Outdoor Center News

GRP Scullers Race Green Mountain Head: Win syrup, apples, and cider

Last Updated: 01.Oct.2018

GRP scullers raced at Green Mountain Head this weekend for what are arguably the best prizes in all of fall head racing. For the last 37 years, Putney Rowing Club has hosted the regatta on their small stretch of the Connecticut River, and have provided single and double scullers of all ages a truly unique race experience. 

For starters, the regatta parking lot is a corn field that is usually harvested just days before the start of GMH. Volunteers usher racers that are both towing trailers and car-topping their boats over mounds of dirt and remainders of prickly corn stalks. Cars bounce comically over the now-empty rows of corn in anticipation of a great day of racing. Don’t be fooled by the low-key nature of this race, though - some of the athletes you see noshing freshly fried apple cider donuts are Olympians and world champions alike. “I looked over and saw Gevvie putting away two cider doughnuts, and then Mary came over and bought one,“ Alex Spaulding (who won a gallon of cider for her third place finish behind Mary and Gevvie) recounts feeling inspired by 2016 Olympic Silver Medalist Gevvie Stone and 2018 World Championship Silver Medalist Mary Jones Nabel on their pre-race fueling methods. “I knew that [Jen and I] should probably get one too, maybe [cider doughnuts] are the secret to going fast.” The men’s and women’s single sculls events were heavily peppered with athletes from national teams past and present, along with novice, club, and masters rowers alike.  

Aside from the general friendliness and good-natured vibes, Putney Rowing Club members and volunteers provide racers with a lunch of healthy snacks, cheese sandwiches, apples, apple cider, and the famously quirky offering of....egg rolls?

“I’ve never had an egg roll before,” recalls GRP sculler and self-proclaimed “big eater” Wes Vear - “but after today, I think I’ve more than well enough made up for lost time.” 

GRP scullers had sights set on both racing well during the 5 kilometer race (split in half by a two stake buoys that racers have to effectively make a u-turn around), and taking home one of the prizes awarded to the top three finishers of each event. First place finishers receive a quart of maple syrup, second place gets a bag of apples, and third takes home a gallon of apple cider. All of these products are local to the great state of Vermont.


Men’s 1x (19-34)

Nathan Lado- 2nd *APPLE WINNER*

Wes Vear- 6th

Lucas Bellows- 8th


Men’s 1x (45-55)

Troy Howell- 3rd *CIDER WINNER*


Women’s 1x (19-34)

Alex Spaulding- 3rd *CIDER WINNER*

Jen Forbes- 4th

Jenny McIlvane- 8th


Mixed 2x 

Jen Forbes/Nathan Lado- 1st *SYRUP WINNER*

Wes Vear/Alex Spaulding- 3rd *CIDER WINNER*

Troy Howell/Jenny McIlvane- 4th


Congrats on a fun and successful weekend of racing! And a huge thank you to Putney Rowing Club for putting on such a fun, competitive and good-spirited regatta!

Up next: Head of the Kevin III (October 13)