All posts by Karen Doggett

Quiz Night Fundraising Success

For those of you not on Facebook you may have missed this comprehensive write up of Saturdays great fundraising quiz night success and I didn’t want anyone to miss out, so find it copied below. Along with this chronical came the daily trivia teasers leading up to the event and all the behind the scenes efforts to make the night a triumph and I wanted to offer my personal thanks to everyone who contributed to keeping the annual RRC fundraiser a fun night not to be missed. Look out for news here on how the funds will be spent to directly benefit the members of the club.

“I lost my virginity again on Saturday night, hosting my first ever trivia night. And even before I got to the first question, we lost the answer sheets and the table round questions (quotable quotes). I swore, as I do in these situations, walked around the room a few times until Dave appeared with a ream of paper. Crisis averted.

It was a nervous start: rules were read and rehearsed jokes fell flat. The warm up served it purpose, pin pointing the location of the drinkers, and those not on facebook. It was a bit long winded and the punters were starting to get restless, they just wanted the trivia.

Round one, Arts and Entertainment. I was told the night before the questions were too easy. After only a few questions, it was obvious this may not be the case. However, by the middle of the round, most teams looked to be answering questions. I relaxed, and we started to hit the groove. That was until I read out the answers at the end of the round.

Question eight, the hecklers started; the team not on facebook (known herein as the minority) . Yes, I stuffed up, most first timers do. They questioned, I defended, they questioned back (with interest), I conceded, they offered to Google, I conceded again, they muttered words and shook heads. Question retracted. They were hear to play.

The highlight was the round was the karaoke. Three great renditions of Valarie, Throw your arms around me and Life on Mars. I was impressed, and so were the punters. Bonus points awarded to the brave.

We broke for the Auction. Derek kicked off the first round superbly, raising over $1K with the five items on offer. Things were looking up.

Round two, Melbourne. After a fairly even first round, teams would falter on their knowledge of Melbourne. If only they were tourists, trawling for background on the city they would soon visit, they would have nailed every question.

The minority skipped away with a solid round. Despite their lead, they continued to heckle and question. Yes, Archer did win the cup twice, but he won the first in 1861 not 1862. If I wanted the year the second Melbourne Cup was run, I would have asked for it.

I hand the keys over the Derek and head to the bar to buy a beer.

Derek took to the floor for round two of the auction. The prizes were bigger this round and so were the bids. The big one was the hall hire. It went for $950. The clubs jewel in the crown became the five bedroom weekender, and as the bids increased, the committee collectively smiled.

Round three, general ignorance. A not so flattering photo of Trump brought a chuckle among the crowd. Several drinks into the night, the crowd was starting to catch up with the lads at the back of the room.

The questions were bastards. The type that sit on the tip of the tongue but you can never spit them them out. What is Donald Trumps personal twitter handle? Where was the Titanic built? Right royal bastards.

The answers were read out, fists pumped and cries of anguish were heard as each way bets proved the difference between right and wrong. The elephant in the room arrived during this round on the back of the Grand Old Party. Two out of seven teams walked away with the bonus points.

The minority were at it again. Neptune is a gaseous planet not terrestrial, according to NASA, and I am guessing they know a bit about these sorts of things. And by the way, when the question asks for four planets, don’t list six to cover all options. Oh dear, the quiz master is having difficulty in adding up their scores correctly. I have always been bad with numbers.

Round three of the Auction and Derek is working the room raising more than he should on items lost on their owners. This is what the auction is all about. By the end of the round he will have raised over $4K for the club. A great nights work.

Round four, sporting glory. The final round starts with a slide of the Australian mens heavy weight four catching a massive crab mid race at Lucerne. We are all human after all.

It’s a fun round with most teams fairing well. However, some responses left me feeling that sporting knowledge is not on the agenda for some people. Perhaps they have given up, and their intention was to make me laugh. It certainly worked. There is no question that Gough Whitlem was a remarkable person, however, I am not sure he managed to kick the goal that put Australia into the 2006 World Cup.

The final answers are given, and for the first time of the night, the minority remain silent.

Dave runs the sit down game and we raise a bit more cash for the club. We complete the night by announcing the minority as the winners by a slender margin of two points. They come forth to claim their prize, winning the tiger and refusing to accept it’s birth certificate. It remains behind the bar.

It’s been a good night for the club. We have raised over $6K for new equipment which helps keep members in new boats and in the medals.

If the truth be told we were all virgins tonight. It’s was also Derek’s fist time as an auctioneer and Dave’s organising the event. Following on from the master Justin was going to be tough, but I think we did alright.

See you all next year.”

Simon Crunden

Shiny New Boat (and it’s first win!)

Thanks to everyone who put forward suggestions for the name of our newest RRC fleet addition. As a committee we thought long and hard about the choice for this new boat. It is a brand new Sykes coxed quad/four for women that will no doubt get extensive use and be with the club for many years to come (if we look after it very well! – please). As a result we believed it was important to name it after a person who embodies the Richmond Rowing Club spirit and who has contributed throughout many years, continues to do so today and hopefully will continue for many years to come, so it is my pleasure to announce it is to be named the Dennis Beck.

Dennis has been a smiling face around the club for many years and has been an active and very successful rower, representing RRC at state and national levels. Most current members will know him as regular coach, cox and substitute extraordinaire happy to jump in and fill a seat or do what is necessary to ensure crews get on the water and have fun. He is never far away when we call for a volunteer to BRO at regattas, serve drinks on the bar, or man the BBQ. Along with this he has served on the committee in the role of captain and been a constant helpful hand at the club. The current committee believe he is very well deserving of this honour.

Dennis collageCan you recognise the man throughout his RRC career? and some other familiar faces.

I was delighted to be at the club with the man himself when the shiny new boat was delivered just over a week ago and also very proud to be involved in its maiden voyage at Nagambie last weekend. Now just over a week old the brand new boat has received its first bling with a successful row on Saturday with the WC4X+ winning through a heat, semi and the final to take out the title at Australian Henley.

Let’s hope for many more successes in this beautiful boat (and with some more fundraising maybe we can buy another one 😉 – don’t forget to buy your Quiz night tickets for 18th March now).

WC4X+ Aus Henley Champions
WC4X+ Aus Henley Champions – Sophie, Karen, Gerri, Ainsley and Mike N (cox)


Ballarat and Nagambie Sprint Regattas

After a great weekend at training camp on the Yarra on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd January, rowers, coaches and coxes were ready to test their skills at sprint races.

On alternating weekends from the camp weekend the RRC trailer has been making hauls up highways to get boat to regattas.

The first sprint regatta was endured at Lake Wendouree, Ballarat on Sunday 5th February. Now Ballarat is a regional centre with lots of attractions to bring visitors. The very picturesque lake is bang in the middle of town. So any reasonable person could be enticed into wandering around its perimeter to take in the sights and sounds of a lake. But rowers have a much stronger sense of foreboding when entering the environs of the lake for a regatta. And so we encountered another day of violent winds tearing hats from heads, tipping tents over and generally threatening un-tethered boats with some airborne adventures.

Once crews got on the water and up to the starting line, they quickly realised they weren’t in rowing races, but in surf boat races! A hearty cheer to the coxes, who handled the inclement weather, and got their crew on the start line, and then over the finish line.

The wind was not all that was to be endured. A persistent rain storm descended and made the last few races a visual mystery as the mist of rain completely obliterated any view of boats after they left the floating pontoons.

Despite all that Ballarat threw at us, some crews took home some medals.

 Wins for RRC crews

Men’s D Grade Coxed Four - Allan, Jon, David, Laurent coxed by Stef
Men’s D Grade Coxed Four – Allan, Jon, David, Laurent coxed by Stef, with coach Dennis


Female C Grade Coxed Four - Ainsley, Karen, Geri, Michelle coxed by Schoolgirl supersub Kiara
Female C Grade Coxed Four – Ainsley, Karen, Geri, Michelle coxed by Schoolgirl supersub Kiara
Female C Grade Double Scull - Ainsley and Geri
Female C Grade Double Scull – Ainsley and Geri

The next regatta was at Nagambie, a lake created by a very determined politician (with a strong involvement in rowing!) to ensure ongoing business for a small country town. So the lake is very serviceable for rowers, but even successful politicians can’t guarantee the weather conditions to suit rowing.

On our visit on Sunday 19th February the weather was not best suited to our needs. But rowers are trained to tackle the situation they find themselves in. The start line umpires had good technique in getting all crews in a race up to the line together for quick starts.

Once again the skies opened in the latter part of the day and delivered a good amount of water. But just as quickly it all moved away and the sun shone down on us again.

A great day of racing was run with RRC having many crews in many races ranging from D to B grade. Some improvement in times for crews not getting over the line first and great times for other crews showing a real pick up in performance. A few medals made their way back down the Hume in RRC bags.

Wins for RRC crews

Winners are grinners! Nagambie Men’s D Grade Coxed Four, coxed by Stef, Stroked by Allan, followed by Jon, Dave and Laurent.
Winners are grinners!
Nagambie Men’s D Grade Coxed Four, coxed by Stef, Stroked by Allan, followed by Jon, Dave and Laurent.

The RRC rowers are very grateful to the people who organise their attendance at regattas from entering the crews in Rowing Manager, creating the boatloading plan, ensuring all crews are allocated the best boat available and have the right equipment. Not forgetting our BROs (boat race officials – Barry at Ballarat and Allan at Nagambie) volunteers that are required at all regattas we attend as a club. To the rowers, their attendance at boat loading and unloading, are pivotal activities to ensure the continuation of regatta attendance.

Well done everyone!!

By Anthea and Piyada

Yoga for Rowers- Starting Tuesday 21st Feb 6.30am

Screen Shot 2017-02-13 at 5.09.02 PMFrom Tuesday 21st February we will be offering weekly yoga classes at the boathouse.

  • Running from 6.30-7.30am (every Tuesday for 6 weeks).
  • $15 cash paid before the class starts (pay per class/per week – no 6 week commitment required up front)
  • Bring your own mat if you have one (club has a selection in the gym cupboards)

The classes will be focused around building core strength and developing overall flexibility with the main goal to balance out the intense training rowers do. A consistent yoga practice can create bodies more resilient to injuries and the long-term stress rowing and training for rowing puts on the body.

We hope this will be a popular training addition to your schedule and after 6 weeks we will decide whether to extend the classes. All practitioners MUST sign a waiver before commencing their first class and inform the instructor if they have any injuries, medical conditions or other things that might impact on yoga. So please ensure you arrive with plenty of time to sign the waiver and set up ready to start at 6.30am on Tuesday and have $15 cash (correct money appreciated).

For more information and what to expect watch this video clip, prepared by Therese (certified yoga teacher, controlled strength coach and founder and owner of The Inner Warrior) who will be running the classes.


Boathouse security

On Tuesday morning, whilst some members were out rowing some cash was stolen from the MLC office.   Apparently thieves have been targeting the boatsheds, with reports of computers and money being taken from other clubrooms.
Please can I remind you to close all doors behind you and ensure you keep the change room doors locked at all times and if you are erging alone in the gym please keep the gym door shut for your safety.
If you see someone you do not recognise acting suspiciously and you feel safe to do so ask them who they are and what they are doing. Please report any suspicious people to the committee – preferably with a photo if you have your phone on you and it’s safe to take a pic !!!

Regatta Fees

We hope the following information assists members’ understanding about regatta fees
1.  Seat Fees – are charged by RV and on-charged on the basis of regatta entries approved by the Head of Rowing.  If rower changes are made subsequent to finalisation of entries the rower may negotiate a refund with the replacement rower, not with the club.
2.  Overhead Costs include:
  • tow vehicle hire (if applicable)
  • tow vehicle fuel
  • bookkeeper’s invoicing costs (new this year)
3.  Overhead Fees per Rower are estimated prior to the regatta and divided by the number of rowers entered by Richmond
  • the member who tows the boat trailer is exempted from overhead fees in lieu of vehicle wear and tear, tolls, and extra time/responsibility for towing club property
  • members who only cox (ie don’t row) are exempted from overhead fees
  • any trailer charges to other clubs (as known at the time invoices are raised) will be deducted from overhead costs on-charged to our members
4.   Accommodation Costs (where organized by the club) will be totaled and divided by the number of people using the accommodation.
Please contact the Treasurer if you have any questions.

HoTY 2016

Head of the Yarra has been and gone for another year with close to 2300 competitors in 255 eights taking part in the 8.6km race up the Yarra from Birrarung Marr to Hawthorn Rowing Club. The club had an impressive number of members participating across the day either rowing in our club and composite crews or coxing some of the visiting crews. This year we entered 2 of our own crews but had representation in another 6 boats across the day.

As one of the first races in the morning, the Richmond D Grade women’s eight put in a solid effort down to Hawthorn despite the difficult traffic conditions and we managed a clean run down past Big Bend before running into trouble. The rowing gods however turned against us but thanks to Mike’s expert coxing, both the boat and crew all made it to the finish line in one piece despite a few knocks and collisions along the way. With a last minute sub, our crew consisted of Kathy Macrow, Karin Bouvin, Vicki Brennan, Jodie Naisbitt, Dana Hill, Piyada Pravitharangkul, Gabriella Ibbott, and Yash Vegi.

After a spot of lunch and a hydrating glass of wine or two, we pottered across to the Yarra to watch other crews and wait for the Men’s D Grade eight to appear around the bend. After a few false alarms (seriously how many clubs have yellow zooties) the men’s crew coxed by Shern powered past us looking far more refreshed than I had felt at the same point. The men’s crew was made up of Laurent Demay, George Frederiksen, Jon Roberts, Allan Randall, Charlie Burke, Andrew Yuile, Guy Ayres, Michael Calvert and David Micallef.


Keeping with Richmond tradition, after the river reopened the women’s eight’s rowed back in costume- this year’s theme being animal fancy dress. Thanks to everyone who participated in getting all Richmond crews on the water and to our volunteer/cheersquad BRO, Stef Dudczig and some pretty great photography credits Tim Evans and Michael Gehling.


Dana Hill

The time is near for new year…

Celebrate New Years Eve with great friends and unrivalled views of the city’s midnight fireworks from our very own clubhouse deck.


We will be opening the doors and the bar of the boathouse at 8pm on NYE to ring in 2017.

Tickets are just $40 for members and $50 for non members with all proceeds going directly to the clubs fundraising goal of new gym equipment. Tickets are on sale now so purchase them before you miss out!



Melbourne Head 2016

Richmond again showed their worthy credentials at the Melbourne Head regatta. Variously referred to as the “Head Racing Championships of Australia”, and a curtain raiser for the Head of the Yarra on the following week, the race nevertheless is a unique opportunity in the season to demonstrate our prowess on home “surf”, among an enlarged competition from across Australia.img_8492

Richmond claimed line honours in the mixed and masters categories, with Lindsey & Dennis Beck, Rochelle Stokes and Michael Gehling (yours truly) outsmarting the competition in what was meant to be a casual, social quad… with that intention overridden by competitive spirit, in typical Richmond style. Speaking of typical Richmond style, Carolyn Manning overcame a fierce field, as well as a tangle with an octuple scull, to take line honours too!


The day started with the Men’s Eight raising the curtain on their Head of the Yarra appearance the following week, with solid efforts backed up by Allen Randall, George Frederiksen, Jon Roberts and Laurent Demay in the Club Four competition and Michael Calvert, Andrew Yuile, Dave Micallef, Charlie Burke in the Club coxed quad, with Shern Timmins and Sarah Houghton expertly navigating down the familiar waters. James Attenborough, Ka Ki Wong, Todd Marshall and Alexander Reid also joining the Quad race, admirably rounding out the field in their first ever regatta. Andy Harrison and Ivan Gushchin also represented us well, coming mid-field in the single sculls.


Richmond’s masters’ men also kept the competition on their toes, with Leigh Sullivan, Guy Ayres, Denis Henry and Phil Munson, coxed by Chris Sullivan, cruising over the line with a solid mid-field placing.

Richmond was well represented by its female contingent in the Double Sculls, with Stef Dudczig & Sarah Houghton, Ally Dejaegher & Suzie Mullner with Jodie Naisbitt and Vicki Brennan all competing in the doubles. The club coxed quad sculls competition also saw a great turnout from Richmond. Gabriella Ibbott, Dana Hill, Karin Bouvin and Da Pravitharangkul, coxed by Stef Dudczig, fought off Suzie Mullner, Morgan Chandler, Ally Dejaegher and Chris Sullivan, coxed by Laurent Demay. Sophia Robinson, Ainsley Raggatt, Karen Doggett and Lisa Ortu, coxed by Mike Numa, took out an admirable third over the 3.5k course.


Afterwards, Richmond threw open the doors, and the bar, for a post regatta barbecue. Thirsty rowers, old hands and new friends lapped up the view, rounding out a beautiful, clement and successful day for the race and the club.

img_8473By Michael Gehling

Some more good news

Were you at the club on Saturday? It was the perfect day for soaking up the sun, enjoying Melbourne Head and a BBQ on our great deck (regatta report to come). Just as we have been making use of our beautiful venue you may have noticed that it is a popular spot for private function hire. The hard work of our facilities co-ordinator Lucy, and the rest of the committee, has seen the club as a whole benefit from the income generated from the use of our boathouse since its redevelopment. We are very happy to reinvest some of the profits made from the facility back into the rowing program and as a result have placed an order for a BRAND NEW Sykes boat!

The new Kevlar bow coxed quad/four Mould 10 will be a top of the range addition to our fleet and with 6 quads on the water at the same time on Saturday it will no doubt be a useful resource. It comes with quick release riggers enabling adaptability and easy storage on our new racking system. It will not arrive until the new year but in the meantime we are calling upon you, the members to suggest a name for it. Please submit all suggestions to and the committee will choose a winner, whether it be in honour of a person or a creative novel suggestion.

As we move into the busy Summer and festive season we will be continuing to book out our boathouse for functions to ensure we maximise our potential for income to enable us to continue to build RRC and we thank all members for their understanding. Please make sure you are aware of what is going on by checking our online calendar.