The Dirty Dozen needs YOU!

Posted by Graham Everitt | July 9, 2013

“Good Day. We are privileged to live another day in this magnificent world. Today you will be tested.” – Mike Livingston from Assault on Lake Casitas


The summer racing schedule is now drawing to a close for many of us, and while several squads will be attending some of the smaller regattas in August, many are now starting to eye up what next year could bring.

This is the point where the near legendary group of scullers from Broxbourne Rowing Club begin their transition into a hardened group of single scullers, intent only on submitting their bodies to the sickening cycle of damage and repair that is the build up to Scullers Head, due to take place this year on November 15th.

“You must assume full responsibility for choosing to pursue power. Know that you alone have chosen to be tested, and then proceed without doubt, remorse, or blame. You alone are responsible.”Mike Livingston from Assault on Lake Casitas

The group, coached (metaphorically) by Brad Alan Lewis and Mike Livingston, are known both locally and internationally as The Dirty Dozen.

Sometimes they are simply and affectionately referred to as “The Doz'”.

In previous years, various BRC members have rolled into the Doz’. That the members have ranged from Junior Men and Junior Women to Quintin shows that age and beauty are no barrier. The group trains regularly together to forge a competitive spirit that squads that don’t train with Chris Scorah just can’t replicate.

Only one thing is sure – the Doz’ has never contained exactly a dozen scullers.

“Pain? Yes, of course. Racing without pain is not racing. But the pleasure of being ahead outweighed the pain a million times over. To hell with the pain. What’s six minutes of pain compared to the pain they’re going to feel for the next six months or six decades. You never forget your wins and losses in this sport. YOU NEVER FORGET.” – Brad Alan Lewis from Assault on Lake Casitas

Vesta Scullers Head takes place this year at 9:30am on November 15th. It’s one of the most gruelling, and rewarding, races in the British Calendar – held over the 4.25mile Championship course from Mortlake to Putney. So if you’re struggling to find an aim that seems worthy, join the Doz and represent at Scullers Head.

The build up involves regular sessions throughout the summer that you can pick and choose:

  • Monday evenings – 12k-18k OTW r20
  • Tuesday evenings – 12k-18k OTW r20
  • Wednesday mornings – 12k OTW (r24 if Scorah is down, r20 otherwise)
  • Thursday evenings – 12k-18k OTW r20
  • Saturday mornings in Tidal Flow – Anger and Carnage x 4 – free rate

Once July, August and September have disappeared into a red mist of crushing, lung searing, blistered, joyous pain then it’s time to start racing.

“You must approach each test with the seriousness and passion that you would use to prepare to challenge your death. You must prepare–not to die– but to battle for your life in each moment with every faculty and power available to you.” – Mike Livingston from Assault on Lake Casitas

The exact schedule is subject to sign-off from the Rowing committee, but is likely to feature the following races:

  • 28 Sep – Wallingford LDSc
  • 27 Oct – Upper Thames 4s & SBH
  • 2 Nov – Henley Sculls
  • 9 Nov – Kingston SBH
  • 16 Nov – Vesta Scullers Head

Nothing is concrete, nothing except the want to beat each other is required. In the Dozen, every sculler is his own master. Our accountability to ourselves is what makes the Doz’ fly.

“Nobody Beats Us! served as our main trigger… We practiced using trigger words, private verbal keys, which unlocked certain thoughts for us. We had a half-dozen phrases–some dealt with maintaining our technique, two dealt with maintaining our technique, two dealt with our stroke rating. The most powerful phrase was ‘Nobody Beats Us!’ According to our plan, when I said these words to Paul toward the end of the race, we would immediately shift into our final sprint, rowing as high and hard as possible, straight through, until we crossed the finish line.” – Brad Alan Lewis from Assault on Lake Casitas

Join the Doz’. Do it for yourself. To join, simply let me (Graham Everitt) know you’re interested and I’ll get you up to speed on who’s training when.

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