The Royal St. John's Regatta - 1982 - 2003 Special Events
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1982-2003: Special Events
The record returns to Outer Cove as, in an amazing display of athletics, the crew of Coxswain Mike Power, Andrew Boland, Bert Hickey, Campbell Feehan, Gerard Ryan, Jim Hibbs and Owen Deveraux shatter the newly set record of 9:12.04 by coming in at 9:03.48.
In women's competition, the General Hospital crew consisting of Daurreen McGruer, Susan Greene, Jennifer Ryan, Corinne Gillespie, Janet Preston, Linda Preston and Coxswain Mike Summer Jr. take their third championship race. They set a new course record of 5:29.11
The Regatta was named the "Gilbert" Regatta in honor of Sir Humphrey Gilbert's claiming of Newfoundland as Britain's first colony 400 years earlier. His Excellency, Governor General Edward Schreyer and Mrs. Schreyer attend.
Gail Malone becomes the first woman elected to the Regatta Committee, reflecting the growing contribution women make to the sport of rowing.
A new record time of 9:01.58 is recorded by the Smith-Stockley crew, but is later recanted by the Regatta Committee due to malfunctions in the unofficial boathouse clock and the clock on the Smith-Stockley boat. Other clocks confirmed a time of 9:04.38 and once this was verified the official time was changed to 9:04.38.
The Quidi Vidi/Rennie's River Development Foundation is formed and they prepare a Master Plan for improvements to Rennie's River and to the area around the Lake for Regatta spectators, making the area more like a park.
Crews start to use the carbon fiber oars, which replace the wooden oars in use since 1896. The carbon fiber oars are much lighter weighing only 7 pounds each.
For the first time, the Regatta coat of arms is granted and displayed. This crest will later be modified in 1993 when the Royal designation is given to the St. John's Regatta. For more information, please see the Heraldry section of the website.
St. John's Regatta Hall of Fame is established. In 1987, nine individuals and 2 crews are inducted. For more information please visit the Hall of Fame section of this website.
Well known and famous Coxswain James Ring dies. Known as "Skipper" Ring, the loss of this competitive rower and coxswain saddens the Regatta and Newfoundland sports community.
Three of four crews competing in the championship race refuse to row claiming poor weather conditions. Smith-Stockley, Giant Construction and H.M. Penitentiary bowed out of the championship race. The Chief Judge on the course ordered the race started even though the only crew to appear at the start line was the Police crew. The Police crew ran the course with a time of 9:29.34 and secured their first championship win in 30 years.
New Course record of 9:00.96 is set by RNC-Lakeshore Homes crew rowing in the Blue Peter in the Amateur Race.
Oz-FM women's crew set a new course record in the Championship Race of 5:08.34, beating their old mark of 5:14.97 set in 1989.
Five new Regatta racing shells are christened at the Regatta Boathouse. They are: Captain Morgan (Seagram's), Miss Molson (Molson Breweries), Good Luck (Newfoundland Margarine Company), Miss Labatt (Labatt Breweries) and the Dictator (Crosbie Industrial). They are built at Hudson Boat Works, Komoka, Ontario at a cost of $25,000 each. They are made of mahogany and fir and weigh 386 pounds each.
Rowing in the Good Luck, the Smith-Stockley/Outer Cove crew breaks the nine minute barrier during the Championship Race. The crew, rowing a 8:59.42 course record, consisted of Jim Hibbs, John Barrington, Ken Power, Dave Kelly, Paul Boland, Bert Hickey and Coxswain Rich Bailey.
Trinity Bay Offshore Contractors' women's crew win the first ever Women's "Triple Crown" - Harbour Grace, Placentia and St. John's.
The Regatta is postponed after 15 out of 22 races are held. High winds cause the Regatta Committee to reschedule the remaining races to Saturday.
The original Blue Peter is destroyed in the fire that claims the Church Lads Brigade Armoury on Harvey Road.
For the fourth time in the history of Newfoundland and Labrador, the designation "Royal" is granted by Her Majesty, the Queen to an organization. The St. John's Regatta is now officially known as "The Royal St. John's Regatta". The other three organizations are The Royal Newfoundland Regiment, The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary and The Royal Newfoundland Yacht Club. The coat of arms for The Royal St. John's Regatta is changed to accommodate "supporters" on either side of the crest. For more information please see the Heraldry section of this website.

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