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ASRL Newsletter September 2021

sept update newsletter final

The ASRL monthly newsletter is BACK and it is PACKED with information!

This newsletter includes;
  1. ASRL President Update
  2. Save the Date - ASRL Open at Elouera
  3. Social Media / Comms WE NEED YOUR HELP
  4. Q & A with Griffo
  5. The Loose History of the Modern Surfboat Manufacture
  6. National Team Selection Event Update
  7. Heroes - North Steyne Boaties are Recognised
  8. 24 Hour Row Update
  9. Instagram reshare - Coolum SLSC
  10. 2018 ASRL Open Highlights Package
  11. States Update

*Having trouble reading this on your mobile device? Click HERE

A month comes around really fast as NSW enters what seems to be the never ending life with restrictions. There is now light at the end of the tunnel. It's great to see the states that can, getting out in the boat and catching some winter waves. I know I speak for NSW here by saying we love being able to reminisce so make sure you're posting it up and tag @teamnavyasrl so we can share for all to view. 

Planning continues on our events and we hope to be able to deliver our premier events as per usual and will be looking at all options available to us, our event director has been working hard to have all the preliminary meetings with the stakeholders to get events locked in. As each month comes we will update on the progress on these events and any possible changes that may be required. As soon as any decisions are made you all will be notified. 

We are continuing on our journey with all our discussion points that we took to the May national surf sports meeting and by next month will hopefully be able to announce some major change with lots of meetings happening this month with all levels of SLS. As always if you have input on how you think things should be changing, get in touch. As the ASRL we are here to represent rowers on the national arena so speak to us. 

I know from personal experience this has been an extremely challenging time for our NSW and VIC team especially. 10-1212 weeks without seeing crewmates who you spend every waking moment with it seems during summer. Has taken its toll so remember to reach out to your mates and connect by any means available to you, Keep up hope that we will have events this summer, stay together and stay safe. 

In closing, I would like to acknowledge the following members of the wider surf boat family who have tragically passed away since the previous newsletter.  

  • Graeme Bruce
  • Peter 'Mick' Ellercamp
  • Ken Murray
Nick Sampson
ASRL President

Australia’s premier surf boat event will be heading back to one of Australia’s favourite beaches in 2022, bringing more than 3,000 competitors, supporters and event officials to Cronulla in Sydney’s south.

The 2022 Australian Surf Rowers League (ASRL) Open will be held at Cronulla’s Elouera beach from 17 – 20 February 2022, with over 350 surf boat crews from almost 100 clubs expected to attend. This equates to thousands of surf life savers from across Australia who will head to Elouera for four days of exhilarating surf boat racing.

It is the biggest stand-alone surf boat racing event in Australia with divisions of surf boat racing being contested including Open Male, Open Female, Reserve Male, Reserve Female, Under 23 Male, Under 23 Female, Under 19 Male, Under 19 Female and Masters.

The event also features finals on all four days of racing including Masters finals on Thursday, the Interstate Championships on Friday, Reserve finals on Saturday and the remaining finals to be held during the action packed Sunday afternoon.

The ASRL Open is proudly supported by Team Navy, the NSW Government through Destination NSW, Sutherland Shire Council and Elouera SLSC.
FULL ASRL OPEN STATEMENT - CLICK HERE
JOIN THE ASRL OPEN FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE - CLICK HERE
 
Are you the creative type? Do you have the magic touch on social media and most importantly, do you want to help promote the greatest sport in the world?

The ASRL are calling for interested individuals to assist with the delivery of our social media and communications.

We are seeking people to help with;
• Posting on social media throughout the season (Instagram and Facebook) AND/OR
• Creation of our EDM communication as required

If you are interest or want more information, please personal message our Facebook page or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
Alan 'Griffo' Griffiths has decided he has announced at a surf boat carnival for the last time. His career has spanned over 42 years, announcing at events across local, state, national and international level.

We wanted to discuss Griffo's achievements, his favourite moments, ask what is next in his life, and just discuss him why he loves surf boat rowing so much! Aaron Tannahill spent a couple of hours on the phone with Griffo to ask him many questions as we say THANKS for volunteering over four decades at our carnivals.

You will also find some words from ASRL Life Member, and great mate, Bert Hunt.

Sit back, relax and enjoy the Q & A in writing via clicking the link below.
Q & A WITH GRIFFO - CLICK HERE
 
The wording via below is compiled by Bert Hunt, Life Member ASRL

If you would like to contribute to this document please email Bert Hunt This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0412 440 763 to have a chat!

This document hasn’t been researched to the point of total accuracy and isn’t meant to be the definitive compilation of the stages of surfboat manufacture. It is written with a view to inviting others to provide some of the detail to backfill some of the gaps. Apologies in advance to any boat builder missed or for any detail not correct, as this is an attempt to create a running history of our evolution and later versions will correct and record and add any missing pieces.
VIEW THE DISCUSSION DOCUMENT - CLICK HERE
 
The ASRL can confirm that the National Team Selection Event will be held at TUGUN, QLD on Saturday 11 December 2021.

Categories are;
Open Male
Open Female
Under 23 Male (Development Team)
Under 23 Female (Development Team)

More information including nomination process and other supporting activities will be released throughout the springs months. In addition, further information on when and where the 2022 Trans-Tasman Test will be announced shortly.

The ASRL are committed to delivering world class events, and the National Team Selection Event is a high priority of the ASRL.
 

Congratulations to Ross Downey and Piteter Marais from North Steyne SLSC 'Mullets' surf boat crew for receiving the SLS SNB Rescue of the Year! The two young men received the award for their heroic efforts when rescuing a member of the public at 2021 ASRL Open, held at Mollymook in March 2021.

On behalf of everyone involved with the Australian Surf Rowers League, congratulations, and THANK YOU!

Wording below from David Maguire

Ross Downey and Pieter Marais from the North Steyne Mullets Surf Boat Crew on Saturday at the ASRL Open at Mollymook saved a man drowning in a massive rip in huge seas.

The two young U18 rowers noticed a man drowning north of the competition area and sprinted down and dove into the treacherous surf to save the mans life. The two young life savers got to the drowning man and stayed with him until the Jet Ski from the boat area came to assist.

If it wasn’t for the actions of the two young boat rowers the outcome would have been fatal. Ron Pomering announcing the rescue occurring at the event, although wasn’t aware at the time of the bravery of the young surf boat rowers.

Insert photo is of photo of Ross and Pieter rowing Bow and second bow for North Steyne
 
The below is on behalf of 24 Hour Row organisers. If you haven't registered, now might be a good time to jump on https://24hourrow.com.au/ for more information due to the postponement of the event.

The 24 Hour Row organisers, together with Gotcha4Life have reviewed the current COVID-19 situation together with Surf Life Saving and believe that the best decision in the current climate is to postpone the 24 Hour Row.

24 Hour Row event organisers have moved this important event to 30th and 31st of October 2021. This will allow time for each state to be out of lockdown and we hope numbers at events will be uncapped by then. We will be updating the website and Facebook page with this information.

We would like to ask event organisers to assist in communicating this news to your individual supporters and connections.

From 24 Hour Row organisers

And hopefully for those in affected areas, this can happen soon ❤️

RESHARE FROM TEAM NAVY ASRL INSTAGRAM

@coolumbeach_bowerbirds
“Best way to start your day, with the sunrise, some surf, laughs, good friends and teamwork.” ??
 
 

The ASRL OPEN is heading BACK to ELOUERA!! Here is a highlights package from the historic 2018 ASRL Open, held at Elouera in amazing conditions!

CLICK THE YOUTUBE LINK ABOVE
 

STATES UPDATE

New South Wales
 
  • NSW Boat Panel have been working with NSW SLSA and the branches to lock in the carnival calendar for the season and this have been sent out to the Clubs
  • We will be very fluid with carnival movements if and when needed, the aim is to ensure we get as much racing in as we can in NSW
  • NSW State Team Selection – 3 carnivals, best 2 results. The 3 carnivals are in 3 different branches, they are all 2 day carnivals and we have 1 in each month of Nov, Dec & Jan.
  • Tea Gardens Hawks Nest – Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th November
  • North Cronulla – Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th December
  • Queenscliff – Saturday 15th & Sunday 16th January
 
Northern Territory
 
  • No updated provided, although we are looking to have state title results in the next edition
 
Queensland
 
  • Yeppoon Surf boat clinic set for the 11th/12th Sept (just gone). ASRLQ weren't able to have Cairns, but we are still working to go up there at some stage
  • Focussing and encouraging clubs to bring in fresh people. We're doing a Rookie Lucky Draw, this will be our only $$ endorsement for the season. (see flyer above for details) Proudly supported by BP Wessel Petroleum - longstanding sponsor of ours 
  • Noosa Youth Carnival locked in and ready to go for the 2nd year in a row, and opening up divisions to U17 - U19 & U23. This is to bring in some kids from nippers and keep it tame for their first carnival
 
South Australia
  • Sweep school well underway with 12 sweeps from 8 Clubs taking part in the program. Great support from our S3 sweeps Gary "Fazz" Fazzalari, Ben Bedford, Jason Mcgaffin, Hocko, Pete Tidswell, Pete Symonds and Ron Harwood.
  • Training is well underway for our competitive crews, with the odd few braving the cold and getting a hit out in the surf.
  • First Surf Boat Carnival Sun Nov 7th, mobile location to get the best of the conditions. This will be an all in Male/Female div only event to rank our open male/Female divs for the start of the season. Jnrs, Res & Opens will all race head to head in respective genders.
 
Tasmania
 
  • SBRT Tasmania AGM was held in late August. The new positions are listed above
  • Draft 4 Round Navy Event dates pencilled in. Locations for 2021/22 are Clifton Beach, Carlton Park, Penguin and Burnie
  • Crews from around the State preparing for the Marathon Series commencing in October with the Wynyard to Somerset marathon 14km
 
Victoria
  • Sat 9th Oct Port Campbell are hosting a 10km Marathon on the Curdies River and then drinks at the famous Boggy Creek Hotel. All welcome (pending COVID)
  • Coaching and Sweeping Seminar at Port Fairy 23+24th Oct. Register with VSRL Secretary Rod Costa
  • COVID causing some major issues with councils approving carnivals for next summer. Draft Calendar currently circulated through VSRL channels
 
Western Australia
  • First boat panel meeting for the upcoming season was held Tuesday 23rd August at Floreat SLSC and Zoom. Stuart Clarke from Mullaloo SLSC to again chair the panel continuing his great leadership
  • Another sweep training morning was held on Sunday 29th August at Mullaloo Beach and the last Sweep Training Session in the winter series will be held this Sunday at Secret Harbour. Great conditions forecast with light winds, 1.6m swell and high tide
 
Make sure you follow us on Instagram!

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Open Instagram, follow us @teamnavyasrl and join in on the fun! Don’t forget to #TeamNavyASRL on your social posting!

AUSTRALIAN SURF ROWERS LEAGUE OPEN RETURNS TO ELOUERA

ASRL Open 2022 Elouera

Australia’s premier surf boat event will be heading back to one of Australia’s favourite beaches in 2022, bringing more than 3,000 competitors, supporters and event officials to Cronulla in Sydney’s south.

The 2022 Australian Surf Rowers League (ASRL) Open will be held at Cronulla’s Elouera beach from 17 – 20 February 2022, with over 350 surf boat crews from almost 100 clubs expected to attend. This equates to thousands of surf life savers from across Australia who will head to Elouera for four days of exhilarating surf boat racing.

It is the biggest stand-alone surf boat racing event in Australia with divisions of surf boat racing being contested including Open Male, Open Female, Reserve Male, Reserve Female, Under 23 Male, Under 23 Female, Under 19 Male, Under 19 Female and Masters.

The event also features finals on all four days of racing including Masters finals on Thursday, the Interstate Championships on Friday, Reserve finals on Saturday and the remaining finals to be held during the action packed Sunday afternoon.

ASRL President Nick Sampson said the membership love to travel to the Sutherland region, which was important when making the decision to return to Elouera.

“The ASRL are committed to taking our premier event to top surf destinations that are also visitor-friendly, and through the support of Destination NSW, Sutherland Shire Council, Team Navy and Elouera SLSC, we are able to achieve this in 2022,” Mr Sampson said.

Mr Sampson is confident the four days of racing will engage not just the surf life saving community from Elouera and surrounding areas, but the wider Sutherland Shire community.

“This event will bring thousands of visitors to the region and engage with hundreds of Elouera SLSC members, council representatives and other volunteers from the community. We encourage everyone to come down and experience this thrilling event”.

NSW Minister for Tourism Stuart Ayres said the State Government was committed to supporting a diverse calendar of events for Sydney and NSW that celebrate the State’s natural surrounds, warm hospitality and connected community.
“The NSW Visitor Economy Strategy 2030 outlines our ambition to be the events capital of the Asia Pacific, which acknowledges the important role events play in the social and economic wellbeing of our State,” Mr Ayres said.

“Activities such as the Australian Surf Rowers League will attract thousands of visitors from around the country to our spectacular beaches, such as Elouera. It will be a high-energy four days for Sutherland and surrounds, with images from the event shared across the country hopefully inspiring future visitors to enjoy their own future Sydney beach escape.”

Elouera SLSC Club President David Kowland is confident all Eloeura and wider Bate Bay club members, along with the wider community, will rally to help deliver another successful ASRL Open at Elouera.

“Elouera has a proud history of running this event and other major events on our beach and with a strong membership with a ‘can do’ attitude who are community driven, we are enabled to run these events successfully.” Mr Kowland said.

There is no cost for spectators to witness the action over the four days which makes it an affordable activity for families to come down to the beach and check out the best surf boat rowers competing from across Australia.

To find out more about the 2022 Australian Surf Rowers League Open please visit https://www.asrl.com.au/. Click or tap to follow the link." style="overflow-wrap: break-word; text-size-adjust: 100%; color: rgb(109, 198, 221); font-weight: normal; text-decoration: underline; font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 15px; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-align: left; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">www.asrl.com.au or https://www.facebook.com/navyasrl/. Click or tap to follow the link." style="overflow-wrap: break-word; text-size-adjust: 100%; color: rgb(109, 198, 221); font-weight: normal; text-decoration: underline; font-family: Helvetica; font-size: 15px; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-align: left; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">https://www.facebook.com/navyasrl/.

The ASRL Open is proudly supported by Team Navy, the NSW Government through Destination NSW, Sutherland Shire Council and Elouera SLSC.

CLICK HERE TO JOIN THE FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE

ASRL Newsletter August 2021

ASRL Newsletter

August 2021


The ASRL monthly newsletter is BACK and it is PACKED with information!

This newsletter includes;
  1. ASRL President Update
  2. National Surf Sports Meeting
  3. Incoming ASRL Vice Presidents 
  4. We Say Thanks - Don Cotterill
  5. Hall of Fame - Rex Dale
  6. National Team Selection Event Update
  7. SHR / ASRL App Training
  8. 24 Hour Row Update
  9. George Bass Marathon - Postponed
  10. Member Profile - Lizzie Scott
  11. VALE - Peter Stewart
  12. 2021 ASRL Open Finals Package
  13. States Update
 
 

Well, what a start to the top job! It’s been a full-on start, meeting with all the big cogs that make surf boats turn on a national level. Thanks to everyone who has reached out and offered assistance and guidance, it's very much appreciated. Michael has stepped down this year leaving the ASRL heading in a great direction, that we as a committee plan to continue.

The committee has jumped straight into gear, working on planning events for this summer and shaping not only the future of surf boats but the future of Surf Sports around Australia. To start off we have a few announcements.

It gives me great pleasure to announce on behalf of the ASRL Committee the following appointments. 
ASRL Event Director - Natasha Tunney
ASRL Open Referee – Tamara Brawn
ASRL National Selection Referee – Sandy Clarke

We are looking to announce dates and venues very shortly so standby!

This year we will be introducing a monthly newsletter to keep everyone up to date with what your committee is up to and to give you some insights into what is happening around the states.  If you have any suggestions or content get in contact with your state representative or the ASRL via our social platforms. We now have a full committee appointed and we welcome Phil and Grant to the team.

Over the past few months, we have been working on the agenda items we took to the National Surf Sports Meeting. All the items we presented were endorsed by the SLSA Surf Sports Advisory committee (SSAC). Some of these action items now sit with us to go away and help re-word the proposed changes in collaboration with the SLSA Surf sports team. Via the SSAC we aim to present these changes to the SLSA board for final approvals.  These meetings have been very productive, and we have been given great support by SLSA. We will continue to close out these items and hopefully see them implemented for the benefit of the sport. You may have seen Russell Lamb's posts on social media raising the very same issues. It’s great to see we are all like minded and that the ASRL is already addressing issues that are of importance amongst our membership.

Agenda items we took to the meeting included:
- National Short Course Championship moved out of Aussies to a standalone event in January
- Removal of minimum patrol hours requirement
- Allowance to have composite crews at Surf Boat events
- Allowance for recreational users to use sport equipment
- Elevation of Open Male/Female div to A1 priority at Aussies
- At Aussies, Lifesaver Relay to be held as a premier event on Saturday afternoon at Aussies and to also be elevated in the priority system
- Removal of 120 & 140 Masters surf boat divisions at Aussies and inclusion of 240 Female
 
As of last week, we have begun to work closely on the rationale and removal of minimum patrol hours, collecting data to present to the board and surf sports committee. We are also working on a model for composite teams that will allow those crews that lose a rower or sweep close to championship events to add a member from outside their club. There are many other initiatives in the pipeline that aim to improve outcomes for our volunteers and make participation in our great sport that little bit easier.
 
It’s been great to see some rowing action and people out training, it won’t be too long until till “Guns Up”. Stay safe and check in on your fellow rowers.
 

Nick Sampson
ASRL President
 
On Saturday 26 June, the ASRL had representation at the National Sport Advisory Committee meeting.

Agenda items we took to the meeting included:
  • National Short Course Championship moved out of Aussies to a stand alone event in January
  • Removal of minimum patrol hours requirement
  • Allowance to competitive rights with more than one club
  • Allowance for recreational users to use sport equipment
  • Elevation of Open Male/Female div to A1 priority at Aussies
  • At Aussies, Lifesaver Relay to be held as a premier event on Saturday afternoon at Aussies and to also be elevated in the priority system
  • Removal of 120 & 140 Masters surf boat divisions at Aussies and inclusion of 240 Female
The meeting was extremely positive and the outcomes from the meeting will be shared once the minutes have been released.
 
The Australian Surf Rowers League would like to introduce two incoming ASRL Vice Presidents. The incoming members replace Don Cotterill (did not re-elect) and Nick Sampson (moved into President role).

GRANT HOWE (Tasmania) - One Year Term
PHIL CHIPMAN (Queensland) - Two Year Term

Click the link to read each of the bios - https://bit.ly/3BCgcyt

ASRL COMMITTEE FOR UPCOMING SEASON
Nick Sampson (President)
Natasha Tunney (Secretary)
Rory Gillespie (Treasurer)
Edwina Wright (Vice President)
Geoff Wilson (Vice President)
Grant Howe (Vice President)
Grant Wilkinson (Vice President)
Phil Chipman (Vice President)
Rod Costa (Vice President)
 
The Australian Surf Rowers League (ASRL) would like to notify the membership that ASRL Life Member, Don Cotterill, has decided to not re-elect for the position of Vice President.

Don was a valued member of the ASRL committee since 2001 where he served as Vice President uninterrupted.

Thank you Don Cotterill for your dedication to the ASRL, and we look forward to continuing to see you on the beach for the years to come.

To read our detailed tribute, click here - https://mailchi.mp/asrl/the-asrl-say-thanks-don-cotterill 
 
The Australian Surf Rowers League (ASRL) are proud to announce REX DALE as the forty-sixth inductee into the ASRL Hall of Fame.

Pictured are Rex's boat crew at Dee Why when winning gold at Australian Championships in 1975 - Peter Grant, Bob Luce, Lance Hately, Gary McKellar and Rex Dale.

Read our full statement including Rex's achievements - https://mailchi.mp/asrl/asrl-hall-of-fame-inductee-rex-dale
 
The ASRL can confirm that the National Team Selection Event will be held at TUGUN, QLD on Saturday 11 December 2021.

Categories are;
Open Male
Open Female
Under 23 Male (Development Team)
Under 23 Female (Development Team)

More information including nomination process and other supporting activities will be released throughout the springs months. In addition, further information on when and where the 2022 Trans-Tasman Test will be announced shortly.

The ASRL are committed to delivering world class events, and the National Team Selection Event is a high priority of the ASRL.
 
SHR & ASRL DRAWS SYSTEM TRAINING

Back in May we hosted what was a fantastic day of training for 40 face to face attendees from 6 states, along with a few who joined via Zoom! Participants were lucky to have Gary McCoy present on the SHR assessment and then Sandy Clarke covered to utilise the ASRL Draws system and Push draws to the ASRL app.
 
The below is on behalf of 24 Hour Row organisers. If you haven't registered, now might be a good time to jump on https://24hourrow.com.au/ for more information due to the postponement of the event.

The 24 Hour Row organisers, together with Gotcha4Life have reviewed the current COVID-19 situation together with Surf Life Saving and believe that the best decision in the current climate is to postpone the 24 Hour Row.

With three of the five states who are taking part now in lockdown, and no confirmed date of restrictions easing, we will be moving this important event to 30th and 31st of October 2021. This will allow time for each state to be out of lockdown and we hope numbers at events will be uncapped by then. We will be updating the website and Facebook page with this information.

We would like to ask event organisers to assist in communicating this news to your individual supporters and connections.

From 24 Hour Row organisers
 

HEARTBROKEN ???

Wording from Sue Hunt

The George Bass Committee met on Monday, 2nd August 2021, and as a result have made the decision to postpone the GBM2022.

This decision has been made in consultation with several key stakeholders, with the current COVID-19 situation in mind the Committee’s decision was unanimous.

With the uncertainty around movement across Australia and New Zealand we cannot guarantee the safety of our competitors, their families and support teams, our Officials and each of our respective Communities.

Several other factors were taken into consideration,
· Sudden, lockdowns, border closures and enforced quarantine
· COVID-19 compliance – consideration of public health order around sport and events
· Lack of training, many of you have been unable to train for in the past year
· Square meter restriction campgrounds eg. at this point Tathra Country Club can only accommodate 70
· Campground facilities – rostering times for everyone to use them, cleaning etc
· Presentations - numbers of persons able to attend venues is extremely limited or non-existent
· And selfishly, the Far South Coast region has had very little exposure to COVID-19 and with the introduction of the large numbers of persons from the multitude of regions we were expecting to attend the GBM2022, the risk to our community, which has limited respiratory resources, is considerable.

We are also highly aware that many crews journeyed to the Far South Coast for the GBM2020 did so at great personal and financial expense only to have the event cancelled due to the bushfire emergency. We wish to avoid having to cancel it again and would much prefer to welcome you all back for a well-supported event, with high participation in all divisions and training regimes at their peak.

As a committee we have worked hard for the past 18 months to make the GBM2022 event something extra special after the bushfires and we share the disappointment that many of you will be feeling, we thank you for your understanding. We are also aware that some of you may not agree with our decision, we will not enter any debate regarding this matter.

Participants who have paid entry fees will be contacted in the next few days.

Information regarding GBM2023 (starting 02/01/2023) will come towards the end of this year.

Stay well.

Yours in Surf Lifesaving

Sue Hunt
On behalf of the George Bass Marathon Committee
 

Rower Profile - Lizzie Scott

Club - Mordialloc LSC (Victoria)
Created by Meredith Baker on VSRL Surf Boats Facebook group

How did you get involved in surf boat rowing?
I was in my high school rowing team and our coach suggested we go down and try surfboats at Frankston LSC. Next minute I had my bronze and was a patrolling member, then I transferred to Mornington when I was 18 and started competing.

Tell us about your history in rowing so far?
I rowed for Mornington for a few years, then did a season at Rosebud followed by about a 5 year hiatus from the sport. During that time, some old Mornington boaties and I were commenting on a Facebook ad for a cheap rundown surfboat, debating if we should split the costs and then be able to go out chasing waves whenever we liked. Matt Mulcahy must have seen what we were thinking, because he got in touch and told me he was putting a women’s crew together. I got back in the boat in late 2019 with Mordialloc and haven’t looked back. Also, we never bought the boat because nobody wanted to store it in their backyard.

What’s been your highlight in surf boat rowing?
Highlights would have to include repping the Big V as an U23s crew in 2012 and as a ressies crew in 2020 (even though conditions meant we missed out on racing at Mollymook). Also, catching bombs out the back of Lorne pier and regular visits from the dolphins at Mornington definitely deserve a mention.
If you could add one thing to the sport to make it better, what would it be and why?.
Bring back the State Titles on the Labour Day long weekend! I used to bloody love racing heats on Saturday and finals on Sunday... then running amok at the Anglesea pub &/or caravan park on the Sunday night to celebrate. Having it all in a single afternoon makes it feel a bit like any other carnival, and for those of us who can’t attend Aussies, States is our big season finale!

Who have been the most influential people in your time in surf boat rowing?
Matt Mulcahy has gotta be number one - he took me to my first ever States and Aussies and I have the utmost respect for him as a sweep. I’ve followed him across clubs and I love learning new things from him every season.
I’m also inspired by Kevin and Tina Spooner, who are still pulling on the wetsuits and line judging when it feels about 10 degrees! What legends.

When you’re not rowing or training, what keeps you busy?
I’m probably still hanging around a beach somewhere if I’m honest, giving my dog a run if it’s windy or snorkelling if it’s not. I love going camping and hiking, netball, yoga, and of course sinking a few beers with mates. I fund these activities by working as a civil engineer in the water industry.
What would your advice be to a first season rower, or anyone thinking of starting the sport?
Don’t get sunscreen on your handle or you’re gonna have a bad time!! Scrub your hands with wet sand after every time you reapply. (Also, on personal reflection, probably don’t date your sweep haha)

What’s the best advice or guidance you’ve received and who gave it to you?
Some of the best advice I received was from Trevor Jarvis when I was at Mornington. He told me to focus on my oar in the surf and stop looking for the waves behind me - because I’d only panic and overthink my catch which meant I’d stuff things up completely.
Oh, and an honourable mention for advice goes to Lara Squires for the tip about Sudocrem.

What’s your favourite part about surf boat rowing?
My favourite parts about surfboats are the glorious roadtrips with mates, travelling to amazing beaches and catching absolute bombs with your crew. I love the surfboat community in Vic and how the rivalries become camaraderie as soon as we leave the state. I’m also a big fan of a post-row froffy to debrief after a carnival.

Tell us your funniest surf boat story…
When Matt’s kids were all at Mornington in youth/nippers they would all train while we were out in the surfboat. I was unaware that Matt was playing chicken with his eldest, Kevin, who was on a nipper board as we were rowing towards him. My oar hit him square in the chest and knocked him off his board... I don’t think he’s ever forgiven me.
There’s also one I won’t mention featuring you Meredith Baker, involving a rowing trip and a wooden cactus, but people can ask me on the beach if they need more info on that one.
 
The Australian Surf Rowers League and the surf boat community were devastated to hear of the passing of Peter Stewart, who was pulled from the water unconscious during the Fannie Bay Swim Classic on 18 July 2021.

Read our full statement - https://mailchi.mp/asrl/vale-peter-stewart-darwin-slsc
 

The 2021 ASRL Open Surf Boat Finals went right down to the wire! Here is the video package of the event - CLICK ABOVE

The event was held at Mollymook and Long Beach in NSW in March 2021. Your commentators are Phil Stivano and Nick Sampson. #TeamNavyASRL #ILoveSydney

Thanks to our proud supporters of this event;
Team Navy
Destination NSW
Shoalhaven City Council
Mollymook Surf Club
 

STATES UPDATE

New South Wales
 
  • NSW Surf Boat schedule for 2021/22 season nearly finalised (all dates/events subject to change and COVID requirements 
  • NSW Surf Boat Panel appointed which includes Mick Lang, Brett Main, Peter Spence and Greg Heard
State Selection Events are 
  • Hawks Nest 27-28 November
  • North Cronulla 18-19 December
  • Queenscliff 15-16 January 
  • North Steyne (TBC)
 
Northern Territory
 
  • Had a very successful surfboat weekend with Pete tidswell, brought out 11 new sweeps and 2 s3 signed off
  • NT State Championships are coming up on the 27-29th of August
  • Everyone was keen for a Broome trip for the sunset challenge but COVID had other plans
  • Mindil have plans to compete in the massive Murray paddle
  • Darwin are doing their annual row to Mandurah in early August
 
Queensland

ASRLQ Committee 
  • Corey has stepped up from Sunshine Coast rep. to Vice President, but will still be performing his role as QLD State Team lead 
  • Scott Clements from Northcliffe is our new Gold Coast Rep. Joining with Anthony Fox from Noosa as Sunshine Coast rep

ASRLQ Development 
  • We continue in our 4th year of our Surf Rowing Clinics - with our first one for the season being held at Etty Bay (Cairns) on the 7/8th August. Focussing on our goal to grow our regional clubs
  • Mooloolaba SLSC are holding a 'Youth Academy' in early September which will run for a 6 week period - already a huge success with all Jr / U23 crews being filled within their club
  • We intend on holding an unofficial U17 event at our first carnival of the season on 13th Nov which happens to be the Noosa Youth Carnival. We have a big focus on youth this season to help grow the grass roots.
  • Open division won’t be forgotten with the continuation of our valued sponsor BP Wessel Petroleum once again providing prize money for open men and women and other divisions.
 
South Australia
  • Congratulations to SLSA President and ‘boatie’ John Baker ESM on his induction into Surf Life Saving SA's Hall of Fame. John is pictured aboveon the right alongside fellow boaties, SLSSA President Kevin ‘Brakey’ Watkins and ASRL Secretary Natasha Tunney
  • SA Sweep school to start in September. This will run off a similar model to Queensland and Western Australia
  • Top 5 male & female boat crews in SA will be selected to race in three rounds of the SA Surf League with board, ski, swim & beach competitors. Five teams will go head to head to battle it out for the cash prize pool. All five teams are selected by a panel and will be evenly matched to provide close, hot racing
  • SA & Vic will come together for SA's season opener at Robe Dec 4th
 
Tasmania

SBRT was in decline in the 19/20 season, lacking in numbers in crew and club participation, it was generally felt by a few passionate participants things had to change.
 
At the conclusion of the Co-vid halted 19/20 season, led by new ASRL Vice President Grant Howe, a few passionate members reformed the SRBT committee in Tasmania.
 
Planning has structured around the three themes that have become apparent from discussions and brainstorming during our meetings. The three key areas we have agreed to focus on over a three year rebuild were;
  • Competition
  • Recruitment
  • Development
To achieve our goals as outlined above, regular engagement with all stakeholders, including SLST, and ARSL is required.

One year into our three year plan, some of the highlights for season 20/21 include in no particular order
  • Sweeps accreditation resulting in 35 accredited sweeps state-wide
  • Over 100% increase in crew numbers from the previous season
  • Successful Come and Try Days held in the North and South of the State
  • 2021 four round Navy Series held
  • Penguin U23 Men making semi finals at Australian Titles
  • Two Burnie Masters Crews amongst medal winners at Australian Titles
  • Engagement level amongst members is high and “cross club barrier free” to assist each other and the sport to grow
As a group we are confident and excited for what we may achieve over the remaining 2 years of our initial 3 year strategy.
 
 
Victoria
  • Formed VSRL Youth Panel, convened by Pat Spinazzola, first meeting was held on 3 July at Anglesea SLSC which was followed by a VSRL Forum looking at development of our sport and at the recovery post the peak (hopefully) period of COVID 
  • Sweep and coaching weekend planned for 23-24 October at Port Fairy
  • Developing an online method so sweeps/coaches can share programs across the state
 
Western Australia
  • Albany Surf Craft Challenge, 1ST weekend in June each year which is a  13km row from Princess Royal Harbour out into ocean finishing at Albany SLSC. A record 36 surf boats started this year and the field included several still water rowers in their first competition and new to surf boats. This event continues to attract more crews each year.
  • The weekend included a Sweep coaching and Wave session at Denmark on the Saturday before the Surf Craft Challenge on Sunday.
  • Pre Avon Descent fun day at Champion Lakes Rowing Course Sunday 1st August was postponed due to weather conditions.
  • Established a Rowing Coaching partnership with Fremantle Rowing Club. Offering coaching still water and surf boat throughout winter as a lead into summer of surf boat racing. Offers the opportunity for sweeps to accompany coaches in dinghies for still water on water sessions to pick up technique coaching methods.

On and off water coaching , coaching seminars, still water racing is available as part of the package with fees included.

Takes competitors through to Surf Lifesaving State Titles.

On going Sweep Coaching sessions at various locations with a variety of instructors every 2nd Sunday until the end of September.

 
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Introducing our two incoming ASRL Vice Presidents

ASRL Vice Presidents 2021

The Australian Surf Rowers League would like to introduce two incoming ASRL Vice Presidents. The incoming members replace Don Cotterill (did not re-elect) and Nick Sampson (moved into President role).

GRANT HOWE (Tasmania) - One Year Term
Father of 4
President of Surf Boat Rowers Tasmania.
Managing Director Zenith Wealth, Financial Adviser, Business Coach and Key Note Speaker
Podcast Host “Get the Know Howe””
Rotarian
Member of the Penguin Surf Life Saving Club in North West Tasmania

Grant commenced rowing as a Junior in 1989, concluding his rowing in 2006.

After a significant period of time away from Surf Life Saving, he re-joined at Penguin in 2019 to row for general fun and fitness.

"I was a little taken back at how much participation and standard had declined therefore deciding to give back to the sport that had previously given so much to me during my younger years. I drove the reformation of Surf Boat Rowers Tasmania, and with a very passionate team, we have built a three year plan to rebuild the sport here in Tasmania, which we have already made significant inroads during the season just finished."

Grant's business experience and surf boat passion will ensure he is an outstanding Vice President for your ASRL.

PHIL CHIPMAN (Queensland) - Two Year Term

With over 30 years of engineering and project management experience Phil Chipman is currently the Technical Director of GoldlinQ who supervise the design, construction and operation of the Gold Coast Light Rail.

Prior to this appointment Phil held various senior appointments in major water infrastructure projects and associated road and community infrastructure projects in Queensland. Phil started his career in the Australian Army as an officer in the Royal Australian Engineers.

Phil was President of the Mermaid Beach AEME Surf Life Saving Club from July 2011 until July 2017 and was made a Life Member of the club in 2015. He has held the appointments of Boat Captain at Mermaid Beach for 12 years, Surf Sports Director for two years and Secretary. Under Phil’s presidency the Mermaid Beach SLSC won Queensland Surf Life Saving Club of the Year consecutively in 2013-14 and 2014-15 and Australian Surf Life Saving Club of the Year 2014-15. Phil was also the President of South Coast Branch of Surf Life Saving Queensland where he represented the 12 surf clubs in the northern Gold Coast and Southern Moreton Bay area over the period July 2015- July 2017. As such was a member of the Queensland State Lifesaving Council over this period.

Phil gained his Bronze in January 1990 at Southport (Queensland) and has also been a member of Arcadian SLSC (Townsville).

Phil has rowed surf boats since gaining his Bronze in 1990 and been sweeping since coming to Mermaid in 1999. He is currently stroke of the Mermaid Mayhem 200 masters crew who won Queensland and Australian Gold medals at the 2021 championships. Prior to this he had previously won one Gold and one Silver Australian medal in masters competition plus numerous State medals.

Phil brings a wealth of experience in surf boat rowing, sweeping and surf life saving governance to the ASRL Committee.


ASRL COMMITTEE FOR UPCOMING SEASON
Nick Sampson (President)
Natasha Tunney (Secretary)
Rory Gillespie (Treasurer)
Edwina Wright (Vice President)
Geoff Wilson (Vice President)
Grant Howe (Vice President)
Grant Wilkinson (Vice President)
Phil Chipman (Vice President)
Rod Costa (Vice President)

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