Fairfield Canoe Club
2019 Centenary Year

2016 Awards

I’d like to begin by acknowledging the traditional owners and custodians of the land and river at Fairfield, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation.   We pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.

Today we’ll be presenting a series of awards which recognize performance, improvement, dedication and club spirit.

Awards have a racing focus but we’ll also be talking about the wider FCC – social, touring, supporting each other.

Presidents Award


Awards are a recognition of individual results – but they are also a celebration of the efforts of all of us behind the results: the coaches, parents, friends and club board.  While it’s a risk mentioning names I’m going to anyway.  Some highlights:


  • Tony Payne, who has been a fabulous coaching coordinator this year
  • Trinity coaches and captains: Joe, Alan and the Trinity team,
  • Strathcona:  Liesl, Marg and the strathcona team who have continued the reinvigoration of strathcona paddling at FCC
  • Coaches leading the beginner courses which are a great tradition at FCC: Julie, Joe, Marg, Neil, Tony, Alex, Trev.
  • The paddle power coaches – Hamish and me
  • The canoe polo coaches – Brigit, Jen and Ben
  • Coaches who work with individuals and small groups – Kieran, Marg, Joe
  • The coaches who have run the Zoli sessions this year.  Shout out to Kelly, Tony, Anna, Chris Wharton, Lofty, Peter and Chris Runting… and of course the inimitable Bob who has run all of our time trials this year.


  • All of the FCC people who have helped out with running kayaking and canoeing events this year.  Joe, Connie, Gary who run and help out at every CV marathon event.  Chris Wharton at the Downriver events.  Brigit and Jen at the Canoe Polo events.  Kieran on the sprint events. 
  • Plus all the volunteers at the events, on turn buoys, on motor boats, first aid etc.  In particular – recognize the volunteers at the FCC/ INCC winter series race which was a huge success this year.  John Young in particular, but the FCC mob, who included Peter & Peter, Mark & Jenny, Trinity parents,  Jono Eager and many others.
  • Volunteers who make FCC what it is: creating the social environment, maintaining and improving our facilities- working bees etc.
  • Particular thanks to the team who have organized and helped out with today’s event: Elena, Lulu and family, Brendan, Tony, Liesl and the Strathcona mob, Peter and the board.

Parents, Partners, Children and Families of paddlers

  • For supporting our paddlers at all levels
  • For Driving…
  • For to partners for providing tickets of leave for us to go paddling
  • And in many cases for gradually realizing what a great opportunity paddling provides and joining in!

FCC Board, who have been a fabulous support in building up our fleet, our facilities and in supporting the FCC community in racing and touring.

Now onto the awards.


1)   Winter Series Awards

These awards are to acknowledge the best paddlers in the Winter Series – Marathon Season

FCC had a very good presence in this year’s winter series – in all races.  We had great participation levels.  We came a creditable second to INCC on club points and on junior points, with Trinity second to MLC in the school points.  Great results.

Separate awards are presented to male, female & junior members.
Members who accumulate the most number of points in the competition are declared winners. In the event of a tie, the member who has the highest finishing record will be declared the winner

On individual results, we’ve calculated them in two ways: the FCC traditional way which scores 10 points for first FCC paddler in a constituted class, 9 points for second, 8 for third etc.  In calculating these we’ve not used traditional constituted classes but instead have divided paddlers into three age groups, junior up to 18, open mens, open womens.

The results of this methodology reward paddling well in lots of races, rather than doing brilliantly in a small number of races.

We’ve also calculated the results according to the Canoeing Victoria current methodology.  This corrects results for boat type (K1 vs TC2 etc), paddler age group, gender.  The results were the same in both cases.

This year, given that canoes have done particularly well overall, we’ve awarded a kayak specific award where in the past we’ve awarded canoe specific awards


Women: Robin completed 5 races, Elena, Judith and Anna 4 each.

Men: Tony raced in 6 races, Alex and Rowan in 5, and Con in 4 races.

Juniors: Nathan raced in 5 races, with Alex, Tom, Noah and Mason racing 4 times.


Women's: Robin Curwen-Walker, Anna Wilson 2nd and Judith Arndt 3rd, Elena Cementon 4th

Men's: Tony Payne, with Rowan Doyle 2nd, Alex James 3rd.  All in Canoes.

Junior Girls: Lulu Kershaw

Junior Boys: Noah Cameron, with Alex Boyd and Tom Brockman close equal second – then Nathan and Josh equal fourth

Mens Kayak: Con Toronis, with Pat Maclean 2nd, Wennie van Lindt 3rd.

2) Coaches Award

This award is based on feedback from the coaches and rewards commitment, consistency and improvement in paddling over the past 12 months.  We’ve had nominees from a number of disparate groups and have awarded across those groups.

Nominees were:

Alex Boyd, Maddie Strauss, Diana Simpson, Lulu Kershaw, Elena Cementon

Winners: Alex Boyd - Trinity, Maddie Strauss - Strathcona, Diana Simpson – Trinity parents’ paddler group: TASK.

3)   Szigeti Medal

The Szigeti Medal is awarded for elite paddling in national and international competition and last year was awarded to Noah Cameron.

This year, we’ve had some good performances in nationals, particularly Noah winning the U18 200m sprint, Macgregor in the winning U16 K4 sprint in all distances, and Sabastian winning C2 500m.  Sabastian also competed in the world student games in Portugal this year.  However, we’ve elected not to award the medal this year.

4) Under the Yarra Award

Awarded to a member who personifies the club spirit – often relating to one incident.

We had three nominees.

Con – continued paddling despite other pressures he’s always out there paddling with good humour, despite his constant illnesses.

Peter Niemandt – cleaning with such high pressure –parts of the sleepers have been washed away

Dan Holthouse – mowing by stealth  - has anyone ever seen him in action?

And the winner is: Dan Holthouse, “mowing by stealth”


Our club Chair, Peter Goldsworthy, will now present the President's Award.

 Rowan Doyle, Technical Director, 4 December 2016


5) President's Award

The President's award has been setup to recognise overall effort to the club, not necessarily related to paddling.
It is seen as a way to reward members who contribute to the administration or Maintenance of the club over a twelve-month period.

As we are co-operative with very low fees, our club would not survive without the contributions from Volunteers that have kept the club running for almost 100 years.

This year the award decision was not easy as we have many worthy recipients.

Contenders for the Presidents award this year were:

Kimalee (Kim) – Kim was solely responsible for the front garden makeover. Kim weeded, mulched and supplied an array of native plants in the front garden.
Others have tried before but have never come close to Kim's achievement

Sabastian Wakim - Over the past year Sabastian established and has coached a growing C boat squad, recruited mainly from outrigger teams.
Whilst maintaining his own high level training program competing in Nationals and in Portugal, Sabastian has also contributed some excellent improvement ideas to the board related to gym equipment and facilities as well as submitting a detailed High Performance Proposal to the board, This proposal is currently being worked on by the Board and will be a priority for 2017.

Dan Holthouse - another quiet achiever, repeatedly mowing and whipper snippering the club grounds before we have time to notice the long grass!

Peter Niemandt - Pressure washing the dock, concrete and everything else with a solid surface. One of those many reliable volunteers

Rowan Doyle - As  Board member and Technical Director Rowan continue sto make a significant contribtion to the club. With Paddlepower/coaching/racing, entertaining & informative weekly eNews, and general contribution to all aspects of the club – however as a Booard member he’s disqualified from recieving this award.

Alex Boyd  - Coaching, work with the school racing squads,  race organisation

Bob – single handily running all the club time trials through the year and volunteering at almost every opportunity

In summary, Volunteers are essential for the ongoing survival of FCC.
We thank all the above and the countless others who have contributed to FCC over the past year.

However there can be only one winner...
I have much pleasure is awarding this year's President's award to Sabastian Wakim.

 Peter Goldsworthy, Chair of the FCC Board, 4 December 2016

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