College – Issue 31

1996 Maadi winning crew get together after 20 years

For some of the nine Old Boys who came together this year to celebrate their 20th year since claiming the Maadi Cup at Lake Ruataniwha, it was the first time they had seen one another since leaving College. The former crew were there to offer their support at this year’s regatta.

Organiser Jean-Michel Tallot says after 20 years of fading memories and appearances, it was an initial struggle for some just to recall who was who. “However, once we all got re- acquainted, the reminiscing and celebrating kicked off and the night before the finals we recounted many glory stories and, best of all, watched an old VCR of our Maadi winning finals in 1996. “Looking back, I have to say our success in the mid ‘90s was pretty impressive, even at a time when the school was dominating the sport at national level,’’ he says. “Many of us started together as under-16s winning national under-16 eights, fours and quadscull. This rare trifecta was repeated when many of the original crew came together in our final year to win the under-19 eight (Maadi Cup), the under-19 four (Springbok Shield) and the under-19 quadsculls (Trevor Cocker Shield), a “threepeat” of the premier events, which to this day no other school has achieved. “This year’s regatta at Lake Ruataniwha was also one for all College supporters to be proud of, and it was fantastic for this returning crew to see this year’s first eight claim the Maadi Cup in such a dominant fashion against the fancied North Island crews. “Geoff Perry, one of the former College coaches, who was instrumental in this crew’s success,

Left to right: Jon Dolan, Hamish Simpson, Simon Todhunter, Henry MacElrea, James Forbes, Geoff Perry (Coach), Ben Johnson, Simon Apperley. Front: Guy Shallard, Jean-Michel Tallott

heard the boys of 1996 were at the regatta and we got together to share a few stories and a photo together. The day was capped off in style with a very short, but memorable, blast in a College eight at the end of the regatta, a sensation most hadn’t experienced since that winning day on that same stretch of water 20 years earlier.

“We are really grateful to the Old Boys’ Association for their support and for the hospitality given by not just the parents and College staff at the supporters tent, but to the current group of boys who showed genuine interest and enthusiasm for us, and for indulging us by making it possible to once again climb into an eight for a short trip down memory lane.’’


College Issue 31 2016

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