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The First World Masters Rowing Competition to be Held in Finland in July 2010

Sulkava, Finland plays host to the world event from July 8-11, 2010. Open to national and club teams from all over the world and using the distinctive Finnish “churchboats,” the competition will be held on Lake Saimaa, the largest of Finland’s 200,000 lakes and the fourth largest lake in Europe.

The competition will feature two events: a short race of 2,000 meters in front of the Sulkava Rowing Stadium and a long race of 60 kilometers around Partala Island, the largest island in Lake Saimaa. The competition will be held jointly with Finland´s largest rowing event, the Sulkava Rowing Race, which has 8,000 participants annually.

The World Masters Rowing Competition will be run with traditional Finnish 12-meter wooden churchboats which have sliding benches and 14 oars. “Churchboats” are long rowing boats, sometimes called Sulkava boats or Viking boats, which the Finnish people once used to travel to holy mass on Sundays and were based on models from Viking days.

The church has required maintenance of the boats since the Reformation in the seventh century.

The Masters in Rowing is open to national and club teams from all around the world. Each crew consists of 14 rowers and a coxswain, with single-sex or mixed-sex crews. The first three crews will be awarded medals, diplomas, and a cash prize. The organizers offer a variety of packages for accommodations, transportation, and other services. Between races, teams enjoy the region’s nature and culture and indulge in the renowned Finnish sauna.

For more information about World Master Rowing 2010 visit www.wmrowing-sulkava.fi

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