Victorian Masters State Championships 2018

written by Stefanie Dudczig

SATURDAY

It was a sunny 12.3 degree celsius Saturday morning (it felt more like 6.2) when we arrived at Lake Nagambie for this years Rowing Victoria State Masters Championships. The weather was actually very kind to us with lots of sunshine and warmer temperatures later on in the day.

The racing started off with the Mixed Masters A-B coxed Four consisting of Morgan, Lindsey, Allan and John C., coxed by Derek. They crossed the finish line ahead of Powerhouse by 4 seconds, winning the first (and unfortunately only) Gold Medal for Richmond.

A mentionable race, but no medal involved, was the Male Masters C Eight against Cardinals. A club I’ve never heard of before but according to Kim they had crew members that rowed at the 1980, 1989 and 1991 National Championships in the Men’s Youth Four and Youth Eight.

The boys of our Eight (Dennis, Jon R., Allan, John C., Kim, Alex, Ray, Rob, coxed by me) did well and gave everything, but were unfortunately no match for them. Later we found out that the Cardinal Crew were only training for 14 months!!!!! prior to this event. We had 14 minutes to the start line and a borrowed boat with more spiders than people in it.

Another medal for Richmond came from the crew of Denis, Phil, Guy and Leigh, coxed by Christine in the Male Masters E coxed Four. They secured themselves a Bronze medal beating Bairnsdale and Melbourne Argonauts Composite crews.

More strong performances of Richmond crews included:

  • Christine, Morgan, Guy, Leigh coxed by Denis in the Mixed C Four

  • the Female Masters Club Eight with Yash, Jodie, Dana, Sarah, Christine, Morgan, Lindsey, Cat (Note: she just came to Nagambie for this race! Thumbs up!) and Derek (cox) trying to make up a 19 second handicap.

  • Male Masters Club Fours: Richmond-1 with Allan, Jon, Dennis, John, me (cox) and Richmond-2 with Kim, Alex, Ray, Rob and coxed by Shern (who also just came up for this race…. and the Tahbilk winery).

  • Karen and Michelle making it to the Final in the Female Masters A-B double scull

  • Female Masters A-B coxed Four with Sarah, Dana, Jodie, Yash and Derek (cox)

  • Female Masters Club Quad Scull: Richmond-1 with Michelle, Karen, Kate, Lindsey and Richmond-2 with Sarah, Dana, Jodie, Yash, coxed by Christine.

After a successful race day, Rowing Victoria invited everyone for free drinks to the finish line. They definitely didn’t spare on beers, wine and bubblies. Whilst most drove back to Melbourne for the night, some stayed at the Big4 caravan park in Seymour taking advantage of the walking distance to the Pub and the inflated jumping pillow after 6pm.

SUNDAY

More racing followed on Sunday. It wasn’t cold, it was freezing!!! I finally gave up on squeezing my zootie over 10 layers and decided, that a black jumper with Richmond on the back was more appropriate than a bright orange jacked one of the other coxes were wearing. The sun was shining again, but this time with a bad cross wind. This made attaching the stern to the boatholders at the startline and staying in a straight line for the start quite difficult. Thanks to all the bow and 2 seat people for their endless tapping and backing.

The day started well with the girls of the Female Masters A-B Quad Scull (Michelle, Karen, Kate and Sarah winning) picking up silver, missing out on gold to the Victorian Nationals team.The Male Masters A-B coxed Four (Allan, Jon R., Dennis, John C., coxed by me) got Bronze by beating the second boat of the Argonauts, leaving Gold to Power House and Silver to the Argonauts first boat.

Bronze also for the Female Masters Club Four (Michelle, Karen, Kate, Sarah, coxed by Denis H). Their race had one boat on GO (Latrobe University G crew) and 7 crews with a 25 – 30s handicap. Our girls came solid third with only 1 second behind Melbourne University in second and 5 seconds behind Power House in first leaving two Melbourne crews, 2 Latrobe crews and Yarra Yarra  behind.

The probably most exciting and nerve-wracking race was the Mixed Masters A-B Eight. Michelle in stoke seat lead Karen, Kate, Sarah, Allan, Jon R., Dennis, John C and myself (cox) to a silver medal. Whilst sitting just slightly behind Melbourne for the first 600m of the race Michelle found the turbo button that made us zoom past them in the last 300m finishing in second place 4 seconds ahead of them. You should have seen their faces… shocked to see the Richmond crew overtaking them. Well done everyone!

A last bling for the day came from the composite crew with Latrobe University. The Mixed Masters F Eight with Leigh, Guy, Phil and Denis won silver beating a Argonauts composite crew by 5 second.

More great performances came from the following crews:

  • Male Masters E quad scull with Leigh, Guy, Denis and Phil

  • Male Masters A-B Eight (Dennis, Jon R., Allan, John C., Tim, Kim, Ray, Rob, coxed by me)

  • Male Masters Club Quad Scull (Kim, Alex, Ray, Rob coxed by Christine)

  • Female Masters A-B pair (Lindsey and Morgan)

  • Male Masters C coxed Four (Allan, Jon R., Tim and Dennis coxed by myself). This boy’s did a fabulous job staying next to Power House of the start. It looked promising until the steam started to run out after 250m…..

Check out all results, crews, handicaps  and times here: https://vic.rowingmanager.com/?results;regatta=3799;club=356

GENERAL COMMENTS and THANK YOUs

Kim our Richmond cameraman on site, was full in action taking footage of the mens Eight and Men’s four whilst racing. I’m pretty sure that we will see some of the actions shots at our soon upcoming presentation night.

Denis Henry is the man with the most medals won at this Regatta (silver and bronze for coxing, silver and bronze for rowing).

Allan and John C. managed to collect the complete set (one of each: gold, silver and  bronze).

Big “Thank you” goes to:

  • Phil, Kim and Christine for volunteering as Boat holders at the start line. Kim unfortunately missed out on this unique job as there were more than enough people in his session.

  • Leigh for pulling the trailer to Nagambie and back

  • Tim and Barry for organizing boats, crews, people and for being there for us.

Ahhh… and I nearly forgot one of the highlights of the whole Regatta: the BBQ food van. OMG! This brisket and pulled pork burgers were AMAZING! Ask John C. for the full tasting experience as he managed to sample everything. And I think we all agreed that the pulled pork loaded potato was the winner of the whole menu. We are looking forward to see them again at future regattas.

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