Spracklen’s Whisper

Courtesy of Kevin Light Photography

1 August 2022

By Grant Sommers

We’ve done this a thousand times before
Boat on gasoline slick, at the catch
And Spracklen’s whisper begins to roar

German’s listen – hear us at their door
Mike smiles, all is well, then lights the match
We’ve done this a thousand times before

Price the barker, calls the burn – hardcore
Canada will put this on their backs
As Spracklen’s whisper becomes a roar

We start fast, every man, every oar
We lay our own wake – true North track
We’ve done this a thousand times before

Then Crothers puts the hammer to the floor
Byrnes, Howard, McCabe – push engine room pack
When Spracklen’s whisper turns to roar

Now they all know we’ve reached their door
Now Brown, Gibson, Csima, Bergen catch
We’ve done this a thousand times before
Hear Spracklen whisper? We hear him roar.

Grant writes: On August 1, 2012, the Canadian Men’s Eight captured the silver medal at the London Olympics. Underdogs to the Brits, they rowed through the hometown crew in the final 500 meters. This would end up being Coach Mike Spracklen’s swan song as Canada’s winningest big-boat Olympic coach of all time with gold medals at the 1992 and 2008 Olympics to go with the 2012 silver at the London Games. We remember, thank you Mike!

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