Surfboats battle Lorne’s swells

Erin Pearson
MORE than 40 surfboat crews from across the country will take to the waters in Lorne this weekend to battle the surf for points in the Navy Australian Surf Rowers League racing event.
Event spokesperson and Fairhaven club sweep Joe Bergin said spectators should expect a day full of “competition” and “carnage”.
“The event will be a real curtain raiser for the Pier to Pub swim which will follow,” he said.
“There will be thrills and spills and tiring sprint finishes.”
Bergin said both local and non-local clubs would prove tough competition.
“Fairhaven will have a few hot crews, Lorne’s open men’s group will be competitive and Torquay’s junior crew is really good,” he said.
“But the top two teams to watch will be Fairhaven’s women side and Torquay’s under-23.”
The round one event will see teams contest the open men’s and women’s events, A and B reserve events, under 23 men and women and under 19 men’s events.
Racing will begin 8am before the Pier to Pub race begins.
Conditions are predicted to produce clean swell this weekend.
Crews will row 800 metres in wet starts and finishes with top teams to advance to the second round in each division to be held in St Kilda next month.
The 2010-11 NAVY ASRL series consists of 24 events around Australia from October 2010 to February 2011.
The Australian Surf Rowers League currently has over 3000 members from over 260 clubs which make up 450 crews.