Breezy conditions slow times at national championships
Saturday 7 March 2009
The penultimate day of racing at the 2009 Hydro Tasmania Australian Rowing Championships was held in tough, head wind conditions at Lake Barrington, Tasmania.
Victorian’s Phoebe Stanley and Pauline Frasca won their second national title in as many days when they combined with Elizabeth Kell (NSW) and Sarah Heard (VIC) in the women’s four to claim a comfortable victory.
Kell, Heard and Frasca were all members of the Australian women’s eight crew in Beijing last year, while Stanley was reserve, and they showed their experience and strength to cross the line in a time of 7:18.85. In second place was the AIS based crew of Laura Osti (SA), Georgia Baker (WA), Emma McCarthy (QLD) and Emily Rose (WA). They finished two seconds behind the winners, while their training companions at the AIS, Sylvie Withers (VIC), Alison Crowe (VIC), Charlotte Walters (TAS) and Sophie Robson (VIC) won the bronze medal.
The all Tasmanian crew of Nick Baker, Shaun Finlayson, Blair Tunevitsch and Dion Birtwhistle was victorious in the final of the men’s lightweight coxless four. They won in a time of 6:59.35, six seconds ahead of the West Australian combination of Tom Nicholls, Perry Ward, Ross Brown and Todd Skipworth.
The same two crews will battle it out for the Penrith Cup in the Interstate Regatta tomorrow. Tasmania and Western Australia have shared this trophy since 1999 and are expected to display another top contest.
Dominic Grimm (NSW), Tom Larkins (VIC), Fergus Pragnell (NSW) and Tom Swann (VIC) won the men’s coxless four, recording a boat length victory in a time of 6:21.77. Missing fellow Olympic silver medallist Francis Hegerty (NSW), the crew of Cameron McKenzie-McHarg (VIC), James Marburg (VIC) and Matt Ryan (NSW) were unable to find rhythm with Alexander Scharp (VIC) and finished in fourth place, eight seconds off the pace.
The open women’s eight race was taken out by Melbourne University in convincing fashion. Coxed by Lizzy Patrick and stroke by Sarah Heard, they recorded a time of 7:38.21 to lead home Sydney University and Mercantile.