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Rusty Robertson Trophy remains with Australia

Under 21 Australian Rowing Team defeat New Zealand in annual Trans-Tasman series

Australia’s Under 21 Rowing Team have retained the Rusty Robertson Trophy at the conclusion of the 2018 Trans-Tasman Regatta today in New Zealand. The Australians took victory on the final day of competition on Lake Karapiro, defeating the Kiwis 290 points to 272.

The yearly event saw Australia and New Zealand’s U21 teams battle it out once again for the prestigious Rusty Robertson Trophy. Robertson, a New Zealander, coached both New Zealand (from 1967-76) and Australia (1979-84) in a prolific career. Robertson’s career saw him achieve many notable results with his crews, including overseeing two New Zealand crews to Olympic gold medals (1968 Men’s Four and 1972 Men’s Eight) as well as Australian crews to multiple World Championships as well as Australia’s Men’s Quadruple Scull to an Olympic silver medal at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games.

Australia’s performance at this year’s Trans-Tasman Regatta saw the team not only win the first leg of the regatta, held in Penrith, earlier this year, but also retain their winning margin over the New Zealanders throughout the three-days of racing in New Zealand. The second leg of the regatta saw Australia and New Zealand joined by a small Under 21 team from Canada, with the Canadians able to win medals at the event but not claim points towards the prestigious trophy.

The final day of racing saw the teams move into Eights to compete for the final set of points on offer. The Under 21 Women’s Eights were first up, with the New Zealand and Australian crews joined by a crew from Canada in the race. The morning’s heats saw Canada take the win, with New Zealand in second and Australia’s crew, coxed by Phoebe Georgakas, finishing in third in a time of 6 minutes 59 seconds. The finals saw a repeat of the final standings, with Australia once again crossing the line in third.

The Under 21 Men’s Eight, coxed by Andrew Le, saw the Australians cruise to victory in both the heat and the final against the New Zealanders. The Australians had a winning margin of 16.84 seconds in the heat, and 11.84 seconds in the final.

Australia U21 Men’s Eight contesting the U21 Trans-Tasman on Lake Karapiro, Cambridge, New Zealand on Saturday the 25th August 2018. © Copyright photo Steve McArthur / @RowingCelebration

The racing, over three days, saw Australia claim five gold medals and seven silver medals. The men’s crews had a particularly strong regatta, with the Men’s Pair (Holt and Lavery), Men’s Four (Holt, Lavery, Kench and Kennedy), Lightweight Men’s Single Scull (Ryan), Men’s Single Scull (Grzeskowiak) and the Men’s Eight (Kennedy, James, Murray, Grzeskowiak, Nichol, Kench, Lavery, Holt and Le) all winning gold medals.

The seven silver medals came from the Women’s Single Scull (Bartram), Lightweight Men’s Double Scull (Kennedy and James), Women’s Pair (Ford and Green), Men’s Pair (Kench and Nichol), Lightweight Women’s Single Scull (Bennett), Men’s Quadruple Scull (Grzeskowiak, Murray, James and Kennedy) and the Lightweight Mixed Double Scull (Bennett and Ryan).

Jaime Ford, Kirstie Green, Alexandra Finlay, Ella Bramwell, Olivia Bartram, Charlotte Wirtz, Celia Cowan, Michaela Franz & Phoebe Georgakas (c) Australia U21 Women’s Eight contesting the U21 Tri-Series, NZL vs AUS vs CAN on Lake Karapiro, Cambridge, New Zealand on Saturday the 25th August 2018. © Copyright photo Steve McArthur / @RowingCelebration