Edmonton Rowing Club wins Men’s Division title at the 2015 NWIRA Championship

48 Edmonton athletes made their way to Regina this weekend to compete at the 112nd NWIRA regatta. The North-West International Rowing Association (NWIRA) championship is one of the oldest sporting events in the north-western region and features the highly sought after Lipton Cup for the winner of the overall club championship.

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Quinn Brandly struck gold in Regina, bringing home four gold medals and a barrel trophy to boot

Unfortunately, racing at the 2-day regatta had to be abandoned early on the second day due to bad weather conditions. Rowers, coaches and volunteers had already battled through driving rains and 50 km/h winds on Saturday morning, before the regatta officials decided to cancel the regatta with roughly a third of events still to be contested. 
Despite the shortened regatta the club came away with 6 gold medals in Lightweight Men’s 1x (Brandly), Open Men’s 4x (Brandly, McKall, Peters, Tietz), Masters Men’s 2- (Fitzjohn, Mummery), Open Men’s 2- (Tietz, McKall), Dash Men’s 8+ (Tietz, Lemire, Brandly, McKall, Stephens, Harrower, Altman, Peters, c. Williams) and Dash Lightweight Men’s 1x (Brandly).
4 silver medals found their way to Edmonton in the Open Women’s 1x (Belzil), Open Men’s 2- (Stephens, Carr), Masters Men’s 1x (Aarts) and Open Women’s 2x (Hartley, Dolphin). 
The ERC medal haul was completed with 6 bronze medals in the Open Women’s 2- (Hartley, Turner), Open Men’s 1x (Tietz), Open Men’s 4x (Hohnstein, Findlay, Carr, Dennett), Masters Men’s 2- (Rannells, Story), Dash Women’s 1x (Hartley) and the Open Women’s 4- (Rice, Cinnamon, Belzil, Turner).
This left the ERC in third place of the overall club standing trailing in the wake of a sizeable Winnipeg Team and a formidable contingent from St. Paul. However, the club took away more than a minor consolation prize. When the regatta president announced that Edmonton had secured the Men’s Division title, the banquet hall {and / or night club} erupted with cheers from the ERC athletes and coaches. The Edmonton representatives were intent on celebrating their historic achievement and did just that, which lead coach Williams to point out to the Winnipeg head coach that “you might have won the cup, but we won the after party”.
The morning after left the ERC racers wondering what might have been if the weather had been kinder and the regatta had run its full course. The Green and Gold Men’s and Women’s 8’s were tipped for title glory, as were the Open Men’s and Masters Men’s 4’s. There is no point crying over spilled Guinness {as they say in Ireland} and the club will have to wait another year to finally lift the Lipton Cup for the first time in its history.
{Note #1: Quinn Brandly undoubtedly brought home the bacon for the ERC at this regatta. Quinn won four gold medals and raced an undefeated series of races over the course of the weekend. Excellence comes at a price and a set of oars was lost in the process, a fact which Judge Slatter would like to commit to record.}
{Note #2: Ray McKall informed the press team that since the Canadian Masters Championship was cancelled this year, the McKall / Slatter pair automatically retains the title they won in 2014, no matter the outcome of the NWIRA race. Inter-club competition amongst the Master’s pairs is heating up – all four ERC pairs finished within 12 seconds of one another}
– Press Officer Tietz