East Coast Nationals – action on and off the track

East Coast Nationals – action on and off the track

29/09/2015, Sydney, Motorsport - Drag Racing, Sydney Dragway, Article # 13404695
East Coast Nationals – action on and off the trackDisplaying 20141101-Joe Maday-Nationals- 817.JPGPhoto credit: Joe Maday
The return of one of Sydney Dragway’s foundation events, the East Coast Nationals, has been confirmed as a part of the newly formed Australian Professional Drag Racing Series and will not only see more than 300 competitors on the track, it will also feature a massive array of family entertainment for the iconic western-Sydney venue.
Sydney Dragway General Manager, Peter Beaumont explained “It’s great that we have the new series and details sorted for our racers and the drag racing community but our Sydney Dragway team has been working hard behind the scenes to make this event something special, in addition to the racing for our fans and spectators.
“The event will feature the Shannons Show ‘n’ Shine, a huge collection kid’s rides and amusements, trader and promotional stands, face painting, clowns and a whole lot more.
Displaying 20141102-Joe Maday-Nationals- 038.JPG
“Our Sydney Dragway events will more and more, be a carnival that features drag racing as the main course – but for us – it’s about providing entertainment for the entire family when they come to our race track,” smiled Mr Beaumont.
The East Coast Nationals, at Sydney Dragway has previously been the start of the Australian drag racing season and after two rounds in Darwin, it will be the first major round of the 2015/2016, featuring all of the six professional categories.
Mr Beaumont explained, “Top Fuel has a spiritual home in Sydney and we are glad to have the nitro dragsters back. Along with Top Doorslammer, Top Alcohol, Pro Stock, Top Fuel Motorcycle as well as Pro Stock Motorcycle, the pits will be once again full of the best race cars and bikes in the country.”
The event is predicted to attract more than 300 race teams around Australia, as teams chase championship points for the new series.
Mr Beaumont also added “The 2015 ANDRA Championship Dinner has been rescheduled for Monday November 9 following the East Coast Nationals at Sydney Dragway on November 7-8, so it’s great chance to unwind and congratulate peers and friends as the 2015 champions of Australia.”
Event Details- 7-8 November - East Coast Nationals, Sydney Dragway
Top Fuel, Top Alcohol, Top Doorslammer Top Fuel Motorcycle, Pro Stock, Pro Stock Motorcycle, Summit Racing Equipment Sportsman Series
Tickets and event details can be found at
Top Fuel undercover – Sheehan in canopy car for Nitro Champs

Top Fuel undercover – Sheehan in canopy car for Nitro Champs

13/04/2015, Sydney, Motorsport - Drag Racing, Sydney Dragway, Article # 9416745

Displaying 01042015motoringmarksheehan.jpg

Bellis and Ross claim gold in first finals of SIRR 2015

Bellis and Ross claim gold in first finals of SIRR 2015

25/03/2015, Sydney, Rowing, Sydney International Rowing Regatta, Article # 9028386
Media Release
Sydney, 25 March
Bellis and Ross claim gold in first finals of SIRR 2015
LTA Men’s Single Scull featured 12 entries, with heats and repechage for first time in a para-rowing national event in Australia
Saturday sees a 2000m para-rowing exhibition race taking place
Para-rowing World Champions, Kathryn Ross and Gavin Bellis continued their winning ways today when the duo claimed the first medals of the 2015 Sydney International Rowing Regatta (SIRR). Ross took gold in the Trunk and Arms Women’s Single Scull, while Bellis claimed gold in the Men’s equivalent race.
Due to limited competitors in the Trunk and Arms events, Ross and Bellis actually competed against each other in their respective finals, while normally the duo race together in the Australian TAMix2x.
Ross racing for the Australian National University and the National Training Centre, Canberra won her race in a time of 4 mins 31 seconds on a beautiful day at the Sydney International Regatta Centre.
Post-race Ross said: “I think that’s my ninth national title in a row and it feels great. The conditions were really presentable today, little bit of everything out there but good maintainable conditions and it was a nice race.”
Bellis, who was representing Powerhouse Rowing Club and the National Training Centre, Canberra said post-race: “For me it was quite daunting actually racing Kat in this as Kat is very fast and for me to try and stay ahead of her is actually very hard, so I’m glad I technically got away with a win over Kat this time.”
“It’s great to be rowing amongst everyone this week, it’s as it should be, we just row a shorter distance, and that’s the only difference. Everyone gets behind everyone here and that’s what’s so exciting and makes it an enjoyable regatta,” added Ross.
On Saturday afternoon, just before 5pm, there will be an exhibition race from Australia’s top para-rowers who will compete over the full 2000m course at the Sydney International Regatta Centre. Normally, para-rowing events are contested over 1000m and the exhibition is something Bellis is looking forward to competing in.
“That will be an interesting afternoon when we race off against fellow para-rowing World Champion Erik Horrie, who will be in the Arms and Shoulders Single Scull, as well as the Australian Legs, Trunk and Arms Mixed Coxed Four. If the weather is kind to us, I think it will make for a great race for spectators,” said Bellis.
This year has seen the most entries to date in the Legs, Trunk and Arms Men’s Single Scull with a total of 12 entries, including two from the Hong Kong Para-Rowing Team.
Cameron Crombie (Canberra RC/ACTAS) and Kevin du Toit (UTS) qualified for the final from Heat One, while from Heat Two it was St George’s Stephen Knott and WARC’s Kevin Wall who automatically qualified.
The remaining athletes, including Balmain-NSWIS athlete Jeremy McGrath and Hong Kong duo Chi Choi Daniel Yau and Sze Lung Cheng, contested a repechage later in the day with McGrath, Alistair Chong (Tasmanian University), Aaron Skinner (Nestle) and Isaac Denholm (Hutchins) taking out the top four places and thus securing places in tomorrow’s final at 12:30.
Tomorrow’s racing will see finals commencing from 08:05am until lunchtime, with finals for a number of underage crews, Open Men’s and Women’s events as well as various Para-Rowing finals.
Tickets for SIRR 2015 are available now on, by calling 132 849 or via any Ticketek agent.
A full range of ticket prices is available
A full list of the events taking place at SIRR 2015 is available here.

Historic announcements made to tackle homophobia at World Cup of Gay Rugby

Historic announcements made to tackle homophobia at World Cup of Gay Rugby

30/08/2014, Sydney, Rugby, Bingham Cup, Article # 3808045

Bingham Media's profile photo

Historic announcements made to tackle homophobia at World Cup of Gay Rugby

Video of press conference/Games:

29 Aug - As the Bingham Cup kicked off today in Sydney, two Rugby World Cup winning Wallabies’ captains joined senior federal politicians for every major Australian party, as the International Rugby Board (IRB) and the Australian Rugby Union made history. The IRB is believed to be the first major international sporting federation to publicly endorse a gay sporting event while the Australian Rugby Union is the first Australian sport to adopt a range of policies aimed at eliminating homophobia. Other international sporting organisations, such as FIFA (soccer) were challenged to follow rugby’s lead.

“We should commend and celebrate the support around the world to address homophobia and discrimination in sport. There is still a great deal of work to do, but I’m hopefully we’ll soon see a time when athletes at all levels feel comfortable being open about their sexuality and playing the sports they love without fear of discrimination,” said John Eales, the most successful captain in Australian rugby history and a board member of the Australian Rugby Union.

Another Rugby World Cup winning Wallaby captain, Nick Farr-Jones, joined Eales at the media conference. Both sporting legends are Bingham Cup Ambassadors. “I’m proud rugby is taking a leadership role in tackling homophobia and other forms of discrimination. I hope this encourages the other major international sports to take similar steps,” said Farr-Jones. 

In a show of bi-partisen, high-level support in Australia for ending homophobia in sport, the two international rugby legends were joined by senior politicians from all major, Australian parties:

- Malcolm Turnbull, a senior Australian cabinet minister

- Australian Labor’s Anthony Albanese, Shadow minister for Infrastructure and Transport

- Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, Green Party.

World First

The IRB’s board has provided its support to the International Gay Rugby Association and Board, and the event it overseas, the Bingham Cup. Chief Executive Brett Gosper said: “Rugby recognises sport’s wider responsibility to society and its ability to drive social change. Sport can cross barriers. Sport boosts self-esteem and Sport promotes inclusivity and celebrates diversity. We are proud as Rugby grows across every continent that the sport’s strong values of solidarity, integrity, discipline, respect and passion still make a real difference in modern society.”

“The Bingham Cup is a symbol of the power of sport to drive social change. It has opened hearts and minds and will continue to inspire future generations to participate, to express themselves and to have fun,” said Gosper.

Full letter is in the Bingham Cup media centre

Bingham Cup organisers have made driving social change a major focus of the 2014 tournament, leading a number of historic initiatives to help tackle homophobia in sports. This included commissioning the first international study on homophobia in sport as well as working with the Australian Rugby Union to tackle discrimination. The ARU was the first major Australian sport to commit to implement policies in alignment with the anti-homophobia and inclusion framework, which it did last year and then followed-through with implementation this week.  Other sports followed the lead of the ARU, making similar commitments in April of this year.

See ARU Press release in the Bingham Cup media centre

Senior Australian federal cabinet minister Malcolm Turnbull was also at the Bingham Cup’s opening. He said, “A person’s sexuality should be completely irrelevant whether they are playing sports or doing anything else in life.  I’m proud Australians are playing such a significant role in highlighting the need for change. We need to continue working proactively to find effective approaches to address homophobia and change sporting culture.” Turnbull, who is the Federal Communications Minister, is long-time advocate for same-sex equality. He has also made a significant contribution to support the Bingham Cup.

Jeff Wilson, Chairman of the International Gay Rugby Association and Board welcomed the high level support in Australia and from around the world, "The partnership with the IRB and the ARU on issues relating to ending homophobia and discrimination in the Sport of Rugby is ground-breaking. The leadership of both organisations demonstrate that the sport of Rugby is dedicated to creating an environment where players can feel comfortable being honest, authentic and open about their sexual orientation, without the fear of discrimination. This remarkable support will hopefully incite other professional sporting organisations at all levels to follow suit while continuing to create a culture of inclusion and diversity inside the Sport."

Homophobia in sport remains a serious problem, according to one of the international experts involved in conducting the first international study on homophobia in sports, called Out on the Fields ( The study was commissioned by the Bingham Cup. Experts at six universities are involved, including an Australian pioneer in the field, Dr. Caroline Symons. “Homophobia is often not directed at any one individual but rather it;s part of a sporting culture. For example, when men in team sports don’t perform as well as they are supposed to, people say they are 'playing like a pack of girls, playing like a pack of poofs'. This can be very damaging to closeted gay people, in particular."

Others at the press conference:

- Andrew Purchas, Bingham Cup President and Sydney Convicts founder

- Dr. Caroline Symons, Victoria University, pioneer of homophobia in sport research

- Jason Ball, openly gay Australian Rules football player

About the Bingham Cup

The 2014 Bingham Cup, the world cup of gay rugby, is being held in Sydney from August 24 to 31. Event organisers have led a range of initiatives aimed at tackling homophobia in sport in the lead up to the tournament including the study mentioned above. In April, they also organised a national televised event where the heads of every, major professional sport signed the ‘Anti-homophobia and Inclusion Framework’ developed by the Bingham Cup. This committed them to eliminating homophobia and making sport welcoming and inclusive. Supporters of the Bingham Cup include Destination NSW, the City of Sydney and principal partners Commonwealth Bank, Telstra and aussieBum. The Bingham Cup has a goal of challenging stereotypes and perceptions of gay men. More info:



29/08/2014, Sydney, Rugby, Bingham Cup, Article # 3779441


29 August 2014



Australian Rugby Union is delighted to announce a new Inclusion Policy, which is designed to stamp out all forms of discrimination and homophobia in Rugby and ensure a positive environment for everyone involved in the game.


Today’s announcement coincides with the launch of the 2014 Bingham Cup, which will see thousands of international Rugby players, fans and media gather in Sydney for the world cup of gay Rugby.


In August last year, the ARU became the first major Australian sporting code to commit to developing an Inclusion Policy.


ARU CEO Bill Pulver reaffirmed Australian Rugby’s resolve to eliminate discrimination in Rugby in April this year when he joined the leaders of other sporting codes to sign a collective commitment to stamp out homophobia in each of their respective sports.


“We’ve worked with a number of stakeholders to develop our Inclusion Policy – most particularly, the organisers of the 2014 Bingham Cup, who were instrumental in putting a framework together earlier this year,” Pulver said.


“Our new Inclusion Policy reinforces Australian Rugby’s commitment to ensuring every individual, whether they’re players, supporters, coaches or administrators, feel safe, welcome and included, regardless of race, gender or sexuality.


“Over the next few months we’ll start implementing our Policy to ensure everyone involved in our game at all levels is aware of it and understands our expectations.


“We want Australian Rugby to be an environment where everyone is treated with respect and dignity, reflecting our desire to create a truly diverse and inclusive Australian Rugby community.


“There is absolutely no place for homophobia or any form of discrimination in our game and our actions and words, both on and off the field, must reflect this.


“I am confident our Inclusion Policy signals our clear stance on discrimination. It will ensure everyone in Rugby understands our position on inclusion and will help us tackle homophobia in all aspects of our sport.


“Congratulations to the 2014 Bingham Cup Committee which has done a remarkable job in creating real change, in addition to organising what is set to be a terrific tournament in Sydney this weekend.


“On behalf of Australian Rugby, I would like to welcome all Bingham Cup athletes and supporters to Sydney as we celebrate a future for Australian Sport – free of discrimination.


“I wish all the competitors well for the tournament and look forward to watching some fantastic Rugby in Woollahra and Rose Bay over the next few days.”


Qantas Wallabies stalwart and Bingham Cup Ambassador, Adam Ashley-Cooper, echoed Mr Pulver’s sentiments in expressing his support for the tournament.


“I’m extremely proud to be part of an event which is challenging stereotypes and the 2014 Bingham Cup is an excellent chance to foster further growth for the initiative.”


“Freeing Australian sport of discrimination is crucial and I’m looking forward to supporting players from around the world as they band together for a great cause,” Ashley-Cooper said.


The 2014 Bingham Cup will be played in Sydney from Friday 29 August to Sunday 31 August.


Hosted by the Sydney Convicts, Australia’s first gay Rugby club, it will see 24 Rugby teams from more than 15 countries compete in one of the largest international Rugby tournaments of the year.


To find out more about Bingham Cup, visit


The ARU’s Inclusion Policy can be viewed at




Wallaby 1st Memberships on sale now!
Gay rugby players arrive in Australia: NSW Waratahs host massive joint training session



Waratahs Rugby Media Release

Monday August 25, 2014


Gay rugby players arrive in Australia: NSW Waratahs host massive joint training session


Gay rugby teams from around the world have arrived in Australia to try to win the Bingham Cup from three-time world champions, the Sydney Convicts, ahead of the stereotype-smashing world cup of gay rugby, which begins this Friday.


More than 500 international gay rugby players are expected to attend a training session this Wednesday (August 27) with Waratahs players Matt Lucas (Manly), Jed Holloway and Ben Volavola (Southern Districts), plus Wallabies coach (and former Waratah and Wallaby) Andrew Blades.  As long-time supporters of the Sydney Convicts, the Waratahs along with numerous other elite rugby players and teams around the world, are providing significant support to the gay teams as a way of sending a strong message of acceptance of gay athletes.


The Bingham Cup is a gruelling tournament of intense rugby with 24 teams playing six games over three days. Almost 1,000 players and supporters representing 30 gay and inclusive rugby clubs from 15 countries have arrived in Australia for the Biennial event, named after 9/11 hero Mark Bingham.  The event is one of the largest 15-a-side rugby tournaments in the world and while most participants are gay, in the spirit of inclusivity, many teams have straight players.


One of the strong contenders to win the Cup is London’s Kings Cross Steelers, the world’s first gay rugby team. Like many athletes taking part in the tournament, the team’s first grade team captain, Chris Buckmaster, used to believe being gay and playing a tough sport was an impossible combination.


“I grew up in a rugby dominated society where being gay was not even an option, let alone being gay and actually playing competitive sport. This led me to believe that I could not possibly actually be gay myself, given I excelled in sport and was also the school prefect at a private all boys school. All of my misconceptions about myself and gay people were demolished when I went to my first training session with the Kings Cross Steelers, I was very surprised by the high level of rugby and focus on the game.”


There is intense rivalry among the international gay teams, particularly Sydney, London, New York and San Francisco as well as among the three Australian teams from Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. Interestingly, Brisbane beat Sydney earlier this year at the Australian Gay Rugby championship.


"Too many people may assume that a bunch of gay guys holding a rugby tournament is just an excuse to have big party with a rugby theme - but nothing could be further from the truth,” says Dany Samreth, captain of the San Francisco Fog RFC, the team Mark Bingham played for before his death.


The San Francisco Fog RFC hosted the first Bingham Cup in 2002, after Mark's death on Flight 93, which he helped crash into the fields of Pennsylvania. “We have been training very hard over the last two years and have received strong support from high level athletes and coaches. We’re very focused on winning our third Bingham Cup and bringing it back to San Francisco where the tournament began.”



Issued by Waratahs Rugby

Email Signature - join your champions