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Sep, 2020



In this weird rowing season of cancelled major head races, Catawba Yacht Club was inspired to host its inaugural Head of Wylie Lake Regatta, affectionately known as the HOWLR, which took place on September 12.   Both masters rowers and Charlotte Youth Rowing (“CYR”) rowers were invited to compete in the event.  Sixteen masters and fifteen youth rowers competed. For a number of the competitors, it was their first race in a single.

Given the pandemic, the race was open to singles, doubles, and pairs only.  Masks were worn by all competitors and officials when they were not on the water.

The day was cooler than we’d seen for a long time and cloudy with a heavy dose of humidity.  The winds were at 5 mph from the east, so the rowers had some bumpy water, but they handled it with aplomb.  Perhaps as a result of the clouds, we were lucky to have little boat traffic.  

Unlike other regattas, the racers started in waves of seven or eight.  Boats lined up across the course and took off from a stop (similar to a sprint race).  

Alex Kosarek, the youngest competitor in the masters division, had the fastest unhandicapped course time at  20 minutes 37 seconds.  

In the Masters group, the gold medal in the men’s heat went to Dick and Bob Fuller, who rowed a pair.  In the women’s wave, Melissa McGuire took gold.  In the doubles, the gold medal went to Kate Cavazza and Henri Durand.

In the Youth rowing competition, Harrison Kaplan won the gold for the men.  Sue Holderness took the first for the women.  

CYC is fortunate in that it has members who were willing to take on the responsibility of organizing the event and numerous more who volunteered as course officials.  

We all hope that the HOWLR will become an annual event!

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