Crew

VPBA attempts to shut down crew

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By: Corinne Minnick, News Editor 2016-2017

On Wednesday, June 14th at 6:30 p.m. there will be a town meeting at Bettie Weaver Elementary School to address the concerns about the rowing programs at Robious Landing. According to coaches from Virginia Boat Club and James River Crew, some of the members of Virginia Power Boat Association (VPBA) want all rowing at Robious Landing to cease because some of the private teams, such as James River Crew, are using public property. This would mean the end of James River Crew, River City Crew, and the Virginia Boat Club. Members of these teams are attending the town meeting to save these programs at Robious Landing. Come out to Bettie Weaver to lend your support to our crew team.  

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The crew team headed to Nationals

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By: Caroline McMullan, Staff Writer

On May 27th and 28th, JRHS Crew is sending four boats to SRAA National Championship Regatta in Nashport, Ohio. Men’s Lightweight Four (lt4), Men’s Junior Four (Jv4), Men’s Double, and Women’s Double qualified at the VASRA State Championship on May 14th in Occoquan, Virginia. Their success earned them a bid to race at the national level on Memorial Day weekend. You can watch the races live with the link provided so tune in at 8:45 to watch the Women’s Double, 9:00 for the Men’s Double, 10:00 for the Men’s Jv4, and 2:00 for the Men’s lt4. These rowers have been working since January to make it to the highest level of Scholastic Rowing, so cheer on your fellow Rapids!

Click here to watch the Rapids row!

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The 12 qualified rowers and two coxswains are ready to head to Ohio for the National Championships. Photo by: Marlene Meade

Vote for Jamie

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By Aidan Minnick, Staff Writer                                                                                                                     

Senior Jamie Massey has been recognized for his outstanding academic success by being nominated for the Pursuit of Perfection Leadership Award. The Pursuit of Perfection award program is run by Lexus of Richmond, and it takes 30 ambitious students and nominates them for a chance to get a $10,000 award for college.

For more info about Massey’s academic and athletic accomplishments, check out his video here http://www.lexusofrichmond.com/scholarship under “Week 27.”

To vote for Massey text LEXUS27 to 67336, or go cast your vote on their Facebook page. With your help, Massey could get a scholarship to UVA!

Rapids taking on the river

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By: Amanda Wallace, Staff Writer

James River High School has a sport that’s unique to us: we have a crew team. The James River is less than a mile away from our school, so why not have a rowing team?

James River crew is technically not a school sport. If it was a school sport every high school in Chesterfield County would have to have a team too, and a river for every other school is not  easy access at all.

”The team was started 18 years ago by Hank Holswade. He negotiated with the county and got a boathouse on the present site,” coach Michael Johnson said.

The boats are not very cheap either; they use doubles, fours, and eights for the team. The least expensive boat is a double which is $11,900 and the most expensive is an eight boat is $45,900. The team has to fundraise all the money on their own; the county and school does not put any money into this sport. The team does not get any money from the school or taxpayers, they fundraise throughout the year that is how they obtain equipment and can afford the attendance fees for competitions.

The team was once eight people, but now, with 82 people on the team, there is a Varsity crew team and a Novice  team which is like the JV; that is where you begin. There is also a “learn to row team” which is for the freshmen in the fall where the coaches teach them the rowing techniques and how the team works. Therefore, the freshmen will be trained and moved up to the Novice  team in the spring.

“There are leadership roles within the team they name captains for the men and for the women coxswains. During the ‘off-season’ they lead the practices and during the season they lead and nurture the rowers to keep them motivated during the season,” Johnson said.

Fall season immediately starts when school starts back up and goes until the first week of November. The spring season they do sprint races which are 1500 meters in length and are “heat” races. This season runs through Memorial day weekend when they have nationals.

Coach Johnson has now been coaching the team for five years now first as an assistant coach and took over head coach in the fall of 2014.

“I coach because I enjoy teaching the kids the sport of rowing. I also enjoy watching the kids grow, mature and develop long lasting relationships with one another. Crew is a true team sport and their working together will give them wonderful leadership and teamwork traits that they can carry on into their college lives,” Johnson said.   

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James River crew has their very own spirit wear, you can spot it around school on many kids and in many different types. Photo by Amanda Wallace

James River rows in first regatta: pictures

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Last Saturday’s Regatta had many James River Boats race, and here are some pictures of the event.

Some of the Women’s Varsity Eight ready to get on the water. Photo by Jewel Cox.
Some of the Women’s Varsity Eight ready to get on the water. Photo by Jewel Cox.
The Men’s Varsity eight taking third at the finish line. Photo by Luke Forbes
The Men’s Varsity eight taking third at the finish line.
Photo by Luke Forbes
The schedule for the day with the race times. Photo by Mike Johnson
The schedule for the day with the race times.
Photo by Mike Johnson
The Men’s Double and friend celebrating the first place victory. Photo courtesy of Jamie Massey
The Men’s Double and friend celebrating the first place victory.
Photo courtesy of Jamie Massey
Chorus rowers singing the National Anthem to start off the day. Photo by Susan McMullan.
Chorus rowers singing the National Anthem to start off the day.
Photo by Susan McMullan.
The Women’s Varsity four rowing up the river to the starting line. Photo by Susan McMullan
The Women’s Varsity four rowing up the river to the starting line.
Photo by Susan McMullan

James River rows in first regatta

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By: Caroline McMullan, Staff Writer
The 10th annual Head of the James Regatta was held on Saturday, October 10, at Robious Landing Park. Eight teams from all around Virginia came to compete in the three mile race.There were 16 events and 71 boats competed. On average, it takes 17-20 minutes to complete the race. The Men’s Varsity Double, seniors Jamie Massey and Noah McMordie, placed first in their event.  Overall, River City Crew took home the first place trophy. Check back for pictures of this event!

Crew coach rows into new season

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By: Cana Wilson, Staff Writer

The James River crew team started off their fall season with a new coach, new rowers, lots of progress, and brisk weather.

Coach Mike Johnson has been with the team since 2012 when his daughter decided to join. Last year, Coach Johnson was assistant coach, but this year, he took full responsibility as head coach.

“Being head coach instead of assistant is a lot more responsibility. The success of the entire team is now on my shoulders.”  said Johnson

Coach Johnson shared how coaching this year is different from last year when Coach Hank was the Head coach of the crew team.

“Before, I got to focus on just coaching the rowers and I didn’t really have to worry about much else. Now, I have to coach, maintain a safe environment on and off the water, schedule the regattas and arrange transportation, and set the line-ups for the boats. I have to deal with personality differences and the occasional disagreement between the athletes. I am finding the challenges fun, but stressful at the same time. This year’s team is a good one and they are really making the transition a good one.” said Johnson.

Photo by- Corinne Minnick
Photo by Corinne Minnick.

With about 70 rowers, the crew team has almost doubled in size. This year’s slots were filled within 12 hours of releasing the applications.

“The team has been steadily growing over the years.  We have one of the winningest teams in the school and the athletes know that before they apply. They hear about the teamwork and the hard work required to compete and that gets us a lot of notice.  People want to be part of a winning team and one that works hard and together to achieve a goal.” said Johnson.

For the very first time, the crew team had a “Learn-to-Row” boat compete in the head race. The head race is an annual race for the varsity and novice rowers, so it is a major accomplishment.

“The team is making great progress.  Overall, the season has been a very good one, and at the head race, we brought home seven first place medals and three second place ribbons.  The kids are really working hard together and I am very pleased at the camaraderie amongst the rowers,” said Johnson.

Throughout the season, Coach Johnson has worked really hard with the team, and their hard work has been proven through their great progress and awards.

“My favorite part of coaching is to see the growth of the athletes over their time rowing.  These kids come here scared and unassured of themselves, and by the time they graduate, they are self-assured and very proficient at the sport.  This is something that they can do for the rest of their lives, and that alone, is a big plus,” Johnson said.