History of Rowing in Queensland
- Table of Contents
- 1. 1859-1900
- 2. 1901-1945
- 3. 1946-1970
- 4. 1971-1982
- 5. 1983-1995
- 6. Conclusion
- A: Office Bearers
- B: International Representatives
- C: Interstate Representatives
- D: Results of the Men’s Queensland Rowing Championships
- E: Results of the Women’s Queensland Rowing Championships
- F: Results of the Boys Head of the River Races
- G: Results of the Girls Head of the River Races
Chapter 2 1901-1945 Federation to WWII
Back to Chapter 2 Part 2 1901-1910
Next to Chapter 2 Part 4 1930-1945
Part 3 - 1920-1930
In October 1920, the Q.R.A. sent to Queensland rowing clubs a draft proposal for consideration in connection with the matter of holding inter-district eights on the Brisbane River at least one month before the next following interstate race, with a view to selection of the best available crew to represent the State. Crews representing Brisbane, Maryborough, Bundaberg and Rockhampton were eligible, but in view of the fact that only one country club owned an eight-oar boat, it was probable that some of the country centres would not compete. The winner of the race to have the right to represent the State, and provision was to be made for two umpires to watch the race from start to finish - one in the country's interests, and the other the metropolitan. If a country crew won the race the Q.R.A. would bear all its expenses.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Maryborough on October 23, 1920, and the newspaper report described it as one of the most memorable sporting events held in Maryborough, attracting a record number of entries. In the Champion Sculls, A. Baynes of Commercial R.C. won by three lengths to A. Simpson of Bundaberg R.C., J. Moir of Bundaberg R.C. in third place, followed by T. Brasch of Wide Bay R.C..
Seven crews started in the Champion Four - Rockhampton Rowing Association, Brisbane R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Wide Bay R.C., Leichhardt R.C., Maryborough R.C. and Commercial R.C.. Bundaberg and Brisbane led out. After one mile Brisbane was leading the Rockhampton Rowing Association four with Bundaberg third. Shortly after the mile Rockhampton went to the lead and in the final mile it was a procession, with Rockhampton winning by six lengths to Brisbane, who were five lengths ahead of Bundaberg, then Wide Bay, Leichhardt, Maryborough and Commercial. The winning crew was - L. Hagevole (B), J. Deacon (2), A. Hagevole (3), A.R. Pashley (S) and R. Thompson (Cox).
In a newspaper article of October 31, 1920, it states:-
Mr. C.M. Pitman, in "The Field" pays tribute to American organisation in the winning of the Olympic Eights. He says: "From the beginning of February, the crews were ground into one uniform whole by long, steady rows of upwards of twelve miles. During the summer they rowed upwards of thirty races. They came over in a cruiser fitted with rowing machines, and arrived at Villevorde three weeks before the race with a complete second crew to act as pacemakers, four spare men, the ship's doctor to look after their health, men to rub them down, cooks to prepare their special food, a trainer, and a staff of servants." He then contrasts the way in which the English Leander crew did things, and he mentions that they had to carry their boat over two miles of hot, dusty roads, from the station to the starting point. The race was won by the Americans by eight feet in the record time of 6 mins. 5 secs. for 2000 metres (about 1 mile 350 yards). The time was about five seconds better than the world's previous best for that distance.
The British Olympic Association did not even know until a week before the crew started that the race was to be at Villevorde and not in Antwerp.
The incoming Governor, Lt.Col. Sir Matthew Nathan, G.C.M.G., P.C. (Ire.), kindly extended his patronage to the association.
A senior eights race was conducted by the Q.R.A. on January 22, 1921, over two miles on the Milton Reach in Brisbane. From the two crews a Metropolitan District eight was to be selected to represent in the Inter-district race in April. Commercial R.C. won by three and a half lengths to Brisbane R.C.. The crews were - Commercial R.C.; J. Walls (B), J.F. Styles (2), W. Jones (3), L.R. Eastman (4), T.S. Johnston (5), J. Dowrie (6), T.F. Caniffe (7), K.H. Baird (S) and J. Twigg (Cox) -
Brisbane R.C.; T. Kelly (B), G. Hall (2), M. Donnollan (3), J. Maguire (4), G. Macfarlane (5), F. Quinn (6), W. Price (7), P. Maguire (S) and W. Farmer (Cox).
The Inter-district Eight was held on Hamilton Reach on March 19, 1921, between Wide Bay District and the Metropolitan District. After an evenly contested match, Wide Bay won by one and a half lengths. The Wide Bay crew was - J. Copp (B), H. Hunter (2), B. Axelsen (3), S. Barriskill (4), D. McDowell (5), C. McDowell (6), E. Barcham (7), N. Goodwin (S) and D. Robertson (Cox) and E.C. Anderson (Coach).
The Interstate Championship regatta was held in Launceston on Monday April 25, 1921. The Interstate Eight was rowed in good conditions with Tasmania and Western Australia forging slightly in front of Victoria and South Australia at the start. After one mile Tasmania was half a length ahead of Western Australia. The race continued in this vein with Western Australia winning by three feet to Tasmania with three lengths to Victoria, then South Australia, Queensland and New South Wales. This was the first win for Western Australia and they were the lightest crew in the race.
In the Interstate Sculling Championships there was a clash about mid-way through the race and R. Neilson of New South Wales was disqualified for fouling J. Barton of Victoria. The race was re-started where they were and G.A. Westbrook of Tasmania who had been leading at the time went on to win by three lengths from Barton. There was no Queensland representative.
In the Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over three quarters of a mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy, Tasmania took an early lead from Queensland, but were rowed down by South Australia and Queensland, with South Australia going on to win by two lengths from Queensland with Tasmania third. Although in the same regatta, the ladies' photos and names did not appear in the programme, the only reference to them being a time slot in the programme of events. The names of the ladies' crews appeared in the Hobart
"Mercury" and the Queensland crew was Misses C. Buzacott (B) F. Foubister (2) E. Munce (3) M. Petrie (S) and Mr. W. Farmer (Cox).
The All Schools regatta was rowed on June 4, 1921, on the Bridge Reach, over a 3/4 mile course downstream from Commercial R.C. to the University boathouse in the Domain. There were five crews entered and the race was won by The Southport School from C.E.G.S., B.G.S., B.B.C. and Central Technical College.
The winning Southport crew was:- R.J. Hayter (B) J.R. Wamer (2) R.H. Moyse (3) I.F. Champion (S) and J.T.H. Michod (Cox).
During the 1920/21 season there was no Champion Eights race conducted. Apart from the Championship Fours regatta and the Inter-district Eights, the other regattas were the Brisbane River Fours and Sculls on October 16, 1920, the Fitzroy River Fours on November 20, the Q.R.A. regattas in Brisbane on December 4 and January 22, 1921, the Burnett River Fours on March 28, and the Q.R.A. regatta on April 16, 1921.
In the Q.R.A. Annual Report for 1920/21 it was noted that "on the application of the Wide Bay R.C. that the next Eight-oar Championship of Queensland be rowed on the Mary River", the committee considering it would be in the best interests of fostering eight-oar rowing in the country centres, granted the application. Owing to the Interdistrict race and the lateness of the rowing season, it was decided to hold the contest early in the season 1921/22, but nevertheless, that the points for the Championship Pennant in connection therewith be added to the points won in the season 1920/21.
Accordingly, the Championship Eight of Queensland was rowed on August 27, 1921, over 3 miles at Maryborough.
There were only two crews in the race, Commercial R.C. and Wide Bay R.C.. From a good start both crews struck a rating of 42 strokes to the minute. When only about half a mile had been covered Goodwin's crew had shot out in front and taken Commercial's water. Both crews settled down to a rating of 28 strokes to the minute. The home crew was in fine fettle and led by about four lengths after two miles and eventually won by nine lengths.
The winning Wide Bay R.C. crew was - D. McDowell (B) T. Brasch (2) M. Raffin (3) R. Goodwin (4) H. Hunter (5) S. Barriskill (6) E. Barcham (7) N. Goodwin (S) G. Hutchins (Cox) and E.C. Anderson (Coach).
The Premiership points at the end of the regular 1920/21 season had stood at 60 points to Rockhampton R.C., 57 points to Commercial R.C. with Wide Bay R.C. with no points. The second placing should have given the 1920/21 Q.R.A. Premiership to Commercial R.C..
The Intervarsity Race was held on May 8, 1921, over three miles on the Brisbane River for the first time. Queensland University led to within 200 yards of the finishing post, but in a final sprint, Melbourne University drew ahead and won by a length to Queensland, Adelaide and Sydney. Queensland had made its first appearance in the Intervarsity race in the previous year in Melbourne.
The Champion Four was held in Rockhampton on October 8, 1921, and Bundaberg were not represented for the first time in fifteen years. Five crews started - Maryborough R.C., Rockhampton R.C., Brisbane R.C., Wide Bay R.C. and Leichhardt R.C.. Wide Bay started well and after a mile were leading by two lengths from Maryborough and Rockhampton. At the mile and a half the bow man in the Wide Bay crew cramped and the crew stopped rowing. Rockhampton then led until about three hundred yards from the finish when Maryborough sprinted and beat Rockhampton by a length, with Brisbane a further ten lengths back and Leichhardt right out of it. The winning crew was -
R. Barton (B), F. Nelson (2), R. Shaw (3), A. Hansen (S) and D. Castles (Cox).
The Henley-on-Brisbane was conducted on November 19, 1921, with New Farm Park being the scene of most activity and the finishing point of the rowing races. There were the usual decorated boats, speedboat races and a rowing regatta in which the main event was the Champion Sculls of Queensland over two and a half miles. There were only two entrants - A.A. Baynes of Commercial R.C. and J.G. Smith of Bundaberg R.C.. The start was from the Edward Street ferry and Baynes immediately took the lead and turning Kangaroo Point had six lengths clear, at Mowbray Park where both men were in midstream Baynes had twelve lengths. On the New Farm Reach choppy conditions were encountered and both men kept into the bank. Baynes won by half a mile.
The other races were Trial Fours, Ladies' Fours, Maiden Eights, Under 18 Fours, Henley Fours, Henley Eights, Ladies' Double Sculls, Maiden Fours, Naval Championship, Naval Races, Grand Speed Boat Race and Canoe Race. Prizes for Best Decorated Boat, Fancy Dressed Crew, Most Original Design Poster, Funniest Turnout and an Aquaplaning display filled out the programme.
The rules adopted by the Q.R.A. on January 16, 1922, in relation to District Representative Eights were:
- A race to be called the "District Representative Eights" shall be rowed on the Mary, Brisbane and Fitzroy Rivers in rotation, over a course of not less than three miles, at least four weeks prior to the date fixed for the Interstate Eight, when staged in New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and Queensland, and six weeks if in South Australia or Western Australia, or on any date as desired by the Q.R.A.. Provided however that when Bundaberg is in a position to enter the contest as a separate district, the Burnett River be added to the rivers on which the race is to be rowed.
- The race shall be confined to the following districts - Brisbane, Maryborough (including Bundaberg) and Rockhampton.
- The winners shall have the right to represent Queensland in the Interstate Eight-oared contest.
The Inter-district Eight was rowed in Maryborough on April 15, 1922, to decide the Queensland representatives to the Interstate Championships in Sydney. District crews from Maryborough, Rockhampton and Brisbane faced the starter. There was a very large crowd in the Botanic Gardens and on the waterfront. The race was started in a nasty cross wind and the tide had turned against the crews before they were sent away. After a quarter of a mile Maryborough had a canvas on Rockhampton with Brisbane a length and a half in the rear. At the end of the first mile Maryborough led by one and a quarter lengths to Rockhampton with Brisbane labouring in the rear. At the two and a quarter miles Maryborough had four lengths on Rockhampton and Brisbane ten lengths behind. With the race in their keeping Maryborough slackened up and finished two and a half lengths to Rockhampton with Brisbane fifteen lengths back.
The winning crew was - R. Barton (B), F. Nelson (2), R. Shaw (3), R. Goodwin (4), B. Axelsen (5), S. Barriskill (6), D. McDowell (7), N. Goodwin (S) and G. Hutchins (Cox).
The Interstate Championships were held on the Parramatta River on May 6, 1922, before a great crowd massed at every vantage point and all kind of craft were afloat on the river.
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over half a mile for the U.L.V.A Trophy saw crews from Tasmania, South Australia, Queensland and New South Wales competing. Tasmania established a good lead shortly after the start and held it throughout, but South Australia closed the margin to half a length at the finish, with four lengths to Queensland and New South Wales last. The Queensland ladies were seated - Miss F. Coombe (B), Miss G. Munce (2), Miss C. Buzacott (3), Miss M. Petrie (S) and Miss F. Foubister (Cox).
The Interstate Championship Sculls saw only three starters - A.G. Bull of New South Wales, A. Pitt of Tasmania and J. Barton of Victoria. The conditions were rather rough for the scullers, the steering being erratic. Bull used his local knowledge of the course to obtain as much smooth water as possible even though rowing a longer course and won by three lengths to Pitt, with Barton third.
By the time the Interstate Eight-oared Race was started the tide had turned and conditions had improved. After half a mile South Australia led from Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales. At the mile South Australia had a length on Victoria, and shortly after half way both South Australia and Victoria were troubled by rough water, but South Australia held their long stroke while Victoria shortened. With half a mile to go, Queensland swamped but they were well out of the race at the time. South Australia won by three lengths to Victoria with Western Australia a further three lengths away in third place. Then followed Tasmania and New South Wales with Queensland not finishing the course.
The Interstate Eight-oared crews competed for the first time for the trophy known as the King's Cup, which remains the permanent trophy for which the eights compete each year. The King's Cup was first won in 1919 at the Henley-on-Thames Regatta held on 2nd to 4th July of that year. This handsome trophy, a substitute for the Grand Challenge Cup Race for that year, was presented by King George V to the successful A.I.F. No. I crew which, along with seven others, contested the eight-oared race for competition between crews from the armies of the Allies in the 1914-18 War.
The successful crew comprising Sgt. A.A. Robb (Bow - Derwent R.C. TAS.), Lieut. F.A. House (2 - Derwent R.C. TAS.), Lieut. T. McGill (3 - Leichhardt R.C. NSW), Gunner A.V. Scott (4 - Murray Bridge R.C. S.AUST.), Lieut. H. Hauenstein, M.M. (5 - Leichhardt & Balmain R.C.s NSW), Major S.A. Middleton, D.S.O.,(6 - Glebe & Sydney R.C. 's NSW), Gunner G.W. Mettam (7 - West Australian R.C. W.AUST) Captain H.C. Disher (S - Melbourne University B.C. VIC) Sgt. A.E. Smedley (Cox - Sydney R.C. NSW) defeated the A.I.F. No. 2 crew in the first heat, Cambridge University in the semi-final and Oxford University in the final by a margin of one length in a time of 7 minutes 7 seconds, the other competitors being Canada, France, New Zealand and the United States of America. The crew was coached by Lieut.Col. N. Marshall, D.S.O., M.C., and Lieut. H. Ross-Soden. The race was over 1 mile 550 yards. Clavill Bere, later a long time rowing coach at The Southport School, was a member of the A.I.F. No. 2 crew.
The famous trophy was left in the custody of the Australian Military Authorities, and was later handed over to the Australian War Memorial Council and placed in the Australian War Museum. On 14th May, 1920, at a conference of delegates of the Australian Rowing Association held in Brisbane, it was decided to ask the Australian War Memorial Council for the Cup as a perpetual Trophy for the Australian Eight-oared Championship. This request was refused, and on 12th October of the same year a further request was made by the Victorian Rowing Association for the Cup, with the suggestion that it be kept in the Australian War Museum of the State which won the race each year. This request was also refused.
The second refusal precipitated further action by the Victorian Rowing Association, and a petition to the King prepared by it dated 30th October, 1920, and signed by Captain H.C. Disher, was sent to His Majesty with the request that he make known his wishes with regard to the disposal of the trophy. A reply dated 13 May, 1921, received from the Secretary of State for the Colonies, Mr. Winston Churchill, stated that His Majesty commands me to inform you that it is his wish that the Cup should be used as a permanent trophy and be competed for annually in the Interstate Eight-oared Race of Australia.
The trophy was, in fact, won twice, first by the Australian oarsmen in three strenuous races and then by the Australian Rowing Administrators in three equally strenuous contests with the Australian authorities who had taken possession of it.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 13, 1922, over 3/4 mile on the Bridge Reach to the University boathouse in the Domain. In these days the Domain was a public parkland on the Gardens Point, had good access and was ideal for the crowds of supporters to view the finish. Church of England Grammar School won by one and a quarter lengths to The Southport School and Brisbane Grammar School third.
The winning crew was:- H.B. Beaman (B) H.E. Hunter (2) G.W. Barlow (3) T.P.F. Fowler (S) and A.F. Fowler (Cox).
An article in the Brisbane Courier of May 22, 1922, advised that Arthur Baynes was in England and training at Marlow for the Diamond Sculls which commenced on July 5. His trainer was George Towns.
On June 3, 1922, at Port Adelaide, the University of Queensland eight won the Inter-Varsity race over three miles, defeating Melbourne by two lengths with Sydney six lengths away third and Adelaide fourth. The report said the Queenslanders won by good, hard rowing, and what they lacked in their body swing they made up with their catch and leg drive. The crew was - R.L. Mills (B), J.J. Daly (2), F.S. Marshall (3), V.E. Greet (4), J.W. Grice (5), J.W. Dowrie (6), K. Baird (7), E.B. Freeman (S) and F.G. Holdaway (Cox).
In the Diamond Sculls, A. Baynes was defeated in the semi-final by Hoover, the American champion sculler, by three lengths. Baynes had the prettier style but lacked the American's pace. Hoover went on to win the Diamond Sculls, defeating Beresford the English champion.
The Q.R.A. Premiership for 1921/22 was won by Brisbane R.C. with 80 points to Commercial R.C. on 44 points and Rockhampton R. C. on 41 points.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Brisbane on October 14, 1922, on a course from the Dry Dock to the top of Milton Reach at Kayes Rocks. It was a full scale regatta with maiden fours, junior fours, senior fours and a ladies' fours race in which a Brisbane Ladies' R.C. crew defeated a crew from Women's College R.C..
In the Champion Sculls over two and a half miles, J.G. Smith of Bundaberg R.C. won on a row-over, neither M. Sullivan of Wide Bay R.C. nor H. Kipping of Commercial R.C. who had entered for the race putting in an appearance.
There was a very large crowd gathered for the Champion Four, the Victoria Bridge, North Quay and Milton road banks being crowded with spectators, as was Davies Park and at the finishing post at the St.Lucia comer. Crews from Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough R.C., Wide Bay R.C., Brisbane R.C., Rockhampton R.C. and Commercial R.C. competed. Wide Bay led out early but all boats shot the bridge with very little to spare. The sailing craft kept splendidly to the northern bank to allow the competitors fair water. At Davies Park Bundaberg led from Maryborough and Wide Bay, with Brisbane, Commercial and Rockhampton tailed off. Bundaberg won by two lengths to Maryborough and a further three lengths to Wide Bay, with Brisbane, Rockhampton and Commercial bringing up the rear. The winning crew was -A. Evans (B), T. Horton (2), F. Martens (3), A. Wilkinson (S) and H. King (Cox).
The Champion Eights regatta was held on the Hamilton Reach on Monday May 7, 1923. The eights race was scheduled to catch the last of the flood tide but the crews lost that opportunity by not reaching the starting line until three quarters of an hour after official starting time. Four crews were entered - Brisbane R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Rockhampton R.C. and Wide Bay R.C .. Wide Bay led out and after one mile was two and a half lengths clear of Brisbane. After two miles Wide Bay had a three lengths lead with the other three crews almost level. Rockhampton challenged in the final mile but Wide Bay won by three lengths to Rockhampton and a further five lengths to Bundaberg and Brisbane tailed off by a further seven lengths. The winning crew was - H. Knight (B), E. Lohse (2), P. Finney (3), T. Brasch (4), H. Axelsen (5), L. Cain (6), D. McDowell (7), G. Casperson (S) and D. Castles (Cox).
The Interstate Championships were rowed in Perth on the same day after being postponed from the Saturday because of the rough weather. There were four scullers in the Interstate Championship Sculls over two and a half miles - A. Sadler of Western Australia, I. McGorm of Victoria, M. Bradley of Tasmania and A.G. Bull of New South Wales. Bull was never troubled and won by two lengths to Bradley, two lengths to McGorm and a further three lengths to Sadler.
In the Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over half a mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy the South Australian ladies showed surprisingly good form to win easily by four lengths to Tasmania and Victoria ten lengths back.
In the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over 3 miles for the King's Cup, all States except Queensland started. After a quarter mile Victoria was slightly in front, and shortly afterwards Western Australia moved to the lead and by the mile mark Western Australia led by a length to Victoria with South Australia closing in. At the halfway Victoria and South Australia were almost level in second place and these two went neck and neck for the next half mile. Gradually South Australia forged ahead and with a quarter a mile to go had passed Western Australia to lead by a quarter of a length. South Australia gained victory by half a length to Western Australia with Victoria two lengths away third, New South Wales ten lengths behind and Tasmania crossed the line 50 seconds after South Australia.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 12, 1923, over 3/4 mile downstream to the University boathouse. The Southport School won by one foot to Brisbane Boys' College with a half length to Church of England Grammar School and Brisbane Grammar School in fourth place.
The winning crew was:- I.M. Grant (B) J.E. Lewis (2) W.H. Bell (3) E.O. Moyse (S) and L.J.L. McLean (Cox).
While the schools' race in the Southern States was always referred to as the "Head of the River" in the newspapers, this year was the first time that the Brisbane race was referred as being for the "Head of the River".
The Inter-Varsity Race was held in Sydney on Friday June 1, 1923, with Queensland, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney competing. Queensland led out from Adelaide and Melbourne with Sydney dropping back early. At the halfway mark Queensland had a lead of three lengths on Adelaide, with half a length to Melbourne. Queensland won by four lengths to Adelaide, one and one quarter lengths to Melbourne, and Sydney well behind.
The winning Queensland crew was - R.L. Mills (B), J. Buzacott (2), L.C. Fisher (3), G.W. Harding (4), J.R. Cooper (5), J.W. Dowrie (6), J.W. Grice (7), E.B. Freeman (S) and F.G. Holdaway (Cox).
During the 1922/23 season, the Brisbane R.C. obtained permission from the Brisbane City Council and the Christian Brothers Schools R.C. to build their new shed on a site between Commercial R.C. and the Brisbane Grammar School shed on North Quay. They must have taken over the approval previously given to the Christian Brothers Schools R.C.. Then began the long struggle to amass the necessary funds.
The Q.R.A. Premiership for the 1922/23 season was won by Wide Bay R.C..
The office bearers elected at the 1923 A.G.M. were:-
Patron:His Excellency the Governor, Sir Matthew Nathan
President: D. O'Connor
Chairman:G.R. Howard Gill
Hon. Secretary:H.J. Katchell
Hon. Treasurer:S. Roberts.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Bundaberg on October 20, 1923, and the four scullers competing in the Champion Sculls were A. Baynes of Commercial R.C., V. Sullivan of Wide Bay R.C., J. McGregor of Commercial R.C. and J. Copp of Maryborough R.C.. The race was a foregone conclusion and it was only a matter of what distance Baynes would win by. Baynes gradually pulled away and practically paddled home winning by four lengths to Sullivan, then McGregor and Copp.
In the Champion Four there were five starters - Rockhampton R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Wide Bay R.C., Maryborough R.C. and Commercial R.C .. After an even start Bundaberg moved ahead and after one mile had one and a half lengths on Rockhampton then Wide Bay. The race then gradually developed into a procession with Bundaberg winning by eight lengths to Rockhampton and four lengths to Wide Bay, with Maryborough and Commercial following. The winning crew was A. Evans (B), T. Horton (2), A. Hassam (3), E. Rackemann (S) and G. Hargreaves (Cox).
The Champion Eight was held in Maryborough on December 15, 1923, and Wide Bay R.C., Bundaberg R.C. and Commercial R.C. made up the field. Wide Bay assumed the early lead and went on to win in fine style about twelve lengths ahead of Bundaberg and an even greater margin to Commercial. The winning crew was - S. Axelsen (B), E. Lohse (2), P. Finney (3), R. Goodwin (4), V. Sullivan (5), M. Raffin (6), H. Axelsen (7), N. Goodwin (S) and D. Castles (Cox).
The Inter-district Eight was rowed in Rockhampton on March 15, 1924, with only Rockhampton District and Wide Bay District crew competing. It had been announced a few weeks previously that the Bundaberg crew did not intend to take part in the race and early in the week it was announced that the Brisbane crew which had been in training did not intend to make the trip due to lack of finances and other discouraging influences. When questioned at the official welcome to the visiting rowers, Mr. G.H.R. Gill, Chairman of the Q.R.A., said that Brisbane District should get the blame for the absence of the crew, and not the Q.R.A.. Bad form, coupled with dissension, led to the crew deciding not to take part. He did not think the men in the boat were faithful to each other.
In the first start of the race in the morning both crews started from the southern bank but went right across. Rockhampton got close in under the northern bank and ran on to a sandbank. The crew was transferred to the launches and the boat was towed in for repair. In the restart in the afternoon, Wide Bay surged to the front and cut Rockhampton out and they turned into the home stretch a length and a half in front. The No.4 man then broke the roller in the slide and they stopped, and Rockhampton paddled in. It was well after six o'clock when the crews headed for the start for the third time. Wide Bay at once went to the front and crossed to the north side where they fouled the mangroves and lost ground. Rockhampton failed to make up the leeway and Wide Bay drew away in the final stages to win by five lengths. The race was finished in the moonlight.
The Wide Bay crew was - S.E. Axelsen (B), O.E. Lohse (2), P.J. Finney (3), R.S. Goodwin (4), V. Sullivan (5), A. Clark (6), L.B. Raffin (7), N. Goodwin (S) and J. Hughes (Cox).
The Interstate Championships were held on April 26, 1924, at Port Adelaide. The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over half a mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy saw five crews competing - Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. The South Australian crew soon went ahead of the others and won by a length and a half to Victoria, with Western Australia third and Queensland fourth. The Queensland crew were - Misses E. Palmer (B), L. Palmer (2), E. Parker (3), C. Buzacott (S) and Miss F. Foubister (Cox).
In the Interstate Championship Sculls over two and one half miles, Queensland was not represented, the starters being L.C. Nimmo of Tasmania, W.C. Lorimer of New South Wales, J. Barton of Victoria, G. Rogers of Western Australia and R.L. Naylor of South Australia. In the programme, the photo of the New South Wales sculler gives the impression of a teenager. As was anticipated, Nimmo quickly demonstrated his superiority. He was lengths ahead and was rowing as he liked, when the wash of a blundering motor launch capsized him about three quarters of a mile from home, allowing Barton to go on and win by several lengths from Rogers, Lorimer third and Naylor last. The Regatta Committee met at the conclusion of racing and decided that although the accident was most unfortunate and the Tasmanian was undoubtedly in a winning position, the wash was one which could have been negotiated, and therefore, the result of the race could not be altered. The Harbours Board was to be asked to prosecute the owner of the offending launch.
In the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup all States were represented and Queensland drew the middle of the course, with Western Australia and New South Wales 1 and 2 in the more sheltered water. The start was delayed for an hour owing to an accident to the Tasmanian boat, which after being repaired was capsized by the wash of a pleasure boat while being towed to the starting line. There was a false start on the first attempt. Tasmania and Victoria led out at the second start but after half a mile were overhauled by Queensland. It appeared that in endeavouring to avoid a beacon in midstream that Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia would fall foul of each other, but capable steering averted the catastrophe. New South Wales got on terms with Queensland and just after passing the mile mark had a slight lead. At half way, however, Queensland had drawn level with New South Wales again with South Australia a length back. A mile from home the South Australian crew crossed without interference in front of Tasmania and making the most of the inside position at the turn and with just over half a mile to go, just got their nose in front of Queensland. Queensland and New South Wales responded and a terrific tussle was witnessed for the last quarter of a mile. South Australia lacked the necessary firepower to hold Queensland and New South Wales, rowing splendidly, just overtook them. Queensland finished a canvas in front of New South Wales with half a length to South Australia, with Western Australia fourth, Tasmania fifth and Victoria, who were so far back the umpire's boat had to pass them, were swamped.
The winning Queensland crew was - S.E. Axelsen (B), O.E. Lohse (2), P.J. Finney (3), R.S. Goodwin (4), V. Sullivan (5), A. Clark (6), L.B. Raffin (7), N. Goodwin (S), D. Castles (Cox) and D. McDowell (Coach).
It was Queensland's first win for thirty three years, the last occasion being in 1891 in the Intercolonial Eights, and the Wide Bay stroke was very correct when he said after the race that they would go wild in Queensland.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 10, 1924, over 3/4 mile on the Bridge Reach. Brisbane Boys' College won by three feet to Brisbane State High School, a canvas to Church of England Grammar School, then The Southport School and Brisbane Grammar School.
The winning crew was:- G.S. Sturtridge (B) R.S.I. Brown (2) E.K. Murphy (3) S.O. Cowlishaw (S) A.R. Kennedy (Cox) with Dr.V. McDowall and J.T. Styles (Coaches).
This was the Brisbane State High School's first year in the All Schools' race. The school was founded on July 1, 1921, by the amalgamation of the Central Technical College, the Brisbane Junior High School and the High Top at the Wynnum State School. A rowing club was formed at the school in May 1923, and the schoolboys trained out of Brisbane RC ..
In the Brisbane RC. annual report for the 1923/24 season, the rejuvenation of the Brisbane District Committee was welcomed.
At the close of the season, the Brisbane Ladies RC. tendered their resignation from the Association in view of the complications which must occur in the handling of the Interstate race when held in this State.
The regatta officials were - Umpire - F.W. De Little, Judge - J.F. Donovan, Starter - W.J. Thompson, Timekeepers – R. Wilson and E.E. McCaskie.
In the 1924 Intervarsity race, Melbourne University pipped Queensland by half a length. This was the first time that five University eights had competed.
Commercial RC. won the Q.R.A. Pennant for the 1923/24 season, which started in September 1923, and ended in July 1924. At the 1924 A.G.M. concern was expressed that the allocation of points for the premiership unduly favoured metropolitan clubs. An amendment to the constitution to allow districts to affiliate in the same manner as the clubs and to have the district's delegates recognised by the Q.R.A. was carried. Mr.G.R.H. Gill was elected an Honorary Life Member at this meeting.
The office bearers elected were:
Patron:His Excellency, Sir Matthew Nathan
President: D. O'Connor
Hon. Secretary:H.J. Katchell
Hon. Treasurer:S. Roberts.
G.R.H. Gill was elected Chairman at the first committee meeting after the A.G.M.. H. Katchell resigned in October and was replaced by G.N. Smoothey.
Celebrations were organised to commemorate the centenary of the founding of the Brisbane settlement in 1824. On August 9, 1924, carnivals were held for foot racing and sailing and a Centenary Regatta was held on the Bridge Reach downstream to the Gardens Point. The Under 20 Four over 3/4 mile was won by Brisbane R.C.; the Centenary Eight over 1 mile by Commercial R.C.; the Maiden-Junior Four over 3/4 mile by Brisbane and the Centenary Four over 1 mile by Commercial.
On July 2, 1924, a meeting of ex-members of Toowong R.C. was held in Toowong and although only fifteen were present, they felt quite optimistic about their ability to establish a club in the district, and the Toowong Rowing Club came into existence for the third time. The University of Queensland Boat Club made space available in their shed at the Domain and placed their old clinker eight at Toowong's disposal. The club made their first appearance at the Henley-on-Brisbane on the New Farm Reach on October 11, 1924, and won the Henley Eights over five eights of a mile.
The Murray Bridge R.C. eight from South Australia, which represented Australia in the Paris Olympics was eliminated in the repechages.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Maryborough on October 25, 1924. The Champion Sculls over two and a half miles saw A. Baynes and A. Buckley of Commercial R.C. and N. Croucher of Bundaberg R.C. face the starter. After faltering slightly at the start, Baynes then shot ahead and although Buckley gave everything in the chase Baynes won by fifteen lengths with Croucher over half a mile behind.
In the Champion Four over three miles, five crews competed - Bundaberg R.C., Wide Bay R.C., Commercial R.C., Maryborough R.C. and Rockhampton R.C .. There was an even start but the water was choppy for the centre crews, and the Bundaberg cox steered a great course for the first mile to have a lead of three lengths on Wide Bay. Wide Bay drew to within two lengths but Bundaberg had the trump card on the bank out of the tide and held off Wide Bay to win by three lengths with a further three lengths to Commercial, then Maryborough and Rockhampton. The winning crew was -
A. Evans (B), T. Horton (2), A. Hassam (3), E. Rackemann (S) and G. Hargreaves (Cox).
The Champion Eight was rowed at Bundaberg on December 6, 1924, with Bundaberg R.C., Wide Bay R.C. and Brisbane R.C. being the starters. In the first start Bundaberg and Wide Bay clashed after half a mile and the race was re-started. Bundaberg and Wide Bay fought out a hard race with Bundaberg winning by a length to Wide Bay. Brisbane, finding their position hopeless, retired at the club house and did not complete the course. The winning crew was –
J. Lawrey (B), R. Lyndon (2), A. Hassam (3), D. Young (4), A. Wilkinson (5), F. Martens (6), A. Evans (7), E. Rackemann (S) and E. Boston (Cox).
The Inter-district Eight was rowed in Brisbane on March 21, 1925, on the three mile course from the top of Milton Reach to the Dry Dock, and there were three starters - Rockhampton District, Bundaberg District and Brisbane District. At the half mile Bundaberg was a yard or two in front of Brisbane and the oars of the two crews were almost touching, when the Bundaberg stroke held up his hand aa a protest. The Northern crew then retired. Brisbane paddled on with Rockhampton and finally Brisbane finished seven lengths ahead of Rockhampton. The protest by both Bundaberg and Rockhampton that Brisbane had taken their water was upheld and a re-row was ordered for Sunday.
The re-row was conducted on the Sunday on Hamilton Reach before a crowd estimated at 10,000 people. Rockhampton did not compete as one of their crew was the son of a clergyman who held decided views on Sunday sport. Bundaberg sprinted shortly after the start and obtained a slight lead, but Brisbane were not troubled and kept to their long hard stroke and they overhauled Bundaberg to have a half length lead after two miles. Bundaberg again sprinted and again established a slight lead. The crews see-sawed until about 200 yards from the finish when Brisbane sprinted again and won by half a length. The Brisbane crew was –
B. Richmond (B), N. Grimes (2), G. Axelsen (3), G.D. Young (4), J. Brennan (5), F.R. Conn (6), C.J. Henricksen (7), R.C. Hooper (S), W. Farmer (Cox) and A.A. Watson (Coach).
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was rowed over half a mile on Albert Park Lake in Melbourne on April 18, 1925. The South Australian ladies won decisively by four lengths to Victoria, a further two lengths to New South Wales and Western Australia fourth. It does not appear that a Queensland crew was entered.
At the rowing conference held in Adelaide in April 1924, in conjunction with the Interstate Championships, a resolution was passed providing for:
(1)The formation of an Australian Rowing Council, with the following powers:
- to arrange, prepare, and regulate the representation of Australia in international rowing:
- the council to meet annually at the time and place of the interstate race, or at any other time and place deemed necessary:
- to determine the policy regarding and frame all rules and regulations governing and controlling the King's Gold Cup race, and any other interstate championships, leaving the actual arrangements in the hands of the controlling body of the State where the race is held.
(2)That the resolutions passed by any interstate conference and subsequently ratified by two-thirds of the State Associations of the Commonwealth shall be binding to all.
(3)That the Federal Olympic Council be requested to permit the controlling bodies in the Commonwealth of each sport to finally select their representatives for the Olympic Games, and raise the necessary funds to send such representatives.
As at July 1924, the Victorian Association had endorsed the resolutions but with regard to resolution (c) had made a proviso that no other country be admitted to the King's Cup race.
In view of the fact that the Queensland delegates to the interstate conference in Launceston in 1921 had submitted a proposal for the formation of a Federal Council, it appeared that there was no occasion for delay, but resolution (2) was the fly in the ointment. Previously, resolutions of the interstate conference had to be unanimous before they could be binding and Queensland felt that this should continue.
At a Q.R.A. meeting on July 14, 1924, the resolutions were ratified with a proviso that the present agreement regarding the participation of the various States in the interstate competition and rotation of holding the race be incorporated in the constitution of the proposed Federal Council. The proposal for a two-thirds majority was deferred for further consideration.
The result of these discussions is unknown, but the Australian Amateur Rowing Council was formed on May 1, 1925, and Queensland did not join until 1926.
The Interstate Championships were rowed in Melbourne on May 2, 1925. In the Interstate Championship Sculls over two and a half miles there were five starters - A.A. Baynes of Queensland, H.E. Ricketts of South Australia, A.H. Cambridge of Victoria, A.W. Cuthbertson of Tasmania and C. Lorimer of New South Wales. The sculls had looked a good thing for Baynes but after holding the lead for the first mile he was overtaken by Cambridge and suddenly stopped sculling. He had been unwell during the latter part of the week and the indisposition reasserted itself. With about three quarters of a mile to go Cuthbertson drew level with Cambridge but Cambridge held out and won by three quarters of a length with Ricketts several lengths away third and Lorimer fourth, well in the rear.
In the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup all States were represented. Queensland appeared to get a bad start and were unable to recover. After a quarter of a mile Victoria had a half length on Western Australia with South Australia next. By the three quarters of a mile Tasmania moved up to second position. After the mile Western Australia and South Australia began to close up. Before halfway Western Australia were in the lead with Victoria and South Australia falling back. At the halfway Tasmania took the lead but at the two mile Western Australia had it back. At the finish Western Australia won by two and a half lengths to Tasmania, then half a length to New South Wales. Fractions of a length separated the other crews who finished South Australia, Victoria and Queensland. There was less distance between first and last than had been seen in any previous similar event.
In the same edition of the paper was a report of a regatta held in Maryborough to provide funds to assist P. Finney, the three man in the crew which won the King's Cup the previous year at Adelaide. Finney had met with a gun accident whereby he had lost the sight of both eyes and he was shortly thereafter going to Sydney in the hope of undergoing treatment that might partially restore his sight.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 9, 1925, over 3/4 mile downstream to University boathouse. After the third attempt at starting the race, Brisbane State High School won by four feet to Brisbane Boys' College, then Church of England Grammar School, The Southport School and Brisbane Grammar School.
The winning crew was:- C. Colledge (B) F. Whyatt (2) C. Fisher (3) E. Anderssen (S) and V. Anderson (Cox).
The Intervarsity race was rowed in Brisbane on June 6, 1925, and was won by University of Tasmania, from Sydney and Queensland.
Bundaberg became a separate district during the season, having previously been coupled in the Maryborough District for Q.R.A. purposes.
Apart from the Championships the regatta programme started on August 8, 1924, with the Centenary Regatta, October 11 - Henley, October 18 (Brisbane Fours and Sculls-QRA), Brisbane District Rowing Committee regattas on November 8 - Maiden Eight, November 22 - Senior Eight, December 13 - Nazareth Home Carnival, and B.D.R.C. on January 17, 1925 - Junior Eight.
The Q.R.A. Premiership for the 1924/25 season was won by Bundaberg R.C. with 136 points to Brisbane R.C. on 69 points and Commercial R.C. on 48 points.
At the 1925 A.G.M. the office bearers remained unchanged except for the election of R.C. Hooper as Honorary Treasurer.
On September 18, 1925, the Past Grammars Club affiliated with the Q.R.A. and within a few weeks changed their name to Great Public Schools Old Boys Rowing Club. They held their initial regatta on February 6, 1926.
The Champion Four was held in Rockhampton on October 10, 1925, over three miles. Four crews were entered - Rockhampton R.C., Leichhardt R.C., Bundaberg R.C. and Maryborough R.C., with no Brisbane representation. The crews started well but then Leichhardt started to fall back. Maryborough and Rockhampton collided and the Rockhampton crew threw up their hands but then stroke Fleming immediately shouted to them to row on, and they only lost two lengths. At the mile post Rockhampton was holding Maryborough with Bundaberg a length behind. At the two miles Rockhampton was still just holding Maryborough with Bundaberg about four lengths back. Maryborough fought until about half a mile to go but Rockhampton then moved away to win by three lengths with Leichhardt coming up to overtake Bundaberg, but still ten lengths behind. The winning crew was - C. Tucker (B), V. Taylor (2), D. McKay (3), A. Fleming (S) and S. Barnes (Cox).
Sir Matthew Nathan completed his term as Governor on October 27, 1925, and it is presumed that William Lennon, the Administrator, again extended his patronage until the arrival of the new Governor on January 27, 1927.
The Champion Eights regatta was held on the Hamilton Reach on December 12, 1925. The Champion Sculls saw four entrants - A.A. Baynes and S.R. Kent of Commercial R.C. and J.G. Smith and N. Croucher of Bundaberg R.C.. Baynes moved easily to the front after 100 yards and went on to win with the greatest of ease by fifteen lengths to Smith and fifteen lengths to Croucher and Kent a further six lengths back.
A. Buckley of Commercial who had also been entered, smashed his scull taking it off the launch at the starting point and could not start.
The races were much delayed by the break down of the speed launch to follow the race with the officials and the press and no other boat being readily available. The Champion Eight started one and a half hours late with five crews entered - Commercial R.C., Brisbane R.C., Toowong R.C., Maryborough R.C. and Wide Bay R.C.. On the first start the stroke of Commercial broke his stretcher strap and upon appealing a re-start was ordered. Maryborough jumped the gun at the second attempt and the crews were brought back for a third start. Commercial took an early lead with Toowong and Maryborough fighting doggedly to displace them. At the Cold Stores, Maryborough rowing in anything but championship form, but with a bulldog tenacity made a surprise burst and got the lead, then Toowong, rowing powerfully, took the lead but Maryborough shook them off. Commercial then called for the big effort and at the two mile mark it was clear that they had the race in hand. Maryborough and Toowong held on pluckily but Commercial won by three lengths to Maryborough, with Toowong half a length back in third place, four lengths to Wide Bay and Brisbane at least 100 yards behind. The winning crew was - C. Belchner (B), N. Grimes (2), G. Axelsen (3), D. Young (4), H. Blakely (5), G. King (6), C.J. Henricksen (7), F.R. Conn (S), D. Coulter (Cox) and L. Eastman (Coach).
A newspaper article of April 1, 1926, stated that a Brisbane Ladies' Four was training for the Interstate race on May 1, - Misses Hooper (B), George (2), Hinckfuss (3), Palmer (S), Foubisher (Cox) and J.A. Allison (Coach). No mention of any test race.
The Inter-district Eight was rowed at Maryborough on March 20, 1926, and the district eights from Bundaberg, Maryborough and Brisbane faced the starter. Maryborough had a lead of half a length to Brisbane after a half mile. Brisbane fell back with Bundaberg after a mile. Maryborough tired in the middle mile and Brisbane drew to within half a length at the two miles with a further two lengths to Bundaberg. Maryborough recovered their poise and held off Brisbane to win by less than a length with one and a half lengths to Bundaberg. The winning crew was - H.G. Poole (B), E.G. Cook (2), R. Shaw (3), R. Couzens (4), H. Blackman (5), J.J. Poole (6), S. McFarlane (7), M. Raffin (S) and J. Hughes (Cox).
On the same weekend, the new rowing shed for the Toowong R.C., slightly upstream of the Regatta Hotel, was officially opened with a regatta and fete.
On May 1, 1926, the Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over half a mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was conducted in Brisbane on the Customs House Reach. There were only two crews competing - South Australia and Queensland. The South Australian four were much heavier than Queensland and moved out from the start to win by six lengths. The Queensland ladies were seated - Misses C. Hooper (B), R. George (2), A. Hinckfuss (3), E. Palmer (S) and Mr. C. Dix (Cox).
That same afternoon a Q.R.A. regatta was held in Brisbane for the Champion Eights of the Brisbane River which was won by Commercial. At the Commercial shed Mr. James Clark, an honorary life member of the Q.R.A., presented a new eight-oared boat to the Queensland Rowing Association.
The Interstate Championships were held on the Hamilton Reach on May 8, 1926. The course for the three miles was from the city end of Gibson Island to a point 50 yards short of the Hamilton Cold Stores.
A.A. Baynes of Queensland, J.A. Goulding of New South Wales, A.H. Cambridge of Victoria and L.C. Nimmo of Tasmania made up the field in the Interstate Championship Sculls over two and a half miles. Baynes and Goulding were the first to show out. Soon after the start, Nimmo lost his fin and fouled Cambridge, but Cambridge moved more to the centre of the river and took up a position slightly to the rear of Goulding and Baynes. Goulding moved a half length ahead of Baynes after three quarters of a mile and increased that slightly up to the one and a half miles. Baynes then settled down to peg Goulding back and by the two mile mark drew level, then gradually forged ahead to win by one and a half lengths to Goulding, two lengths to Cambridge, and Nimmo a long way back. Baynes announced that this Sculls race would be his last competitive race. Goulding, who was only nineteen years old, sculled magnificently.
The scullers raced for the President's Cup for the first time. This perpetual trophy was presented by Mr. E.C. Watchorn of Tasmania, who was President of the Australian Amateur Rowing Council at the time of its inauguration.
In the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup all States were represented except Western Australia who were excused for the Queensland trip. After a great deal of manoeuvering at the start, the crews got away in a good line with New South Wales slow at starting. As they passed the half mile it was Tasmania, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia but little between them. At the mile Queensland had a slight lead on Tasmania. Just before the two miles Tasmania passed Queensland and over the last half mile drew away from Queensland who were also passed by South Australia and Victoria. Tasmania won by a length to South Australia, three quarters of a length to Victoria, two lengths to Queensland and New South Wales had retired about three quarters of a mile from the finish. The Wide Bay crew which represented Queensland had made a terrific fight for the title, but were lacking in size and experience.
The Queensland Metropolitan Secondary Schools' Association had declined to row the Head of the River on the same programme but did row their race in the morning on the Bridge Reach so as to cause no conflict for the spectators who may have wished to watch both contests. Over the 3/4 mile course downstream to University boathouse, Church of England Grammar School won by one and a half lengths to The Southport School, followed by Brisbane Grammar School, Brisbane State High School and Brisbane Boys' College.
The winning crew was:- D.B. Persse (B) E. McAdam (2) L. Cameron (3) D. Snelling (S) and E. Moore (Cox).
The Brisbane District Rowing Committee became the Metropolitan District Rowing Association during the 1925/26 season.
In the Q.R.A. Annual Report for 1925/26, it was noted in relation to the Australian Amateur Rowing Council that The first meeting of the fully constituted A.A.RC. was held in Brisbane on 7 May. It is worthy to record that the amendments to the Draft Constitution of the A.A.R.C., moved by this Association's delegate at the Interstate Conference held in Melbourne last year, were accepted by all States, as required by the constitution of the Interstate Conference and the A.A.RC. was formed, after the amendments desired by this Association were incorporated.
The Q.R.A. Premiership for the 1925/26 season was won by Commercial R.C. with 187 points to Bundaberg RC. on 53 points and Rockhampton RC. on 52 points.
The Lieutenant Governor, Hon.W. Lennon, had extended his patronage to the Association in the interval between the departure of Sir Matthew Nathan in October, 1925, and the arrival of the next Governor, Sir Thomas Goodwin, in January, 1927. The Honorary Life Members listed at this meeting were J. Clark, D. O'Connor and G.R.H. Gill.
As per the 1926/27 annual report of the Q.RA. the office bearers elected at the 1926 AGM were:
PatronWilliam Lennon, Administrator of Queensland
Vice-Presidents F. Baynes, A. Baynes, Lt.Col. D.C. Cameron, M.P., F.S.N. Bousfield, A. Burton, J.T. Donovan, F.W. De Little, J.N. Devoy, Lt.Col. Hughes, J. Clark, F. Baker, J. McCleer
Chairman G.R. Howard Gill
Hon. Secretary G.N. Smoothey
Hon. TreasurerC.A. Grimley
The Champion Four was held in Brisbane on October 16, 1926, on a course from the Dry Dock to Kayes Rocks at the top of Milton Reach. There were only three starters in the race - Commercial R.C., Bundaberg RC. and Toowong RC.. There were two false starts before getting away on the third attempt. Bundaberg led out from Commercial and Toowong and just before the Victoria Bridge had a clear two lengths lead. Passing the bridge, Toowong moved into second place. After a mile, Bundaberg led by three lengths to Toowong with half a length to Commercial. When Toowong steered wide on the corner into Milton Reach and took Commercial with them, Bundaberg moved to a lead of four lengths. Nearing Davies Park Bundaberg were tiring and Toowong closed up to two and a half lengths. Bundaberg had a lead of a length at Toowong ferry and were pretty erratic. Toowong drew level 100 yards from the line and the crews clashed. The two crews faltered and Commercial made a great dash. Toowong recovered and went on to win by one and a half lengths to Commercial and Bundaberg did not cross the line. The winning crew was - G. Leitch (B), P. Taylor (2), F. Downie (3), L.R. Smith (S), A. McVinish (Cox) and G. Osbaldiston (Coach). Leitch and Smith had been members of the victorious Tasmanian crew in the King's Cup in May.
The Champion Eight was held in Rockhampton on November 27, 1926, with only Rockhampton RC. and Toowong RC. competing. Leichhardt R.C. had loaned their eight to Toowong to minimise the expense for the trip. Rockhampton led out slightly at the start at a higher rating but could not get more than a quarter of a length lead. After half a mile Toowong were nearly on level terms. Toowong took a lead of a canvas, but Rockhampton again drew level and held for half a mile. With a mile to go Toowong started to draw away and with half a mile to go Rockhampton was beaten. Toowong won by four lengths in what was then a record time of 14 min. 35 sec.. The winning crew was - G. Leitch (B), J. Roylance (2), E.G. Prior (3), D. Jones (4), F. Downie (5), P. Taylor (6), J.A. Allison (7), L.R. Smith (S), G. McKenzie (Cox) and G. Osbaldiston (Coach). J.A. Allison could not have been a young man at this time, since he had rowed in a Commercial senior four against Toowong in 1912.
In 1926, the Brisbane State High School was paying the subscriptions of its school members who used the facilities of the Brisbane R.C. and rowed in their colours at club regattas.
The Champion Sculls of Queensland was rowed in Maryborough on February 12, 1927, with only two scullers from the Maryborough R.C. competing. The race had been postponed because of floods and this probably accounted for the poor field. J. Gordon shot out from the start and won by twenty five lengths to D. McWatters.
The Inter-district Eight was rowed at Bundaberg on March 19, 1927, and was the last inter-district race to decide Queensland representation. From 1928 onwards the Champion Eights was to be the test race. All districts were represented - Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Maryborough and Brisbane. The race was started against the tide while a strong north-easterly wind caused a disconcerting roughness. The positions from the north bank were Bundaberg, Maryborough, Brisbane and Rockhampton and this allowed the Bundaberg crew to start in calm water. Further, this crew did not encounter the swells at all, while the other crews experienced a quarter of a mile of rough water, which proved a serious handicap. After a quarter of a mile Bundaberg had a half length on Maryborough and by the half mile had two lengths. At the mile, Bundaberg had three lengths on Maryborough while Brisbane had lost ground, and Rockhampton was in last place. Maryborough made considerable heading once the crews came into the Town Reach, but Bundaberg won by two lengths to Maryborough, ten lengths to Brisbane and Rockhampton in last place. The Champion Fours of the Burnett was rowed on the same day and was won by Wide Bay R.C. from Bundaberg R.C.. The winning Bundaberg crew in the Inter-district Eights was - J. Lawrey (B), R. Lyndon (2), A. Bragg (3), J. Cullen (4), A. Hassam (5), H. Zunker (6), P. Feeney (7), D. Young (S) and R. Clemence (Cox).
R. Lyndon later sculled in Cairns and for Toowong R.C. - was Chairman of the Brisbane District Rowing Association and also Chairman of the Queensland Amateur Rowing Council.
The Interstate Championships were held in Hobart over the Lower Derwent course on May 7, 1927. In the Interstate Championship Sculls over 2 1/2 miles for the President's Cup there were four starters with no Queensland representation - R. Pearce of New South Wales, A.H. Cambridge of Victoria, L.R. Marsh of Tasmania and W.H. Pfeiffer of South Australia. The race was won by Pearce in comfortable style in rough conditions. He rowed a well judged race from start to finish, and throwing off Cambridge about 300 yards from the finishing line, won by twenty lengths. Cambridge steered an erratic course which, to a large extent, accounted for his defeat. Marsh, who was unable to adjust to the rough water, finished third and Pfieffer plugged along in the rear the whole of the race.
There was a strong northerly wind which got worse after the sculls race and forced the eights to be delayed until five o'clock and the race finished in semi-darkness. An immense crowd of 30,000 waited patiently all afternoon in the Domain, but at the finish of the race only those with powerful glasses could distinguish the crews, any others merely saw the splashing of the blades.
All States started in the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup and considering the very rough water the start was a very fair one. After the crews settled down Western Australia had a slight advantage over Queensland, then Tasmania and South Australia. After three quarters of a mile New South Wales began to draw up on Queensland, who were getting remarkable pace out of their boat for a very light crew. Soon after the crews struck lumpy water and all crews floundered except Western Australia and New South Wales. Western Australia rowed through the rough water in fine style and increased their lead over New South Wales to a length, three quarters of a length to Tasmania, half a length to Victoria then South Australia and Queensland. At half way the crews struck particularly bad water and Western Australia increased their lead to two lengths. Tasmania, who had been equal third, half filled and dropped back. With a quarter of a mile to go New South Wales challenged Western Australia and for a short time looked as if they would overtake them, but Western Australia responded and won by two lengths to New South Wales, three lengths to Victoria and South Australia kept their boat afloat long enough to cross the line and then swamped. Tasmania and Queensland had swamped about half a mile from the finish.
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over 1/2 mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was rowed on the Tamar River, Launceston, on Monday May 9, 1927. The water, in contrast to that for the King's Cup in Hobart on the previous Saturday, was like a millpond. The race was won easily by South Australia, the crew having held the title of Australian champions for the four years in succession prior to this event. A most exciting tussle took place between Tasmania and Queensland for second place with Tasmania displacing the Queensland crew who appeared exhausted at the finish. South Australia won by five lengths to Tasmania who were a length ahead of Queensland.
The Queensland Ladies were Misses J. Snodgrass (B) R. Myers (2) R. McHale (3) Mrs.A.J. Flemming (S) with no coxswain listed.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 14, 1927, over 3/4 mile downstream to University boathouse. Brisbane State High School won by 3/4 length to The Southport School and Brisbane Boys' College who dead-heated for second, with Brisbane Grammar School in fourth place. Church of England Grammar School did not finish the course.
The winning crew was:- R. Anderson (B) A. Polkinghorne (2) F. Whyatt (3) W. Allan (S) F. Longmore (Cox) and G. McCaskie and R. Longmore (Coaches).
The Great Public Schools Old Boys' R.C. opened their new shed on the Domain alongside the University boathouse, on the same day and held a regatta to commemorate the occasion. No doubt they hoped to achieve a substantial spin-off from the school spectators.
The club membership figures for the 1926/27 season were as follows:
Bundaberg R.C. 30
Commercial R.C. 60
Leichhardt R.C. 45
Maryborough R.C. 27
Rockhampton R.C. 55
Toowong R.C. 44
Wide Bay R.C. 22
No membership numbers were shown against Brisbane R.C. or GPSOBRC (who had affiliated in September, 1925).
Toowong won the Q.R.A. Premiership pennant with 132 points and Leichhardt were second with 52 points.
Agenda items to be decided at the meeting were a proposal to row the Champion Eights of Queensland four to six weeks before the date of the Interstate Eights and the Queensland Championships to be the selection race. It was also proposed that a Junior Premiership be initiated to be decided on points gained in Maiden, Junior and Under Twenty events.
The new Governor, Lt.Col. Sir John Goodwin, K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O., F.R.C.S., conferred his patronage on the association after his arrival on January 27, 1927. The President, Chairman, Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer remained unchanged.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Bundaberg on December 3, 1927. The Champion Four was rowed on a flood tide with a strong northerly wind, making the water for the first mile very choppy and the going heavy. Seven crews started - Rockhampton R.C., Leichhardt R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough R.C., Brisbane R.C., Commercial R.C. and Toowong R.C.. Bundaberg had drawn the favoured northern side of the course. After a quarter of a mile, Bundaberg and Rockhampton were leading when they clashed blades and Bundaberg was checked temporarily, but after half a mile Bundaberg had half a length lead. At the end of the first mile Bundaberg led Rockhampton by four lengths, two lengths to Maryborough and Toowong. At the end of the second mile Bundaberg had the race well in hand with a lead of six lengths to Rockhampton who swamped on the tum. Bundaberg then paddled over the line to win by fifteen lengths to Brisbane, two lengths to Toowong, then Leichhardt, Rockhampton and Maryborough. Commercial did not finish. All the boats had shipped a considerable amount of water during the race. The winning crew was - J. Kingston (B), J. Lawrey (2), A. Hassam (3), D. Young (S), H. King (Cox) and W. Moller (Coach).
The Champion Eights regatta was held at Maryborough on April 7, 1928, before a crowd of about five thousand people. In the Ladies' Four-oared Championship over half a mile, the Brisbane Ladies' RC. four won by a length to the Fitzroy Ladies' RC. with Rockhampton Ladies' RC. in third place. The winning crew was - Misses G. Carr (B), O. Lutz (2), M. Reid (3), K. Beardmore (S) Master N. Hooper (Cox) and Mr.C. Potts (Coach). This was the first Queensland Championship race for the ladies. An article headed
“LADY ROWERS" in the Maryborough Chronicle of April 9. 1928, says "The three crews rowed in good form, with a little in favour of the southern four, who finished with some distance to spare. The three crews put up a creditable performance and the finish was very interesting.
The Champion Sculls saw A. Buckley of Commercial RC. win on a row-over.
Seven crews started in the Champion Eight - Rockhampton RC., Bundaberg RC., Maryborough RC., Wide Bay RC., Brisbane RC., Toowong RC. and GPSOBRC. The race was started on the last of the flood tide and the crews got a good even start. The first half mile was very even with Wide Bay possibly holding s slight lead. At the mile Wide Bay had a half length on Maryborough with Bundaberg third. At the two miles Wide Bay still led and went a little wide on the tum taking Maryborough with them with Bundaberg third, Rockhampton and the three Brisbane crews several lengths back. Wide Bay had the staying power and won by three lengths to Maryborough, a further four lengths to Bundaberg, and the rest of the field was strung out, finishing Brisbane, Toowong, Rockhampton and GPSOB. The winning crew was - D. McDowell (B), J. Cullen (2), J. Mansfield (3), L. Andersen (4), S. Watson (5), R. Weir (6), A. Andersen (7), J. Andersen (S), P. Lambert (Cox) and R. Hunter (Coach).
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was rowed on the Parramatta River over half a mile on April 28, 1928. Four crews started - New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Queensland. New South Wales rowed in good form, maintaining good length and defeated South Australia by two lengths with Queensland a half length away third. Victoria was fourth.
The Queensland Ladies were Misses G. Carr (B) O. Lutz (2) M. Reid (3) K. Beardmore (S) Mr.N. Hooper(Cox) and Mr.C. Potts (Coach).
The Interstate Championships were rowed on the Nepean River on May 5. 1928. In the Interstate Championship Sculls over 2 1/2 miles for the President's Cup there were four scullers - A. Buckley of Queensland, L.R. Marsh of Tasmania, H.R. Pearce of New South Wales and A.H. Cambridge of Victoria. After one false start all scullers got away to a good start. Pearce took the lead almost from the start followed by Marsh, Cambridge and Buckley. At the half way mark Pearce had twelve lengths lead on Marsh, six lengths to Cambridge and a length to Buckley. Pearce sprinted in the last half mile to win by thirty lengths to Marsh, ten lengths to Cambridge and Buckley well back.
All States were represented in the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup. There was an unfortunate delay caused by the stroke of the Queensland crew breaking a poppet pin. There was an excellent start, with New South Wales having a canvas lead on Western Australia after 100 yards with the other crews level a few feet behind. After a half mile Queensland and Western Australia on opposite sides of the river were moving to New South Wales. At the mile Western Australia led Queensland by a length with New South Wales third. Western Australia and Queensland were both stroking 38 to the minute, and they fought out the middle mile stroke for stroke with Western Australia finishing with a length and a half lead. Shortly after the two mile Queensland sprinted and closed to within a length of Western Australia. Tasmania moved past Victoria into third place. With about 300 yards to go Western Australia had a lead of more than a length and Tasmania had come up on Queensland. The umpire had to call on Queensland to take its own water which cost them half a length. Once under the bridge, Queensland made a further effort but Western Australia won by one and a quarter lengths to Queensland with a length to Tasmania, then followed Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia.
1928 saw the advent of St. Joseph's College, Gregory Terrace, into the Head of the River competition, and this caused the race to be rowed in two heats and a final for both the first and second fours, although no reason was given in the newspaper for the necessity to row in heats.
The heats were rowed on Thursday, May 9, 1928, downstream to the Domain. In the second fours, C.E.G.S. won from T.S.S. and B.G.S. in heat one, and B.B.C. won from B.S.H.S. and Gregory Terrace in heat two. In the first fours, B.S.H.S. won from B.B.C. and C.E.G.S. in the first heat, and T.S.S. won from B.G.S. and Gregory Terrace in heat two. Accordingly, B.G.S. and Gregory Terrace were eliminated from the second fours, and C.E.G.S. and Gregory Terrace were eliminated from the first fours.
The final of the All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 12, 1928, over 3/4 mile downstream to University boathouse. In the First Four for the Head of the River, Brisbane State High School and Brisbane Grammar School dead-heated for first place, followed by Brisbane Boys' College and The Southport School. There was no re-row of the event, both schools being co-holders of the title.
The winning crews were:-
B.S.H.S. – R. Trickett (B) A. Polkinghorne (2) F. Whyatt (3) V. Crew (S) and F. Briant (Cox)
B.G.S. - K.V. Sylow (B) E.R. Collings (2) L.D. Lawton (3) F.M. Nicholson (S) and H.T. Priestley (Cox)
The Second Four, also over 3/4 mile, was won by Brisbane Boys' College from Church of England Grammar School, The Southport School and Brisbane State High School.
A serious accident while training caused Gregory Terrace to withdraw from the competition before the 1929 race.
During the 1927/28 season Bundaberg R.C. became the outright winner of the Ernest Winter Shield by virtue of their win in the Champion Four. The Inter-district Eight race was no longer conducted. Toowong won the Q.RA. Senior Premiership and Commercial RC. the Junior Premiership. Following dissatisfaction with the points scoring in the senior and junior premierships, an agenda item proposed returning to one premiership with all districts rowing River Championships and strict control of status races. This motion was adopted. It was also proposed that the season should open not earlier than September 1, and should close not later than April 30 in each year. The office bearers basically remained unchanged except for E. Gordon Prior being appointed Hon. Treasurer.
At the Olympic Games held in Amsterdam, Holland, from May 17 to August 12, 1928, H.R.(Bobby) Pearce of Australia won the Mens Single Sculls.
The Champion Fours regatta was held in Brisbane on the Milton Reach on November 24, 1928, starting where the William Jolly Bridge is now. The Champion Four was rowed over two miles, which was to be the new set distance for this race. Eight crews were entered - Rockhampton RC., Bundaberg RC., Maryborough R.C., Wide Bay R.C., Brisbane RC., G.P.S.O.B.R.C., Commercial R.C. and Toowong RC.. As could be expected with eight crews there were several false starts and the crowd became impatient. Wide Bay, on the south bank, got the best of the start, followed by Brisbane, Rockhampton, Bundaberg and Toowong. After three quarters of a mile Wide Bay led narrowly from Brisbane with Bundaberg third. After one and a quarter miles Wide Bay and Brisbane were together with Rockhampton several lengths away third. Brisbane slipped away and won by a length and a half to Wide Bay, five and a half lengths to GPSOB third and then Rockhampton and Maryborough together, followed by Bundaberg, Toowong and Commercial who did not finish. The winning crew was - H. Blakely (B), R. Parr (2), R. Robinson (3), R. Conn (S), V. Anderson (Cox) and L. Eastman (Coach).
The Champion Sculls were rowed in Brisbane on March 9, 1929, over two and a half miles with four starters - A. Buckley of Commercial R.C., J. Smith of Commercial R.C., J. Crouch of GPSOBRC and G.S. Dawber of Toowong R.C .. Buckley took the lead after a quarter of a mile and was never troubled to win by fifteen lengths to Crouch and a further fifteen lengths to Smith. Dawber was swamped by the wash of the umpire's boat and retired about three quarters of a mile from the finish.
The Champion Eight was rowed at Rockhampton on March 30, 1929, over three miles with seven starters -Rockhampton R.C., Leichhardt RC., Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough RC., Wide Bay RC., Brisbane RC. and GPSOBRC. GPSOB led out from Bundaberg and Wide Bay. At the mile Bundaberg was in front with GPSOB handy. The order was unchanged during the middle mile, but entering the last mile Wide Bay began to move up. The final quarter mile was a great race with GPSOB the first to crack under the strain and Wide Bay went on to win by three quarters of a length to Bundaberg, half a length to GPSOB in third place. Maryborough was a further two lengths back, with Brisbane and Leichhardt four lengths behind and Rockhampton right out of it. The winning crew was - J.Sullivan (B), W. Don (2), W. Barlow (3), J. McKewen (4), S. Watson (5), J. White (6), J. Mansfield (7), J. Andersen (S), P. Lambert (Cox) and R. Hunter (Coach).
The Ladies' Champion Four was rowed on the same day over half a mile. Three crews were entered - Wide Bay Ladies R.C., Brisbane Ladies' R.C. and Fitzroy Ladies R.C.. Brisbane got away to a good start followed by Wide Bay. Notwithstanding their superior style, Brisbane could not draw away from Wide Bay, who went on to win by a canvas to Brisbane and Fitzroy four lengths back.
The winning crew was - Misses L. Erkert (B), M. Finney (2), N. Watson (3), H. White (S), Master G. Phillips (Cox) and Mr.W. Carberry (Coach).
On April 20, 1929, the Brisbane Ladies' R.C. christened a new racing four, the "James Clark". The boat, which was christened by the Club Captain Miss M. Reid, was named in honour of the club's patron, and was the first new four to have graced the commodious boathouse for twenty years. The new four was built by Edwards & Sons, Melbourne, at a cost of £75.
The Champion Lightweight Four was rowed for the first time on Milton Reach in Brisbane on a two mile course from Kayes Rocks to a point just under the Grey Street Bridge (present William Jolly Bridge) on April 27, 1929. The weight limit for lightweights was ten stone (63.6kg) with no averaging of crew members. Four crews entered for the race - Bundaberg R.C., Brisbane R.C., Toowong R.C. and GPSOBRC. Toowong led out and at the quarter mile had a canvas on Bundaberg with Brisbane and GPSOB two lengths back. After three quarters of a mile, Bundaberg rowing with great power took the lead. Brisbane came into second place but at the mile mark Bundaberg had a length and a half on Toowong who were rowing comfortably with GPSOB challenging them. Bundaberg were never troubled to win by three and a half lengths, while after a terrific last 100 yards Toowong came in second, three feet ahead of GPSOB with five lengths to Brisbane. The winning crew was - B. Pyle (B), R. Slean (2), C. Roebuck (3), J. Lawrey (S), P. Stibe (Cox) and W. Moller (Coach).
The Interstate Championships were held in Perth on May 4, 1929, and Queensland were excused from making the trip. The Interstate Championship Sculls over 2 1/2 miles for the President's Cup was virtually a match race with R. Pearce of New South Wales and K. Langley of Western Australia the only entries. Pearce took the lead after half a mile and was untroubled to win by three and a half lengths even though Langley was gaining slowly at the finish.
The Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup got away late because of rough weather, and Tasmania also was not represented. At the end of the first mile New South Wales led Western Australia by half a length and the two crews remained locked together. With a beautiful burst New South Wales crossed the line three quarters of a length clear of Western Australia with ten lengths to Victoria and four lengths to South Australia.
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 4, 1929, over 3/4 mile downstream to the Domain. In the First Four for the Head of the River, Brisbane Grammar School won by half a length to The Southport School, then Church of England Grammar School, Brisbane Boys' College and Brisbane State High School.
The winning crew was:- L.D. Lawton (B) C.A. Acton (2) E.R. Collings (3) F.M. Nicholson (S) and A.B. Farquhat (Cox).
The Second Four was won by B.G.S. from B.S.H.S. and C.E.G.S..
In a newspaper article of June 14, 1929, an item of interest was that on sectional eights, which had been introduced from New Zealand and later adopted by George Towns. The boats were built in three sections for packing in two crates each only 23 feet long.
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over 1/2 mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was rowed on the Swan Water, Perth, on May 11, 1929. From an even start New South Wales gained a slight lead after 200 yards over Victoria and South Australia with Western Australia about half a length behind. There was little change until about 200 yards from the finish, when Victoria began to move after the leader. It appeared that New South Wales, who were still showing the best form, must win, but Victoria though ragged by comparison, quickened its stroke and throwing every ounce into a last desperate effort, reduced the lead foot by foot. A few feet from the line, Victoria drew level, and getting in the last stroke, won the Championship from the holders of the title by a foot. The placings were Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Western Australia. There was no Queensland representation.
Wide Bay R.C. won the Q.R.A. Premiership for the 1928/29 season. Brisbane Ladies' R.C. and Cairns R.C. affiliated with the Q.R.A. during the year.
The Fortieth A.G.M. of the Queensland Rowing Association was held on July 31, 1929. There were 10 affiliated clubs with a membership of 407 and the Ladies and University clubs were not included.
Mr.F.W. de Little was elected as an Honorary Life Member. Roy Gill retired as Chairman after nine full year's service and was presented with a gold watch and chain. The office bearers elected at this meeting were: Patron - Sir John Goodwin; President - D. O'Connor; Honorary Secretary- G.N. Smoothey; Honorary Treasurer - J.C. Trotter. The death in London of W.B. Carmichael was recorded. He had been an Honorary Life Member of the Q.R.A. and a prime mover in the building of the O'Connor Boathouse for Commercial Rowing Club. Mr.D. Beatson was elected Chairman at the first meeting of the new committee. At this first committee meeting it was noted that there actually did not exist any complete set of rules for the government of the Q.R.A. and this had of recent years, caused dissatisfaction in some clubs. The secretary was instructed to write to the other State Associations for copies of their rules to act as guides to the sub-committee formed to deal with the matter.
The Champion Four was rowed at Maryborough over two miles on October 26, 1929, with six crews competing - Rockhampton R.C., Leichhardt R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough R.C., Wide Bay R.C. and GPSOBRC. Wide Bay immediately went to the front, closely followed by Bundaberg. Passing the mile Wide Bay maintained the lead from Bundaberg with Rockhampton third. Wide Bay then increased their rating and went on to win by five lengths to Bundaberg with Maryborough in third place a further five lengths back, followed by GPSOB, Leichhardt and Rockhampton. The winning crew was-
J. Mansfield (B), J. White (2), S. Watson (3), J. Anderson (S) and J. King (Cox).
Early in 1930 a new rowing club for Shell Oil Co. employees was opened, boating from Kangaroo Point. The Shell premises at this time were in Mary Street. The Shell Rowing Club's colours "yellow and red".
On February 15, 1930, a four from the Brisbane Ladies Rowing Club competed in the Sydney Ladies R.C. 21st Annual Regatta, which included the N.S.W. Women's Championships. They competed in the Lightweight Junior Four and gained third place.
The crew members were Misses N. Newcombe (B), S. Murphy (2), J. Aland (3), P.E. Edwards (S) and K. Beardmore (Cox).
The Champion Eights regatta was rowed on Hamilton Reach on March 29, 1930. The Champion Sculls had a field of seven starters - A. Buckley of Commercial R.C., J. Richardson of Bundaberg R.C., J.G. Smith of Commercial R.C., J. Crouch of GPSOBRC, G.G. Boreham of Bundaberg R.C., J. Gilmeister of Commercial R.C. and G. Reville of Brisbane R.C.. Buckley led out and after half a mile was fifteen lengths ahead of Richardson with Smith four lengths back. At halfway Buckley settled to a comfortable paddle and won by five lengths. There was a great tussle between the veteran Smith (nearly fifty years old) and Richardson for second place with Richardson taking second, Smith third, then Crouch, Boreham, Gilmeister and Reville.
In the Ladies' Champion Four over half a mile, the Bundaberg Ladies' R.C. crew, rowing in their first championship, shot out at the gun and rowing at 38 throughout, won by four lengths to Brisbane Ladies' R.C.. The winning crew was - Misses M. Brunke (B), A. Hampson (2), F. Crossett (3), E. Midgley (S), Master P. Stibe (Cox) and Mr.J. Lawrey (Coach).
There were eight starters in the Champion Eight - Rockhampton R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough R.C., Wide Bay R.C., GPSOBRC, Brisbane R.C., Toowong R.C. and the University of Queensland Boat Club making their first appearance in the Champion Eights. The sequence of events that followed was rightly headlined in the Monday newspaper as "ROWING FIASCO". The race was timed to start at 4.50 p.m. on Saturday. It started at 6 p.m. in a blinding rainstorm, as darkness approached. After rowing half a mile, the oarsmen, in their anxiety to get to the shelter of the northern bank at a bend in the river, converged, and it was decided to re-row on Sunday morning.
Again there was trouble. After two false starts, and when the crews had rowed half the distance, the race was stopped because a poppet was broken in the Maryborough boat. The Maryborough coxswain had raised his hand, and the umpire, who had been over 200 yards behind, thinking there had been a clash, stopped the race. At this stage Toowong had been leading by six feet and rowing side by side with Maryborough, with GPSOB and Bundaberg travelling comfortably a length behind. Toowong ignored the umpire's signal and rowed on in disgust. The meeting held afterwards between the Q.R.A. officials and the strokes of the crews was a stormy one, and it was decided to appoint two umpires and a referee for the afternoon race.
At the oarsmen's request the race was re-rowed at 4 p.m.. University and Brisbane did not row in the afternoon. The course was downstream from near Breakfast Creek to Queensport on a straight course. The race was timed to start at 4 p.m. but actually got away at 3.45 p.m. just as the eighteen footers and other skiffs were finishing close to the starting point. This, together with rough water, made it very difficult for the crews to stay afloat. Bundaberg was the first to meet trouble, when the boats were almost abreast shortly after the start of the race. This crew became entangled in a nest of sailing craft and was nearly run down. Their hands went up in protest. The race proceeded. A minute afterwards the Maryborough crew was in trouble and retired. Then Wide Bay with a waterlogged boat had to row to the shore for safety, and Rockhampton, rowing level with Toowong became waterlogged, the back of the boat was broken, and becoming unmanageable, fouled Toowong. All this happened before the crews had gone a mile and it left GPSOB the only crew afloat. With the advantage of the smoother water, they rowed on to the finish and were declared winner of the Champion Eights. This decision caused a howl of protest from the other crews, who appealed against it to the Q.R.A..
At the meeting of the Q.R.A. held on the Monday evening, the Chairman of the Q.R.A. and umpire in the Champion Eight presided. The Chairman ruled that the Q.R.A. had no jurisdiction to over-rule the decision of the umpire (himself). It was moved and seconded that the Chairman's ruling be disagreed with. The motion was carried but not with the necessary two thirds majority and thus lapsed. After further discussions the GP SOB delegate and four of the crew retired and then returned to announce that they would accept challenges to race over a course of three miles from Queensport to Toombul Rocks, Brisbane, on April 13 at 9.45 a.m.. The GPSOB club would forego its rights to trophies in respect to the Champion Eights of Queensland, which should be presented to the crew winning the re-row. The offer was accepted and carried unanimously. After a long discussion on the financing of country clubs which decided to challenge GPSOB, it was decided that the Q.R.A. pay the freight on craft and the fares of the visiting oarsmen. After discussion of the appointment of officials and consideration of proposals which were tantamount to a vote of no confidence in the Q.R.A. officials, it was decided that Mr. Beatson (the Chairman) should act as one umpire together with a similar official appointed by the crews of the country districts.
The meeting closed with a decision to place on record appreciation of the splendid spirit of sportsmanship displayed by the GPSOB crew and club.
The challenge eight-oared race to decide the right to represent Queensland in the King's Cup at Mannum in South Australia and to hold the Queensland Champion Eights title was held on the Hamilton Reach on April 13, 1930, with Rockhampton R.C., Bundaberg R.C., Maryborough R.C., Wide Bay R.C., GPSOBRC and Toowong R.C. competing.
Maryborough led out and after a quarter of a mile had a canvas on Bundaberg with a further quarter length to GPSOB and Toowong. At the mile, Maryborough had increased their lead to two lengths to Bundaberg with GPSOB and Toowong a quarter of a length away. At the two mile mark Bundaberg and Toowong were level with Maryborough half a length behind. Bundaberg raised their rating in the last mile and won by two lengths to Toowong, half a length to GPSOB, two feet to Maryborough, a length to Rockhampton and Wide Bay was last 300 yards behind.
The winning Bundaberg crew was - T. Wust (B), R. Slean (2), W. Mortensen (3), A. Hassam (4), V. Stephenson (5), C. Cullen (6), C. Roebuck (7), J. Lawrey (S), R. Clemence (Cox) and W. Moller (Coach).
The Champion Lightweight Four was rowed in Bundaberg on April 21, 1930. No Brisbane crews competed and it was a race between two Bundaberg crews. Lawrey's crew was in command from the first stroke and won as they pleased. The winning crew was - G. Leask (B), R. Slean (2), C. Roebuck (3), J. Lawrey (S), P. Stibe (Cox) and W. Moller (Coach).
The All Schools' Four-oar Championship was rowed on May 3, 1930, over 3/4 mile on the Milton Reach, downstream to the Knoll which was just upstream of the Grey Street Bridge. In the First Four for the Head of the River, The Southport School won by one and a half lengths to Brisbane Grammar School, then Church of England Grammar School, Brisbane State High School and Brisbane Boys' College.
The winning crew was:- J. McWhirter (B) R.A. Yates (2) P.C. Lahey (3) J.S. Turnock (S) and J.C. Stephenson (Cox).
The Second Four was won by T.S.S. from B.B.C., C.E.G.S., B.G.S. and B.S.H.S..
An Old Boys' Eights race over 1 mile was won by B.G.S. from T.S.S., B.S.H.S. and C.E.G.S..
The Interstate Championships were rowed at Mannum on the River Murray in South Australia on May 10, 1930. The Interstate Championship Sculls over 2 1/2 miles for the President's Cup was won easily by J.R. Scott of New South Wales who defeated A. Buckley of Queensland by eleven lengths with fifteen lengths to A. Beauchamp of Tasmania and R. Jelbert of Victoria fourth.
In the Interstate Championship Eight-oared Race over three miles for the King's Cup the starter got the race away in a good line but in getting in to the launch to follow the crews, he accidentally fired the gun again and the race stopped. There was further delay and the re-start was 35 minutes later. At the quarter mile Victoria and Queensland were level with Western Australia and New South Wales a length behind. With one mile gone Victoria and Queensland were still together with a length to Western Australia then New South Wales. New South Wales then appeared to get their act together and at the halfway were two lengths behind. Shortly after this the No.6 in the Western Australian crew broke his seat and they were out of the race. At the two mile mark, Victoria led Queensland by one and a half lengths and the light Queensland crew were tiring, and New South Wales were closing fast on Queensland. With half a mile to go New South Wales had moved to within half a length of Victoria, and at the quarter mile the margin was a quarter length. In a magnificent sprint for the finish Victoria crossed three feet ahead of New South Wales, ten lengths to Queensland in third place, and Tasmania and South Australia a long way behind.
The Ladies' Championship Four-oar of Australia over 1/2 mile for the U.L.V.A. Trophy was held on the same day at Murray Bridge with New South Wales winning from Victoria with South Australia third. There were no other starters.
The Brisbane R.C. shed which was on the bank below North Quay had to be pulled down in March, 1929, to permit the start of bridgeworks for what is now the William Jolly Bridge. The new shed was located between the Commercial R.C. and the Brisbane Grammar School sheds on North Quay and was officially opened on April 5, 1930. Their boats were housed with the various metropolitan clubs in the interim.
The Brisbane Boys' College moved to their new buildings at Kensington Terrace, Toowong in June 1930, with a boathouse to be constructed at Toowong. In the meantime, they boated from Toowong R.C. The college held their regatta on April 14, 1934, to celebrate the opening of their new boathouse.
Bundaberg R.C. won the State Premiership for the 1929/30 season. The financial statement presented at the 1930 A.G.M. was the worst presented to the Association, showing an excess of liabilities of £208.
G. Smoothey retired after six years as Honorary Secretary and was sincerely thanked for his services. Mr.A. Burton was elected as an Honorary Life Member, making the list of Honorary Life Members -D. O'Connor, P. Frankel, J. Clark, G.R.H. Gill, F.W. de Little and A. Burton. The allegations of Queen Street control of the Association were again revived and resulted in the District Associations being required to pay £25 to the Q.R.A. for the right to stage State Championship regattas and the district then to be in charge of arrangements. This enabled the Metropolitan District Rowing Association (Brisbane) to gain control of State Championships in Brisbane and also benefit by the profits generated. Delegates and office bearers were to be the only persons to vote at A.G.M.'s. - in proportion to their membership numbers - while any other persons present could speak to the motions but not vote. This was to prevent stacking of the meeting by metropolitan supporters.
The annual report noted with regret the death of M.J. Slack, the winner of the first Intercolonial Champion Sculls at Brisbane in 1892.
In the 1929/30 season, apart from the State Championships, the following clubs won river titles:GPSOBRC - Brisbane Four and Eight; Commercial R.C. - Brisbane Sculls; Bundaberg R.C. - Burnett Four and Sculls, Brisbane Lightweight Four; Wide Bay R.C. - Mary Four; Maryborough R.C. - Mary Eight and Rockhampton R.C. won the Fitzroy Four and Eight.
The regatta officials listed were - Umpire - D.T. Beatson, Judge - L. Trout.
The office bearers elected at the 1930 AGM were: Patron - Sir John Goodwin, President - D. O'Connor, Chairman - D.T. Beatson, Hon. Secretary - R.T. Delaney and Honorary Treasurer - J.D. Felgate. The Honorary Treasurer retired during the year and R.T. Delaney took on the dual duties of Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer.
A report on August 8, 1930, records that the Sydney G.P.S. Association had disqualified both Sydney High (first) and Sydney Grammar (second) due to both crews having adopted practices in training savouring of professionalism and each had departed from the true spirit of GPS Association tradition.
The same report stated that eight regattas in the Metropolitan half season were ample - this season fourteen were staged in the half season - financial drain on the members was excessive - entrance fee of 2/6 is heavy. Comment on dangerous practices by persons steering crews - two deaths as a result of collisions of racing boats on the Brisbane River. Portmaster stated crews disregarding river laws - out after sunset without lights - nothing has changed.
A point of interest was that The Southport School in 1930 was conducting its 23rd annual regatta, with the usual races for senior clubs - the Southport Fours and the Challenge Flag, and in this year a ladies' four in which two Brisbane Ladies' R.C. crews faced a St. Hilda's crew.
The First Empire Games were conducted in Hamilton, Canada, in August, 1930, and H.R. (Bobby) Pearce won the Single Sculls.
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