SRC Women Build after Camp

In the first week of December coaches Donovan Cech and Lachlan Carter ran a women’s rowing camp at the Nepean River. The aim of the camp was to enhance technical skills and improve their physical ability in the lead up to the racing season.


Camp attendees…


Leah Saunders (Senior A)

Rachael See (Senior A)

Madison Brown (U23)

Emily partridge (U23 LWT)

Gemma Dane (U23 LWT)

Brianna Caputo (U21)

Bianca Riley (U19)

Harriet Hudson (U19)

Romola Davenport (U19)

Georgia Bradley (U19)



We had a good group of girls with a healthy mix from under 19 to Senior A level rowers and there were a couple of lightweights in the mix as well. We were privileged to welcome Gemma Dane from Lower Clarence who came to join us for the week. Gemma may only be 52kg but she knows how to get a hold of her legs off the front. Gemma’s contribution to the camp was greatly appreciated is she is always welcome.


Our accommodation was at Don’s house which overlooks a spectacular view of the Nepean River in Leonay. I was not aware that Penrith had serenity, click but this place had heaps of it. So much serenity. One night we had dinner at the local Thai joint ‘Ping Kun’ where we shared 10 meals and enough coconut rice to choke a donkey. The coconut rice really is to die for so don’t feel bad about the donkey. It’s amazing.


Throughout the camp each athlete made solid technical gains as they learned more about feeling the run of the boat and refining the skills a rower needs in their hands. Everyone had an opportunity to row with each other and jump into each of the sculling boats (1X, 2X and 4X). This ensured that they could learn how to adapt to each other and row in different combinations which is essential for selection into crew boats.


Having the experience and professionalism of our senior leader Leah Saunders was great for the development of the younger U19 girls. Leah is the clubs most successful female athlete and has so much to offer anyone at SRC. The camp was good preparation for Leah as she goes into Olympic selection time trials this week so we wish her all the best of luck.


We really have a good range of girls throughout the shed now and are looking to build on this as we aim to send an U19 women’s 4X to Henley Royal Regatta for the first time. Harriet Hudson from Queensland joined our U19 squad and was welcomed with open arms. She added great personality and positivity to the group and is showing early signs of athleticism after only a week of training with us.


Our U19 4X of Romy, Harriet, Georgia and Bianca finished the camp with a great long row in the 4X and had a chance to race it at the Reindeer Regatta the next day. With only HSC fitness behind them, Romy, Harriet and Bianca really appreciated Georgia Bradley’s hard work over the winter as she is making the step from U17 to U19 next year. Georgia’s role in the 3 seat was to back Harriet up and provide her with plenty of good chat to keep her revved up throughout the race. Romy and Bianca in the bow pair did a fantastic job of picking up the crew at the front with sharp blade entries and good calls to keep the opposition to only a canvass lead right to the end.


With no confidence in her toe, Harriet steered a perfect course and set up a sweet rhythm for the girls to follow. Hearing “YEAH SYDNEY” from Bianca in the bow seat was music to my ears as I watched these girls fight to the end as if to say “if anyone is going to beat us, they are going to suffer doing it”.


A narrow defeat is usually disappointing but this one seemed like a victory as they performed well above expectation. Good on you girls for putting yourselves out there and havin’ a crack. The girls ended up winning the mugs as the winning crew was ineligible for this race so we’ll take that. After seeing this race, I am really looking forward to seeing this group develop over the coming season.


Leah Saunders won her single in convincing style. In the spirit of Christmas at the Reindeer regatta, Leah’s red nose bow ball was the first to cross the line for the day and also for Sydney to set the club up on a winning vibe. She later won the pair by about one furlong. That’s a bloody long way.


To help integrate the young girls with the senior girls, Bianca Riley combined with Charlotte Trent (U16) in the Open women’s 2X. Bianca showed great leadership from the bow and they showed great discipline to fight back on the 3rd placed crew and row through to claim the 3rd spot. This is the sort of relentlessness that you see in world class athletes so I was very impressed with Charlotte’s composure in such a pressured situation. To see this in a young school level athlete is really exciting. Well done girls on a great race.


We had four girls in the final of the U19 single at the NSW sprint Championships. Romy, Harriet, Bianca and Georgia claimed 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 7th respectively. As this was Georgia’s fifth sprint race for the day, she was quite fatigued. These included a win in her U17 1X and 3rd with Romy in the U19 2X. Brianna Caputo had a cracking race claiming 2nd in the U21 1X. Gemma Dane claimed 2nd in the U23 1X which was great to see as she slipped down the outside lane.


Overall we had a very successful camp and finished on a high with great results in the regattas over the weekend. Coming up we have our annual training camp in Taree where we look to make more gains as we approach the racing season.