Up for my first regatta in quite a while at Footscray some nerves creeping in on the drive in, also not knowing how to get there in traffic not helping.
The weather looks overcast with a chance of rain in the morning which is nearly over as I’m not racing until 12.40 so arriving at 11.00 finding the Richmond boat trailer and fellow crew members. As we walked along the river it was easy to find the Richmond tent and oarspersons with black and yellow everywhere well setup and nice shelter from the cold.
Our first podium Gold and Silver came with the male D grade coxed four a bit of a battle between coxswains there. The male master’s quad scull was a eye opener for me as we gave the Powerhouse crew a 4 second start and was not able to catch them, not sure how that works as the crew looked pretty polished.
I think it was race 97 with the Mixed Coxed Scull getting the boat in the water with assistance from Guy when Christine had an unfortunate connection with an oar. The medics were quick onto the scene with Guy to assist. Chris recovered well and kept on rowing.
Then our Male Masters Coxed Four race, third last race of the day. We being an E grade had a nine second start which I thought was pretty good over 800. Two B crews Richmond and Bairnsdale tried to catch us but we made it to the line in front with Denis struggling in the 2 seat with the rigger coming loose in the last 200 mtrs.
The mixed coxed eight was the last race for the day but no more success.
Time to pack up the trailer and sort the boats out which is quite a lot more work than I remember but with everyone pitching in it gets done. Thanks to Kathy for the very welcome banana cake.
Off home and the traffic was a bit ordinary for that time on a Saturday evening, I think there was an event on at the showgrounds which slowed things down. I hope Tim didn’t have too much trouble getting over to Essendon, awesome job by our trailer driver and helpers who make it all possible.
Run for the kids and the Grand Prix was on Sunday so getting to Essendon from Mentone was going to be a bit tricky, I knew to avoid the city and took the long way around. No problem there so looking forward to another day of racing even being a bit sore after Saturday’s racing.
Essendon has not got the wide open spaces like Footscray so everything is all a bit closer including the course.
They call it a sprint course to me it is equivalent to a 100 metre foot race go hard and fast and don’t keep anything in reserve. This for me is a bit different coming from the distance running that I’ve been used to.
There again was the easy to find Richmond tent with everyone being involved with the regatta by cheering or helping with rigging or whatever needed to be done. Also the amount of planning and organizing that’s done is, I think incredible.
First race won was the Male D grade coxed four winning the 2nd heat.
Next race won by the Female D grade coxed quad scull with Catherine, Susanna, Iluka, Stefanie and Sarah bringing home the Gold. Second place went to our other Richmond crew of Theresa, Hannah, Karissa, Christine and Sue.
Second last win for Richmond was the Female Masters Coxed Four won by Hannah, Stefanie, Susanna, Iluka and Sarah over the Essendon/ Barwon crew.
Last win for the day was the Mixed Coxed Quad Scull with Jennifer, Christine, Denis, Leigh and Laurent. This I believe was a special win in two regards as it was Christine’s first win as an oarswomen for Richmond and that it was powered by two couples, great stuff.
At the end of the day pack up the trailer and head for the shed, and again it does not seem too hard when everyone pitches in and helps. Back at the club it’s a hive of activity getting the boats and all gear off the trailer then washed, and put back in the racks. No banana cake today but there was a couple of beers to help celebrate and finish up a great weekend of rowing.
By Phil Munson