For some, the morning of Head of the Goulburn started early with the drive to Nagambie. For others, we simply rolled out of our expertly assembled tents for a leisurely breakfast. The nerves started to kick in just as the wind started to pick up.
All the crews started to assemble at Nagambie Lakes Leisure Park as the push off point before a leisurely paddle down towards the start line. Once through Chinaman’s bridge it was a solid 7.2km race down to the finish line at Tahbilk Winery. The thrill of the chase spurring us on, even when we might not have believed our Cox’s calls about how close we were to the next boat.
The day turned into a stunner once we were out at the winery and able to swap carrying the boat for a glass of sparkling. The cheers for Richmond at the winners announcement were definitely some of the loudest and for good reason.
The men’s 4 of Jon, Allan, Michael C and Michael G cleaned up their category with Laurent coxing. My own marvellous quad managed to hunt down Bendigo thanks to Rosie’s direction, with Ally, Lucia and Shern’s efforts. What a way for Lucia to say goodbye to Australia by winning a medal. Special mentions to Michelle’s open single scull efforts, and John’s medal for his D grade single.
The party kept going back at the caravan park, with some going for a dip in their zooties in the lake. Another round of Articulate thanks to Ally before off to bed to seek out more wineries in the morning.
Thanks to all for a fabulous weekend, particularly Tim for organising, Barry for boat towing and our mystery boat unloaders. I can’t wait to hear how Richmond goes at Melbourne Head and HOTY!
This very popular regatta runs along the Goulburn river, starting at Chinamen’s Bridge near Lake Nagambie and finishing at the beautiful Tahbilk winery. Known as the ‘Bridge to vines’ regatta the atmosphere at the finish line is worth the effort of racing to get there, with wine tasting, bbq and music on offer. A very popular regatta.
I was pretty excited about donning the Richmond Zootie for the fist time and tried hard to quell the accompanying ball of nerves; a mixture of fear and anticipation of my first race in years!
The drive up to Nagambie was pretty quick allowing time for a desperately needed coffee. It was opening up to be a cracker of a day, the sun promised to beat down hard and strong. Coffee was followed by the boat unloading and rigging ritual, lots of standing about waiting, “stretching”, a couple of nervous pees and the application of several litres of sunblock by all.
We finally got on the water and everyone seemed to be in mode. It finally felt like we had it together, we were a proper crew. It felt amazing heading into our first race knowing we had improved so much and this was our chance to prove it, if not to everyone else, but at least to ourselves.
Derek was cracking jokes about the starting official out in a tinny with his dog and then boom we were off and there was no time to think it was just one stroke into the next building to a steady rhythm.
I’d be lying if I didn’t confess that the most appealing reason and subsequent motivator for the Head of the Goulburn was the fact it ended at a winery. Apparently it is the only such regatta in the world!
We only had one other competitor in our Womens D grade 8 and with a rolling start it was a challenge to catch them. We passed a men’s 8 and a men’s four which was really motivating.
I freaked out when I saw the 3km sign thinking “What?!? Seriously?!? We’ve only gone 3km?!” followed by a mental sigh and stern words to push through it! I almost felt like doing a lay down Sally. I pulled myself together and kept pushing. The 2km sign came up and I simultaneously felt incredibly silly and awfully relieved that it was the home stretch. Optimism crept in, Derek’s calls kept us going and we finished strong.
We hadn’t really trained much together as a crew so all things considered we did really well and finished on a tired high!
RRC had lots of crews in the race and everyone did Richmond proud!
Carolyn was asked to row with a Masters E Quad only one week before the race. They were the fastest Masters female quad on raw time and were faster than theMelbourne female quad crew who won in C grade, so a great result! And, they had only been on one training row as a crew with Tom prior to the race.
A special mention to the Mens D four with Robert in bow seat, Ben in two, Raymond in three, Devindhe as stroke, and Sarah R as the coxwain. This crew performed exceptionally well, winning their race.
Congratulations to the winning crews and a great effort all round by all who participated. Bring on next years Head of Goulburn!
By Sarah Houghton
Richmond had a impressive number of entries and an equally impressive results list.
The fastest Richmond crew on the day was the FD8+ who won their division in a time of 30:23 overtaking all their competitors along the course. Sophie, Karen, Ainslie, Kate C, Amanda, Michelle, Rochelle and Kate D were coxed to success by Mike Numa with coaching credit going to Simon Crunden and Dennis Beck. Dennis Beck did not stop there though earning himself a coxing medal with the male D quad, Micheal G, Micheal C, Charlie and Dave who pulled him along the course in 33:13.
Completing the Richmond domination in D grade the WD4+ of Emily, Amy, Cat and Lindsey coxed by Derek won their race in 35:31. With another Richmond crew in the WD4+ and more crews also in the MD8+, WD4X+, MM4X+ and FM1X Richmond certainly showed a strong presence on the river and then back on land as we enjoyed the celebrations and the fruits of our hard work at the finishing line at Thabilk winery.
Another great day for the club and a huge thanks to all those who helped make it happen especially Pete Schouten for safely delivering our boats.