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Dennis Patison

It is with a heavy heart we inform you that Dennis Patison passed away on Saturday 14 November.

Dennis was one of the truly good guys of surf boat rowing. Dennis, father of Jack, was the backbone of the Austinmer SLSC for many decades. He was a remarkable sweep, a brilliant coach, and most importantly, a friend to all. Dennis remained active within the sport after he finished sweeping by mentoring Jack and Austinmer crews, and he was also a race starter on the national stage.

Dennis was inducted into the Australian Surf Rowers League 'Hall of Fame' in 2007.

Photo obtained via Facebook
Wording supported by Bert Hunt

Please leave your tributes on the Facebook post via the button below. We will share funeral arrangements as they are made available. 

Leave a Tribute via Facebook - CLICK HERE

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Bristles Funeral Info

Relatives and close friends are respectfully invited to attend the funeral service for Don 'Bristles' Alexander.

When: Friday 23rd October at 11am
Location: Mt Thompson Memorial Gardens
329 Nursery Road
Holland Park QLD 4121

The service will be followed by refreshments and food at the Mt Gravatt Hotel.

Anyone from the surf boat community who is interested in attending Bristles' funeral in person must RSVP due to COVID-19 restrictions. Please contact Aaron Tannahill via aaron.tannahill@hotmail.com or mobile 0474 233 139 who will pass on details to the family.

A memorial service will be held at South Port in South Australia when COVID-19 restrictions ease. In addition, the funeral on Friday 23 October will be live streamed at the following times;
11am QLD
11:30am SA
10:30am NT
9am WA
* Live stream details including a link will be made available in the coming days.

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Today we are sad to announce the passing of one of our great mates. Bristles, as he was known to all, was a bloody good bloke. He was first a Husband, Father and Grandfather and our thoughts are with wife Robyn, son Brendon, daughters Chrissie and Jacky in this especially tough Covid time when families are locked away from proper goodbyes.

The sport of Surf Lifesaving and particularly Surfboats is very rarely fortunate enough to have a Bristles on their team. He was everything you could expect from a leader. He was hard working, diligent, tough, compassionate, a mentor to many and a friend to all. His contribution and involvement in surfboats as a Sweep well into his 70’s and as an Administrator for longer is a lesson in hard work and dedication.

In his youth Bristles was a Champion Ten Pin Bowler and that sport’s loss was a massive gain for surfboat rowing. Bristles joined the ASRL Committee in the 2010-11 season and held the role of Treasurer continuously until he retired at the last AGM in 2020. In that time Bristles was an integral part of the ASRL team that delivered so much in the area of policy change and technology development for the sport that will live on as part of his legacy.

On this very sad news day, please take the time to read a gentleman’s story. Remember him as he would have wanted: he faced his inevitable death as he did everything else with a level of dignity and stoicism.

Tonight, we raise a Schooner of the best Coopers Pale Ale as we share some quite time to reflect on a life well lived.

RIP Bristles

Bert Hunt
Life Member - Australian Surf Rowers League


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ASRL Open Govt Funding Boost

On behalf of the ASRL committee I am delighted to announce we have signed a contract with Destination NSW for 3 years for the ASRL open. The agreement sees funding provided from the NSW government which allows the ASRL to continue to put on the biggest and best surfboat carnival in the world. The funding reduces the ASRL’s financial commitment to the event, which paves the way for the ASRL to continue to improve our sport through other investments such as technology, youth and sweep development.

Michael Brooks
ASRL President


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ASRL Open 2021

The ASRL committee are pleased to announce Mollymook as the venue for the 2021 ASRL Open.

The dates are 18th – 21st of February.

The event has opened up to a 3.5 day program releasing restraints on competition and allowing for potential Covid crowd restrictions.

The masters will be held on the Thursday afternoon and competitors are encouraged to celebrate their event, or rest and prepare for entry into the reserve grade the following day.

The final race on Sunday will be completed at 2:00pm, medals ceremony to follow.

It is widely known that the Covid environment is constantly changing but your carnival committee is planning the event as normal in anticipation for a successful event. Updates will be provided each month.

Photo Credit - Malcolm Trees


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National Team Event 2020

We are proud to announce that the National Team Selection Event will be held at TUGUN in Queensland.

With that announcement, it is also important to note that today the Queensland Premier announced the closure of the Queensland border with NSW.

19 weeks out from the event at the ASRL are still planning on running as planned.

SLSA are in contact with SLSNZ and both parties are keen to see the Test Match proceed in February, even if this means being flexible around dates and locations of both the National Team Selection Event and the Test Match (currently the Selection Event is scheduled for 12 December 2020).

The above said the restrictions around Covid-19 will have an impact on such events.

We will provide an update to the membership on the 1st day of each month.

Watch this space.

Photo credit - Malcolm Trees, 2020 ASRL Open.


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Stephen GrayThe ASRL are proud to announce that STEPHEN GRAY is the latest member to receive ASRL Life Membership.

Stephen received his Life Membership at 2020 ASRL Annual General Meeting on 27 June 2020.

You can read more about Stephen and his contribution to Surf Rowing by clicking HERE

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Don The ASRL would like to say THANK YOU to Don 'Bristles' Alexander, who has chosen not to renominate for the position of ASRL Treasurer.

Thank you for all that you’ve contributed to within the ASRL / Life Saving and surf rowing. It will certainly not be forgotten.

You can read more about Don and his incredible contribution to the ASRL and Surf Rowing in general by clicking HERE

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ASRL Annual Report 2019-2020The 2019/20 ASRL Annual Report is now available to members and Interested parties.

The Annual Report can downloaded by clicking HERE

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ASRL Tender InviteInvitation to Tender For Content Production and Distribution of Australian Surf Rowers League
National Surf Boat Events

Australian Surf Rowers League (ASRL) is looking to engage an agency/individual to assist in content production and distribution for its national surf boat events.
The ASRL is responsible for running two events each year.

The tender document can be viewed by clicking HERE

Submissions due 17 July 2020.

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agm notificationDue to the COVID‑19 pandemic the 2020 Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be a virtual/hybrid meeting.  Only the President, Michael Brooks, Treasurer, Don Alexander and Vice President, Edwina Wright will be at the meeting venue.  All current Financial Members, Life Members and Hall of Fame Members will be provided with a link to enter the meeting, which will be live streamed on Zoom.  

We do have five constitutional changes that require a vote and one nomination for Life Membership.  The constitutional changes will be put on the ASRL Web Site to allow any discussion that members may require prior to voting.

Voting will open for these at 10.00 am on Wednesday, 10 June and close at the conclusion of discussion of these items on Saturday, 27 June.  All members will receive an email providing a unique link for access to the vote, controlled by our webmaster Perry Brennan.  Members will be asked for a simple yes or no.  Constitutional changes require a 75% acceptance and the Life Membership requires a simple majority. 



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vale zom

With greatest of sadness we wish to inform you all of the passing of Graeme James Knox, AKA The Zom peacefully in his sleep on Wednesday 27th May after a tragically Short battle with Cancer.

Zom was a Giant in the Sport of Surfboat Rowing both here and abroad, leaving a legacy of positive change to Racing we as Rowers enjoy to this day.

Zom Loved his family and his extended family of Boaties all over the World. In recent times Zom had made the microphone “his Own” as one of our Sport’s Premier Boat Race Commentators’ across all levels of Competition.


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agm notificationNOTICE OF 2020 AGM

DATE: 27 JUNE 2020
TIME: 10.00am AEST
LOCATION: Virtual AGM (100% online)

* An open forum for all members will follow the AGM * 
Due to the current health emergency in Australia with the COVID‑19 and the restrictions in place for close proximity, we will be holding a Hybrid (physical location) and Virtual (online facilities) AGM. Our Constitution under “Objects” says that we must “(b) act at all times on behalf of and to represent the interests of the Members and surf rowing throughout Australia and worldwide”. Australian Securities and Investments Commission also has some guidelines on this subject in support of the Hybrid and Virtual AGM during this health emergency in Australia. The electronic vote will be available as required to undertake the business of the meeting.

Call for ASRL Committee Nominations:
In accordance with the ASRL Constitution clause 20, the ASRL Committee hereby calls for nominations for Treasurer and 3 Vice-Presidents. These positions are currently held by Don Alexander – Treasurer, Nick Sampson, Edwina Wright and Rod Costa - Vice-Presidents.

Continuing in their current positions for a further 12 months are Michael Brooks - President, Natasha Tunney - Secretary and Don Cotterill, Grant Wilkinson and Geoff Wilson - Vice-Presidents.

Nominations must be made in writing, signed by 2 current ASRL Members and accompanied by the nominee’s written consent (form available via the link below). Nominations must be delivered to the ASRL Secretary, no later than 28 days prior to the 2020 ASRL Annual General Meeting, ie, 10:00am, 30 May 2020.


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Each season at the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships, it has been our practice in the boat area, to pay our respects to those of the surf boat fraternity who have passed away since the previous season, called the 'Moment of Reflection'
This year, due to the cancellation of the 2020 Aussies, we are acknowledging those who have passed with a video via the ASRL website and social media channels, where we can still pause to quietly reflect on our surf boat mates.
We sincerely thank those who have assisted in providing the information and photos which has allowed us to prepare this presentation. A special mention to Mike Tamblyn ... this is his baby, and we are proud to continue the tradition in the modified format.
Time listings for each reading can be found HERE
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Want to thank a sweep, praise a sponsor, reward a crew or thank a representative from your club?

Mike Tamblyn's Surf Boat Trophies make surf boat trophies to cater to the many aspects of our great sport of surf rowing ranging from :
• A replica trophy to give to a sponsor on boat launching day
• A memento to the person honoured with their name on the new boat
• Appreciation from a crew to their sweep or coach or special individual
• Club presentation night for outstanding crews and perpetual trophies

All our trophies are made from selected Australian timber and materials. Each trophy is individually made to your requirements

Visit www.surfboattrophies.com.au for more information or contact Mike Tamblyn phone 0414 659 701 or email: mike@tamblyn.com.au

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Online Memorial Video

With the cancellation of 2020 Aussies we would like to recognise those we have lost since 2019 Aussies.

Mike Tamblyn, Griffo and Aaron Tannahill have worked together over the past couple of days, and will continue to do so, to gather information and create an online/video memorial. This will replace the Moment of Reflection, normally held at Aussies, for 2020 only.

We are now seeking information of those we have lost since the 2019 Moment of Reflection (6 April 2019) to now.


BEFORE YOU WRITE THROUGH YOUR SUBMISSION, please email aaron.tannahill@hotmail.com with the person/s you would like to recognise, and I will then be in contact with you to discuss what information I or Mike/Griffo may already have, and then we can go from there.

In preparation for your submission, please start to gather images and details about the person/s contribution to surf boat rowing, their club/s, what they are remembered for and any other information.
Please contact Aaron Tannahill if you have someone you would like to be featured and we can then discuss what information we already have.

Submissions due by 12 April 2020. I understand that this is not the normal process for the moment of reflection. I am doing the best to recognise those we have lost in our current environment, working closely with those who have put so much work into this in past years.

Aaron Tannahill

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AGM 2020

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis the ASRL have made a number of decisions in the best interested of all members, and to follow current state and federal government guidelines.


The annual May conference has been postponed with a date to be determined throughout the year. We are aiming for this conference to held in September, although this is pending future state and federal government guidelines.


After seeking advice from Dept of Fair Trading NSW we are going to hold our Annual General Meeting as a ‘virtual’ AGM (online only). We are working on confirming the technology to hold the AGM and once we are comfortable with the technology, we will announce a date for this to be held.

The ASRL committee would like to wish the best for our members for the uncertain times ahead. We look forward to seeing you on the beach once again later in the year.

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Why I Row Surfboats

Stop for a minute and have a read of this ❤ ❤ 

@theevolutionofjen (Jen Davis - Northcliffe SLSC)
Why I row surfboats?

The cancellation of Aussies 2020 has absolutely gutted me as an athlete. Knowing how incredible our season has been & not having the chance to finish it off hits hard. I love competing & I really love winning.

But it also allows for a moment of introspection about why I row surfboats & consider the bigger picture.
I row surfboats because I get to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

I row surfboats because I get to trust & be trusted... my team mates, my self, my stroke, my training, my coach.

I row surfboats because i get to practice discipline... to get done what is required, to look after myself, to be healthy, to make smart choices to be the best athlete I can be.

I row surfboats because I get to experience that effort equals reward.... that “good luck” tends to favour those who are the most prepared.
I row surfboats because it’s not about me... it’s about my team. Doesn’t matter how hard one of us pulls... if we are not pulling together we’re not going anywhere.

I row surfboats because I get to constantly learn about myself.... how I deal with discomfort, expectation, competition, my resilience.

I row surfboats because it makes me better at life. A better partner (to the right guy). A better employee. A better human.

I row surfboats, so when faced by a completely unprecedented uncomfortable set of circumstances, I can draw on the trust, discipline, team work, preparation & learning required to be the best human I can be to get through it with the rest of the world.

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aussies cancelled

The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting today advised against holding non-essential, organised public gatherings of more than 500 people. In light of this advice, Surf Life Saving Australia is cancelling the 2020 Australian Surf Life Saving Championships.

The annual championships were due to be held on the Gold Coast in Queensland from April 18-26, with over 6,000 competitors and thousands more family, friends and spectators expected to attend the event.


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ASRL Open 2020 Survey

Thank you to those competitors and visitors who attended the Team Navy Australian Surf Rowers Open.
As your feedback is valuable to us, we’d like to invite you to complete a short online survey based on your experience at the event.
The survey should take around 5-10 minutes to complete. Please click here to complete the survey.
All fully completed surveys will go into the draw to win a Go Pro prize pack or one of ten headphones and a beach towel with the event and ASRL logo.
The survey will close at midnight, 08/03/2020. All the information you provide will be confidential and used for analysis purposes only, and your responses will not be identified in any way. Personal details you provide for any corresponding Competition you choose to enter will be used for this purpose only. Your information will be handled according to the Promoters Privacy Policy located at: https://www.sydney.com/privacy. You can opt out at any time. Please see Terms and Conditions for more information.

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