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History of the South Australian Schools Head of the River rowing regatta

1922 South Australian Schools' Head of the River

Wednesday, 13 December – Torrens Lake:


After an extended hiatus, the Head of the River for schools resumed in 1922. The regatta moved from Port River to Torrens Lake.


The resumption of the SA Head of the River was in the form of a challenge in eights between St. Peter's College and Adelaide High School. Despite being involved in the 1893-6 regattas, Prince Alfred College did not contest this race. Raced over a ½ mile, Adelaide High broke St. Peter's unbeaten streak in the schools regatta by just 3 feet.


The Journal wrote of the inaugural SA school's eights race in 1922:

"On Wednesday evening, shortly after 6 o'clock in the presence at a large number of spectators the eight oar crews of St. Peters College and Adelaide High School rowed a challenge not over the course from the weir to the landing stage below the Botunda. The event was most exciting, and the large number of schoolboys watching the efforts of their champions were intensely enthusiastic as the finish was approached. St. Peter's were on the north side, and their coxswain took than over a fine course the whole distance. From an excellent start both crews moved away on even terms. There wis considerable splashing for some distance, but (he crews altar a few hundred yards settled down to their work, the St. Peter's boys showing good blade work. At this stage the high school stroke side ploughed through some weed, but picked up their work, and when the Morphett Street Bridge was reached the high school were out a canvas in the lead. Wadey quickened his time and brought the St. Peters crew up when abreast of the Commonwealth shed, but Jarvis replied to the challenge and managed once more to secure a slight lead. The high school boat was at this stage being badly steered, and the coxswain, discovering that his craft was off the straight track, turned to such an extent that the oars of both boats came perilously near a contact when within a couple of lengths of the finish. It is not thought that this interfered or influenced the ultimate result of a victory for the Adelaide High School by three feet...The high school were not as clean in their blade work as St. Peter's and the latter owe their deficiency at the finish chiefly to lack of work in front of the rigger."

Organising Committee:

South Australian Rowing Association



First Eight

½ mile

Time: unknown

Margin: 3 feet

1st Adelaide High School – Str: Jarvis

2nd St. Peter's College – Str: Wadey


Rowing (1922, 15 December), The Journal (Adelaide, SA : 1912 – 1923), p. 4, Retrieved April 7 2023, from

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