WARA The Welsh Amateur Rowing Association - Rhwyfo Cymru
Executive Committee members
Commonwealth Strategy for 2006

After the highly successful 2002 regatta where Wales won 12 Medals, the Wales Team has been in a metamorphic stage. The teams' standard was of Bronze to Silver standard. Damian has been doing some extensive talent search and recruitment through all avenues but especially Clubs and Welsh Universities.

The next avenue was to widen the net to Welsh qualified athletes coming to Wales to study. Damian has contacted every Rowing School in England with a promotional pack and all our details.

Damian has also been recruiting physically gifted people who have either been rowing for a very short time or show the physiological/physical traits of a top line rower from excellence in other sports. They must all have had to pull excellent ergometer scores. They must also sign up to the full-time training programme.

Through Damien's work Welsh International Rowing is trying to encourage a far more home country based team through The Institute of Rowing, Wales. This is primarily based at the Welsh Institute of Sport and Cardiff Bay. This means that Wales International Rowing is developing new talent to hit the far more difficult targets that have been set by WARA and the International Committee to move our nation's Rowing higher up the Commonwealth, European and World/Olympic stage. This will, of course, take some time, as we're now looking to recruit from within and have shown that we can put our own athletes from our country on all major competition podiums.
The Commonwealth and Home Countries International
are highly important to our nation
Wales' high-performance Coach, Damian, strongly believes that World potential needs lessons and development through the key stages and that all athletes should be given the chance to perform at their highest standard.

Clearly, many athletes compete at HCI and Commonwealth standard before moving on to World level. It's important for our World-level athletes, wherever possible, to be given the chance to represent their nation at the Commonwealths.

The Institute of Rowing, Wales, operates to develop International oarsman for Wales and Great Britain with the aim of producing high-performance athletes.

Our programme is proven and it encompasses racing abroad at various International Regattas and top UK events so that Welsh Oarsman are fully versed with, and can deal with, International racing in order that they may perform at their best at the Commonwealths and beyond. We have a full training structure and training camps that prepare the athletes for this level of competition.

There's nothing in the World of Rowing like our programme.
Open to all.

The next Commonwealth Team for Wales will try to move up a gear.

So, the aims will be as follows.

To try to achieve Gold and Silver Medals.

For athletes to be strong enough and skilful enough to be able to double up unless a stronger singular unit can be found.

Team and Crew Formulation.

We will be trying to formulate groups in Wales and form crews from these groups, provided that the athletes make the standard. Having said that, if Welsh qualified ex-patriots do the trialling and prove to be of a higher standard than resident crews then, of course, they will represent.

There will also be many boat types that the Institute can cover; applications for these will be duly looked at. If an outside unit proves itself to be quicker than Rebecca units, then there may be two courses of action.

1. They represent

2. Exploration by matrix trialling to see if an even quicker crew can be selected for Wales.

There will be an opportunity for Under 23 boats to be formed and raced. They must present themselves at the trials and show themselves to be close to Commonwealth Standard, if not ahead of Senior Team members. The emphasis for these units will be on boats that formulate from the current junior ranks with their Coaches. The National Coach with the aid of The International Committee will decide the precise criteria for these closer to the time.

The Institute of Rowing, Wales, team operating under the development-racing name of 'Rebecca' will try to recruit a team of

6 Heavyweight Men Scullers,

6 Lightweight Men Scullers,

6 Heavyweight and/or Lightweight Women Scullers.

The athletes may also row sweep but by sculling we can formulate twice as many boat options and, being a small nation with a small base, if we get injuries and/or illnesses the remainder of the boats can carry on training without disruption. Sculling also means that athletes can train away from the group, or at different times from work/college commitments, if need be.

If a group cannot be recruited (e.g. Heavyweight Men), another group may be enlarged (e.g. Lightweight Women).

Other groups of relevant boats and coaches will be set up to cover other boat types at other locations, provided that they make the standard.
Trialling and Selection