Head of the River
This year’s Head of the River Regatta, held on 17 March, offered a wonderful showcase of the Pembroke Rowing crews and the standard they had reached during the season. On a very windy day the first win was achieved by the Boys 8B, followed by the Girls 8A and 9A crews. Their magnificent form was supported by the many strong showings by the other boats.
I was amazed by the depth of feeling of the Pembroke crowd as the Boys First Eight stormed home only to be overtaken by a stronger St Peter’s College boat. Racing past the hotel for the final 500 m our crew was hit by the full force of the cross-head wind and the boat speed fell, thus allowing the St Peter’s boat to pull away. Pushing through the pain barrier the First Eight, stroked by Nick Blackman, recovered their form and were gaining boat speed as they crossed the finish line. Second place in this event was Pembroke’s best result in over a decade—well done to Coach Simon Lane and all the boys. With Pembroke hosting the 2019 Head of the River, the expectations are high for future success.
The Girls senior crews were out of luck this year. However, they have established a very firm foundation on which they can build heading into the 2019 season.
The season is not just about the Head of the River, but about the journey that has taken all the rowers from the pre-season in Term 3 of 2017 to this high stakes regatta. Many of our rowers have experienced the joy of winning and the sorrow of losing, and I hope that this has made them better people and more capable of dealing with life’s travails and successes.
Rowing has few peers in school sport and is arguably the most disciplined activity you can undertake. With this in mind rowers are often the high achievers in both the academic and sporting worlds. Our rowers look forward to a bright future in all their pursuits.
A big thank you goes to the Pembroke Rowing Parents Association for their season-long support and hosting of the presentation dinner. Well done to the rowers, parents and coaches who worked so hard to make 2017–18 a successful season. Thank you also to Principal Mr Luke Thomson and the School staff for their generous support and encouragement of Rowing.
We finished the season with Nick Blackman, Alistair Sadler, Frank Headley and Will Sam competing in Sydney for the SA Pathways Eight—a wonderful end to a great season
Boys 8B Quad Scull
Debuting in his first year as Coach, Mr Francis (2017) guided the Boys 8B Quad Scull to victory. The crew was stroked by Henry who was competing in his first season.
Girls 8A Quad Scull
The Girls 8A crew continued their early success to take out their event. Lucy, who had only recently taken the reins as coxswain, led her crew to victory with a 4-second margin over Adelaide High School. The crew rowed well together and had a polished look that was far superior to their age category. Thank you to Ms Baum (2017) in her first year as Coach.
Girls 9A Quad Scull
The Girls 9A Quad Scull crew continued their season-long domination to take out the A event. Sofia, stroke of the boat, set a cracking pace to send them to an early lead. Directed by Eve in the coxswain’s seat, the crew fought off a fast-paced Wilderness School combination. With barely a change to their long smooth strokes the girls looked poised and in control as they crossed the line. Their Coach was Mr Kirchner, University of Adelaide and State team rower.
The Girls 9C crew came second at the Head of the River and comprised three Year 8 and two Year 9 rowers. They worked incredibly hard during the season to race against full Year 9 boats from the other schools. Their magnificent effort saw them gain one of Pembroke’s highest placings.
Head of the River Placings
Boys Year 8: A – fourth, B – first, C – fourth, D – seventh
Boys Year 9: A – fifth, B – third, C – third
Girls Year 8: A – first, B – seventh
Girls Year 9: A – first, B – second, C – second
Girls Year 10: A – eighth, B – third
Girls First Eight – sixth, First Four – sixth
Boys First Eight – second
Head of Rowing