Grafton Rowing Club History: GRC History Page 9
Australian Rowing Professional
Flooding Grafton
Early Shipping on the Clarence

Grafton Rowing Club History - The 1950s and 1960s

Whilst the 1950s did not produce a “boom era” like the 1930s, there was still plenty of rowing activity in Grafton, as well as some very competent competitors in the club, including Ross Morris, R. Graham, E. Cooper, Clarrie Shaw, Frank O’Loughlin, Jack Chaseling, L. Freebody and Ray Fanning.

Ray Fanning proved to be one of the best lightweight scullers in Australia and went
on to race Charlie Edwards for the World Lightweight Sculling Championship.

Competitors still regularly travelled from Sydney for Grafton regattas, especially the famous Easter regattas. The page below from an Easter regatta shows scullers from Parramatta, Balmain and Drummoyne.

This field actually contains two world champion scullers in George Cook and Evans Fisher, as well as two world championship challengers in Max Fisher and Ray Fanning.

School rowing was also popular during this era, with the All Schools’ Head of the Northern Rivers a new development that soon became one of the major events on the rowing calendar.

This program from 1957 shows the competing schools included a number of
private schools from Queensland as well as Sydney Boys High.

The 1960s, however, saw growing interest in rowing, as the ranks of Grafton Rowing Club swelled to the point where there was a desperate need for more equipment.

Crews were limited to ˝ hour training sessions on the water as the demand for boats increased and any crew member who turned up late for a session soon wore the wrath of his team mates, but not so much as anyone who returned late from their ˝ hour on the water!

Grafton Rowing Club regularly competed in Northern Rivers regattas and travelled to major regattas in both Queensland and Sydney.

Grafton Rowing Club History - Page 10