Rugby players rowing to beat record

STUDENTS from an Ipswich school were today expected to smash a world record in rowing.One hundred rugby players from St Joseph's College, in Belstead Road, began the challenge to break the world one million metre rowing record for high schools at 8pm yesterday and were due to finish today.

STUDENTS from an Ipswich school were today expected to smash a world record in rowing.

One hundred rugby players from St Joseph's College, in Belstead Road, began the challenge to break the world one million metre rowing record for high schools at 8pm yesterday and were due to finish today.

The record currently stands at 17 hours, 39 minutes, 25 seconds, and is held by Niskayuna High School, in New York.

Graham Richards, director of rugby at the school, expected the boys to break the record by about two hours.

He said: “They were about two hours ahead of schedule and have done extremely well.

“They went through a hard patch over night but when the other pupils came in again in the morning and rallied round, it picked them up.

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“There was a good atmosphere. We had music on all night and a disco.”

Using four rowing machines, the boys aged between 13 and 18 had to row for two minutes at a time covering as great a distance as possible, looking to average 500m for each two minute stint including changeovers.

Proceeds from sponsorship for this event will be split equally between the South African rugby tour in 2009 and the College's La Sallian Developing World Projects.