Inland Surf Boat Crew to Row in Gallipoli

The City of Goulburn is known for producing great sports men and women. Goulburn now has its very own surf boat crew, who are preparing to represent the inland city in the Gallipoli 100 surf boat race in Turkey next April in conjunction with the 100th anniversary commemorations.

A crew of nine men ranging from 17 to 56 has been training weekly to hone their rowing skills and to maintain the level of fitness required to compete against crews representing surf clubs from all over Australia, New Zealand and Turkey. All nine have undertaken rigorous training in order to obtain their Bronze Medallions, a pre-requisite for entering the Gallipoli event.

Not only does Goulburn now have nine fully-qualified surf lifesavers to call its own, but so does Burning Palms SLSC. Burning Palms, along with trainers from other Sydney clubs, hosted and trained the Goulburn crew and the rowers will now patrol at Burning Palms SLSC over the season as a way of saying thank you.

In the two days leading up to Anzac Day 2015, the Goulburn Crew will participate in a 53km surf boat race along with boats crewed by other Australian surf lifesavers and their Turkish counterparts.

The race begins at the port of Eceabat, travels south through the Dardanelles, passing through the Narrows at Canakkale, and down the line of artillery fortifications along the south-eastern coast of the Gallipoli peninsula.

Reaching the tip of the peninsula at Cape Helles, the race course turns north into the Aegean and heads up the north-western coastline of the Gallipoli peninsula to Anzac Cove and finishes, out of respect for the hallowed ground there, not at Anzac Beach but slightly north on the afternoon before Anzac Day.

The surf boat being used by the Goulburn Crew prominently displays the logos of its major sponsors, along with the names of the 31 fallen Australian diggers from the Goulburn District who were killed during the Gallipoli campaign. Following the race the Goulburn boat and all gear will be donated to one of the newly established Turkish lifesaving groups.

The Rotary Club of Goulburn Mulwaree is assisting with getting the boat and crew to Turkey, in addition to raising money for Rotary charities and projects. For more information go to Gallipoli 100 Facebook page.

Fri 12 Dec 2014