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australian rowers profiles and history

John Hannell

Newcastle Rowing (NSW)

Hannell, is a name synonymous with rowing in Newcastle. Over more than half a century, as either competitors, promoters administrators or officials the Hannell family played a pivotal role in ensuring Newcastle was a major rowing centre at a time when rowing was the predominant Australian sport.

John Hannell, brother of James Hannell, contested both sailing and rowing races at early regattas in Newcastle and Maitland. He rowed in the winning four and single scull at the Hunter's first regatta at Maitland in 1844 and contested the pair and single scull events at the 1845 Morpeth -Hinton Regatta. In a type of boat called a sliding gunter, he also won the sailing race at the first regatta in Newcastle the same year. John organised boat races on the Hunter River at Hexham (the first a four-event regatta on 24 May 1850) but, as explained above, these promotional efforts were for commercial rather than altruistic reasons. 

Colin Charters - extracted from his book Just Add Water, the times and tide of Newcastle Rowing Club published by Seaview Press in 2009

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