Corporate rowers celebrate historic win

Optimus crew win

photography: Ron Wallace

On 25th June, rowers from Optimus (Aberdeen) Ltd went down in history as the first all-male team to win the Aberdeen Inter-Company Row, sponsored by GDF Suez E&P UK Ltd.  

The four-strong crew overcame a three boat length handicap to pip first time entrants Centrica to the finish line by half a boat length in a nail-biting final race.

Now in its 27th year, it was the largest Aberdeen Inter-Company Row to date. More than 150 competitors from 40 companies took part in fancy dress to add to the spirit of the day. The teams had no previous rowing experience and spent the last month being taught to row in just six lessons by Aberdeen Boat Club coaches. 

Winning Optimus crew member Chris West commented on their first Inter-Company rowing experience, “It was the first time any of us had set foot in a rowing boat, so it was amazing to win. We had been training hard for six weeks, and it was brilliant to be rewarded for all our work with a win. It was a huge challenge – the races got harder and harder through the knockout rounds and it was a great team event. We might have made some mistakes on the day, but we all pulled together, and under the expert supervision of our cox, Karen Pirie, came out on top. We thoroughly enjoyed it and might even continue rowing as a hobby!”

For more information about the event visit