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australian rowers profiles and history

Claude Vanderkelen

Mercantile Rowing Club (VIC)

Claude was a successful maiden and Junior oarsman pre World War One who enjoyed his rowing and Club life. He was a regular participant in intra club racing.

Claude second from the right at Mercs pre WWI with his crew mates

His race wins included the following races.

1910 - Melbourne Regatta, Men's Maiden Eight, bow - First

1910 Maiden eight with Claude in the bow seat

1911 - Melbourne Regatta, Men's Junior Eight, bow - First

Finish of the 1911 junior eight win

1911 winning junior eight with Claude in the bow seat

The 1938-39 Mercantile annual report recorded his death during that season as follows:

Mr Claude Vanderkelen was a member of many years standing. An excellent Club man, who could always be depended upon to lend a helping hand, his charming personality endeared him to all with whom he was associated. As an oarsman he was a model of neatness and efficiency and did well in regatta racing. His death in the prime of life is greatly to be regretted, but it is pleasing to know that the name is being worthily upheld in the Club by his two sons.

Claude was a gemmologist who practised in Melbourne.

Andrew Guerin
December 2021

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