Alex Purnell ( stroke of the King's Cup Eight) gets the King's Cup from the Governor General, Peter Cosgrove

Sydney University Boat Club (SUBC) rowers finished top of the medals table at the just concluded 2017 AON Sydney International Rowing Regatta, held at Penrith Lakes, March 27 to April 2, 2017.

SUBC shone in the rain at this major regatta on the Australian Rowing calendar which attracts a swag of international competitors and doubles as the Australian Open and Australian Open Schools Rowing Championships.

In the pinnacle King’s and Queen’s Cups, which pitches the best of each State Men’s and Women’s Eights respectively against each other, the light blue of NSW prevailed in a thrilling King’s Cup race in which the NSW crew took charge with a lightning fast 500 of 1 min 19 secs. Coxed by SUBC's Will Raven and SUBC stroke Alex Purnell (Little Dog) and backed by Jack Hargreaves in 7 and Hamish Playfair in 6 the NSW crew backed up with a 1.21 second 500 to have observers putting down the glasses by the halfway mark.

In the Queen’s Cup, the NSW Women’s Eights (featuring SUBC rowers Rowena Meredith, Georgina Gotch, Fiona Ewing and Sarah Cook) gave themselves every opportunity leading at the 1500m mark; however, the famed Victorian crew managed to overall them and extend their unbeaten run in this prestigious race to thirteen victories.

Our NSW Queen's Cup Eight - with a raft of SUBC reps fought hard for silver in the Queen's Cup
In the President’s Cup, SUBC’s Cameron Girdlestone claimed the Interstate Men’s Single Scull title for NSW from a highly credentialed interstate field over 2000m.

The Rio silver medallist regained his mojo after placing third behind Spencer Turin and Hamish Playfair in the Open Men’s Single final last Thursday.

Cam Girdlestone - winner of the Interstate Men's Single Scull - the President's Cup
In the Youth events the NSW Men's Youth Eight with five SUBC members and stroked by Jack O'Brien cleared away with an amazing start - grabbing a clear lead in only three strokes and leading by a length after only 250 metres. The crew went on to win by nearly five seconds to take out the Noel F Wilkinson Trophy.

Coached by Alfie Young, Genevieve Horton shone for SUBC. The youngest member on the Australian Olympic Rowing Team in 2016, Horton made an impression in a number of events including taking Bronze in the Open Women’s Single Scull – the first time a NSW rower has been on the podium in 9 years.

Many SUBC rowers excelled over the week including:

Above - triple Gold Medallists from the 2017 Australian Rowing Championships for Sydney Uni. Charlie Wheatley, Rowena Meredith and Wallis Russell.

Rowena Meredith is now the 2017 U23 Australian Single Scull Champion and backed that gold up by pairing with Carlin Cronin to take out the U23 Women’s Double Scull title.
Wallis Russell, just 17 years of age, came from behind to win the U23 Lightweight Single Scull and then paired with Reina Zylm to clinch the U23 Lightweight Double Scull.
SUBC duo, Lochie Miles and Jack O’Brien combined to take gold in the U21 Men’s Coxless Pair in a time of 6m 50s.
Charlie Wheatley claimed gold in the U21 Men’s Single Scull with Devlin Walsh bronze and Matt Murray fourth.
Leon Chambers charged to the line for gold in the U23 Men’s Lightweight Single Scull title.
Georgie Gotch took the bronze medal with Molly Goodman in the Women’s Open Pair, where just one second separated the top three crews. Gotch and Goodman also took gold in the Open Women’s Four.
Georgia Miansarow won gold in the Open Women’s Lightweight Single Scull, leaving her Coach Alfie Young full of smiles.

NSW Men's Youth Eight about to go onto the water for final training with SUBC's Jack O'Brien, Lochie Miles, Matt Murray, Leon Chambers and jacob Flanagan.

SUBC and UTS combined in a composite crew to take bronze in the U23 Women’s Eight.
In the U23 Men’s Eight SUBC and Sydney Rowing Club composite took second by just 0.23s, behind QLD composite.
Andrew Judge and Jake Bicknell got home with bronze from the U23 Men’s Pair final.
Fiona Ewing and Gen Horton were bronze medallists in the Open Women’s Double.
The U21 Men’s Quad Scull of Jacob Flanagan; Matt Murray; Charles Wheatley and Leon Chambers took the gold medal.
Charlie Wheatley, Wallis Russell and Rowena Meredith all got 3 golds each in Championship events


Another gold medallist - Georgia Miansarow with coach Alfie Young.

There were many other fine performances from SUBC rowers over the week. To underline how well SUBC performed it was ranked first in the 2017 Australian Championships Medals table. In this scoring medals are allocated as a percentage of a medal for composite crews, so if a club has one member in a four that wins a medal the club receives 0.25 of a medal for the colour won. Tallying up everyone’s gold, silver and bronze results SUBC finished top with 22.625 medals just ahead of UTS on 21.625.

The victorious NSW King’s Cup Men’s Eight crew was Cox, Raven; Alex Purnell; Jack Hargreaves; Hamish Playfair; Spencer Turin; Alex Lloyd; Gus Moore; Peter Koster and Ed White.

Huge congratulations to all SUBC rowers and coaches on a highly successful 2017 AON Sydney International Rowing Regatta.