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1930 APS Head of the River

The sixty-third Head of the River returned to the Barwon with bad news for Geelong Grammar. They were disqualified in the final for colliding with Wesley College. Xavier College also suffered from steering issues with Wesley College in their heat. Wesley led early in the heat but move across the Xavier crew forcing them into the south station. The umpire did not take action and so Xavier did not protest. They were praised for their sportsmanship.

The races were conducted on 9th and 10th May 1930.

The popularity of the event was now in question with a long editorial in a Scotch College magazine about the emphasis placed on the regatta. To quote from the article to provide a sample of the line of argument: The objections are not merely raised against the prominance given to the actual event, but also to the publicity given to the training operations long before the race takes place. For an extended period the boys are under the public eye, and after the race, the "lionising" and hero-worship continue among their school-fellows, the younger generation in particular.

The seven seat of the Geelong Grammar crew was future Prime Minister John Grey Gorton.

The Xavier College Captain of Boats Jack Ryland missed out on selection in the winning 1929 crew and illness forced him out of the crew in 1930 at the last moment.


Wally Ricketts

Wally coached many Melbourne Grammar crews from 1930 to 1954. He coached nine winning crews. He was senior chemistry teacher at MGS and took a sciebtific approach to his coaching and experiemented a great deal with his theories. He was a great oarsman himself and also a significant club coach at Mercantile. His other well known trait was his great enthusiasm with junior crews. Photo from Melbourne Grammar.

The Barwon course in 1930


Head of the River day - thought to be 1930

Head of the River

Time: 5:35.2
Margin: 3/4 length (GGS did not compete in the restared race.)

1st Melbourne Grammar - Bow: E D Scott, 2: F E C Loxton, 3: B A Laycock, 4: K F Cole, 5: D J Wilson, 6: T Luxton, 7: J G Brown, Str: H R Marks, Cox: P J Eckersley, Cch: W N "Wally" Ricketts
2nd Wesley College - Bow: W D'a Curtis, 2: K C W Beckett, 3: R B Walduck, 4: A W Mitchell, 5: J McCulloch, 6: C D Chamberlain, 7: J G Girdwood, Str: H R Millikan, Cox: J D Mackay, Cch: Charles Donald
Geelong Grammar disqualified - Bow: N C Campbell, 2: R E White, 3: P A Thornley, 4: H M Greenfield, 5: A W A Cartwright, 6: J G Barclay, 7: John G Gorton, Str: T A Gatenby, Cox: D L Green, Cch: William H Pincott

It is reported that Geelong Grammar cut off a bend and clashed with Wesley. The race was stopped and Geelong removed.

Melbourne Grammar crew

Photo courtesy of Melbourne Grammar archives

Wesley College crew

Geelong Grammar crew

Other crews competing were:
Scotch College - Bow: Sidney C Powell, 2: John F Ross, 3: Colin S McKay, 4: Gordon R Webb, 5: Henry D L Thompson, 6: Ernest D Lardner, 7: Hew F G McDonald, Str: William D Refshauge, Cox: Kenneth F E Cook, Cch: Dr Charles W B Littlejohn
Xavier College - Bow: J A Hartung, 2: Gerald F Jones, 3: Geoff E Gray, 4: M C Davies, 5: C E Long, 6: E Fuller McKenna, 7: Alan F Redding, Str: Colin M Wilkinson, Cox: Eddie A Fakhry, Cch: Mark Shea
Geelong College - Bow: J K Watson, 2: J H Gough, 3: J P Stoker, 4: S W Robertson, 5: F G Funston, 6: A E Forster, 7: J H Cato, Str: A R Hinchliffe, Cox: E M Emerson, Cch: C J Collyer

Scotch College crew

S C Powell, Dr C W B Littlejohn, C McKay, J F Ross
H D L Thompson, E D Lardner, W D Refshauge, H F G McDonald, G R Webb
K F E Cook

Xavier College crew

Geelong College crew

E1: 1st GGS, 2nd SC - Time: 5:09, Margin: 1 length
E2: 1st WC, 2nd XC - Time: 5:06, Margin: 0.5 length
E3: 1st MGS, 2nd GC - Time: 5:12, Margin: 3 lengths

Second Crews

(This race was not conducted at the Head of the River regatta and was conducted amongst Melbourne metropolitan schools on Saturday 3rd May.)

Time: No time taken
Margins: 3 feet, 1 length and 0.5 length

1st Wesley College - Bow: L R D Pyke, 2: K B Leigh, 3: V R Say, 4: P S Woodruff, 5: A B Foxcroft, 6: T G Luff, 7: J E Hartnell, Str: A A Parish, Cox: G V Harrism Cch: R J D Turnbull
2nd Melbourne Grammar
- Bow: L I Lloyd, 2: R Benson, 3: L Aitken, 4: J W P Wilson, 5: R A Wilmoth, 6: R A Craig, 7: G F Atyeo, Str: H R Smith, Cox: A Ket, Cch: H K Hunt
3rd Scotch College
- Bow: A E Carlyle, 2: N H Straus, 3: R Blyth, 4: L F Orr, 5: S L Oke, 6: R Ferguson, 7: R B Campbell, Str: R J Cheney, Cox: R A Cliff, Cch: C E Boyes
4th Xavier College
- Bow: W T Burnett, 2: D Sheahan, 3: H Mulcahy, 4: R McMinn, 5: G Grey, 6: A Grant, 7: J Roche, Str: J Gartlan, Cox: J England, Cch: Marcus Burke

Third Crews

(This race was not conducted at the Head of the River regatta and was conducted amongst Melbourne metropolitan schools on the Upper Yarra on Saturday 3rd May.)

Time: No time taken

Margins: Dead heat, canvas and 2 lengths

=1st Wesley College - Bow: H V Lamb, 2: T R J Walduck, 3: A N Waite, 4: N R Millikan, 5: N F Prescott, 6: D V Peck, 7: D A V Eastaugh, Str: H K Richardson, Cox: R J Clarke, Cch: W G Rolfe
=1st Melbourne Grammar
- Bow: C G Pitts, 2: K B Brownside, 3: J E H Rutter, 4: K H Watson, 5: C R Galletly, 6: T W Saxton, 7: J H Thomas, Str: T H Collins, Cox: R Eckersley, Cch: C R Franklin
3rd Scotch College
- Bow: C S Tomlinson, 2: A C Young, 3: W White, 4: N C Elliott, 5: G I Anderson, 6: I M Bertram, 7: T H E Mitchell, Str: J R Collie, Cox: H Wilson, Cch: W Max Bailey
4th Xavier College
- Bow: C M McClean, 2: A D McClean, 3: A Prytz, 4: R Whitehead, 5: G O'Keefe, 6: G G Perrignon, 7: R Burns, Str: A England, Cox: F Lavan, Cch: J Keleher

Fourth Crews

(This race was not conducted at the Head of the River regatta and was conducted amongst Melbourne metropolitan schools on Saturday 3rd May.)

Time: No time taken
Margins: 1, 1 and 2 lengths

1st Melbourne Grammar - Bow: W H Miller, 2: S E Vance, 3: A H T Pitcher, 4: A D Cook, 5: T Fitzgerald, 6: P B Bellew, 7: H Heseltine, Str: G J Tabart, Cox: R C Scarlett, Cch: J E Giles
2nd Wesley College
- Bow: K H Robin, 2: J B Curtis, 3: E V Saynor, 4: D J Oldmeadow, 5: R A Fisher, 6: L M Brown, 7: F Sanguinetti, Str: G L Millard, Cox: W Mason-Cox, Cch: W G Rolfe
3rd Scotch College
- Bow: H Wilson, 2: T C Adams, 3: L F Laidlaw, 4: K Gardner, 5: D D Drummond, 6: R M Hearn, 7: A G Cochrane, Str: D M Banks, Cox: C Stirling, Cch: David B Skewes
4th Xavier College
- Bow: C Fontaine, 2: B Buxton, 3: T Keogh, 4: A Ley, 5: D O'Brieb, 6: F Murphy, 7: R Calvert, Str: J McCaffrey, Cox: J Riordan, Cch: W Fox

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