There was a sense of community and camaraderie at Lake Wendouree on Sunday for Head of the Lake.
High school spit crews cheered for rowers throughout the morning as families and supporters lined the shore of the lake.
While school spit crews varied in size, age and volume, all shared a similar sentiment; Head of the Lake brought people from different schools together for a common purpose and celebrated the hard work of the rowers.
We have united as a year level to get around the girls and support each other, practicing chants at lunch time and keeping spirit at the school really high in the lead up.Emily Canavan, Loreto College spit crew leader
St Patrick's College spit crew leader Will Clark said Head of the Lake 2020 would be one of the best memories from his time at school.
"In Year 7 you see the spit crew and you admire them. We have been looking forward to it for so long and it is finally here," he said.
"It brings the brotherhood together. You are brothers all the way through but this really ignited the group as a collective. There is such a good camaraderie. We love it."
Around 140 Year 12 students formed the Loreto College spit crew, that celebrated loudly when Loreto won the girls' open division one race.
One Loreto spit crew leader Emily Canavan said the students had worked well together to prepare for the event.
"We have united as a year level to get around the girls and support each other, practicing chants at lunch time and keeping spirit at the school really high in the lead up," she said.
RELATED COVERAGE: Head of the Lake 2020 | live results as they happened
The Loreto College spit crew formed a circle around the winning rowing crew, cheered, chanted and sang 'you are the champions' after their race. Loreto College Year 12 co-ordinator Roger Morris spoke to the students after the celebration.
"We will be humble in our victory. We recognise the phenomenal performance of all the rowers out here today," he said.
"Humility is a great quality. We congratulate rowers from other schools as well as our very successful rowers here."
While Damascus College and Phoenix P-12 Community College are relatively new to the rowing community, their spit crews were not lacking volume or enthusiasm.
Representatives from both said they hoped student enthusiasm for rowing and being a part of the spit crew would continue to grow in coming years, particularly with younger students.
At both spit crew bases on Sunday, there was a great show of community spirit.
Phoenix College's spit crew remained at the lake after all its rowing crews crossed the finish line to support neighbouring Damascus College teams.
Phoenix College rowing co-ordination Sarah Hawkes said Phoenix shared a rowing shed with Damascus and they often helped each other out.
"Whenever we are in trouble Damascus shares their boats and we do help them out as well, so joining together for the last bit and helping each other is really nice," she said.
One of the Phoenix College spit crew leaders Ivy Timmins said the students wanted to support every school.
"We do work really closely with Damascus which is why we are cheering them on, because they are a great school as well," she said.
It was excellent rowing conditions on Sunday, with clear blue skies and a light breeze, a relief to organisers after previous years of high winds on event day.
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