Novice Racing Team

Informational Session & Start Date: August 6, 2018 at Lake Union Crew (open to anyone interested regardless of current membership status)

Practice Days: Mondays, Wednesdays at 6:30pm & Saturdays at 6:30am

Overview: This program was created for committed adult athletes of all ages who have recently discovered rowing and are interested in committing to a training program and racing.

Benefits: This class was designed for rowers who are early in their rowing careers who want to fast track their rowing technique and start racing at regattas. This focus on competition allows rowers with a similar mindset to improve their technique quickly, thereby increasing chances of winning races and moving on to one of the top competitive programs at the boathouse after completion of the novice program. As for the other benefits? Friends, fun and a lasting commitment to peak fitness!

Eligibility: Picked up an oar for the first time less than 2 years ago and ideally less than 1 year ago for full eligibility in all novice events.

Prerequisites: Completion of any Learn to Row class and preferably with a coach’s recommendation. If you are not currently a member at Lake Union Crew or don’t have a coach’s recommendation but are interested in joining us, you are welcome to attend the informational session on August 6th but please check-in with the coaches when you arrive. If you choose to move forward with the program, you must either currently be or soon become a trial or full member.

Racing & Regattas: If you want to race as a novice (2 years or less since you first picked up an oar as of the date of the regatta), this program will have priority boatings in all novice events. For regattas without novice events, we’ll work with other coaches in the boathouse to enter all events possible.

Commitment: You will be expected to attend 3 practices per week and an additional 3 hours per week of cardio, strength and flexibility which will be prescribed by the coaches. If you can only attend 1-2 practices with the Novice team due work/life schedule, you can attend another classes at the boathouse but please note that this may impact whether you are in top/fastest lineups at regattas.

Boats: We’ll enter novice events throughout the year for most types (1x to 8+ – maybe even an 8x+!) and accordingly, we will practice sweeping and sculling most practices. Races will include men’s, women’s and mixed events. Ideally, we’ll have 8 or more men and 8 or more women so we can participate in all events so bring your friends!

Pricing: Trial membership (first 5 weeks for $145) or full membership ($145 per month) required.

About your Coaches: Hugh and Jenn have been married for 16 years and will be your primary coaches. They’ll set workouts, practices and lineups. Depending on average numbers, they will bring in additional coaches as needed.

Hugh Tompkins has experience coaching junior, collegiate and masters rowing. Hugh ran the freshman men’s program at the University of Florida and coached a summer program for Holy Names Academy at Pocock. He has been coaching masters rowing from Learn to Row to NatComp off and on at Lake Union Crew since 2011.

His rowing career started in 1992 at Winter Park High School in central Florida. As a junior Hugh won multiple state championships and placed 2nd in the Championship 4+ at Stotesbury. After 3 years of rowing in high school, Hugh moved on to the University of Florida, stroking the lightweight varsity eight as a freshman. After five years of rowing in the gator infested lakes of Florida, Hugh transferred to the predator-free waters at the University of Washington where he stroked a varsity 4+.

When not coaching or rowing, Hugh works as an independent product designer and inventor and enjoys mountain biking, basketball and other outdoor sports.

Jenn Murrow is a digital marketer by day and began her rowing career in 2011 with a Learn to Row class with Martha. Immediately hooked, she started rowing and racing and has found many great, lifelong friends at the boathouse.  She began helping Hugh with managing practices and quickly became his coaching assistant and/or coxswain for most programs. She began to think about the concept of the Novice Racing program in 2015 and it’s been a goal ever since to start the program and see it succeed!

Ready to Commit? Questions? For membership/dues questions, please contact Patty at or Martha at or via phone at (206) 860-4199.

If you have questions about the program or you want to sign-up, please email Hugh at and Jenn at