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australian rowers profiles and history

Lachlan McPherson

Corio Bay Rowing Club and Yarra Yarra Rowing Club (VIC)

Member 1981/82 - 2014/15

Passed away 20/12/2020

Committee 1987/88, 1990/91, 1991/92, 

Vice President 2003/04, 2005/06 - 2007/08

Wins recorded:-

2007 - Essendon regatta, female “E” four (coach)

2007 - Banks master’s regatta, female masters “B” four (coach)

He recorded wins for Corio Bay Rowing Club, but no details available.

In 2017 a single scull was christened in his honour.

From the Yarra Yarra Rowing Club newsletter 'Yarra Yabbie' No84/4 September 2002

Hi! I’m Locky, I’ve been around Yarra Yarra for just over 20 years, served on the committee, introduced a few people, taught them to row, done a bit of coaching, propped up the bar on the odd occasion (well, aren’t they all odd?), and done a bit of stirring.

I got introduced to rowing in Geelong at Corio Bay in 1971, we won our first heat we went in but not the final. I was hooked. The boat was the Charles Demillo, an old racing four (yes they were legal then). I had to move to Melbourne for work and rowed up at Hawthorn and won my first final coincidently on the Barwon, then my second against two of my Corio mates!

Back to Geelong and Corio and had some great years and great wins. Then came the highlight of my rowing life when we took one boat and four crews and rowed across Corio and Port Philip Bays back in 1976 with me sitting in the 7 seat in front of Jeff Watt (champion international oarsman) and David Ramage (Aust Olympic & silver medalist). The row was mind blowing. It had been done before and has not been attempted since. I can still remember the sunrise as the first crew change was done. Those of us lucky enough to be warm and dry aboard the support craft watched the changeover crew approach the eight with trepidation to relieve those half-drowned, freezing oarsmen who braved the elements (and caught a fish!) in the dark and cold of Corio Bay in July.

When it came to my turn to relieve the third crew, the bay was almost flat and Melbourne was looming up. We had a fabulous row, across Altona Bay, round the Fawkner beacon and into the mouth of the Yarra, ending up in front of Richmond Rowing Club. What a day!

Eventually I moved to Melbourne full-time and after stuffing around at a couple of other clubs found what I had been looking for. Why Yarra? Simple, the people. I had already qualified as a Boat Race Official and I kept coming across these loveable rogues and gentlemen that always seemed to belong to Yarra Yarra. Who could never forget (if they actually were there) the legendary Jack Donald loosing off both barrels at the water-skiers at Yarrawonga all those years ago. Then there is Ted, Billy B., Gags, The doctor, Ted (Kiwi) Stewart, Doc Gillespie, Browney, Jim Skidmore, that inimitable clan the Coe’s, and some who have had their last row- Andie Currie, Brian Christian, Mick Bushby, And if I’d forgotten some who are still breathing, my apologies. However, a special mention, Rom Mitchell, a wonderful bloke and probably the funniest man I’ve ever met only he doesn’t know he is. Who else but Ron could be a member of the World Ship Society but call them BOATS?

Then there is the shed. How many people can claim they belong to a club where the walls lean out nearly as far as the Ettamogah Pub? To say it’s got character is an understatement. I am proud to have been involved in various projects to make the shed more liveable for us mere mortals, like the showers and toilets AND the flagpole AND the fire alarm gong (that doesn’t work because we don’t have one part – looks good though!)”

2005 Locky regatta commentator

2005 behind bar at the farewell to old shed 

2005 Locky and wife Susan at Yarra Ball

2005 Lachlan with arms raised at opening of new shed

Jim Skidmore
Jume 2024

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