In the summertime, it's the rowing time

Jun 1, 2019

The first day of June began with warm weather and the Buzzards Bay Open Water Rowing Challenge. Ninety-five proud owners of kayaks, canoes, rowboats, dories, gigs, and whaleboats came to the Onset beach to participate in a three-mile-long race.

Twelve teams entered the competition. Among the gigs, which are six-oared boats, the Gloucesters held on for a winning time of 26 minutes, 11 seconds. The Gail Force team placed second in 27 minutes,11 seconds and Mad Martha took third in 29 minutes, 29 seconds.

Suzanne Chase, one of the members of the winning team, said still water and warm weather gave her team a prominent advantage.

“At Gloucester, we have a lot of wind and rain, so we have had some really difficult practices in very bad conditions,” said Chase. “This was our best row as a team.”

The winner of the canoe competition, Joe Lukaszevicz, crossed the finish line with a time of 29.30, and said his recipe for success lies in “regular practices and a good night's sleep before the race.”

Traditionally, the rowing challenge is hosted at Fort Taber Park in New Bedford. However, thanks to the efforts of Lee Socorro and other members of the Buzzards Bay Rowing Club, for the first time in thirteen years, the competition was held in Onset.

“The view and location are perfect. Everybody is happy today and the weather conditions are great,” said Socorro.

Socorro and her team Rowomes claimed the first place during last year’s competition. Socorro plans to bring Open Water Rowing Challenge to Onset again next year, but with some improvements, such as incorporating more parking spaces for the boats.

“I think people love the fact that it is a new venue, so next year we might have more boats coming to participate,” said Socorro.