Footscray and Essendon Regattas 2019

Some of us started the day of Footscray thinking, ‘What on earth have I gotten myself into, this is my first regatta with Richmond I definitely can’t make a fool of myself,’ and desperately hoped that the piece of toast I was slowing working my way through contained enough energy to help the team cross the finish line at least.

When I arrived, it was comforting to hear that the other members of the team were also nervous, so at least we were all in the same boat- pun intended. We were on the water, having a warm up as the heavens opened and we were faced with the fact that the first few races of the day were going to be in the rain. Even with the questionable conditions, all squads managed to complete their first heats successfully, with many going through to the finals.

The day was an overall success with 3 third places taken out by Charlotte North-Coombes, Imogen Aitken, Kirsty Fergie, Louise Roberts-Bailey with Christine Sullivan as Cox (Female D Grade Coxed Quad Scull), Jon Roberts, Allan Randall, John Carey and Dennis Beck Coxed by Ainsley Raggatt (Male Open Coxed Four) and finally Charlotte North-Coombes in the Female D Grade Single Scull.

5 second places went to Alexander Pupko, Oliver Paterson, Cristian Udovicich and Lachlan Stewart Coxed by Ainsley Raggatt (Male D Grade Coxed Four), Sarah Houghton and Geraldine Goss (Female Open Double Scull), Charlie Burke, Michael Gehling, Kim Begelhole, Richard Healy, Allan Randall, Jon Roberts, John Carey and Dennis Beck Coxed by Christine Sullivan (Male C Grade Eight), Allan Randall, Jon Roberts, John Carey and Dennis Beck Coxed by Christine Sullivan (Male C Grade Coxed Four), and finally to Shern Timmins, Imogen Aitken, Kirsty Fergie and Louise Roberts-Bailey Coxed by Christine Sullivan (Female D Grade Coxed Four).

Sarah Houghton came away with a win in the female D grade Single Scull.

Alexander Pupko, Oliver Paterson, Cristian Udovicich, Lachlan Stewart, Diana Vernon, Sarah Hardy, Saloni Dikshit and Alysia Draper with Christine Sullivan as cox celebrated a row over in the Mixed Coxed Eight.

The crews I was a part of started and finished strong, coming second in the ladies D Coxed Quad Scull heat and winning the Mixed Coxed Eight, which was a fantastic achievement for our first race together as a team. I was pleasantly surprised in my abilities as I hadn’t competed in over three years and was very happy to find such a lovely and supportive group of teammates.

The weather cleared up and we joined the rest of the club at the tent to watch Richmond start their next race. We cheered for the black and yellow crews all the way through to the finish line for the rest of the afternoon. Even if I had only been in the club for a short while, I was very grateful for the opportunity of being a part of the team.

The final race of the day was soon upon us as we carried the coxed eight down to the water. Another successful race completed as we finished first in our category, and we hoped to bring the good luck into the next day further up the river at Essendon.

Another early start, but this time it was filled with a bit more confidence that I wasn’t going to catch a crab and that wearing the club Zootie actually looked quite cool.

I had two more races to compete in, one in a Female D Grade Coxed Quad Scull and one in the Female D Grade Coxed Four. It took us a bit to get used to coxed Four but after a few strokes our boat was well into the race. Even if we didn’t finish first in our final race of the day, there was a big sense of achievement at the end of the weekend regattas.

A second place went to Diana Vernon, Dianna Angus, Anthea Amos, Christine Sullivan, Charlie Burke, Philip Munson, Guy Ayres and Leigh Sullivan Coxed by Ainsley Raggatt in the Mixed Coxed Eight.

The crew that came away with a winner’s medal on the day was the Female Masters Coxed Four with a crew of Diana Vernon, Dianna Angus, Anthea Amos and Christine Sullivan Coxed by Charlotte North-Coombes.

Another brilliant day concluded with having a few beers after the boat unloading. I have made a lot of happy memories by being a part Richmond Rowing Club, and it has made my placement experience even more special. I hope that I can enter another regatta with the team in the future when I eventually travel back down to Melbourne.

Alysia Draper

College rowers around the club and on the water in April

Training for the University of Melbourne intercollegiate regatta has commenced culminating with the regatta day on the May 4th.

It’s worth noting that whilst some crews are ex-school rowers with plenty of experience many have never rowed before and will be getting a crash course in sweep rowing before competing in that first regatta in less than a month.

This year RRC has leased 2 of our 8’s out to the college crews (the Shouten Family and the Jennifer Campbell). The crews are expected to be training regularly on weekday mornings and occasionally over the weekend or other times. However the 8’s will be available to us as part of our regular training sessions in the evenings (Tuesday and Thursday) and on Sunday morning.

With RRC and MLC leasing fleet to the intercollegiate rowing this year there will be a number of new faces around the club over the next month. That’s a lot of potential new members so make them feel welcome.

They have been reminded to use the log book but please check the boats are all on the racks before you lock the RRC shed up.

More information on the intercollegiate various sports including rowing can be found here:
http://www.sport.unimelb.edu.au/CollegeSport

Victorian State Championships 2019

After a long season of training, the Victorian State Championships were held on 3 and 4 March 2019. Richmond were well represented across the day. With temperatures pushing 37 in the afternoon, the new tent was greatly appreciated and looked the envy of all clubs. However the heat was accompanied with strong winds in the morning making conditions tricky, especially for the smaller boats.

The heats of the women’s D grade singles were Richmond’s first events of the day. Competition was strong with 28 entries across 4 heats. Kate Riley, Rosie Dickson-Hoyle and Gypsy Shepherd were all competitive in their races with Rosie progressing from her heat to the final. As a recently joined member it was great to see Kate also backing this up later in the day in the C grade single.

As the morning progressed Dana Hill, Sarah Houghton, Geraldine Goss, Zoe Maxwell and cox Charlotte North-Coombes, took out Richmond’s first win of the day in the D grade women’s 4. A great effort in tough conditions with them leading throughout.

The men’s crews were up next with Alan Randall and Jon Roberts stepping up to compete in the men’s C grade pair. Competitive throughout they finished 4th in a strong field.

The men’s D grade 4 were up next, after a restart Andrew Yuile, Dennis Beck, Michael Calvert and John Carey, coxed by Derek Begg, finished strongly but just outside the medals in 4th place.

Michelle Joy and Kate Dyball finished Richmond’s involvement in the morning session in the A grade women’s double. Leading throughout in the 2km event Michelle and Kate brought home gold with a outstanding performance in this high quality event.

After a well-earned lunch break we were back in action with the events coming thick and fast. Sarah Houghton, Geraldine Goss, Zoe Maxwell, Kate Dyball and cox Michelle Joy represented the club in the heat of the highly competitive C Grade quad.

This was quickly followed by the D grade double with 2 crews of Gypsy and Rosie and Dana Hill and Louise Roberts-Bailey representing Richmond. Gypsy and Rosie won their heat, finishing just outside the medals with a 4th place finish in the final.

Allan Randall, John Carey, Dennis Beck, Andrew Yuile, and cox Charlotte North-Coombes were up next in the C Grade Four. Another strong field saw the crew finish just outside the medals again in 4th place.

The D grade women’s quad was up next Louise Roberts-Bailey, Dana Hill, Rosie Dickson-Hoyle, Gypsy Shepherd and cox: Charlotte North-Coombes made it through their heat into the final. In what felt like a theme for the day, the crew rowed well, but finished just outside the medals in fourth place.

Andrew Yuile and John Carey faced off against a Power House crew in the D Grade pair, taking out the gold medal by just under a second in a close race.

Dennis Beck was back in action in a single, competing in the C grade single late in the day.

The final medal for the day went to Sarah Houghton, Geraldine Goss, Kate Dyball, Michelle Joy and cox Derek Begg, in the B grade quad. Progressing well through their heat, they finished third in the final to pick up the bronze.

Overall a great performance by all involved, with huge thanks to our supporters and coaches that turned up on the day.

RRC Quiz Night Auction Items Announced

The quiz night is less than 2 weeks away – Friday 15th March – hope you have your tickets!! Just to get you excited here is a list of current auction and silent auction items (still happy to receive more Items contact shern.timmins@gmail.com)

 

Can’t be there on the night and see something you like – get someone else to bid on your behalf – remember all proceeds go towards some shiny new boats!

Don’t forget your tickets!!! Tickets are available through Trybooking at https://www.trybooking.com/466963

 

RRC Zooties and Kit

Anyone wishing to compete must purchase a zootie to meet Rowing Victoria’s uniform guidelines. If you are a new member you may be wondering where to get some club kit to demonstrate your Richmond pride and be regatta ready.

The RRC range of kits from theregattashop.com.au includes almost everything RRC you could possibly want or need for the rowing season at Richmond. This includes our competition zootie and then there are multiple other garments available for all that extra training or for just looking great on the bank while drinking coffee. Don’t wait till the last minute or rely on being able to borrow a zootie – it can take some time for the orders to be fulfilled if they are not in stock so make sure you order early.

Go to their club shop to view all the items and place your orders.

Also, if you are new to competing check out this Rowing Victoria guide on being regatta ready – amongst other things it covers uniform requirements (zooties, caps, t-shirts etc) and equipment checks before racing. RV – is your crew regatta ready?

RRC Quiz Night – Friday 15 March 2019 – Tickets available now!!!

The annual RRC Trivia Night is on Friday 15th March. This year we have a swinging 60’s theme. So its time to revamp your flares, dust off your go-go boots and re-arrange your flower necklace, cause the swinging Sixties are coming back to Richmond.
Our quizmaster from afar, Justin Thomas, will again be writing the questions to see who can take home the trophy this year.
Tickets are available through Trybooking at https://www.trybooking.com/466963
We are also looking for items to auction….these could be just about anything…wine, tools, accommodation (especially if you have a holiday house), tickets to concerts, shows or galleries, hampers, sporting goods, jewellery, paintings, ….. the list is endless.
The other thing that is always a winner is the donation of your time which could include things such as Coxing (everyone needs a coxwain), coaching, handyman, babysitting, gardening, painting or if you are a professional then perhaps you could offer you service of expertise for a period of time.
Please have a think and see what you can come up with. All donations will help raise money for the club and will be put towards upgrading our fleet and equipment.
If you have any items to donate or can help out with organising the night please contact Christine with questions or donations at fundraising@richmondrowing.com.au.

Rutherglen Regatta 2019 Review

The majority of us made the Friday escape up to Rutherglen and we all congregated between our accommodation in nearby Chiltern and, naturally, the pub for the first regatta of 2019. Great ‘country’ hospitality was enjoyed on the Friday evening before heads turned to the regatta and Saturday morning was upon us.

Personally I was not sure what I had let myself in for as we arrived at Rutherglen after a short drive at 0700 to mid 20 degree heat – and it was only going to get hotter! Trailer unloading, rigging and racing then commenced.

The Saturday comprised of an 800m course on Lake Moodemere and on Sunday the majority of entries were the same for the 500m course. In total Richmond entered 63 boats (inc finals) and 34 clubs were being represented over the weekend making for some good competition.

The Richmond Saturday performance was strong, with many scratch crews there was a lot of positivity as to what could be achieved over the rest of the coming regatta season. Special mentions and congratulations to those that brought home the medals for the club on the Saturday over 800m: Sarah Houghton Female C Grade Single Scull Michael Calvert, Michael Gehling, Jon Roberts, John Carey, Cox: Charlotte North-Coombes Male D Grade Coxed 4 Male Masters Coxed Quad Philip Munson, Tim Evans, Guy Ayres, Leigh Sullivan, Cox: Christine Sullivan Male Masters D Grade Coxed Quad

As the day progressed the temperatures increased with close attention being made to the heat policy and the reminders to keep hydrated! The new RRC tent looked amazing and provided some much needed shade. Thankfully the lake was on hand to cool off in. By c.1600 Level 3 of the heat policy had been instigated (over 38 degrees) and the final few races were shortened to 500m.

Once the day was over and the boats had been racked the Richmond team made their way back to Chiltern via the off licence. A quick dip in the pool was enjoyed by many and with a couple of beers having been consumed we all headed back to the local pub for dinner. With good food on the menu it was perfect for a group of hungry rowers (and here I enjoyed my first Chicken Parmi, and a few glasses of a local red). The racing and heat had taken its toll on the group and we then made our way back to the motel to get some sleep before the Sunday began.

Again, it was a hot day with enjoyable racing. Congratulations to Gypsy Shepherd who brought home the gold in the Female D Grade Single Scull over 500m on Sunday morning. Aside from the rowing the local winerys were a feature for some over the weekend whether it was between early and late races depending on the draw or on the way home!

For me it was a weekend of many Aussie firsts – first Australian regatta, first Chicken Parmi, first plus 40 degree experience (who knew rowing was even possible at that temp?!) and first, and definitely not last, experience of the Richmond hospitality!

I am sure there are too many people to thank, so at risk of forgetting those who deserve a mention (apologies), thank you to Tim Evans for the organisation, Matt Wilson for the coaching, Leigh and Christine Sullivan for towing the trailer, Shern Timmins for organising the accommodation and Michael Gehling for the photos of the regatta and, of course, all the cox volunteers!

With the first regatta of the season down I am sure many feel inspired to build on their successes and get back on the ergs – I know I do and are very much looking forward to Barwon Regatta on Sunday 27th Jan.

Kirsty Fergie

Upcoming racking work in the boat shed

With the ongoing expansion and improvements to our fleet it is also time for us to update the racking in the boat shed so we are able to accommodate more boats as we continue our growth. The Committee has approved the re-racking of the rear of the RRC shed (the area between the Captains workbench and the 8 racks). So we are able to double rack unrigged boats doubling the capacity of this space.

The works will be taking place during the day time from Monday 21 January for a week. Please be aware people will be working in the shed over this time so access may be a little bit more difficult and please obey any safety signs or instructions.

In order to do this we will be relocating a number of boats to the RRC trailer over this time. We understand this may make it harder to access the fleet for a small amount of time, but the longer term benefits are significant. If you use a boat during this time, please ensure it is returned to where it came from and it is tied down if it is on the trailer.

We need some assistance to relocate boats for the work to happen. Please come along on Saturday 19 January, 9.30am to help out. Many hands make light work!!!

Shiny new boats with deserving names

Thank you to everyone who made it down to the club on Saturday for our Melbourne Head BBQ. It was great to see so many people on water in the glorious weather and all those who came to support.

The great weather allowed us to show off and enjoy our great deck – thank you to everyone who helped organise the BBQ, prepared and cooked the food, served being the bar and generally helped out.

Once all the racing was over we celebrated with the naming of our three brand new boats. As announced at the recent AGM the Committee has purchased a coxless quad/four and a men’s and women’s double/pair. This continues our focus on expanding our fleet with new top of the range boats for our most competitive crews.

To name the boats the Committee sought the input of our members, from all the fantastic ideas it was clear there were three standout names to be recognised. All three have been involved with the club for many years as committee members, volunteers, coaches and rowers.

Our first boat to be named was the men’s double/pair. This boat is named after Anthea Amos. Anthea has been a member for 17 years, joining the club through our learn to row program. She has been an active rower for a number of year and always helps out at our ongoing learn to row sessions to pass on her wisdom. Anthea has also been a Committee member for 7 years, serving as Secretary for 6 years.

The next boat to names was the women’s double/pair named after Geraldine Goss. Geraldine has been a member for over 10 years. She is well-known as an accomplished rower, there is unlikely to be a regatta she hasn’t won and her name is well represented on the clubs honour boards. Whenever possible she also provides coaching to our single scullers to improve their skills. In addition she has been a committee member for 4 years, serving as Fundraising Coordinator and Vice President.

Finally, our new coxless quad/four was name for Barry Campbell. What can I say about Barry, as Captain he tirelessly works to maintain our fleet, source new equipment and improve the rowing shed. Whenever there is a problem with equipment he is there to provide advice. He is now in his 9th year as captain so far and continues to excel in the role. Also a competitive rower in his day, he has been seen on the water more frequently of late, possibly due to newer boats requiring less maintenance…..

Congratulations to Anthea, Geraldine and Barry. It is a well deserved honour for all of you, thank you for all your hard work on behalf of Richmond Rowing Club.

Dimboola Regatta and the Head of the Wimmera 2018

Having missed the Dimboola regatta and the Head of the Wimmera last year I was excited to be on the road for the long trip late on Friday afternoon. For those who don’t know Dimboola is a small country town almost halfway to Adelaide. The Richmond contingent of 13 made it to Horsham on Friday night for some food and refreshment allowing us to bring those who hadn’t been to Dimboola before up to speed with the regatta format.

The Dimboola regatta is a 750m sprint on the almost straight section of the Wimmera River that runs up to the Dimboola rowing club. It is only wide enough for 3 lanes and no transit lanes. The regatta is broken up into brackets of 5 or 6 races at a time every 20 minutes. Crews get on water and assemble just past the finish line, when the previous bracket is complete all crews row up past the start line and wait for their race to be called. Typical of country regattas there is a toggle system for stroke seat to hold to asset lining up boats at the start. With a bend just after the start and one just after the finish it make for an interesting row in singles, double and pairs.

We woke early in Horsham on Saturday morning for our 30 minutes’ drive to Dimboola to rig boats and get ready for the day. We had great conditions all weekend, 25 degrees on Saturday and 29 degree on Sunday, no rain and little wind.

Shern was first up in her single, the locals from Dimboola knowledge of the river allowed them to get away to a good start which although closing this over the race, not enough to win. The Mike’s (Gehling and Calvert) were next up successfully winning their heat in the D grade double with some tidy rowing, they came a close second to a powerful Argonauts crew in the final.

Next up was the Men’s Open 4, with Andrew Yuile unfortunately injured, myself, Allan and John Carey we were joined by our Head of Rowing Tim Evans. I was slightly concerned by Tim’s stretching and complaints of his sore back as we pushed off from the landing, but he said he would be fine. We lined up against an experienced Argonauts crew, with Stef coxing we flew off the start finding ourselves a quarter of a boat length ahead. Extending this slightly by half way, the other crew pushed for home reducing our lead, but with the encouragement of the crowd we lifted to take it home and win by 1.05 seconds.

With the unusual arrangements to get on and off water we decided to stay in the boat for the next 40 minutes until our race in the D grade 4. This time we were up against Argonauts and Melbourne crews. The previous race showed as we let Melbourne get away to a half boat lead, but regaining our composure we pushed through the last 250 meters to win by 4.77 seconds.

The races were coming thick and fast now, with Leigh, Denis, Guy and Phil, coxed by Christine up next in the Male Masters four, but unable to beat a fast Powerhouse crew.

After a quick lunch break and some more rigging of boats we could hear the local brass band starting their residency by the river for all the spectators. Up first was Shern and Stef in the double. After a strong start, they edged into the lead, only to be crashed into by one of their competition. The restart saw their competition again come towards them, with a clash of oars the Hamilton and Alexandra crew capsized their boat, but the third crew in the race had already took advantage and went on to win.

Next up was the men’s D grade 8, the scratch crew of Leigh, Guy, Tim, John C, Mike G, Mike C, Allan and myself, coxed by Christine made it comfortably through the heat with some composed and relaxed rowing. In the final we were up against Melbourne in one of the closest races of the day. Richmond getting a solid start and leading by almost half a length, both crews dug deep with Richmond holding off the fast finishing Melbourne boat by 0.85 seconds.

Mike G had a quick turnaround from the 8 into his single (which required a quick bit of rigging), in a close race he came in second. Myself and Allan zig zagged the unbuoyed course in the pair, beating Melbourne but unable to overcome the experienced Wentworth crew.

Last up for the day Denis, Guy, Phil and Leigh were joined by Wentworth in a composite male masters 8, coxed by Christine. Unfortunately they were not able to claw back enough time to beat the older Powerhouse crew.

After picking up our medals we headed back to Horsham for dinner where we recounted the successes of the day and make sure we were well hydrated for the head race the next day.

We were back to Dimboola the next day for the Head of the Wimmera, a 6.2km head race through the most picturesque area. For this race, all crew are required to get on water and row the 6.2km to the start, line up in order and then race back. It’s a real coxswain’s race, with lots of corners, including 2 very tight no overtaking bends where the right line can save vital seconds.

Richmond had 2 crews competing and one cox helping out another club at short notice. Allan, John C, Mike C and myself were coxed by Stef in the D Grade 4. Through some brilliant coxing from Stef we had an excellent line throughout, overtaking our competition in the first kilometer we pushed on to pass a number of boats and pick up the winners medals at the end.

Leigh, Guy, Denis, and Phil were again joined by Wentworth in the Open 8 coxed by Christine, with a good performed against some stiff competition on the day.

Shern was asked at short notice to cox the Argonauts C Grade 8, who came a close second in their grade and thirst fastest of all crews on the day.

A huge thank you to all those who made it a great weekend in the country, Leigh for towing the trailer, Mike G for being our official photographer. Most of all thank you to Stephen Shepherd who made the long trip for the weekend to BRO on Saturday, completing all requirements he is now a level 1 BRO!!! It’s great to see our new members getting involved like this, we always need to people to help out as BRO’s as we are required to provide a BRO (Boat Race Official) for virtually every regatta we attend. Thank you Stephen.

This really is a great regatta, an opportunity to see part of Victoria you may not otherwise visit and support the country rowing clubs who go to great lengths to organise. Hopefully we will see even more members attending next year.

Jon Roberts