-Yeung, Kallista Tong, Cindy Lin and Richard Liang.
VCB Coxed-4 Adult crew in Notorious G.I.G. finished in 0:59:08 , 5 minutes behind the winning crew HLM’s Mighty Oarsmen Sacred Cod to take third place in their category.
Notorious G.I.G. Crew:Coxswain Dave Clayton, Paul Caviano, Andrew Leung, Deborah Clearman and Marcel Dejean
Head of the Weir 2016 Race Results by Category: HERE
Head of the Weir 2016 Race Results by Finish Order: HERE
Special thanks to Eric Cerny and Paul Caviano for organizing and driving.