In October last year Sydney University and Melbourne University Boat Crews raced on inner Sydney Harbour – check out the excellent video compilation of the race. CLICK HERE
Sydney University avenged a 150-year-old defeat when they out-rowed Melbourne University in a gruelling 7.3km men’s eight match race.
Having been beaten in the first inter-varsity race, on the Yarra River in 1860, Sydney University settled the score in what is planned to be the annual Australian Boat Race between the two universities in men’s and women’s eights.
After hauling in the Melbourne crew, who got off to a flyer from the Iron Cove starting point, Sydney University were 10 lengths ahead when they passed the Riverview Wharf finishing line in 22min 3sec.
Starting near the Leichhardt Rowing Club, the course followed the Balmain peninsula in a loop, past Cockatoo Island and into the Lane Cove River, finishing at St Ignatius College Wharf.
While the universities have competed in standard still water events since 1870, it was the first match race between the two boat clubs since 1860. In match racing, crews can change course and battle for the inside running.
The record show Melbourne won the first event down the Yarra in 31min 4sec. Seated second in the Sydney University crew on that day was Edward Barton, who became Australia’s first prime minister in 1901.
As part of the rules for the event, each crew was made up of current students or graduates of the respective universities, giving young rowers the opportunity to join their more experienced counterparts in the event.
In the women’s race Melbourne University proved to be too strong for Sydney University.
The Sydney University crews:
Men: Tom Iredale (cox), Toby Ledgerwood (stroke), Cameron Girdlestone, Sasha Belanogoff, Mitchell Estens, Tom Sacre, Edward Alexander, Henry Mander, James Goswell (bow).
Women: Gen Fick (cox), Chloe O’Regan (stroke), Kylie Duff, Emma Costello, Charlotte Walters, Beatrix Sheldick, Greta Beale, Sarah Sackville, Jo Wood (bow).