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JUNE 2005


· The Australian Surf Rowers League (“ASRL”) was established in the early 1990's to (i) form a united front to best represent the views of the surfboat rowing fraternity (ii) as a lobby group to represent the views of surfboat rowers when discussing surfboat issues with surf lifesaving management.

· There is a widespread view amongst rowers that NSW has lagged behind other States (and particularly Queensland) in the promotion and development of the sport.

· It is considered that NSW has lacked co-ordination and organisation. This has resulted in a lack of consistency and agreement as to carnival formats racing structures and rules. It is considered that the fairness of racing can be improved.

· Surf boat rowing is an historic and important component of surf carnivals. During the 2004/2005 season there were approximately 200 crews and 850/900 competitors that took part in the NSW State Championships accounting for over 50% of total entry fees.

· A large number of passionate “boaties” believe the sport deserves better co-ordination, promotion and administration.

· The lead has been shown by the other states such as Queensland, South Australia, and Western Australia which co-ordinate surf boat rowing on a state wide basis through a rowing league affiliated with the ASRL.

· As a result of the perceived inadequacies and a known fact that there was no sanctioned representative body in NSW, the NSW ASRL Inc. was incorporated on 4 January 2005 to represent NSW surf boat rowers. The NSW ASRL was established by long serving active members of the SLS movement who represent six regional areas covering all of NSW.

· The establishment of the NSW ASRL has been encouraged and supported by the Presidents of the Queensland ASRL (Mr Bob Stone), South Australian ASRL (Mr Tony Park) and Victorian ASRL Delegate to the ASRL (Mr Frank Veltman).

· The NSW ASRL Inc. has secured the support of all bar one of the NSW based ASRL Hall of Fame inductees, who have agreed to become patrons. Bernard “Midget” Farrelly and Will Jephcott (Vice Chairman Investment Banking Merrill Lynch Australia) have also agreed to be patrons.

· The NSW ASRL is not a breakaway or rebel group. It has widespread support amongst the rowers and its clear intention is to work as part of the SLSNSW to promote and uphold the tradition of the SLS movement.

Objectives of the NSW ASRL

The objectives of the NSW ASRL are to:

· Represent NSW surf boat rowers within the SLSNSW;

· Ensure actual and perceived fairness in NSW surf boat competitions;

· Be the representative body within SLSNSW which determines and co-ordinates the carnival calendar , establishes the racing format and contest rules, and to this end to nominate its elected officials as the SLSNSW Surfboat Panel;

· Promote surfboat rowing as part of the SLS movement; and

· Seek sponsorship and grants to fund the NSW ASRL operations.


· The NSW ASRL operates under formal Rules. Its Rules are designed to ensure all regional areas get an equal voice and the regional representation is elected by the members in that region.

· The key elements of the Rules are:

· The Board comprises one Director from 6 regions covering the State and a
non voting Chairman (except for a casting vote if required)

· The Regional Directors are elected by the NSW ASRL voting members from each region.

· The Chairman is nominated and elected by the 6 Regional Directors.

· The Inaugural Directors are:

Chairman - Steve Reilly

Far North, North and Mid North Coasts - Tony Benfield

Lower North, Hunter and Central Coas t- Paul Quick

Sydney Northern Beaches - Matt Collins

Sydney - Andrew Grills

Illawarra - Rod Latham

South and Far South Coasts- Gavin Hunt


· There are 4 categories of membership being

Category Qualifications

Active A member who holds of a bronze medallion and is a proficient and a financial member of a SLSC.

Official A member who is an accredited carnival official and is a financial member or Life Member of a SLSC in NSW.

Hall of Fame A member who has been inducted into the NSW ASRL Hall of Fame in accordance with the NSW ASRL, including ASRL Hall of Fame Inductees.

Associate Any other person interested in surfboat rowing.

Voting entitlement

· Only Active, Official and Hall of Fame members who are current financial members of the NSW ASRL and were financial for the year preceding are entitled to vote at meetings.

· Only Active, Official and Hall of Fame members who are current financial members of the NSW ASRL and were financial for the year preceding, and are financial members of a SLSC in the relevant region, are entitled to vote at regional meetings.


· It is intended that the NSW ASRL be funded by Sponsorship and Grants.

· The financing of the NSW ASRL will not be an impost on SLSNSW.


· The NSW ASRL will be affiliated with the ASRL. All NSW ASRL financial members will be registered with the ASRL, with all membership fees forwarded onto the ASRL.

Benefits of NSW ASRL to SLSNSW

· The NSW ASRL has been established to work with and compliment SLSNSW. It is not in competition with SLSNSW in any way.

· SLSNSW can reduce its administrative and financial burden by delegating to NSW ASRL the authority and responsibility for the organisation and funding of surfboat rowing in NSW. This can be achieved simply by appointing the NSW ASRL Board as the Boat Panel for SLSNSW.

· SLSNSW can avoid being embroiled in and distracted by disagreements within the surfboat fraternity. These issues will be resolved by the regional and NSW ASRL Boards. Notwithstanding, respective Club’s and associations would be notified of issues that impact on the good image of Surf Life Saving.

· The NSW ASRL is expected to attract new sponsorship support that would otherwise not be directly available to the SLS movement. Any new NSW ASRL sponsorship would not conflict or compete with any SLSNSW sponsorship.

A co-ordinated rowing community within SLSNSW will be a powerful force in promoting the Surf Lifesaving Movement and the healthy lifestyle it represents. It will help retain existing and attract new active patrolling members.

Steve Reilly
NSW ASRL Chairman


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