SA’s Roger Barrow is the #1 rowing coach in the world

South Africa’s national rowing coach, Roger Barrow, has been named rowing coach of the year at the 2016 World Rowing Awards. Roger is one of the youngest head coaches in the world, even after eight years of coaching at the highest level.

“Roger is well known to many of us at CN&CO,” Carel. “Many of us have been involved in rowing in one way or another since the early 2000s. We were there when Donovan Cech and Ramon di Clemente took bronze in Athens in 2004, and again when South Africa’s ‘oarsome foursome’ won gold in London in 2012. Currently we are working with the national squad – and in particular our silver medallists from Rio, Lawrence Brittain and Shaun Keeling – to assist with marketing and fundraising.”

Roger Barrow has been a constant in all these relationships.

“We are hardly surprised that Roger won this year,” says Carel. “He has consistently performed exceptionally well on the world stage for so many years. It’s his time.”

Brands are also starting to see the value in collaborating and partnering up with rowing in South Africa. It’s a sport that displays passion, perseverance and commitment at the highest level.

One of the brands that has leveraged its relationship with rowing really well is Rand Merchant Bank. CN&CO has been working with RMB and the national squad to share the linkages between business and rowing.


SA rowing duo Lawrence Brittain and Shaun Keeling won silver at the Rio Olympics. They have a truly inspirational story to tell

“Lawrence and Shaun have a truly inspirational story to tell, which links to perseverance, direction, hard work, collaboration and high energy,” says Carel. “It’s a truly moving story that bring tears to my eyes every time I hear it.”

RMB identified with rowing as a sport that strongly aligns with its business philosophy, and particularly how RowSA (the sport’s national governing body) has managed to establish a culture and an environment in which every rower can reach his or her potential.

“We’ve done some myth-busting and dug deep to define what we know makes us different at RMB,” says James Formby, RMB CEO. “Rowing is the ultimate sporting analogy of teamwork and collaboration – practices key to RMB’s business success.

“When it comes down to RMB’s distinction, it’s our collaborative thinking, enabled by our unique and empowering culture, which sets up our talent to out-perform for our clients.”

The creation of an enabling environment – allied to a little off-the-wall creativity – is certainly what RowSA’s head coach, Roger Barrow and his coaching team, have put in place.

Congratulations to Roger and all other winners. They will be honoured on 28 January 2017 at a gala dinner at the 2016 World Rowing Coaches Conference in Vancouver, Canada.

If you would like to book Lawrence and Shaun to come and do a talk, contact Blake Dyason on 079 711 2922 or

Follow on Twitter … @rogerbarrow  |   @NationalSquadZA  |   @Brittain_L  |  @Keeling_S | @RMB_CIB

And on Instagram … @brittain_l