July 17,2014(ISN) – This Saturday and Sunday, Burnaby Lake will host Rowing Canada Aviron’s 2014 Canadian Masters Championships. The event has received a record number of entrants, taking entries from 800 crews representing 50 clubs from across North and South America.

Coming from as far as Newfoundland and Argentina, rowers will compete within age groups and race over 1000m, half the Olympic distance.

The event has attracted a strong number of rowers in the 65 plus age category, including Anne Linton and Vivienne Irving of Victoria City Rowing Club who will compete in the women’s double scull against a mostly international field. 44 other crews from Victoria City Rowing Club will join them on the ferry ride across to the mainland.

“We are really pleased with the response that we’ve received and are quite proud of achieving a record number of entries,” said Ian Gordon, co-chair of the Local Organising Committee and former Canadian Olympic rower. “We’re all ready to go and with a record number of athletes participating, we’re just buzzing with excitement for what promises to be a great weekend of racing.”

Local support for the event is at an all-time high with Vancouver Rowing Club entering 112 crews, the most entries for any club.

“We’re fortunate to have such a wonderfully active and motivated group of adults spanning several generations,” said Bill Myra, Captain of Vancouver Rowing Club. “Our adult learn to row programs have continued to grow in popularity and those newcomers continually increase the size of our Masters team. So we’re excited to race as it’s a great opportunity with the Canadian Masters so close to home and on what has the potential to be a world-class venue.”

“It’s wonderful to see such big numbers for this annual event,” said Donna Atkinson, CEO of Rowing Canada Aviron. “The local organising committee has put in so much effort to ensure a successful and enjoyable event and I know the waters of Burnaby Lake won’t disappoint. I look forward to welcoming the many international crews and cheering on all the Canadian Clubs that are entered.”

“We are thrilled to welcome the athletes, officials, volunteers and spectators to Burnaby and look forward to the exciting athletic performances,” said Nancy Small, Executive Director of Tourism Burnaby. “Tourism Burnaby is a proud supporter of Burnaby Lake Rowing Club and marquee sport events such as this one. We are honoured by this opportunity to showcase our world class-rowing venue. Best of luck to all the athletes and we hope you have a memorable time in Burnaby – both on and off the water.”

Racing will take place from 7am on Saturday July 19 and Sunday July 20, concluding each day around 6pm. Spectators are welcome.