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2012 Australian Rowing Championships

March 5 to 11
Champion Lakes, Western Australia

Follow all the action —
regular reports, image galleries, videos and social media

Rowing Australia media releases

Sunday 11 March:
New South Wales soar to fifth straight King’s Cup
Sunday 11 March:
Queen’s Cup returns home to Victoria
Sunday 11 March:
Tasmania maintain stranglehold on Penrith Cup
Sunday 11 March:
Victoria takes clean sweep in Interstate singles battle
Saturday 10 March:
Lightweight world champions prevail in action packed finish
Saturday 10 March:
Ginn racks up fifth national men’s pair title
Friday 9 March:
Edwards named as Australian Rowers’ Rower of the Year
Friday 9 March:
Olympic champions retain national crown
Friday 9 March:
NSW lines up fifth straight King’s Cup
Friday 9 March:
Watch 2012 Australian Rowing Championships Live and Exclusive
Thursday 8 March:
Photo finish separates the cream of Australian rowing
Thursday 8 March:
Victoria firm favourites to continue Queen’s cup reign
Wednesday 7 March:
Lightweight world champions shine in Perth
Tuesday 6 March:
2012 Australian Rowing Championships
Day 3 (March 7) Preview
Tuesday 6 March:
Olympic champions heat up in Perth
Monday 5 March:
West Australian women lead the way as national championships commence
Friday 2 March:
Perth ready to host national championships

Sunday 11 March

New South Wales soar to fifth straight King’s Cup

New South Wales has equaled its longest ever winning streak in the King’s Cup with a one length victory at Champion Lakes Regatta Centre in Perth.

Their fifth straight victory equaled the feat achieved by New South Wales between 1974 and 1978 and handed the sky blues their 33rd victory in the famous men’s eight interstate race.

Stroked by Dan Noonan, the crew which also featured Fergus Pragnell, Matt Ryan, Nicholas Purnell, James Chapman, Francis Hegerty, Sam Loch, Nicholas Hudson and cox Toby Lister saw Victoria lead through 500m before they turned the deficit around by just 0.3 of a second at 1000m.

The lead had stretched out to over a second entering the sprint to the end and New South Wales powered to the line to finish in 5:49.23, a length clear of Victoria, with South Australia third.

The Victorian crew (Joshua Dunkley Smith, Drew Ginn, Tom Swann, Joshua Booth, James Marburg, Sam Hookway, Will Lockwood and cox David Webster) had to settle for second place once again and will need to wait until 2013 to add their 66th title in the interstate men’s eight.

Noonan said the harmony within the crew had played a major factor in New South Wales’ success.

“That would be our most memorable from the last five years as there was a load of pressure going into the race,” Noonan said. “We knew the Vics would be the best they had been for a few years but the race went to plan.

“We didn’t get out as quick as we have in previous years but we stuck to our guns and had a couple of good pushes through the middle.

“That might be the last race for a few of us for New South Wales and we made mention of that earlier that we didn’t want to let that opportunity go.”

Victoria was awarded the Rowing Australia Cup as the champion state of the Interstate Regatta finishing with 51 points, with Western Australia and New South Wales joint second on 40 points.

Earlier in the Interstate Regatta Victoria won both Interstate single sculls races through Kim Crow and David Crawshay before Western Australia won the lightweight women’s quad scull and Tasmania retained their title in the lightweight men’s four.

New South Wales won both the women’s and men’s youth eights, while Victoria won their eighth straight Queens’s Cup in the women’s eight.

The King’s Cup concluded the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships with attention now turning to the 2012 National Selection Trials at the Sydney International Regatta Centre from March 23–April 1.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Sunday 11 March

Queen’s Cup returns home to Victoria

Victoria has maintained its stranglehold on the Queen’s Cup women’s eight interstate race with another stirring performance at Champion Lakes in Perth.

Victoria’s eighth straight victory in the event also took its tally to 11 victories in 14 since the women’s eight replaced the women’s four in the Interstate Regatta at the Australian Rowing Championships.

Stroked by Phoebe Stanley, the Victorian crew which also featured Kim Crow, Robyn Selby Smith, Katrina Bateman, Lucy Stephan, Emma Webley, Bec Daniher, Alice McNamara and cox Annabelle Orr, finished three lengths ahead of Queensland, while Western Australia filled the last place on the podium.

Victoria burst out of the blocks and asserted their dominance on the field within the opening 20 strokes, before building on their lead throughout the race.

The lead was almost eight seconds with a quarter of the race to go before Victoria crossed the line in 6:41.59, 8.83 seconds clear of Queensland.

Stanley said the crew had always been confident in their own ability leading into the race.

“We have had such a good streak going and that is my fifth in a row so it is great being part of such an amazing group of girls,” Stanley said. “Usually we get a bit of a chance to get the boat on the water ahead of the regatta but we went for our first pre-row last night.

“We had a couple of injuries but the young girls that came in did a wonderful job and got us across the line.”

The women’s and men’s youth eight races were both won by New South Wales in earlier action.

In the women’s youth eight New South Wales led home Western Australia and Victoria, while it was a mirror image result in the youth men’s eight as New South Wales celebrated both titles.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Sunday 11 March

Tasmania maintain stranglehold on Penrith Cup

The Tasmanian lightweight men’s four has continued their stranglehold on the Penrith Cup with a resounding victory today at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships at Champion Lakes, Perth.

The Penrith Cup, which features as the fourth of eight races that make up the annual Interstate Regatta, has been dominated by Tasmania over the last decade and today was no different.

The crew of Tom Gibson, Blair Tunevitsch, Sam Beltz and Anthony Edwards, who are all chasing selection on the 2012 Australian team, led from start to finish to lead home Western Australia and Victoria

The victory, recorded in a time of 6:26.22 and by a length over Western Australia, gave the Tasmanians their 11th victory since 1999.

Tasmania found themselves a half length in the lead early on and ultimately that proved crucial as they held off the fast finishing Western Australia, with Victoria winning the bronze medal.

Edwards said the chance to represent Tasmania in rowing’s ‘state of origin’ was always a special feeling.

“It’s always good to win that event,” Edwards said. “It’s a very prestigious event and our goal in Tasmania is to win that event.

“You get quite nervous before it and you just need to calm yourself down and it was nice to get out of the blocks today and get a half length lead.

“We did it hard today but we did enough to get across the line first and that’s all that counts.”

The Penrith Cup was first awarded in 1958 and remains an integral part of the Interstate Regatta that concludes each Australian Rowing Championships.

In the lightweight women’s quad scull Western Australia were cheered on by a large and parochial crowd to win the Victoria Cup.

The crew of Hannah Jansen, Maia Simmonds, Thea Adamson and Jessica Bowyer broke the race open in the first 1000m and charged towards the line to win in a time of 7:09.67.

Victoria held on for the silver medal while Tasmania occupied the third place on the podium.

Four more races remain in the Interstate Regatta, with the King’s Cup the final race on the program at 11.50am (Perth time).

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Sunday 11 March

Victoria takes clean sweep in Interstate singles battle

Victorians Kim Crow and David Crawshay have given their State the best possible start to the annual Interstate Regatta with victories in the women’s and men’s single sculls at Champion Lakes in Perth.

The Interstate Regatta, which consists of eight races that form the conclusion of the Australian Rowing Championships, allows rowers the chance to compete for their home State and Crow and Crawshay ensured the Big White V of Victoria had the best possible start.

Crow followed up her victory on Saturday in the women’s single scull national title with another resounding victory to win the Nell Slatter Trophy.

Australia’s leading female sculler, who was able to hold aloft the prestigious trophy for the first time, blew the race open in the first 500m and set sail for home.

Crow had built up over a five second lead through the 1500m mark and crossed the line in a time of 8:07.57 to lead home Kerry Hore (TAS) and Pippa Savage (QLD) by two and a half boat lengths.

Crow said there was always a thrill during the Interstate Regatta that gave each athlete an extra boost.

“It’s pretty exciting to have won this event,” Crow said.

“We all love the Big White V. It means a bit extra and also brings a bit more fun than normal.”

Crawshay meanwhile won the President’s Cup men’s single interstate race for the fourth time.

The 32-year-old 2008 Beijing Olympic Games gold medalist made a stirring move over the second half of the race to reel in early leader Jared Bidwell (QLD) and seal the event for Victoria.

Crawshay held off the fast finishing Chris Morgan (SA) to win the race in a time of 7:30.28. with Scott Brennan (TAS) seizing the bronze medal.

The Interstate Regatta will continue this morning with six more races to be contested, with the King’s Cup the last race on the program at 11.50am (Perth time).

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Sunday 11 March

Victoria takes clean sweep in Interstate singles battle

Victorians Kim Crow and David Crawshay have given their State the best possible start to the annual Interstate Regatta with victories in the women’s and men’s single sculls at Champion Lakes in Perth.

The Interstate Regatta, which consists of eight races that form the conclusion of the Australian Rowing Championships, allows rowers the chance to compete for their home State and Crow and Crawshay ensured the Big White V of Victoria had the best possible start.

Crow followed up her victory on Saturday in the women’s single scull national title with another resounding victory to win the Nell Slatter Trophy.

Australia’s leading female sculler, who was able to hold aloft the prestigious trophy for the first time, blew the race open in the first 500m and set sail for home.

Crow had built up over a five second lead through the 1500m mark and crossed the line in a time of 8:07.57 to lead home Kerry Hore (TAS) and Pippa Savage (QLD) by two and a half boat lengths.

Crow said there was always a thrill during the Interstate Regatta that gave each athlete an extra boost.

“It’s pretty exciting to have won this event,” Crow said. “We all love the Big White V. It means a bit extra and also brings a bit more fun than normal.”

Crawshay meanwhile won the President’s Cup men’s single interstate race for the fourth time.

The 32-year-old 2008 Beijing Olympic Games gold medalist made a stirring move over the second half of the race to reel in early leader Jared Bidwell (QLD) and seal the event for Victoria.

Crawshay held off the fast finishing Chris Morgan (SA) to win the race in a time of 7:30.28. with Scott Brennan (TAS) seizing the bronze medal.

The Interstate Regatta will continue this morning with six more races to be contested, with the King’s Cup the last race on the program at 11.50am (Perth time).

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Saturday 10 March

Lightweight world champions prevail in action packed finish

Australia’s lightweight men’s four world champion crew has won the open men’s four national title after a collision marred the end of the race at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships.

A day after Todd Skipworth (WA), Ben Cureton (WA), Sam Beltz (TAS) and Anthony Edwards (TAS) had won Rowing Australia’s 2011 Male Crew of the Year, they were involved in a grandstand finish to the national title.

With less than 100m remaining in the race the three leading crews came together following a steering malfunction that had hindered the crew featuring Joshua Dunkley Smith (VIC), Drew Ginn (VIC), Tom Swann (VIC) and Will Lockwood (VIC).

The Dunkley Smith crew suffered the steering failure after just 200m of the race that repeatedly pushed them towards lane 4, which was occupied by James Chapman (NSW), Bryn Coudraye (SA), Brodie Buckland (NSW) and Tom Larkins (VIC).

It had forced the Chapman crew closer to the world champion lightweight four, resulting in the collision on the run to the line as the lightweights chased victory.

The lightweight four survived the collision to cross the line in first and be awarded the national title.

Beltz said that despite the end to the race, his crew had been really happy with their performance.

“We got off to a really quick start today and managed to establish a bit of a lead early on which helped us out,” Beltz said.

“The end of the race was pretty crazy but we managed to get across the line in first place.

“We were up against the big guys so there was obviously a bit of pressure there but we had a great rhythm out there and we all feel great ahead of trials.”

They remain in strong contention to be re-named as the Australian lightweight men’s four at the 2012 National Selection Trials at the Sydney International Regatta Centre (March 23–April 1).

Daniel Noonan (NSW), Karsten Forsterling (VIC), James McRae (SA) and Chris Morgan (SA) showed why they were crowned world champions in 2011 with a fine performance.

The Noonan stroked crew powered down the course to win the final in a time 6:22.13.

“We have had two really good races here at nationals and we are looking forward to racing the quad at trials in two weeks time,” Noonan said.

“They were really challenging conditions out there but we handled them really well.”

Brooke Pratley (NSW), Kim Crow (VIC), Kerry Hore (TAS) and Sarah Cook (ACT) won the final ahead of Amy Clay (NSW), Pippa Savage (QLD), Dana Faletic (TAS) and Robyn Selby Smith (VIC) in a time of 6:57.84.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Saturday 10 March

Ginn racks up fifth national men’s pair title

Triple Olympic gold medalist Drew Ginn (VIC) continued his excellent build up to the 2012 London Olympic Games by winning his fifth men’s pair national title at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships.

Ginn combined with Joshua Dunkley Smith (VIC) to defend the title they won last year on another scorching day at the Champion Lakes Regatta Centre in Perth.

Ginn and Dunkley Smith, who remain well placed to be considered for selection in the men’s four for the 2012 Australian Rowing Team, recorded a time of 6:33.44 to win the national title ahead of Bryn Coudraye (SA) and Tom Swann (VIC), with James Marburg (VIC) and Brodie Buckland (NSW) taking the bronze medal.

The Victorian duo was in third place through 500m but had moved to the lead by the halfway point before showing their class over the closing stages of the race.

Ginn said the competition amongst the men’s sweep squad was improving everyone ahead of the London Games.

“The sweep squad is really strong and it is great seeing so much competition amongst the group,” Ginn said.

“The mix is changing all the time and it is really important that we keep on supporting each other to ensure our four and eight are really strong.

“We had a better row today and any time you win a national title is a special feeling.”

2008 Beijing Olympic Games gold medalist David Crawshay (VIC) joined Ginn’s success by winning his fifth national title in the men’s single scull.

Crawshay, who had previously won titles in 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2011, came over the top of South Australian Chris Morgan to defend his title, while James McRae finished in third place.

The 32-year-old praised the strength of the men’s sculling group.

“I hadn’t really been thinking too much about the fact that I had never won the single in an even numbered year but my coach seemed to tell me every day,” Crawshay said.

“I thought I had a pretty good start today but with the quality of the field I found myself a tiny bit behind Morgo (Chris Morgan).

“We have such depth in the squad at the moment which puts us in a really good position ahead of London later this year. We all get along great and push each other really hard.”

Kim Crow (VIC) won her second women’s single scull national title with a start-to-finish victory.

Crow, who has won silver medals in the women’s double scull at the past two world championships, crossed the line in a time of 7:37.94, while Pippa Savage (QLD) and Kerry Hore (TAS) also occupied the podium.

The women’s pair title was won by 2011 world championship bronze medalists Kate Hornsey (TAS) and Sarah Tait (VIC).

The duo swept to a three boat length victory over young West Australian pair Hannah Vermeersch and Alex Hagan who backed up their win in the under 23 women’s pair, while Tess Gerrand (NSW) and Monique Heinke (NSW) won the bronze medal.

In racing later today, the Australian lightweight men’s four that won gold at last year’s world championships will race the men’s heavyweight fours, while another Australian world champion crew, the men’s quad scull will also compete.

The 2012 Australian Rowing Team will be named at the conclusion of the 2012 National Selection Trials at the Sydney International Regatta Centre from March 23–April 1.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Friday 9 March

Edwards named as Australian Rowers’ Rower of the Year

Australian lightweight rowing stalwart Anthony Edwards (TAS) has been crowned as Rowing Australia’s Rowers’ Rower of the Year at a ceremony at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships in Perth.

Edwards, 39, became the seventh Australian rower to receive the prestigious honour that was first awarded in 2005.

Edwards was also named in the 2011 Crew of the Year, awarded to the lightweight men’s four also featuring Sam Beltz (TAS), Ben Cureton (WA) and Todd Skipworth (WA) that won gold at the 2011 World Rowing Championships, while their coach Brett Crow picked up Coach of the Year.

The women’s double scull of Kim Crow (VIC) and Kerry Hore (TAS) won 2011 Female Crew of the Year, while Australian Team Manager Ray Ebert (QLD) won the Volunteer of the Year Award.

Edwards, a popular member of the Australian Rowing Team, had won five world championship medals and three Olympic medals, but never a gold prior to the success in Slovenia last year.

Edwards said he was thrilled to receive the award.

“To win an award such as this is very flattering considering there is such a high standard of performance right across the team at the moment,” Edwards said.

“It is very special as is a sign of respect amongst your peers and I am very grateful to receive this.

“As a crew we had such a great year together last year and it is something we really want to build on again this year.

“The feeling amongst the whole shadow squad is extremely positive at the moment and I believe we are in good shape to move forward in 2012.”

The lightweight men’s four were recognised by many pundits as the best performed crew at the 2011 World Rowing Championships in Bled, Slovenia as they soared to gold in emphatic style.

Their winning margin of 1.23 seconds was the largest margin since the 2006 regatta at Eton in England and the first time Australia had triumphed in the lightweight men’s four since 1981.

Rowing Australia President Colin Smith said all award winners were worthy of their tremendous achievements in 2011.

“Anthony Edwards has been one of Australia’s finest rowing servants over the past two decades and the entire team and all of Australia’s rowing supporters were overjoyed at the success of the lightweight men’s four,” Smith said.

“Alongside the gold medals also won by the men’s quad scull and the lightweight men’s eight, it was a very tough decision in separating all three crews in the decision of male crew of the year.

“Kim Crow and Kerry Hore have enjoyed tremendous success over the past two years and they went extremely close to defeating the British in Slovenia and were fully deserving in retaining their female crew of the year award from 2010.

“The team has built very well over the past three years and I am sure that we will have many more successes to enjoy over the coming year.”

2011 Rowing Australia Rowers’ Rower of the Year Awards

Rowers’ Rower of the Year
Anthony Edwards (TAS)

2011 Male Crew of the Year
Lightweight Men’s Four
Anthony Edwards (TAS), Sam Beltz (TAS), Ben Cureton (WA), Todd Skipworth (WA)

2011 Female Crew of the Year
Women’s Double Scull
Kim Crow (VIC), Kerry Hore (TAS)

2011 Coach of the Year
Brett Crow (Lightweight Men’s Four)

2011 Volunteer of the Year
Ray Ebert

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Friday 9 March

Olympic champions retain national crown

2008 Beijing Olympic champions David Crawshay (VIC) and Scott Brennan (TAS) have retained their national championship in the men’s double scull on day 5 of the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships.

The program was moved forward at Champion Lakes Regatta Centre due to the heat wave in Perth but the Olympic gold medalists form was as warm as the soaring temperatures.

Brennan returned to the stroke seat after rowing from bow in the heats on Wednesday and took control of the race from the opening strokes.

Crawshay and Brennan, who are expected to be selected on the 2012 Australian Rowing Team and then given the chance to defend their Olympic title in London later this year, opened a two second gap at the halfway point before sealing victory with an excellent third quarter.

They crossed the line in 6:43.65, over two lengths clear of Tasmanian’s Blair Tunevitsch and Alister Foot, while Rod Chisholm (NSW) and Tom Gibson (TAS) finished with the bronze medal.

Crawshay also qualified for the final of the men’s single scull final after finishing second in his semi-final.

The final promises to be an exciting showdown between six men who have all won medals at world championship level.

Crawshay will look to defend his national title against Chris Morgan (SA), James McRae (SA), Karsten Forsterling (VIC), Jared Bidwell (QLD) and Daniel Noonan (NSW).

Western Australian Hannah Jansen, 20, stole the show in front of her home crowd by winning two gold medals.

Jansen, who made her debut on the Australian senior team in 2011 as part of the lightweight women’s quad scull, won her third straight under 23 lightweight single scull title by a commanding five seconds over Holly Lawrence (NSW) in a time of 8:14.41.

Jansen then combined with Maia Simmonds (WA) to win the open women’s lightweight single scull to complete a perfect day.

Victorian Kim Crow qualified fastest for the final of the women’s single scull after winning her semi-final in a time of 7:58.72.

The dual world championship silver medalist in the women’s double scull led her Australian team mate Kerry Hore (TAS) into the final, while Queenslander Pippa Savage won the other semi-final.

The two heats of the women’s lightweight single scull were won by Hannah Every-Hall (QLD) and Alice McNamara (VIC), with the Australian team mates now set to battle for the gold medal in tomorrow’s final.

In other results from the fifth day of action Madeleine Edmunds (QLD) showed her promise for the future with an excellent performance in the final of the women’s under 23 single scull.

Edmunds won the gold medal in a time of 7:53.44, as well as winning gold in the women’s under 23 quad scull.

The penultimate day of competition from the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships (Saturday 10 March) will feature a range of elite finals, including the exciting prospect of Australia’s lightweight men’s four world champions racing in the open men’s four final.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Friday 9 March

NSW lines up fifth straight King’s Cup

New South Wales will aim to create history on Sunday (March 11) as they line up a record equalling fifth straight victory in Australia’s most famous rowing race, the King’s Cup.

A fifth straight victory would equal the State’s longest ever winning streak in the event, dating back to 1978, when the Islay Lee stroked New South Wales crew won on the Huon River in Tasmania.

New South Wales, who wrestled Australia’s oldest sporting trophy from Victoria by just 0.21 of a second in 2008, have built on their dominance since then and were victorious by over 2.5 seconds last year in Adelaide.

Their crew boasts only one change from 2011, with Nicholas Hudson joining the all Australian representative crew of Daniel Noonan, Matt Ryan, Fergus Pragnell, Sam Loch, James Chapman, Nicholas Purnell, Francis Hegerty and coxswain Toby Lister.

Hudson said it is good to be back in the crew in 2012.

“It would be great to make it our fifth straight win this week as a few of the guys might be retiring at the end of this year,” Hudson said. “I was on the sidelines last year but still cheering the guys on and it is the race that everyone wants to win.

“We have had a pretty settled squad over the past four years and we consider the race on Sunday a bit of a pinnacle.

“We’re just staying really focused on what we have to do on Sunday and we have a lot of faith in each other that we can get the job done.”

Standing in New South Wales’ path will be a hungry Victorian crew that will be desperate to propel the Big White V back to the top of the podium.

Victoria won 19 of the 23 King’s Cup titles contested between 1985 and 2007 and boasts a crew in 2012 that oozes talent.

Set to be stroked by rising star Joshua Dunkley Smith, the crew also features Drew Ginn, Cameron McKenzie-McHarg, James Marburg, Will Lockwood, Karsten Forsterling, Joshua Booth, Tom Swann, Sam Hookway and coxswain David Webster.

“I’m confident that we will be able to put together a really good row,” McKenzie-McHarg said. “New South Wales have put together some really good performances over the last few years but it is one race and you really have to produce it on the day.

“NSW have set the bar very high but this year our rhythm has felt great in the rows we have had and we’re a step above where we have been recently.

“If the conditions are right on Sunday we have the quality of athletes that could test the world’s best time.”

Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia have also entered crews in the 134th staging of the interstate men’s eight competition that was first contested in 1878.

The race will commence on Sunday March 11 at 11.50 (Perth time) and serves as the final event of the seven day regatta.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Friday 9 March

Watch 2012 Australian Rowing Championships Live and Exclusive

In partnership with The World Championship Sports Network, Rowing Australia is pleased to provide you with a front row seat to the final three days of competition live from Champion Lakes Regatta Centre in Western Australia.

WCSN will web cast competition from Friday 9th to Sunday 11th March.

The event will conclude with the rowing of the prestigious Interstate Women's Eight Race – Queens Cup and the Interstate Men's Eight Race –Kings Cup. (Exact times to be confirmed.)

Log on to www.wcsn.com.au, register your details and sit back to enjoy the action.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Thursday 8 March

Photo finish separates the cream of Australian rowing

The current strength of Australian rowing was underlined today as a number of high quality crews missed out on the final of the men’s pair at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships at Champion Lakes Regatta Centre in Perth.

In cross head wind conditions on Day 4 at Australia’s newest rowing course, the repechage of the men’s pair featured 10 Australian representatives across five exceptional crews.

Only two crews had the opportunity to advance to the final and in the closest finish at the regatta to date, officials deliberated over the photo finish for 20 minutes before separating the crews.

With 500m remaining in the race, James Chapman (NSW) and Will Lockwood (VIC) held the lead over crowd favourites and lightweight world champions Ben Cureton (WA) and Todd Skipworth (WA), while the crews of Brodie Buckland (NSW) and James Marburg (VIC), Sam Loch (NSW) and Fergus Pragnell (NSW), and Matt Ryan (NSW) and Josh Booth (NSW) followed.

In the race to the line Marburg and Buckland ignited and reversed a five second deficit over the final quarter to pip Chapman and Lockwood by just 0.02 of a second.

Cureton and Skipworth were just a further 0.47 of a second back in third place but were forced to settle for a place in the B Final.

In the repechages of the women’s single scull Amy Clay (NSW) and Robyn Selby Smith (VIC) won their respective races, while in the men’s single scull equivalent, Australian men’s quad scull world champion Karsten Forsterling (VIC) won the first repechage, before Tom Larkins (VIC) secured the second race.

The first heats of the schoolgirls’ and schoolboys’ racing were also held on Day 4 as Australia’s most talented school age rowers had their chance to impress ahead of the final on the weekend.

The 2012 Australian Rowing Championships continued tomorrow with the highlights of day 5 action including the semi-finals of the men’s and women’s single sculls, as well as the finals of the under 19 and 23 single sculls and pairs races.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Thursday 8 March

Victoria firm favourites to continue Queen’s cup reign

The Victorian women’s eight will hold the favourites tag when the Queen’s Cup is staged at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships and Interstate Regatta at Champion Lakes in Perth.

The penultimate race of the regatta (Sunday March 11) will feature 32 of Australia’s top oarswomen seeking glory in the 14th running of the women’s eight interstate race.

Originally a women’s four race that was contested for the ULVA Trophy, the race was switched to a women’s eight in 1999, before the trophy became officially known as the Queen’s Cup in 2003.

Since the inception of the women’s eight race in 1999 Victoria has triumphed on 10 of the 13 occasions, and has enjoyed victory for the last seven years.

The 2012 Victorian crew features Katrina Bateman, Bec Daniher, Phoebe Stanley, Robyn Selby Smith, Rebekah Hooper, Pauline Frasca, Alice McNamara, Kim Crow and coxswain Annabelle Orr, but expect there to be strong challenges from New South Wales, Western Australia and Queensland.

With New South Wales featuring four Olympians, Western Australia two and Queensland one, the race may be more wide open than in previous years.

The Western Australian crew will have the crowd on their side as the four crews scorch down the course and Australian women’s team captain and crew member Sarah Tait has faith in her young squad.

“We’re a pretty untested crew but it is great to see a few of our younger rowers coming through and making the switch across from sculling to sweep rowing,” Tait said.

“These girls have already showed their talent across the first part of the regatta and it will be good to see how we go in the race on Sunday.

“Victoria obviously deserve their favouritism in the race but they are missing a couple of more experienced rowers that they have had over the past few years.

“We know that we will have great crowd support on the day and hopefully that will spur us on and we can produce a good race.”

Joining Tait in the Western Australian crew are Maia Simmonds, Lilly Tinapple, Katherine Thewlis, Natalie Bale, Ashleigh Miles, Hannah Vermeersch and Alexandra Hagan.

The Queen’s Cup forms part of the 2012 Interstate Regatta that serves as the conclusion to the Australian Rowing Championships.

Eight races are held where Australia’s leading rowers have the opportunity to represent their State, with all results counting towards the Rowing Australia Cup.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Wednesday 7 March

Lightweight world champions shine in Perth

2011 world champions Anthony Edwards (TAS) and Sam Beltz (TAS) have shown their pace in the new year by qualifying directly for the final of the men’s coxless pair at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships at Champion Lakes in Perth.

Edwards and Beltz rowed four seconds quicker than world record time for a lightweight men’s pair, but their time will not officially count as they were entered in an open weight event.

The Tasmanian duo finished second in Heat 2 of the event behind Bryn Coudraye (SA) and Tom Swann (VIC) in a time of 6:22.14, with both crews progressing to the A Final on Saturday.

Edwards and Beltz, who were part of the Australian lightweight men’s four crew that won gold at the world championships in Slovenia last year, were entered in the men’s pair to test their speed and showed they will be a force to be reckoned with in 2012.

Edwards said he and Beltz pushed each other all the way down the course.

“We executed our race plan to perfection this morning and we both felt in the zone today,” Edwards said. “It felt like one of our best rows ever and we were able to do it in a world class field today.

“We know what we are capable of later this year and to row such a quick time is definitely an added bonus.

“We have national selection trials coming up in two weeks and all these races are important to prepare for those trials.”

In the earlier heat defending national title holders Drew Ginn (VIC) and Joshua Dunkley Smith (VIC) underlined their favouritism to retain their trophy with victory in a time of 6:22.66.

Ginn said despite the victory that he and Dunkley Smith had a lot of things to work on ahead of the final on Saturday.

“We weren’t too happy with that row today and really we should be going ten seconds quicker than that,” Ginn said.

“We have been doing a lot of work in the four and haven’t really concentrated on the pair since trials in December.

“We definitely need to work on a range of things ahead of the final and there is a lot of improvement to be done before then.”

2011 world championship bronze medalists Sarah Tait (WA) and Kate Hornsey (VIC) rowed a strong opening 1000m and were able to ease off in the closing half of the race to win their heat of the women’s pair.

The pair was only a couple of seconds off world record pace through the first 1000m and progressed directly through to the final in a time of 7:24.49.

Kim Crow (VIC), Brooke Pratley (NSW) and Pippa Savage (QLD) won their respective heats of the women’s single scull to open the third day proceedings.

Crow, who is a dual world championship silver medalist in the women’s double scull, won her first national title in the single scull in 2011 and remains on track to repeat the effort this year as she set the quickest time.

Crow won her heat in a time of 7:33.04, while Pratley (7:38.74) and Savage (7:35.48) were equally impressive in their victories.

Queenslander Jared Bidwell recorded the quickest time in the heats of the men’s single scull as he upset South Australian James McRae in the third heat.

David Crawshay (VIC) and Chris Morgan (SA) won the corresponding heats and will both line up from middle lanes in the semi-finals on Friday.

Racing will continue throughout the day with the men’s quad scull featuring later this afternoon.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Tuesday 6 March

2012 Australian Rowing Championships
Day 3 (March 7) Preview

The third day of the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships will provide a mouth watering batch of men’s coxless pair heats at the Champion Lakes Regatta Centre in Perth.

With temperatures set to dip below the 30 degree mark on Wednesday (March 7) conditions will be perfect for Australia’s Olympic hopefuls to gain the upper hand across three heats of the men’s pair.

There are no fewer than 22 Australian representatives across the 13 crews entered into the event and all athletes will be eager to show their form ahead of the impending 2012 national selection trials in Sydney in two weeks time (March 23–April 1).

The defending national title holders Drew Ginn (VIC) and Joshua Dunkley Smith (VIC) will hold the favourites tag heading into the regatta but lining up to dethrone the Victorian pair will be a number of high quality combinations.

Duncan Free (QLD) will line up alongside Will Lockwood (VIC) in a talented combination capable of good speed, while Tom Swann (VIC) and Bryn Coudraye (SA), Matt Ryan (NSW) and Joshua Booth (VIC), and Sam Loch (NSW) and Fergus Pragnell (NSW) also have speed to burn.

Throw in the addition of Sam Beltz (TAS) and Anthony Edwards (TAS), and Todd Skipworth (WA) and Ben Cureton, the four men who made up Australia’s world championship winning lightweight men’s four crew and the stage is set for some fantastic racing.

The open men’s and women’s single scull events will also commence tomorrow as Australia’s leading scullers target national success.

Kim Crow (VIC) enters the women’s event as the defending champion and firm favourite to win her second national title in the discipline.

Crow will face competition from her Australian double scull partner Kerry Hore (TAS) and Queensland’s Sally Kehoe, who is renowned at excelling in the single scull event at the Australian Championships.

The men’s single scull will be a wide open event with a number of athletes capable of winning the event on their day.

David Crawshay (VIC), Chris Morgan (SA), James McRae (SA) and Dan Noonan (NSW) will hold favouritism moving into the heats tomorrow.

Australia’s bronze medal winning women’s pair from the 2011 World Rowing Championships, Sarah Tait (VIC) and Kate Hornsey (TAS) will also feature on an action packed day of racing, while Hannah Every-Hall (QLD), Alice McNamara (VIC) and Ella Flecker (TAS) go head to head in the lightweight women’s single scull heats.

Racing will commence from 8am with the heats of the women’s and men’s single sculls.

A full draw for day 3 racing will be available at the event website from 7.30pm (AEST).

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Tuesday 6 March

Olympic champions heat up in Perth

2008 Beijing Olympic Games Olympic champions David Crawshay (VIC) and Scott Brennan (TAS) have showed their class in comfortably winning their heat of the men’s double scull at the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships in Perth.

Athletes at the Champion Lakes Regatta Centre were once again faced with searing conditions on day 2 of the national titles as they battled 38 degree heat and head wind conditions.

Crawshay and Brennan, who in two weeks time are favourites to be named as the men’s double scull as part of the 2012 Australian Rowing Team, looked strong and cohesive as they powered to a win in their heat to qualify directly for the final.

The duo established close to a three second lead at the halfway point of the race before crossing the line in a time of 6:50.93 to book their place in a middle lane for the final on Friday.

Crawshay said the heat was definitely a factor during racing.

“I think the first thing that really struck us out there today was how dry the air was and we were really feeling it in our lungs,” Crawshay said.

“It was a pretty hard race until about the halfway mark and then things sorted themselves out.

“I thought our rowing got better throughout the journey and we were pretty happy with how things went out there.”

Crawshay said that he and Brennan were looking forward to the chance of defending their national title.

“We are looking forward to going up against a couple of very talented lightweight doubles and they are definitely performing well ahead of the chance to potentially qualify that boat for the London Games.

“They will be ready to go in the final on Friday and there should be some red hot racing.”

In other highlights from the second day of competition, Emma McCarthy (QLD) and Renee Chatterton (SA) were the fastest qualifiers for the final of the women’s double scull while Hannah Jansen (WA) and Maia Simmonds (WA) also recorded the best time in securing a middle lane for the final of the lightweight women’s double scull.

Day 3 of the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships will commence from 8am on Wednesday morning (March 7) with a number of further elite events to be contested.

The open women’s and men’s single scull will lead off the action, before the open women’s and men’s pairs, as well as lightweight racing will all feature.

A full draw for the third day of the regatta will be published an hour after racing concludes this afternoon.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Monday 5 March

West Australian women lead the way as national championships commence

The 2012 Australian Rowing Championships commenced today at the Champion Lakes Regatta Centre with athletes facing 37-degree temperatures in Perth.

Australia’s newest rowing course is hosting its first national championships and the first in Western Australia since Wellington Dam held the 1995 regatta and a range of local rowers dominated the first day of competition.

Hannah Vermeersch (WA Rowing Club) and Alexandra Hagan (Swan River Rowing Club) underlined their favouritism in the under 23 women’s pair with a convincing eight second victory in heat 1 of the event.

The pair has only been rowing together for two months after Hagan made the switch from sculling to sweep oar rowing but their relative inexperience together was unnoticeable.

They raced to an eight second lead at the 1000m mark and then were able to ease off to hold the margin to win the heat in a time of 8:07.89 and progress to the semi-finals.

Vermeersch, a member of the Australian under 23 world championship team in the women’s four last year, said the chance to compete in Perth was fantastic.

“It’s really nice not having to pack your bags up and travel across the country and to have the home support it great,” Vermeersch noted.

“We’re pretty excited to see what we can do with this pair as we have only been training for it over the last two months.

“Our main goal for the week is to win the under 23 pair and see how much we can put between us and the other crews.”

Hannah Jansen (WA) stormed to victory in her heat of the under 23 lightweight women’s single scull to underline her chances in the event.

Jansen made her debut for the Australian senior A team at the 2011 World Rowing Championships in Bled, Slovenia as part of the women’s lightweight quad scull and has continued her improvement since.

Jansen rowed solidly into the strengthening head breeze to cross the line in 9:17.49 and record close to an eleven second victory.

In other results on the first day of the 2012 Australian Rowing Championships, Madeleine Edmunds (QLD) set the quickest time in the heats of the under 23 women’s single scull, while reigning under 23 men’s single scull champion Nicholas Barnier (ACT) won his heat in a photo finish.

West Australian duo Tom Gatti and David Watts were the standout performers in the under 23 men’s pair but will expect more of a challenge from a range of combinations in the semi-finals and final later in the regatta.

Competition continues on Tuesday (March 6) as 2008 Olympic champions David Crawshay (VIC) and Scott Brennan (TAS) contest the heats of the men’s double scull.

Their main challenge in the event will come from the 2010 world championship men’s double scull finalists Nicholas Hudson (NSW) and Jared Bidwell (QLD), while the women’s double scull, as well as the women’s and men’s lightweight double scull heats will also feature.

Day 2 commences at 8am with the repechages of the women’s and men’s under 23 single sculls.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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Friday 2 March

Perth ready to host national championships

The 2012 Australian Rowing Championships and Interstate Regatta will commence on Monday (March 5) at the newly developed Champion Lakes course in Perth.

Western Australia will host its first national championships since 1995 with athletes set to race at school, age, club and elite level between March 5–11.

A total of 1286 athletes have entered the 93 events on offer across the regatta, with the under 19 women’s single scull drawing the most number of entries with 37.

Rowing Australia Events Director Matt Draper said all was in place for what promised to be another fine showcase of Australian rowing.

“Rowing WA has done a tremendous job in ensuring all is in place for their first national championships since 1995,” Draper said.

“Champion Lakes is a world class venue and well placed to host the most important annual regatta in Australian domestic rowing.

“I am sure that all athletes competing across the week will produce some exceptional racing and the crowd will be behind all competitors come the Queen’s and King’s Cup on Sunday afternoon.”

Australia’s Olympic hopefuls will also be out in force as they wind down their preparations ahead of the final national team selection trials at the Sydney International Regatta Centre from March 23–April 1.

The national championships will culminate with the Interstate Regatta as athletes get the rare chance to wear their State colours and race for the Rowing Australia Cup.

The two feature events, the Queen’s and King’s Cup, will see Victoria and NSW aim to continue their stranglehold on the two eights races.

New South Wales has been victorious in the last four King’s Cups and will aim to keep a hungry Victorian outfit at bay once again, while Victoria are firm favourites to add an eighth successive Queen’s Cup to its trophy cabinet.

Live results, news stories, interviews, photos and videos will be available by visiting www.rowingaustralia.com.au.

Media contact:
David Polglase 0401 453 041

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CHANGE TO RULES FOR OPEN ‘CLUB’ RACES

Please note the RA Board has changed (eased) the restrictions for entry into the Open Club races at the Australian National Championships (OCW4-, OCM4-, OCW2x, OCM2x).

The new restrictions will apply for the 2012 Nationals in Perth. Please read carefully (pdf, 266kb).

 

Links and downloads


Official 2012 Nationals website

Bulletins

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Bulletin 1

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Bulletin 2

 

ASC website AOC website APC website World Rowing website Rowing ACT website Rowing NSW website Rowing Queensland website SARA website Rowing Tasmania website Rowing Victoria website Rowing WA website Filippi Rowing Pro Australia Sykes Racing website Croker Oars website Sportlyzer website Stage and Screen Travel Services website iSentia website Designer Paintworks website The JRT Partnership website Iconphoto website