Canoe teams win four medals at nationals

Penticton Racing Canoe Club members win medals at Canadian National Championship

Janelle Parchomchuk, left, Penny Proctor, Jack Wormald, Don Mulhall, Diane Mathews and Stu Seeley at the Canadian National Championships in Harrison Hot Springs.                                Kendalls’ Clicks photo

Janelle Parchomchuk, left, Penny Proctor, Jack Wormald, Don Mulhall, Diane Mathews and Stu Seeley at the Canadian National Championships in Harrison Hot Springs. Kendalls’ Clicks photo

Penticton Racing Canoe Club came away with four medals from the Canadian National Championship in Harrison Hot Springs July 29 to 30.

The nationals race featured 60 crews in short course, long course, men’s, women’s and mixed divisions. Penticton’s crew was second in mixed and first in the Masters 40+ category. The crew consisted of Stu Seeley, Diane Mathews, Don Mulhall, Jack Wormald (NZ), Penny Proctor and Janelle Parchomchuk (steering). The team finished the 20-plus kilometre course in one hour 53 minutes 21 seconds – over five minutes ahead of second place, a local crew from Fraser Valley/Harrison.

“The strong winds made for changing conditions for each of the legs,” said Wormald. “I was impressed at Penticton’s ability to stay close to the Unlimited hulls during the downwind legs.”

On Sunday, Penticton paddlers finished first and second in the Mixed Sr Master two-person outrigger division. First place went to the crew of Mathews and Mulhall with a time of 52:06; and Proctor and Seeley were second at 54:32.

“After a bad start – entirely my fault – we had a great race, and were able to catch lots of crews,” said Mulhall, “finishing within two seconds of one of the top Open Mixed crews was exciting.”

Brian McPhail placed fourth in the Open Men’s division with a time of 55:56.

Bellingham Classic

In the Blue/White canoe in the foreground, Deb Manning, Don Mulhall, Stu Seeley, Penny Proctor and Graeme Galves in the Bellingham Classic. Hui HeiHei Wa’a crew member is bailing water as her crew enters turn. Penticton Crew coming out of turn in lead.
Andy Snow photo

This past weekend the outrigger race on Bellingham Bay saw race organizers modifying the course as a result of rough conditions. The smoke was gone, but strong southwest winds saw the course altered, with teams completing two laps of a course keeping crews and safety boats closer together. The winds made for some exciting conditions on the water.

“Sometimes I had nothing but air below me to paddle in as the canoe would crest on a wave,” said Julie Hollis.

It was the first ocean outrigger race for Hollis and two-seat paddler Deb Manning. The remainder of the crew consisted of Mulhall, Seeley, Proctor and was steered by Graeme Galves of Vancouver Ocean Sports club in Vancouver.

In the single blue/white/yellow canoe from left to right, Graeme Galves, Penny Proctor, Stu Seeley, Don Mulhall, Deb Manning and Julie Hollis.
Andy Snow photo

The Penticton Crew was in first overall for over half the race. Caught in the upwind portion of the second lap, the crew tried, but couldn’t come back, eventually coming in second by 21 seconds behind Masters crew Hui HeiHei Wa’a. Penticton’s time of 1:12:46 was good for first place in their Sr Master division.

Jennifer Turnbull, from Penticton, joined False Creek Racing Canoe Club’s Open Mixed crew for a seventh place finish in a time of 1:27.

For more information about the Penticton Racing Canoe Club, contact Don Mulhall at (250) 488-3100, or don@pentictondragonboat.com.