With just one week to go until the 23rd World Pilot Gig Championships kicks off on Scilly, we’re getting a little bit excited. In order to whet the whistle here’s a lovely poem from Ken Cooper from Nankersey Rowing Club, written just after the 2011 event.
“All for one and one for all” is a well-known battle cry,
And our Club just back from Scillies can tell the reason why:
The least of all our problems was the very windy weather,
For faced with wretched challenges we simply pulled together.
‘Twas the third year for our young Club, containing old and new,
When injury and sickness did so decimate our crew,
And with a mix of “I’ll row on” and “Here, I’ll take your part”,
“All for one and one for all” was writ large on ev’ry heart.
That Friday evening in the wind our Vet crew ventured forth,
Our mix of male and female had to row for all their worth,
Against the men they rowed damn hard and beat some all-male crews,
And at the end we smiled and cheered for this their welcome news.
Long races on the Saturday were Ladies and the Men
Rowing to St Agnes Isle then rowing back again!
The wind was fierce, the sea was rough, the gigs just slewed about
Caught twixt swell and wind and tide, crews had no breath to shout!
But as the afternoon wore on, the breeze did not abate,
And our four crews did soldier on with cries of “Length!” “More weight!”
And came reward for teamwork true as we yelled “Nan-ker-sey!”
The best sight yet, first in their heat, was Lucy’s proud Men’s B!
Now Sunday saw the finals that we knew we could not win
But when Men’s B beat our Men’s A could this be deemed a sin?!
All crews rowed hard, all did their best, that’s what we need to say.
The racing done, we packed our gigs and both were stacked away.
Bishop and Wolf became our lair as day drew to its end
And as we drank and ate and laughed we joyed in new found friends
Good praise we gave to all that came to share our best endeavour,
For we were clear our Club had won despite the blasted weather.
But Monday came, the wind increased, Scillonian tried its luck
But hundreds were a-stranded here when it didn’t make it back!
“All for one and one for all” fulfilled once more our need!
Nankersey you’re the greatest! On fellowship we feed!
A final thought to share dear friends of this superb weekend
For some it’s been a struggle, and for some new lessons learned,
But we’re a team that’s been well forged through simple brotherhood:
“All for one and one for all.” Nankersey are you GOOD!
Thanks for sharing! Stay in touch for more updates as we draw closer to the event, and hopefully some ‘as it happens’ reporting from our very own Ed the Coxswain, in the meantime check out Gig Rowing pages for an introduction to the sport.
For more information about Nankersey Rowing Club: http://www.nankerseyrowingclub.com
World Championships official site: http://worldgigs.co.uk/