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History of World Professional Sculling

World Professional Sculling Championships

1877 Trickett (AUS) defeats Rush (AUS)

Ned Trickett

Ned Trickett

In 1877 Trickett went on to defend his title against fellow Australian Michael Rush on the Parramatta River in Sydney. Alan May reports in Sydney Rows that it was "a race that was said to have excited more interest than any other event that has ever happened in the sporting world of Australia".

Michael Rush had won the Australian Championship in 1870 from William Hickey. Not only did he win the Australian Championship, but also a side wager of £400. Hickey had won the Championships in 1866 from Dick Green who was Australia's first Australian Champion.

The Grafton Rowing Club history provides the following background on Michael Rush:

"Rush was a resident of the Maclean area from 1871 to 1881 although he was listed in 1865 as a butcher at Ashby, across the river from Maclean delivering meat up and down the river in a rowing boat. He then lived at Grafton till 1893, where he was one of the driving forces behind the Grafton Rowing Club.

"In 1868, Rush defeated Prosper Coulon for the Championships of the Clarence, Coulon (described as the Pocket Hercules) came from Chatsworth, and was an experienced sculler who had raced successfully in Sydney."

The history then relates the story of Rush challenging Trickett for the New South Wales Championship which the authors believe to be the World Championship. The race was unequal because Trickett used the new sliding seat and Rush continued to use a fixed seat. Trickett won the race.

Mike Rush

Mike Rush

1879 Trickett (AUS) defeats Elias Laycock (AUS)

Elias Laycock

Elias Laycock was without doubt one of Australia's finest scullers and unfortunately was never able to become World Champion.

He challenged Edward Hanlan for the World Championship in 1881 on the Thames in London but lost. He also challenged Hanlan in Australia and lost again.

In 1880 he won the Hop Bitters Regatta on the Thames for a £400 purse against all the other best scullers in the world except World Champion Hanlan.

The esteem in which he was held can be estimated by the fact that he was still asked to pose in a photograph of key Australian scullers at a Lord Mayoral reception in 1903 with the likes of Stanbury, Pearce, Kemp, Beach, Rush, Trickett and the Towns brothers.

Edward Trickett

Ned Trickett

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