Australia’s best surf rowers light up Lorne

February 22, 2024 BY

Lorne 'Prawns' on the way to victory in Reserve Female. Photo: CORALEE ASKEW

MORE than 1,400 competitors graced the shores of Lorne Beach for Australia’s premier surf boat event over the weekend.

The four-day Team Navy Australian Surf Rowers League event was the biggest stand-alone surf boat event in Australia in many years, with multiple divisions of surf boat racing being contested, including general club racing, a Trans-Tasman Test, and Interstates.

Jan Juc ‘Bowties’ members embrace after making the final of Reserve Male. Photo: SALLY DALE


Jan Juc ‘Bowties’ starting in the Reserve Male final. Photo: SALLY DALE


Surf boat crews from all over the country were represented, including Jan Juc SLSC, Lorne SLSC, Fairhaven SLSC and Anglesea SLSC.

Team Victoria’s greatest success came in the form of the Reserve Female category surf boat race, with Lorne “Prawns” swept by Geoff Matthews winning in a photo finish against Curl Curl.

The Jan Juc “Bowties” missed out on a medal by mere meters in the Reserve Male, while the Fairhaven Salamanders U23 team, Lorne Edge Open Female squad, Fairhaven Angry Otters Open Male crew and Lorne Stars Reserve Female lineup all made national finals.

Anglesea ‘Yalaters’ punching through a wave whilst representing Victoria. Photo: MALCOLM TREES


Both Jan Juc Under 19 Female crews, the only Under 19 crews at the event from Victoria. Photo: SUPPLIED


Victorian event lead Chris Campbell said the level was of competition was of the highest standard.

“We saw over 300 crews competing in excellent conditions across the four days of competition.

“Victoria and the Surf Coast showcased why our region was such a popular location for the sports premier event to be held.

“The feedback we received was remarkable, and the Victorian Surf Rowers League saw plenty of photos of our interstate visitors enjoying the regions finest tourist destinations.

“A special thanks to Lifesaving Victoria, ASRL, Lorne SLSC and Visit Victoria who helped deliver one of the largest and most successful surf lifesaving events held in this state for many years.”