Stroked by Club Captain Francis Hegerty Sydney Universitys No.1 crew finished strongest to hold out St Ignatius College in the 2003 Gold Cup. The university boat had earlier cruised through their heat and semi without incident but were always aware that with a short course, variable conditions and a sharp turn into the finish this race could never be taken for granted.
During the week the crew received some welcome support via emails from members of the 1972, 1974 and 1976 crews who created our trifecta of 1970's wins in this event.
The final saw Shore start on the leaning pile side in lane 2, Drummoyne in 3, University in 4 and St Ignatius on the outside in lane 5. At the start St Ignatius blasted out and surprised the uni crew with their pace over the first 300 metres. The inside crews were not able to keep in touch initially but the Sydney University crew settled in just behind St Ignatius.
At the 600 metre mark University moved quickly increasing their race tempo and output and in less than 200 metres took the lead and extended it to about 3/4 of a length.
The buoy placed at the pile forced University and Riverview very wide at the the turn and as the boats straightened up the outside crews headed into the centre of the course with Riverview pushing across on University. Sydney University responded, bringing their rating up to 42 to move out to a clear water win over St Ignatius with Shore making up ground for a close third and Drummoyne fourth.