Victorian Institute of Sport

Rook to steer women’s rowing eight

Monday, 04 June 2018

Victorian Institute of Sport’s, James Rook, will be coxing the women’s eight at the upcoming Rowing World Cup. 

It was then that rowing's governing body implemented a range of new rule changes, unanimously voting for coxswains — the person that steers the rowing boat — to become gender neutral, permitting Rook to take charge of his female teammates.  

Rook said that when he walked through the doors after being announced, everyone was excited for him.

"I walked in the doors of the training centre and 25 girls and the coaches turned around and yelled out 'rookieeeeee'," he said.

"So that speaks for itself. It was really welcoming and easy. It's just a bunch of people that want to go fast."

Rook said that new rules set a great example for all sports. He said he wanted to see the changes made at the elite level and filter down through to the next generation.

"I want to see it starting at schools," he said.

"That can be at co-ed schools or at clubs. There is no reason why someone who loves the sport can't cox whoever they want."

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