A golden generation of North Esk Rowing Club youngsters is working wonders for Launceston College’s rowing program.
Under-19 rowers Connor Ryan, Jack Barrett, Danny Barratt, Matthew Dikkenberg, Phillip Dikkenberg, Lars Gillingham, Ethan McCullagh, Brad Riley, Braidyn Dawe-Wright, Samuel Williams, Owen Elmer have enjoyed a dominant year in the water, sweeping competition aside in both state and school championships.
The eleven-strong team also performed admirably in Sydney’s national championships, combining for gold in the 500m coxed quad and bronze in the single, quad and four.
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Team manager Peter Ryan said the group had achieved a special feat by winning the double, quad, four and eight at the school championships.
“From a Launceston College point of view it’s really the first time for a long time that a public school has been able to take it up to the independent schools,” Ryan said.
“We’ve been lucky enough that we’ve had all the boys coming through North Esk through the different high schools like Riverside and so forth end up at Launceston College.
“The last time something was won by Launceston College I think it was in the ‘60s, and one of the last championships we could see they actually won was in 1918 or something like that, so there’s a fair bit of history there.”
Ryan said while he hoped to see more young talent taking up the sport in the future, there was no doubt North Esk was experiencing a rare swell of rowing talent.
“It’s like once in a generation that you’d have that amount of rowers coming through who have all peaked at one time - you don’t get it very often.
“You might get some years where you’ve got four or five good boys coming through but then you’ve got some lesser (years) where you haven’t been able to get the success.”