We have two candidates vying for the position of Men’s Squad Captain this year. Both candidates have published manifestos on Facebook, but as some members don’t have ready access to Facebook I’ve provided copies below. In alphabetical order:
After several years of thinking about it, I have finally decided to step up and go for men’s captain. I have regularly thought though what I would do were I in this position, and would like to provide you with the culmination of my various ideas, developments and rethinks that have been running through my mind for the past few years.
This club has several issues, however the primary issue is that there is no structure to develop individuals. There are rarely ever any squads beyond development; those that are there are limited in who can join and rarely last more than 6-8 months. With a sporadic setup like this, very few individuals can excel. Not only this but because of the lack of improvement that many people see, a large number of individuals have decided that rowing isn’t the sport for them.
With improvement to this system as my main aim, here are the changes I desire to make:
Every men’s rower, and ideally every rowing member, will be a part of a squad. These squads will all have different aims and different requirements: whether that be to simply progress to the next squad; to become competitive and ultimately win at various events; or simply to allow individuals to enjoy the more relaxed side of the sport.
There will be set requirements for progression between squads. These will consist of set programs for each squad, written and designed by their squad coach and squad captain (More on that later).
The boat allocation will be re-organised into a tiered system to ensure correct equipment usage and to remove the risk of political decisions preventing promising individuals from using higher standard equipment, while still ensuring the majority of boats are available to use as they currently are.
– Coaching and organisation
The majority of the water based sessions will be organised by a squad-allocated coach to fit their schedules, therefore, Ensuring that they can be regularly present for sessions despite their presence not being required for all water sessions and indoor training as each squad shall elect a squad captain who will work alongside their coach to organise and run the squad, to ensure individuals are all completing the training, and to serve as that squads voice in a subcommittee.
Squad captains will provide a method of communication between all the squads. This will allow minor disputes between squads to be solved internally, rather than having to go to the rowing committee and having a resolution forced upon them. They will also serve as a way for larger issues to be brought to the attention of the men’s or women’s captains and therefore the committee as a whole, and can serve as the main way that individual squad coaches can have their concerns heard by the normally closed off rowing committee.
– Recruitment Development
I would like to introduce a number of new methods for advertising the rowing club to a larger audience, currently the primary way we have of advertising the club is a banner on the club house, and word of mouth. There is no real outreach outside of the junior squad and I believe we are missing a trick here.
We have the University Centre Peterborough, Peterborough Regional College and Peterborough City College on our doorstep, we also have a large number of schools around the city with individuals who want to stay in the city once they complete their A-levels. These are but a few of the potential sources of young future rowers where there is no advertisement what so ever. Outside of these limited areas, a large majority of individuals in this city do aren’t even aware that there is a rowing club in Peterborough. However many of them will regularly visit the city centre, passing through Cathedral Square and Queensgate, areas that frequently have events and advertisement which are completely untapped by this club. All it would take would be to take an erg or two and a boat into town with a few willing volunteers and we would raise the awareness in the city 10 fold.
Of course, with myself being a university student, I would not be regularly present. For many this presents an issue with captains permission equipment, however as has been implemented for some time now, requests for captains permission equipment is required to be sent in written form, through e-mail or a message, therefore my presence would not serve to impact this in any meaningful manner. There may also be issues for some with my perceived commitment to the club if I am not regularly present. With the increased focus on the individual squad captains, my presence would have less of an impact and eventually only the largest issues would be directed towards the men’s and women’s captains, with their main aim simply being to ensure that the squad captains and coaches are performing their roles correctly and to express issues from any of these squad captains in the rowing committee.
Early discussions with current committee chairman, Pete Forest and women’s captain, Jo Burton have taken place and they have both expressed their approval of many of the ideas I have put forward, therefore I am far more confident that these aims can be delivered in a more effective manner than most previous captains.
Thank you for your time and I welcome any questions you have.
As many of you will have seen or heard me and George Bushell are standing for Men’s Captain and Vice Captain respectively. Below are our main aims for the Men’s Squad and Club.
PCRC has one of the best club facilities in the country and should dream big in its goals for the future: being competitive at the more prestigious events throughout the country and on a national level. To help achieve this I have listed the main points I would wish to address as Captain, along with support from George Bushell as Vice Captain.
Get two for the price of one! George and I feel that the role of Captain would be best supported with the introduction of a Vice Captain. This would mean responsibility is shared and decisions are checked. It will also increase the availability of our representation throughout the club and provide continuity between Captaincies that will help the club to develop over a longer period.
PCRC has a fantastic group of committed coaches that succeed in bringing athletes from L2R and through the development squad. We would like to help these coaches expand and increase their influence and confidence by working closely with the coaches via the Rowing Committee and the Coaches Forum.
To aid the longer term future we aim to hold bespoke Taster/L2R events to bring in younger men with the potential to become rowers. They would also be fast tracked into crew boats to help aid with retention from the L2R course in a more structured process.
We would aim to help coaches provide each athlete/crew with a tailored training program to help them achieve their specific goals. Again engaging with the coaches to help place you in a structured plan to maximize your potential.
After the recent success of Tom Copeland coming to PCRC, we would look at increasing opportunities to work with external coaches to help coach the coaches and also the athletes.
Communication between elements of PCRC can be disjointed and frustrating, in order to improve this we will hold an informal monthly meeting. This will be to gauge where you are, where you want to be and how we can work best to help you get there.
We would also look at bringing the Men together on a social level to help integrate those new to the sport or club, this will hopefully help with retention of members from L2R and help create like minded crews with similar commitment levels.
We would also wish to work more closely with the Women’s squad and hope that we can use one another to train more productively.
In order for us to be effective Captains, we need to be committed to help you and the club as a whole. We will demonstrate this through regular presence at the club: helping at events, attendance at training and at racing. Through this commitment we wish to inspire similar dedication from fellow athletes. As Captains we will strive to help you as much as possible and hope you can match or surpass our levels of commitment.
We are happy to answer any questions you might have.
Feel free to add any questions for the candidates to the comments section below.