Meet your new captain, Luke Scott Towner. Born in Canterbury in 1990, the 26 year old Herne Bay resident grew up with rowing in his blood and now the captain of HBARC (for a second time) has answered a few questions so you can find out more about him.

Luke Towner - Herne Bay Captain 2017

What town did you grow up in and where were you born?
I was born in Canterbury, live in Herne bay but my family and I moved to Spain for three years when I was 10yrs old.

What do you like to do in your spare time, other than rowing?
I like watching a lot of films. My all-time favourite is Spartacus (1960’s version with Kirk Douglas).

Do you have any pets?
Yes. I have a dog called Nola. Although she’s becoming my mum’s dog now, I’m still her favourite!

You have recently achieved a qualification in tree surgery, congratulations! What is the qualification and how are you using it?
Yes I passed tree felling, tree climbing and cutting courses. I plan to start up a tree surgery and landscaping business.

What age did you start rowing?
I think I must have been about six or seven years old. We used to have a beach hut and I remember my granddad turning up with a sculling boat on his shoulder. He taught me the basics one summer then I never got back into a boat until I was 15.

Having been brought up with rowing, what's your favourite thing about the sport?
There's always room for improvement. There's nothing better than spending the summer with a crazy bunch of people, improving, racing and hopefully winning races and then celebrating.

What got you into rowing?
Whilst I was in Spain I played a lot of basketball and continued to play when I moved back to England. But when school was finished I had nothing to do. As my granddad and mum had done so well in their rowing in the past, I decided to give it a go. All the basic training my granddad had given me nearly 10years previous all came flooding back and I picked it up quite easily.

Which famous celebrity do you aspire to and why?
I'd rather be myself!

Now that you're Captain, what skills/learnings/experience /values will you bring to the club?
I just want everyone to enjoy themselves. People don't want to put the training and effort into things they don't enjoy. If a crew or individual is really enjoying the sport then that's when the good results start coming on regatta days.

I understand that you were previously captain between 2010 to 2011. How did you find that experience?
I was only 20/21 years old at the time so it was hard to get people older than me to see my point of view at first. But there was a prize given to at least one crew every regatta so I guess it wasn't that bad! Although I did fall asleep in the bath for the second biggest regatta of their year...

And how will this time be different?
Bath ban on the morning of regattas for a start! We will see. I have been away from the club most of last year so I need to see who we have and what their strengths are first and go from there.

Finally, do you have a top tip to give someone who is looking at starting up rowing for the first time? Yes. Be willing to do a lot of waiting around! Once you get in a boat you'll realise why we all get addicted to the sport. Every outing is different so stick with it!

Great advice, Luke! Here’s to a great year and hopefully more, as captain of HBARC.