As a club we want to be as inclusive as possible. We understand that our members are a mixture of physical abilities, different genders and competitive natures.
It is therefore very important that when we row as a club, nobody gets excluded or what can sometimes be worse, left on the shelf because nobody has picked them perhaps just because a group of friends decided they would like to row together.
To make sure we never fall into this situation, we have adopted the ‘Hat of Fairness’ in how we pick our crews for each event we enter. The idea is that all of the people who want to row, get entered into a hat and are then drawn out to see which boat they are going to crew. Whilst this means we may not always put out our best possible crews within an event, it does mean that as a club, we all row for each other and whoever we are with at all times.
The only exception to the above may be an event like the Celtic Challenge where crew sizes are large (12 in each crew) and we may need to have some specialist skills within each of the crews (Doctors, navigators etc..). In these circumstances only, we may assign some crew members specifically and then draw the rest of the crews out of the hat.
This feature of the club is, as far as we can tell unique amongst rowing clubs and is fast becoming widely known about as even with this method of picking crews, we are a very competitive club and hold our own very well against crews that always row together.