The Atlanta Rowing Club and the Lookout Rowing Club will host the Head of the Hooch Rowing Regatta at Ross’s Landing Nov. 3-4.
Twelve thousand people are expected to attend and the public is invited to watch the events for free.
More than 30 years ago, the Atlanta Rowing Club organized a small headrace on the Chattahoochee River, in front of their boathouse. It began with 105 boats. By 1998 almost 500 boats were raced in one day and the regatta was outgrowing its namesake site. In 1999, the regatta moved from Roswell to the Olympic venue in Gainesville, technically still remaining on the Chattahoochee River. The number of boats raced at the Hooch was growing by 10-15 percent each year and by 2004 the much larger venue in Gainesville had reached its limit with more than 1,000 boats - twice as many as only five years prior. The regatta needed to find a new venue that would accommodate the growing number of competitors and spectators.
About that same time, Chattanooga was completing a $120 million renovation to rebuild their downtown waterfront and in 2005 the Hooch (a shortened name for a new location) was held for the first time on the Tennessee River in downtown Chattanooga. The appeal and convenience of a regatta in the downtown area of a city like Chattanooga was undeniable, officials said. Rowers and spectators could walk from the venue to hotels and restaurants. In addition, the city offered many attractions for the non-rowing members of the family. It has become the second largest regatta in the country. In 2011, over 2,000 boats raced in the one and a half day regatta.
The event is co-hosted by the Atlanta Rowing Club and the Lookout Rowing Club. The St Andrews Rowing Club from Atlanta is a major partner providing support. The Hooch organization is 100 percent volunteer run – there is no paid staff. ARC, LRC, SARC and University of Tennessee in Chattanooga provide the bulk of the volunteers.
A fifth race has been added to the events and has been designated as “Row for the Cure” races. Entry fees from these races support local affiliates of the Susan G. Komen Foundation. In addition to its own fundraising efforts, the Hooch encourages and supports fundraising efforts in the high school, collegiate and masters rowing clubs in the southeast. This is the fifth year that the Hooch has participated in Row for the Cure and has helped to raise more than $430,000 for breast cancer awareness, treatment and research. The more than 1,000 Row for the Cure event participants are easy to spot, on and off the water, decked out in their hot pink commemorative T-shirts.
2012 Row for the Cure Events
· Evt# 5: Women's Master 8+
· Evt#10: Men's Master 4+ (New for 2012!)
· Evt#30: Women's Youth 4+
· Evt#35: Women's Master 2x
· Evt#37: Women's Championship 4+
For more information on Row for Cure, visit www.rowforthecure.org and www.rowforthecureatlanta.org
In 2010, The Hooch tested the waters and added a few Sunday races for adaptive rowers, rowers with physical or developmental challenges. This year, 2012, these races will move to Saturday providing an opportunity to showcase these athletes.
Rowing clubs across the nation have started adaptive rowing programs including the Atlanta Rowing Club. Adaptive rowing made its debut at the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing. To ensure fair competition for adaptive athletes, FISA has established a number of classifications (see below).
TA (Trunk and Arms): Rowers unable to use a sliding seat are considered TA participants. Typical disabilities include bilateral knee amputation or a complete lesion at vertebrate L3.
AS (Arms and Shoulders): Individuals with lesions at vertebrate T12 or cerebral palsy class 4 are included in the AS category and typically have minimal or no trunk function.
LTA (Legs, Trunk, Arms): LTA-PD (physical disability) participants typically have a minimal disability of amputation, incomplete lesion at vertebrate S1, or cerebral palsy class 8. LTA-B classification is reserved for individuals with a minimum of 10 percent visual impairment.
For more details, visit: http://www.worldrowing.com/fisa/resources/rule-books.