PLC Sydney competitor competing in the Championship Schoolgirl Single Scull 2000m event.

Head of the River rowing regatta

Lynne Mowbray |

Around 23 schools and clubs competed at this years The City of Grafton Head of the Clarence River rowing regatta, in Grafton on Saturday.

President of the regatta’s organising committee Neville Doughan said that the weekend’s rowing events (Head of the Clarence River on Saturday and Grafton Rowing Club regatta on Sunday) had this year drawn three international competitors.

“Miller Rowe and Logan Ullrich of Kand Rowing Club in Brisbane (bronze medal winners in the Coxed Four at the 2018 Junior World Championships in the Czech Republic), had a hit out on Saturday against the boys in the Eights in practice only, for Sunday’s event,” Mr Doughan said.

“Taylor McCarthy-Smith also competed, following on from her recent success at 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Argentina.
“There’s also a really strong contingent that’s come up from the Hunter Valley.
“Luke MacBeth who is their rowing coach is a former Grafton High School pupil and likewise is Ashley Peppernill who is the rowing master at PLC (Presbyterian Ladies College) in Sydney, she’s also from here (South Grafton).
“So it’s almost like these two have left the nest and brought their clutches back home.
“I remember when these two used to race in this regatta and now they’re bringing the people that they’re teaching back to row in it, so I’m pretty chuffed about that,” he said.
Mr Doughan said that competitor numbers this year were up on last year.
“The Hamilton team from NZ who came here a couple of years ago have returned this year and have been hosted by the Southport School,” Mr Doughan said.
“The Kings School returned again this year. Unfortunately they couldn’t make it last year because of a rugby tour. Kings have been great supporters of this regatta and it was great to see James Tyree and his boys back again.
“We’re grateful for the support of the Grafton Rowing Club with this regatta. It’s a great venue and it’s still seen as one of the last great country regattas,” he said.

Winners of the Open Schoolboy Eight this year went to Nudgee College, Brisbane, followed by Kings College in second place and Hamilton College, NZ in third place.

Overall point score winner was Newcastle Grammar – winning this for the first time.

New Zealand competitors from Hamilton Boys High compete in the Championship Schoolboy Under 17 Eight 2000m event.
Maclean High’s Grace Johnson is congratulated by her coach Clare Millist, at the end of 1000m Schoolgirl Single Scull Under 15 event, in which she came second.