Rowing medal haul at national indoor titles

Josiah Smith, Janine Watson and Amanda Cavill were multiple medalists at the Indoor Rowing Championships event in Taree.
Josiah Smith, Janine Watson and Amanda Cavill were multiple medalists at the Indoor Rowing Championships event in Taree.

Manning River Rowing Club claimed 50 medals at the Indoor Rowing Championships following an event in Taree last year.

The championships were held nationwide in November, attracting more than 500 competitors at 23 locations.

National community development and education officer for Rowing Australia Ron Batt said that the Taree leg of the championship was well organised and boasted a terrific turnout. 

Event co-ordinator Hugh McLeod won four medals on the day: three gold in the 30-39 years lightweight Male 2000 metres, 1000 metres and one minute events as well as a silver in the 500 metres event.

Josiah Smith, 13, also claimed four medals, a gold in the under 14 male one minute category and three silver medals across distance events.

Ron had high praise for Josiah, saying that not many competitors can claim four medals in a single meet.

“I hope he enjoys riding and will continue to do so,” Ron said.

Ron said the ages nationwide this year varied from 12 years to 84.

Taree’s oldest competitor was 75 year old John Cross, who claimed the gold medal in the 75-79 male 1000 metres event.

Amanda Cavill was the best performer in the women’s division, taking three silver medals in the 500 metres, 2000 metres and one minute events.

Roy Halliday (three gold) Colin Broos (three silver) were also noticeable standouts..

The team of Phoebe Sanders, Jemma Wilson, Evan Gresham and Benjamin Homer claimed gold in the 19-39 years mixed relay while Janine Watson Daniella Marks, Jason Clements and Rhett Pattison placed second in the 40 plus mixed relay. 

Ron praised the abilities of all competitors, saying that this form of competition can take competitors to world titles and the Olympic Games.

“It’s really great to see people breaking records and pushing themselves,” he added.

Creating a positive environment and showing a sense of community, Ron expects the event to attract more competitors in 2017.

Medals will be presented during the Taree Summer Regatta this weekend.

Local co-ordinator Hugh McLeod remains confident the Manning club would again he chosen as a venue for the national championships this year.

He said the feedback was favourable from competitors for the 2016 event.

With indoor rowing growing in popularity, McLeod expects there will be more nominations this year.