The Australian Boat Race is to be staged on Sunday 30th October on the Yarra River in Melbourne. The race which was run across the inner harbour of Sydney in 2010 over 7kms from Leichhardt to Riverview will be contested between Australia’s oldest universities , Melbourne and Sydney over what is the “old King’s Cup course” of around 5 kms. The boats will start just west of the Bolte Bridge near Appleton Dock and head eastwards past Docklands, past the Exhibition Centre, Crown Casino, Southbank and Flinders station. The crews will pass under Princes Bridge at Swanston St and finish soon after at Melbourne Uni Boat Club. The Women’s Eights are scheduled for 12 noon and the Men’s Eights at 12.30 pm. Each crew must must comprise a minimum of six current students of each university and the other two rowers must be graduates of their university. In the 2010 race Sydney took the honours in the men’s and Melbourne in the women’s. This year Sydney University men’s crew could be bolstered by the inclusion of national team members Fergus Pragnell ( currently stroke of the Aussie eight at the World Championships) and Nick Hudson ( representing Australia in the single scull). Former senior national representative Richard Allsop and U23 national rowers Sasha Belonogoff and James Goswell are also likely members of the Sydney Men’s eight.
This year new trophies have been commissioned for the event. The men’s trophy will be named after Edmund Barton who, apart from being a moving force behind Federation and Australia’s first Prime Minister, rowed in the two seat of the Sydney boat in the first official intervarsity rowing race on the Yarra between Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide universities in 1870.