Sixteen year-old Jordan Hamilton has been rowing since 2011 between Manitoba and Norway, and during his high school spring break this year, was invited to join his Norwegian Club for their training camp in Southern France. This two-week intense training camp brought significant improvement to Jordan’s technique, allowed for him to bring a few hundred kilometers of rowing under his belt, while spending time with some of his Norwegian rowing friends. “It was a fantastic opportunity, and I hope that the skills I learnt in France will help me significantly in the upcoming racing season,” says Hamilton.
Jordan, along with the Norwegian team, stayed in the picturesque village of Le Temple-sur-Lot, in the region of Aquitaine. The twelve day vigorous camp had him in a variety of boats (1x, 2x, 2-, 4x), mostly with my former racing mates. “It was fantastic to see how much my friends and I have improved over the winter; we had definitely found some new speed!” Hamilton says.
Attending the Manitoba Rowing Association Winter camp this year allowed for Hamilton to have somewhat of an advantage over his ‘competitors’, because he had already rowed this year in British Columbia, with Head Coach Antony Patterson. The B.C. training camp was quite different from the European one in that there were over 30 rowers on the water in France, while under ten at the MRA camp. The individual focus on each athlete brought tremendous skill improvement to his game, while both camps brought great experience leading up to this year’s rowing season overall.
The Norwegian camp allowed for some great off the water activity as well for the rowers. They explored the surrounding villages, played kayak-polo, ate tons of gourmet French cooking, biked through the rolling hills, socialized, and even found a bit of time to rest. “The social aspect of the camp was fantastic: we thoroughly enjoyed each others company! We also reached new heights of mischief, and even made friends with rowers from Britain, Denmark and Belarus,” says Jordan.
Hamilton notes his biggest accomplishment to date in rowing is his 3rd place finish in the Junior Men’s 4x at the Baltic Cup in 2014. It is a rowing competition with representatives from most Northern European countries. Winning a medal in that championship was incredible as they were Norway’s sole medal winners in 2014!
Hamilton’s role models in sport include Olaf Tufte, three time Olympic medalist for Norway in rowing. He has shown his that incredible determination to excel and taking your training seriously can have a huge impact on your athletic level of success. That carries over to his academics as well; hard work and determination allow for his to stay focused on all areas.
Jordan will be attending the Canadian Secondary School Rowing Association, or CSSRA’s (http://www.cssra.ca/) in June where he hopes to start the regatta season on a high note. Long-term goals include making the Canadian Junior National team and competing internationally.
The Manitoba Rowing Association wants to congatulate Jordan on this wonderful experience and wish all Manitoba athletes attending the CSSRA’s this year good luck!