Thursday, February 26, 2009

Mandurah Sprints Ahead

The Champion Lakes rowing centre at Armadale was the site for the latest outrigging races, a sprint regatta hosted by the Fremantle Outrigger Club. It was almost the perfect regatta for the Mandurah paddlers winning all but one of the eight sprint races on offer. They finished with an amazing seven 1st and a 2nd.

In an amazing finish in the Mens’s 250m OC1 sprint there was a 3 way tie for 1st place between Colin Bartley of the Mandurah Club and two paddlers from the Fremantle club. Dario Mestrovic of Mandurah took out the next place and as an indication of how close the racing was, the first 6 paddlers finished within 1.5 second of each other. Our Mandurah ladies completed the OC1 sprints with a 1,2,3 finish for Linda Mestrovic, Julie Bartley and Mel Rei respectfully.

There was a touch of controversy with the first race of the day, the Men’s OC6 500m sprint, when it was discovered that the timing gear didn’t work. The Mandurah crew had won comfortably but was told at the end of the day the heat would have to be run again, but all the times from the subsequent heats would still stand. So after racing all day the boys had to go out one more time and try and post the fasted time to claim victory and with one of their strongest paddlers already gone home the pressure was on. But in true Mandurah never say die style one of their new paddlers stepped up and they delivered the goods....just! They posted the fasted time by 1.5 seconds.

With only two regattas to go the Mandurah club is hoping to continue their winning form and take out the champion club of the year.

The Mandurah Outrigger Canoe Club is hosting the next regatta on Saturday 7th March at Doddi’s Beach starting at 9.00am. Come down and have a look at the exciting ocean sport of Hawaiian outrigger canoe racing and cheer on the Mandurah paddlers.

Friday, February 13, 2009

MOCC Wins in Perth

The Mandurah Outrigger Canoe Club have continued their season winning performance with a clean sweep of wins at the latest regatta held on the Swan River last weekend hosted by the Cottesloe Outrigger Club. Not only did the Mandurah paddlers win all the OC6 (six person outrigger canoe) races, the club also took out the champions club trophy for the day and consolidated it’s place on top of the ladder for champion club of the year.

The day started strongly for Mandurah in the OC1 (one person outrigger canoe) events with paddlers placing 2nd & 3rd in both men’s and women’s events. Mandurah’s strength comes from training and paddling on OC1s this showed with mandurah paddlers filling most of the top five places in both races.

The first OC6 event on the program was the Mixed Mini Marathon over 5km. Mandurah showed the depth of paddling ability by taking the lead from the start and extending it over the length of the course to win by 100m. The crew consisted of Linda Mestrovic, Terry Russell, Mac Nichols, Dario Mestrovic, Mel Rei and Julie Bartley. Mandurah’s second mixed crew finished a strong 5th.

It was now the men’s turn in the 10km Men’s Marathon. Again the Mandurah boys got out to an early lead but were chased hard by Cottesloe and Fremantle. The men’s crew of Terry Russell, Dario Mestrovic, Mac Nichols, Ian Campbell, Max Butler and Colin Bartley made a good turn at the half way markand  stretched their lead over the Freo crew and finished strongly with a 75m lead. 

The last event of the day was the Women’s 8km marathon and proved to be the most exciting race of the day. The Fremantle Doctor was now blowing hard and the girls had a 4km up wind leg from the start. The three crews of Fremantle, Cottesloe and Mandurah exchanged the lead a number of times heading up the course before Cottesloe and Mandurah got a small jump on Freo. With only 2km to go Julie Bartley steered the Mandurah canoe behind and to the inside of the Cott canoe and got the inside line for the last two rounding marks. Having the inside line gave the Mandurah girls all they needed to lift and go past the Cott girls and win by a canoe length. 

With 3 regattas finished and 3 to go, Mandurah now sits on top of the ladder. Their next regatta is a sprint series on the 21st of February and then they will host their own regatta here in Mandurah on March 7th. The last race of the season is the gruelling 6okm Geographe Classic from Bunbury to Busselton at the end of March.

The above photo was taken by Paul French of the Cottesloe OCC. You can see more of Paul's work at