It?s either sharks oar crocs

VISITING rowers Jim Young and Elizabeth Levido aren't fazed about sharing the Fitzroy River with crocodiles.

They're used to training with predators.

The Port Macquarie Rowing Club couple ? who are in Rockhampton to compete in the Australian Rowing Masters Championships ? train with sharks.

"I wouldn't say sharks are worse than crocs. One is as bad as the other,'' Ms Levido said.

The pair said while they had never seen a shark while training, there had been the odd sightings.

Mr Young, who has been rowing for 40 years, said the closest he had come to a crocodile was on a dinner plate and that was close enough.

"I'd put my hands and feet in the boat if I saw a croc,'' Mr Young said. "I'd probably be rowing so fast I'd win the race,'' Ms Levido said.

Ms Levido, who has been rowing for five years, said they had heard about the river's crocodiles before coming and were not bothered.

"I found the signs a little curious. I noticed one women's team just stood on the bank and didn't put a foot in the water.

"I thought maybe they had seen the signs (warning of crocodiles),'' Ms Levido joked.

Mr Young said while there was always the risk of capsizing, he was still not worried about the crocs.

"Even the most experienced rowers can just hit a buoy and fall out. You have that risk with every event.''

Ms Levido and Mr Young are just two of more than 500 people ? including 916 crews representing 59 clubs ? who have travelled to Rockhampton for the championships.

It will continue today and tomorrow from 7am at the Leichhardt Rowing Club.



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