As with every other year, it amazes me how quickly it all comes to an end suddenly. I said to my wife this morning, that it feels like I’ve been on a train going 200 kilometres and hour for the past 7 weeks, and I suddenly jumped off it last night!
It was a fun night last night, and I want to thank you all for the very generous gifts at the end of the night! Many of you came up to me and thanked me for the work we did, but I want to turn that around and thank the athletes. I’ve often said that we provide the road map, but it’s the athletes who undertake the journey and do the hard yards. As you reflect on your seasons, remember the things that make this sport great: fitness, discipline, pushing yourself to a higher level, competitive spirit and working as part of a team. These are ALL attributes that will come into play to help you, either in the coming years as you advance through high school, or as you leave these walls and venture out to bigger and better things.
For those not graduating, let’s move up to the next level starting in November.
For those graduating, it’s been my honour to have coached you, and I can’t think of a better group of five athletes to have been mentor and coach to than Fiora, Katie Mac, Becca, Maddy B and Chloe. Some of you may have noticed that I shake a lot of people’s hands at regattas and even get the occasional hug. Those same people are people I learned from and have known for decades….and they’re watching to see how I’m passing on their knowledge to you. When we walk down to the dock, I know many of you feel like you’re in a fishbowl. You are. But so are we, because our athletes are a reflection of us and of our coaching methods. MANY of those folks have commented on how well you row, how professional, well-mannered and disciplined not only you guys have been, but your predecessors. You are a tremendous source of pride to us in how you’ve conducted yourselves as Westdale Warrior rowers and I will miss you all immensely.