The first-ever Indoor Gig Rowing World Championships is to take place at the Eden Project on Saturday February 24, 2018.
Eden is teaming up with the Cornish Pilot Gig Association (CPGA) to launch a day of competition and celebration of a great sport that the Duchy has given to the rowing world.
The association represents a rowing community of 69 clubs and over 8,000 active gig rowers and it is hoped that many will sign up to take part in this new event to be staged in the famous Eden Project Biomes.
On the day there will be classes for all-comers, from teenagers to veterans, testing themselves in time-based trials in the Mediterranean Biome.
Rowers will pit themselves over two race distances of 1000m which will see the best qualify for the final, a 2000m shootout for the ultimate accolade.
The Mixed Team Relay will see two males and two females working together to finish a 4000m distance in the fastest time in an extreme test of sportsmanship and fitness.
For a bit of extra fun, relay teams can also sign up on the day to take part in a very special challenge in the steamy Rainforest Biome. They will be attempting a relay totalling 77 kilometres, the length of the Panama Canal.
There’ll be plenty to do and see for non-rowers, too. They can come along to cheer on rowers, and learn about the rich history and craftsmanship of gig boats in Cornwall and the vital part they have played in the working and recreational life of the county.
Eden Project Chief Executive Gordon Seabright said: “I’m excited that Eden is going to stage the first-ever Indoor Gig Rowing World Championships onSaturday February 24th.
“To help us devise the event we’ve been working with our friends from The Cornish Pilot Gig Association, the governing body for the sport and protectors of its heritage. I’m looking forward to us welcoming the champions of gig rowing so they can show us how fast they can be out of the water.”
Shane Sullivan, chair of the CPGA trustees, said: “We are delighted to be able to work with the Eden Project to deliver this event. We know our rowers have considerable experience on rowing machines, however this event will be the opportunity for the traditional rowers to demonstrate their potential to the wider audience. I’m sure we will all make a success of what we hope will be a long-lasting partnership.”
For non-rowers who would like to come along and see all the action, entry is free with admission.
The categories are Male and Female Open, Veterans (40-50) and Supervets (50-plus). Adults pay £10 to enter. There will be junior male and female categories – entry £7. 50.
Booking for sessions is now available on: BOOK HERE
To promote the big event, Eden invited two top rowers, Kate Bourn of Caradon Gig Club based in Saltash and Simon Moses of Falmouth Pilot Gig Club to have a test row on machines in the heart of the Rainforest Biome. The Caradon Ladies Crew and the Falmouth Men’s are the reigning World and County Champions. See below to watch a film of Simon and Kate rowing;
Main picture: From left, Shane Sullivan, Chair of the CPGA trustees, Simon Moses of Falmouth Pilot Gig Club, Kate Bourn of Caradon Gig Club and Eden Chief Executive Gordon Seabright, in the Rainforest Biome at Eden.