Head of Goulburn 2019

Following the great day we had at Bendigo last week, on Saturday Richmond Rowing Club was back on the racing scene for Head of the Goulburn, the best regatta of the year (in my completely biased opinion)! It starts from Nagambie Regatta Centre and follows down the beautiful Goulburn river for 7.2 km, meandering through gorgeous eucalypt forests populated with galahs and cockatoos, all the way to Tahbilk winery. As far as I know, it’s the only rowing race that finishes at a vineyard! Good incentive to get us there faster 🙂
Another nice thing about HOTG is that racing starts from 11am for everyone except school kids, a very gentlemanly schedule indeed, giving us plenty of time to drive up, load up on caffeine and get nervous. The forecast had announced a promising “14 degrees, 80% chance of showers, with possible hail storm and sustained 35km wind”, which turned out to be pretty much bang on, but it was the gusts that were particularly fierce. In fact while we were waiting around, an 8 and a 4 ended up going for a swim on the way to the start line.

1. Dario and Stef sheltering before the race

2. A Wentworth crew getting swamped by brutal wind and waves on the way to the start line

3. Bit too heavy to row now 🙁
 Finally the wait was over and it was time to go. First up were Susanna, Christine, Diana, Anthea, Charlie, Phil, Guy and Leigh in the mixed 8 event, coxed by Dianne. They powered down the course in a great time of 35:05.

4. The XM8+ crew coming in after the race
Next was the D grade male 8 with Rob, John Hellerstedt, Steven, Pavel, Nathan, Lachlan, Alex, and Garret, coxed by returning member Sarah Houghton who had only just returned from the USA the night before. Thanks Sarah for jumping in despite the jetlag! The lads had a great row and were so close to winning the event, only just a few seconds behind the Argonauts crew, bringing them in second place

5. The boys ready to rock!

6. MD8+ at the finish, tired but happy
After the eights came the quads, and our first was the men’s B grade quad with Jon Roberts, Allan Randall, Mike Gehling and Dennis Beck, steered by superstar cox Derek Begg. They were looking very clean and powerful throughout, and despite the gusts managed to get a brilliant time of 31:20. This brought the first win for Richmond, well done boys!

7. The MB4X+ looking strong on the finish line

8. Winners are grinners! Medals all around
We then had two mixed quads competing: The first in the Masters category consisting of Shern, Tim, Mike Calvert and Sarah Hardy, coxed by Kathy, who came third of their event with a very respectable time of 36.05.
The second mixed quad was up next with Dario, Kirsty, Keith and Ally, expertly coxed by Lilian for her first time at HOTG, well done! Despite a few windy wobbles, the row was strong and got us a win for the event. Celebrations and wine were in order!

9. Lilian getting the cox treatment 🙂

10. X4X+ between rowing and wine tasting
The final Richmond crew to head off was the Women’s D grade 4 with Amy, Imogen, Lily and Stef, coxed by the lovely Laurent Demay. They had an excellent row, but the competition was too fierce and they came in second.
After all the exertion, it was time to join the rest of the Richmond gang at the cellar door, to refuel and hydrate among all the goodies Tahbilk had on offer. We could also admire the lovely old buildings, huge wine barrels and vineyard equipment that gives this old winery all its charm and character. Even the medals reflect this heritage, featuring the famous Chinaman’s bridge and the iconic 3-tiered farm building. They’re really pretty.

11. Tahbilk winery looking sharp

12. Pretty medals

13. Time for some food, hot sauce dribbling into blisters
Well done everyone for another brilliant regatta! All in all it was great craic despite the weather, and Richmond took full advantage of it all. In fact we were the last to leave, as usual 🙂

14. Obligatory shot in the vines before leaving
Big thanks to Steve Sheppard for his duties as BRO Level 2 during the regatta.
Thank you also to Chris and Leigh for towing the trailer, and Barry for bringing the trailer from the Regatta Centre to Tahbilk.
And Finally, massive thanks to all the coxswains who made the trip up to Nagambie and allowed a crew to race: Dianne, Sarah H, Derek, Kathy, Lilian, and Laurent. You guys are legends!

Head of the Goulburn 2018

For some, the morning of Head of the Goulburn started early with the drive to Nagambie. For others, we simply rolled out of our expertly assembled tents for a leisurely breakfast. The nerves started to kick in just as the wind started to pick up.
All the crews started to assemble at Nagambie Lakes Leisure Park as the push off point before a leisurely paddle down towards the start line. Once through Chinaman’s bridge it was a solid 7.2km race down to the finish line at Tahbilk Winery. The thrill of the chase spurring us on, even when we might not have believed our Cox’s calls about how close we were to the next boat.
The day turned into a stunner once we were out at the winery and able to swap carrying the boat for a glass of sparkling. The cheers for Richmond at the winners announcement were definitely some of the loudest and for good reason.
The men’s 4 of Jon, Allan, Michael C and Michael G cleaned up their category with Laurent coxing. My own marvellous quad managed to hunt down Bendigo thanks to Rosie’s direction, with Ally, Lucia and Shern’s efforts. What a way for Lucia to say goodbye to Australia by winning a medal. Special mentions to Michelle’s open single scull efforts, and John’s medal for his D grade single.

The party kept going back at the caravan park, with some going for a dip in their zooties in the lake. Another round of Articulate thanks to Ally before off to bed to seek out more wineries in the morning.

Thanks to all for a fabulous weekend, particularly Tim for organising, Barry for boat towing and our mystery boat unloaders. I can’t wait to hear how Richmond goes at Melbourne Head and HOTY!
Amy Catlin

Head of the Goulburn – A race to a winery

HoG WD8+As with all rowing regattas, the alarm went off far too early and the sun was nowhere near up as we all made our way up to Nagambie for the Head of the Goulburn race.
I was pretty excited about donning the Richmond Zootie for the fist time and tried hard to quell the accompanying ball of nerves; a mixture of fear and anticipation of my first race in years!
The drive up to Nagambie was pretty quick allowing time for a desperately needed coffee. It was opening up to be a cracker of a day, the sun promised to beat down hard and strong. Coffee was followed by the boat unloading and rigging ritual, lots of standing about waiting, “stretching”, a couple of nervous pees and the application of several litres of sunblock by all.
We finally got on the water and everyone seemed to be in mode. It finally felt like we had it together, we were a proper crew. It felt amazing heading into our first race knowing we had improved so much and this was our chance to prove it, if not to everyone else, but at least to ourselves.
Derek was cracking jokes about the starting official out in a tinny with his dog and then boom we were off and there was no time to think it was just one stroke into the next building to a steady rhythm.
I’d be lying if I didn’t confess that the most appealing reason and subsequent motivator for the Head of the Goulburn was the fact it ended at a winery. Apparently it is the only such regatta in the world!
We only had one other competitor in our Womens D grade 8 and with a rolling start it was a challenge to catch them. We passed a men’s 8 and a men’s four which was really motivating.
I freaked out when I saw the 3km sign thinking “What?!? Seriously?!? We’ve only gone 3km?!” followed by a mental sigh and stern words to push through it! I almost felt like doing a lay down Sally. I pulled myself together and kept pushing. The 2km sign came up and I simultaneously felt incredibly silly and awfully relieved that it was the home stretch. Optimism crept in, Derek’s calls kept us going and we finished strong.
We hadn’t really trained much together as a crew so all things considered we did really well and finished on a tired high!
RRC had lots of crews in the race and everyone did Richmond proud!
Carolyn was asked to row with a Masters E Quad only one week before the race. They were the fastest Masters female quad on raw time and were faster than theMelbourne female quad crew who won in C grade, so a great result! And, they had only been on one training row as a crew with Tom prior to the race.
A special mention to the Mens D four with Robert in bow seat, Ben in two, Raymond in three, Devindhe as stroke, and Sarah R as the coxwain. This crew performed exceptionally well, winning their race.
Congratulations to the winning crews and a great effort all round by all who participated. Bring on next years Head of Goulburn!
By Sarah Houghton
Carolyn HoG 4x

Head of the Goulburn

10641001_10204452443967300_5655954697401836558_nIt was a big ambush of tigers that soaked up the sun at Nagambie last Sunday for the annual Bridge to Vines 7.2km head race along the beautiful Goulburn River.
Richmond had a impressive number of entries and an equally impressive results list.
The fastest Richmond crew on the day was the FD8+ who won their division in a time of 30:23 overtaking all their competitors along the course. Sophie, Karen, Ainslie, Kate C, Amanda, Michelle, Rochelle and Kate D were coxed to success by Mike Numa with coaching credit going to Simon Crunden and Dennis Beck. Dennis Beck did not stop there though earning himself a coxing medal with the male D quad, Micheal G, Micheal C, Charlie and Dave who pulled him along the course in 33:13.
Completing the Richmond domination in D grade the WD4+ of Emily, Amy, Cat and Lindsey coxed by Derek won their race in 35:31. With another Richmond crew in the WD4+ and more crews also in the MD8+, WD4X+, MM4X+ and FM1X Richmond certainly showed a strong presence on the river and then back on land as we enjoyed the celebrations and the fruits of our hard work at the finishing line at Thabilk winery.
Another great day for the club and a huge thanks to all those who helped make it happen especially Pete Schouten for safely delivering our boats.