Tallying 500 million metres in World Erg Challenge
In its third year of affiliation with World Rowing, the 2018 World Erg Challenge saw a total of 522,502,595 metres rowed on the Concept2 indoor rowing machine.
The event begins each year in mid-march and challenges teams to row as many metres as possible in one month. This year’s winning team was the French Indoor Rowers Team – a virtual team made up of several French and French Polynesian clubs. They completed an incredible 31,292,750m, averaging 112,970m per person.
The team leader Kevin Scott says the team came together in 2013 when he and two friends decided to join forces. They had previously been running three separate teams for Concept2 challenges. Their goal was to reach the top 10 for the World Erg Challenge in 2013.
“To our surprise, after a very close month challenging the team Age Without Limits, we managed to win in our first year participating,” Scott says. “Since then, we have participated in many challenges, always with the goal of defending our title, which we’ve only lost twice.”
With 277 members, the French Indoor Rowers team has done well to encourage participation from people at all levels.
“In the end, no matter whether the primary motivation is to improve one's health, prepare for competition or just for fun, each participant finds a personal motivation that serves the team and that's what pushes us all up. We even had some crazy stories within the team of participants who started modestly, just for motivation to lose weight and who, thanks to this motivation, ended up rowing more than 2000 km in one month and were ranked on the world podium,” says Scott.
Topping this year’s individual count was Jay Brandt from Bend Rowing Club, Oregon, USA who rowed a total of 2,538,670m. This means an average of 84,622 metres per day for 30 days straight. Rowing at an intense 2:00/500m split, this would take 5 hours 38 minutes per day. In third place, and the first-placed woman was Darlene Brennan from Ancients Team, Vermont, USA. At age 74, she finished with an impressive 1,849,833m.
The World Erg Challenge gives teams from across the world the opportunity to compete, not for time or split, but rather for total amount of metres logged.
“We can say thanks to C2 for having had this brilliant idea of a challenge based on kilometres logged, because it is dissociated from the usual level of performance. A granny can beat a little kid on this kind of challenge... and it often happens!” says Scott.
For the full results, click here.
For more information about the World Erg Challenge, click here.