If you haven't already read The Boys in the Boat, I highly recommend it. Rumor has it that a movie is in the works, to be directed by Kenneth Branagh. The official German footage of the race was directed by Adolf Hitler's favorite director, Leni Riefenstahl, as part of what was to become the documentary of the games, Olympia. Riefenstahl was the first director to use slow-motion and tracking (i.e., the use of multiple cameras moving alongside, or "tracking," the action) in a documentary - techniques now taken for granted and even expected. Although originally intended to be a propaganda film designed to showcase the dominance of the Thousand Year Reich, Germany's hoped-for dominance of amateur sports on the world's greatest stage was upended by the performances of Jesse Owens and the US eight-oared shell.
2016 marks the 80th anniversary of the US eight gold medal at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. To commemorate the event, and to honor the "Boys in the Boat," we have released a T-shirt celebrating the victory. The design is simple and understated, just crossed oars with the year 1936 and USA imprinted in navy blue on an athletic gray T-shirt, the simplicity in keeping with the poise and demeanor of the championship crew. To represent the United States at the Berlin Olympics was an incredible accomplishment for a boat consisting of the sons of loggers, shipyard workers and farmers. The final race, before a crowd of over 75,000 spectators was one of the closest finishes in Olympic history, with the United States taking the gold medal with a time of 6.25.4, Italy the silver medal with a time of 6.26, and Germany finishing in third place with a time of 6.26.4.
With the ringing in of 2016, the entire crew at Scull Gear wishes all of you a happy and successful new year. Following on the heels of the successful launching of our new website in 2015, and the positive feedback received from both customers and browsers, we are excited about the prospects for Scull Gear for the coming year. Four new T-shirt designs (our “Spring Collection” as they say in the trade) will be rolled out in February, just in time for the racing season.
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook or visit our website for teasers on the new designs and release dates. January will see the release of a T-shirt honoring the “Boys in the Boat” and the 80th anniversary of the incredible victory of the USA eight at the 1936 Olympics. January will also mark the release of Scull Gear’s first sweatshirt and hoodie, a simple design commemorating the 1936 Olympics with the now classic Scull Gear logo on the back.
Over the past few months we have located copies of several out-of-print and hard-to-find photography and art books celebrating the history and visual beauty of the sport, both here and abroad. We will also be adding copies of rowing fiction to the Bookshelf. This year, we will also launch what we think is an innovative partnership to assist rowing programs at all levels in their fundraising efforts. More details will be released as we get the program ramped up.
With that said, we look forward to a busy new year and the opportunity to provide the rowing community with well-made, stylish brand of casual rowing apparel.