Rowing is Looking for Future Olympians


The Manitoba Rowing Association is actively recruiting future Olympians in high schools across the province. Head Coach Antony Patterson along with his dedicated coaching team is heading into ten high schools this spring to test athletes in various capacities to see if they have what it takes to head to the podium for Canada.

Rowing has sent more athletes to the Summer Olympics and Parolympics than any other sport in Manitoba. With such a great track record, we want to ensure this tradition continues.

In partnership with our National Sport Organization Rowing Canada, the MRA is running a Talent Identification (TID) program to fast track talented athletes from other sports toward the rowing national team. Established athletes that have perhaps hit a ceiling in their current sport or looking for a new challenge are great candidates. Identifying athletes at this age is key for the sport in both the physical and mental game for rowing. Athletes must be prepared to work hard both physically and mentally to make it to the top.

This high school testing is not only for future national team members. Rowing in the province of Manitoba has terrific programs for people of all ages and skill levels. The programming allows for excellent physical fitness, team building skills and is a fun time at any level. The opportunity to work along side past Olympians and an incredible coaching team is exciting for all levels of athletic performance.

If you are interested in finding out more about the in-school testing, or about joining a rowing program at any skill level, please contact Andrea (E: at the Manitoba Rowing Association office today!

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Kenora Online

Congratulations to Sandra Kirby – RCA Umpire of the Year


It is with great excitement that the Manitoba Rowing Association announces that Sandra Kirby has been awarded the Rowing Canada Aviron Umpire of the Year Award! Sandi has done so much for the sport of Rowing in Canada, and we at the MRA wanted to share a bit about Sandi and her wide-range of accomplishments as they relate to rowing in Manitoba and across Canada.

In the past year, Sandi has created the RCA Umpire Committee, is a Member of the RCA Umpire Committee – RCA –UC (Guylaine Bernier, Chair) and has been elected to and now Chair of the Umpire Education and Development sub-committee of the RCA Umpire Committee. As Chair of the Umpire Education and Development Program
UMPIRE TRAINING DEVELOPMENT Sandi developed the Clinicians’ workshop program (with assistance from Tim Henderson and Glenn Bailey), delivered the two day workshop in Toronto for all of Canada’s clinicians along with Time Henderson and Guylaine Bernier, and has completed the follow up and critical path development for the complete revision of the RCA umpire training programs (level 1 Associate; Level 2 RCA Umpire License; Level 3 Chief Umpire and Level 4 Clinician).

Sandi is no stranger to hard work. She has gone on to organize and coordinate the three working groups, one for for each level of umpire development, and has worked directly with the Level 1 group, monitoring their progress and helping to set their internal goals and timelines. As part of this, Sandi has prepared interim report for RCA on the UED sub committee and the progress of all the working groups, has presented the interim report to the Umpire Committee at the meetings in Toronto at the end of October where it was positively received and used as the base for the next 12 months of umpire development and training, and prepared a transition goal for full implementation of the new training programs. This received its first approval from the UC and will next be presented to the CEO of RCA and to PAC.

Sandi has also been the person responsible for the new FISA candidate identification and training program, has prepared with Guylaine Bernier, the timeline and suggested selection process to identify candidates across Canada for the FISA examination in 2015, and after candidate selection, matched mentors to candidates and prepared program for getting the candidates fully prepared by June 2015.

Sandi has Co-chaired (co-presented) the 4-day FISA training workshop with Guylaine Bernier at the Henley course in August, 2014. This was tough to do and very very well received by the candidates. In addition, she coordinated the evaluation process for the FISA candidates to keep them on track over the 12 months to the examination.

And her work does not stop there. As Prairie Clinician, she is the person responsible for delivery of umpire education on the prairies. In the past reporting year, and upon request of the PRAs, she organized and delivered the clinics and seminars across the prairies. These have all been organized through the planning and support of the Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba Rowing Associations. In the past year, just over 30 new associates and recertified RCA licensed umpires were trained, along with 7 new Chief Umpires. This has raised the capacity of umpires on the Prairies and will greatly contribute to both the quality of regattas and the consistency of umpiring on the prairies.

As a volunteer, Sandi has delivered clinics for Level 1 (Regina, Saskatoon, Winnipeg),
Seminars for recertification RCA license (Regina, Calgary), Clinics for Chief Umpires (Calgary, Winnipeg/Kenora). She has also completed umpire evaluations in Calgary and Winnipeg and acts as a mentor for some of the 9 new Associates (Level 1) in Manitoba.

As a member of Manitoba Rowing Association Board of Directors, Sandi prepared and presented a plan for umpire development with a long view past the Canada Games in 2017. It will be the 50th anniversary of Canada Games and the 150th anniversary of Canada. In that plan, Kenora (Ontario) was also included as a potential part of the region for the purposes of identifying and training umpires for regattas.

Sandi also introduced the MRA to new initiatives in “safe sport” and we embarked on a review of the policies with an eye to making sport safer for athletes. The Canadian Centre for Child Protection was invited to work with the MRA on child protection considerations. This initiative has positive implications for how coaches – and umpires – behave when interacting with athletes and when participating in events.

As a member of the Winnipeg Rowing Club Sandi organized an athlete’s clinic – “Know your rules!” for rowers competing in regattas such as the NWIRA and Royal Canadian Henley. It was well received and will be repeated at least annually.

As an active umpire in 2014 Sandi was selected to umpire at the FISA World Masters Championships (Ballarat Australia), retired from FISA umpiring because of the 65 year age limit to active international umpiring (after having umpired at the Pan American Games (MEX), the World Cup in Lucerne (SUI), the World Under-23 in Racice, (Czech Republic), the World Masters (AUST) and the Paralympic Games of 2012 in London, UK.) and has umpired at a number of local and regional regattas. For the third year, has umpired at Coastal Rowing event in Alma, Quebec, with a view to bringing coastal rowing to Manitoba.

Sandi’s dedicated to umpiring, coaching and rowing is absolutely admirable. She is a sport scientist and an international expert on harassment and abuse in sport, and Manitoba is truly blessed to have her in our province taking rowing to the next level of excellence with all of her endeavors.

Thank you to Sandi for all that you do for the Canadian rowing!

Manitoba’s Meghan Montgomery elected to CPC Athlete Council

four_podium_2010Meghan Montgomery, a two-time Paralympian and a member of the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s (CPC) Athlete Council since 2009, has been re-elected. Montgomery competed in both the Beijing and London Paralympic Games in theLeg/Trunk/Arms mixed coxed four (LTAMix4+) crew.  She also won a world title in the same event at the 2010 World Championships.

For full story details, please read the Rowing Canada article here.

New Head Coach Announced


It is with great excitement the Manitoba Rowing Association announces that we have hired a new full time Head Coach for our programming. Antony Patterson joined the MRA on Monday, November 3, 2014, after being positioned for the last two years at the University of Tokyo as National Head Coach. Antony’s coaching experience and background has had him travelling around the globe, as he has held National Head Coach Positions at London Rowing Club United Kingdom., Thames Rowing Club, and St George’s Rowing Academy in South Africa.
Antony has coached athletes and crews that have won over 23 world titles and five Olympic medals. With our high success rate across Manitoba in the Olympic experience, Antony will fit right in.
Britain, South Africa, Japan and Australia have all been called home to Antony, all while coaching at the highest level in the sport of rowing. The MRA position is his first Canadian role as a coach, and his dedicated, focused approach will be terrific for all of our athletes across the province, as well as our coaches to learn from.
In his 28 years of successful coaching around the world – from school programs to elite – Antony brings more than just technical to the table. His background in nutrition, sport science, sport psychology, strength and conditioning, personal training and exceptional communication skills all make Antony an incredible addition to our team. Not only is he bringing this elite level to our sport, but we imagine he will delve into the Coaching Manitoba world with strength and adversity as well.
We have brought on a Head Coach to the MRA programs that is truly dedicated to the sport and athletes alike. His sense of humor and sense of commitment and enthusiasm make him a pleasure to be around. Trained as Master / Executive Chef as well – he truly takes everything he does on things with vigor and undying passion.
Please welcome Antony Patterson as our new Head Coach of the Manitoba Rowing Association with open arms! Wishing him the best of success!

Peter Nukoluk Rowing Scholarship


A scholarship in memory of Peter Nykoluk has been established to recognize individuals whose outstanding contribution and/or achievements to the sport of rowing closely parallel the values of determination, commitment and sportsmanship consistently displayed in Peter. The scholarship will be administered by the University of Manitoba in cooperation with the Winnipeg Rowing Club.

Peter passed away on October 12, 1990 as he came to the aid of his teammates who were involved in an accident that occurred when the University of Manitoba Crew were travelling to a regatta in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Peter was a unique individual whose enthusiasm for life was evident in everything he undertook. He had an endless capacity for learning, and the dedication, perseverance and optimism that was consistent with his character was contagious to all who had the pleasure of knowing him.

Eligibility Criteria

In order to be eligible for the scholarship, the applicant must be enrolled as a full time student (minimum of 18 credit hours or the equivalent) at one of the community colleges or universities in Manitoba, and have achieved satisfactory academic standing (a minimum GPA of 2.00/4 in previous university academic work or a 60% average in Senior 4 (Grade 12) academic work (or a comparable equivalent). Proof of academic standing will be required.

Selection Criteria

Selection will be based on the following criteria: (a) dedication to the sport of rowing; (b) contributions to the sport (e.g. regatta assistance, facility /equipment upkeep, recruitment, sport promotion, coaching assistance); (c) personal improvement and the pursuit of excellence as an athlete; and (d) personal qualities (e.g. positive character attributes, leadership, impact on crew morale, commitment to education/career). The Selection Committee will be seeking individuals who are making a positive impact and show the potential to provide leadership in the sport of rowing in future years.

Application and Awarding Procedure

All applications received on or before the September 15th deadline will be reviewed by an independent and qualified Selection Committee. References may be contacted for additional information and applicants interviewed. Consideration will be given to sharing the award in any given year, depending on the ranking of finalists. The Selection Committee will then provide the Director of Financial Aid and Awards at the University of Manitoba with the name(s) of recommended recipient(s). Financial Aid and Awards reserves the right not to award a scholarship if they deem that the nominee(s) do not meet the eligibility criteria. The scholarship is given annually, generally in the fall of each year.

If interested in applying for this scholarship, please click on the below link for the application form. Please note submission deadline of September 15, 2013.

Peter Nykoluk Rowing Scholarship