Ballarat Grammar scoops national double

BALLARAT Grammar School has completed the national schools’ fours championship double in Perth.

In a repeat of its Head of the Lake victories, Grammar claimed the schoolgirls’ and schoolboys’ titles at Champion Lakes yesterday.

Ballarat Grammar rowing director Luke Pougnault said it was a great result for both crews after a season of hard work.

“It’s fantastic for the school and the kids, who all rowed to the best of their ability,” Pougnault said.

“What an achievement for the crews and their coaches too, Sam Hutchison and Bill Gribble.

“It’s a really great effort to cap off the Head of the Lake wins from last week.”

The girls were first to strike.

Grammar’s crew of Stella Fulton (bow), Vicki Powell (two), Anna Fairbairn Calvert (three), Sarah Mair (four) and cox Clara Toohey led all the way over the 2000-metre course.

Pougnault said the girls had been wary of Genazzano, which was known as a fast starter.

Grammar clocked seven minutes, 46.02 seconds with a winning margin of 3.95 seconds from Presbyterian Ladies Perth with Genazzano third ahead.

Ballarat Clarendon College was fourth.

Loreto and Ballarat High School failed to get past Saturday’s repechage.

Grammar boys Campbell Gullock (bow), Sam Ballantyne (two), Tom Hunt (three), Sebastian Walsh (stroke) and cox Matthew Haberfield ensured the Grammar domination.

They stuck to their race plan, racing with the pack and breaking free 750m from the finish.

Grammar was third after the opening 500m and was still in this position with 500m to go before powering home to get gold by 1.98 seconds.

The boys’ time was 6:51.31.

Scotch College worked its way through the field to finish second, with Scotch Oakburn fading in the final stages to get third.

Ballarat High School, Ballarat Clarendon College and two St Patrick’s College’s two crews bowed out in the repechages on Saturday.

It is the end of the boys’ season but Grammar girls have a chance for a triple crown with next weekend’s Head of Schoolgirls in Geelong.