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Riverside Dr
Perth, WA

0407 002 481


More than sport

Filtering by Tag: WARC

Dear City of Perth

Peta Rule

Firstly: I couldn't go to Bunvegas so if anyone would like to compose a guest blog on the WARC assault on the South West, please feel free. Now, on to serious matters.

We've been asked to provide some information to the City of Perth about our access requirements to allow a potential new eastern access way out of Riverside Drive.

The way it was explained to me by the City of Perth is there were some senior managers who wanted to know why WARC could not reverse trailers out of the eastern entrance, or just turn trailers around in the loading zone of the Club.

I thought I would share the answers to these questions with you, should it ever come up in casual conversation.


Dear Sir,

I understand City of Perth was keen to have some more information about the access requirements of the West Australian Rowing Club on Riverside Drive.


WARC is a heritage-listed rowing club with about 100 members aged from 14 to over 80, and we have one member on the current Australian team.

The club was founded in 1868 and has been located in its current position on Perth water since 1905. Our club is on a riverbed lease with the Department of Transport and we hold a jetty licence.

WARC has dealt with the City of Perth for more than 30 years on issues associated with the access road on Riverside Drive. Fortunately there have been few issues raised in the past decade that have resulted in any conflict, thanks to a great deal of negotiation and good will on both sides.

Current situation:

When the Barrack Square redevelopment was announced, we immediately started liaising first with the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority and later with Leighton Broad, and we are comfortable both groups are well aware of our trailer size and access requirements. Please see evidence of our correspondence attached. The information provided in this document has been provided to both bodies.

I acknowledge the frustration those involved in this project at the City of Perth may have at this latest development of a need for a new exit from the Riverside service lane. I would like to make the point the WA Rowing Club flagged this issue as early as 2012, and were assured our requirements were well understood.

For your information, these are the dimensions of the trailer we use to transport boats.

trailer dimensions


We transport our boats on average once a fortnight (two trips each time) during winter, and probably once every three weeks or so from September to March. Summer is much more unpredictable as we are at the mercy of Rowing Australia requirements.



The question put to WARC would be whether it would be possible to reverse the trailer along Riverside Drive.

flush surfaceIt is the view of the WARC Committee this poses a very significant safety risk. The boat trailer itself is only slightly narrower than the service lane, and to the east of WARC, there is no safety bollards that would prevent a trailer potentially being reversed into the river.

There is almost no margin for error in reversing this trailer that would not result in either damage to City of Perth property to the north, or catastrophic injury to rowing equipment, vehicles and potentially people to the south.

The question was put to WARC whether we could turn the trailer around in the loading zone of WARC and use the eastern exit.

We also considered this. At 12m without boats, it would need significant maneuvering in our loading zone and we are not confident that can be achieved.

sharp turn

More significantly, the exit to the East would require a very sharp left-hand turn that would put at risk street lights, rubbish bins, and of course the boats themselves. (see illustration).

The advice we provided to Leighton Broad was as follows:

trailer options

Our first preference is an exit to the immediate west of WARC. This would alleviate any future conflict with the Barrack Square development and allow safe and easy access.

Our second preference is an additional exit to the east of WARC. This exit does pose some safety concerns around loading boats in the dark at close proximity to the river, however we have brainstormed some strategies to mitigate this increased risk.

Our third preference is an exit to the west of WARC as illustrated above.

Our main aims in relation to these exits are as follows:

  1. That risk of injury and accident associated with boat loading to our members is minimised. Almost all serious injuries sustained by WARC rowers have occurred in the loading, landing and unloading process.
  2. That WARC can continue to operate as a competitive rowing club and get our boats out of the club for competition.

Our desire is for a permanent solution to be found that would be acceptable for the City of Perth, Barrack Square, the MRA and the 100 members of the WA Rowing Club.

I believe this is possible but do hold the view that compromise will be required. I hope this document clearly explains the compromises we can make and look forward to hearing about some permanent, ongoing solutions to this difficulty.

Peta Rule President 2014


Waving not drowning

Peta Rule

This post includes:

  • Today
  • Coffeegate
  • Speedboats
  • Why we enter A-grade 
  • Rowing makes me... pix


This turned out to be a five-minute interval:

5 minsSo we all said:


And then this happened:

winged keel


So turns out we ended up with a winged keel on the Irvine, and everyone did their 1500s on foot carrying a boat rather than out on the water. Of course, we need to say thanks to everyone who helped save the wayward rowers, particularly the random joggers who helped carry stuff, Nick B, John, Bobs, Shaun - who went all Hasselhoff to save the UWA rowers stranded in South Perth - some other people probably, and Nel. Nel pretty much took control and made sure no one panicked. Happily everyone is safe and sound - except other John who did have some fairly impressive bleeding going on. I am sure we'll have a post-crisis gear audit at some point to evaluate any damage, at a guess it was just the Irvine that took the hit.

At a guess, mornings like this happen once or twice a year. It starts out deceptively calm... then BAM: Poseidon turns up to smite us all. Of course I could say we all need to check the weather more blah blah blah, but I know you're not going to. I guess all we can really say is: At least we're not UWA.


It is possible I'm the only person who has found this situation ridiculous. Let me know. Here's the situation: Venues West at Champion Lakes has instructed Rowing WA to instruct clubs like WARC to not sell coffee when we host regattas.

Instead, Venues West is going to call out a coffee van (as we have done on occasion) and the profits from said coffee van will go to them - and not to clubs. We usually pick up $300 to $500 from coffee vans, sometimes a lot more.

I thought this was so ridiculous I wrote to Venues West. Check out the Coffeegate letter here. I will let you know if and when I hear back from them.


Please do be aware when carrying speedboats that it is worth waiting for additional help. Graham MacGregor has reported he has sustained a back injury from over-zealous dinghy carrying activity, and I know he's not the only one. For the girls, you will find it a lot easier if you have three people on each heavy corner. Guys, don't be stupid: Team up and share the load. Do not try to carry a corner by yourself. That includes you, Butz.

Why race A-grade?

All top WARC crews have been "racing up" in the A-grade events this year. We haven't always done that in the past, so here's a quick explanation on why we're doing this:

1. Quite often, the WARC crew is fast enough to race in A. In fact, when reviewing results, a WARC crew that places third or fourth in A-grade would have won the equivalent B event, very easily. Winning a race by a mile is good fun every now and again, but it's not a good look for the sport and it's not good for athletes, either.

2. WARC is a major club. We have an athlete in the national squad and are home to some of the most respected athletes in the sport.

3. WARC will not win the overall pennant this year. We haven't grown at the same rate as Curtin and UWA in particular which are bulking out the lower grade events. We might have a chance shot at a grade pennant, and we might as well give A-grade a crack. We are currently fourth in the A-grade pennant behind Freo, UWA and SRRC. We have a good chance of moving up to third at the next regatta.

5. Swans needs someone to keep 'em honest. There's nothing like a hard-fought race.

6. And of course, there's always the "personal points" argument. It goes like this: The more events you win, the lower your personal ROMS score goes. This reduces the flexibility you have as an athlete to row in different types of boats. A few wins in a B-eight and you'll find you've gone from D-grade to B-grade in one regatta.

"Racing up" is a challenge. It's about taking on the big kids in the playground, going the full distance and being proud of who we are and what we can do. Getting a cheap win will score you a glass with a club logo on it (which washes of in the dishwasher anyway) and ROMS points that make your rowing more restricted... but it won't make you more awesome.

Be more awesome. Row up.

Here are a few pix from the past week or so:

rowing collage 3

chad pic 4bacon