Saturday, 16 April 2011
A while ago Iñaki from the Basque country left a link in the comment box. It’s a video of a ‘trainera’ hurtling along with dolphins gambolling about the bow.
The ‘trainera’ fixed seat rowing boats have developed from anchovy and sardine fishing vessels that could be rowed or sailed. Originally made of cedar and beech they are now a high-tech mix of kevlar and carbon fibre. The 12 metre boats weigh in at 200kg. The trainera has 13 oarsmen, 6 pairs and one on his lonesome in the bow, his job is also to help turn the boat by taking his oar off the thole pin, fitting it into a special rowlock and paddling sideways. The patron stands at the stern with a steering oar.
Competition is fierce up on the north coast of Spain and there are active clubs from Galicia to the Basque Country.
I still turn up to training sessions with my local rowing team though only to say hello and receive presents of fresh fish from the fishermen of the crew. Now that I’m underweight again, and have this fabulously streamlined head, they’re trying to convince me to cox. Well, there’s another adventure waiting to unfold.