The 12 GPS rowers who went on to the Olympics
Two-time Olympian and Head of the River winner for Churchie as both a rower and coach, Peter Shakespear gives a surprising answer when asked to compare rowing for one's school and one's country.
Echoing the view of fellow dual Olympian, Grammar's Richard Powell, who described the Head of the River as "the Olympics for schoolboys", Shakespear said "the biggest difference is the people and environment around you rather than the rowing".
"Whether it is the Head of River or the Olympics, you train very hard, you put everything into it and you work as a team," he said.
"The difference is that at the Olympics the members of the crew can come from all over Australia. In the Head of the River you are rowing with boys you have grown up with. Rowing at school brings you into a community with friends that you tend to hang on to for life."
Originally from Western Australia, Shakespear boarded at Churchie when his father Victor, a former Kings Cup rower, was transferred to New Guinea.
He rowed in the school's 1963 winning crew - Churchie's first-ever O'Connor Cup for eights.
After representing Australia from WA in the 1972 and 1976 Olympics, he returned to Churchie as a coach and in his final year took the school to the 1998 Head of the River title.
Shakespear is one of 12 Brisbane GPS rowers to have become Olympians, and one of four to have coached crews to Head of the River triumph.
Between them they have won one Olympic gold medal, one silver and five bronze.
Peter Shakespear - Churchie
Rowed four in the 1963 Head of the River-winning crew. Was part of the coxed four at the 1972 Olympics and the eight four years later. Coached Churchie to a Head of the River win in 1998. Had successful stints with the national rowing programs in Great Britain and Canada. Now serving in a technical advisory role at Churchie.
Tim Conrad - State High
A member of Queensland's 1972 Kings Cup eight, Conrad moved to Sydney and was part of the NSW Kings Cup-winning crews of 1974-75-76. Rowed six-seat of the eight at 1976 Olympics that set a world record in their heat but after injury to two-seat Malcolm Shaw, they finished fifth in the final. Conrad coached Grammar to Head of the River wins in 1995, 1997, and 2001.
Ian Edmunds - State High
Rowed in the BHS eight that finished second to Southport in 1978. A member of the Queensland crew that won the Australian Youth championship in 1981, he also rowed in a youth pair with Churchie's future Olympian Duncan Fisher. Won Olympic bronze rowing in the five-seat at the 1984 LA Games.
Duncan Fisher - Churchie
An outstanding schoolboy rower at Churchie, Fisher was a member of the eight that won the 1981 Australian Youth championship and, along with fellow Olympian Ian Edmunds, was part of the 1984 national championship-winning coxless four. Later that year he competed in the same event at the Olympic Games in LA. Four months later he was killed in a car accident at the age of 22.
Richard Powell - Grammar
Rowing in the six-seat, Powell was part of Grammar's 1977 Head of the River-winning crew. He twice represented Australia at the Olympics, finishing fifth in the quad sculls in 1988 and ninth in 1992.
Bo Hanson - State High
Four-time Olympian Hanson became Australia's youngest-ever Olympic rower when, aged 18, he was part of the eight at Barcelona in 1992. Four years later in Atlanta he won bronze in the quad sculls, a result he repeated at Sydney 2000 in the coxless fours and the eight in Athens in 2004.
Gary Lynagh - Terrace
Part of the Terrace crew that finished second in the 1987 Head of the River, Lynagh was a three-time world champion in the lightweight quad scull in 1991 and double scull in 1992 and 1993. He represented Australia at the 1996 Olympics, finishing sixth in the lightweight coxless four. He later coached Nudgee to their first Head of the River win in 2003 and again in 2009.
Duncan Free - The Southport School
A member of Southport's winning crew in 1989, Free won bronze in the quad sculls at Atlanta in 1996 but it was in the coxless pair that he had his greatest success, winning gold at the 2006 and 2007 world championships and 2008 Beijing Olympics. He also coached Southport to Head of the River wins in 2006 and 2018.
David Weightman - Grammar
Rowed at seven in Grammar's 1988 Head of the River win and eight years later partnered West Australian Robert Scott to win silver in the coxless pair at the Atlanta Olympics after a great battle with Britain's Steve Redgrave and Matthew Pinsett.
Michael Toon - Terrace
Banned from contact sport due to major heart surgery and a pacemaker from the age of six, Toon was coxswain in Terrace's 1996 Head of the River win and coxed the Australian eight which won bronze at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.
Shaun Coulton - Grammar
A two-time Head of the River winner as stroke of the Grammar crew in 1995 and six-seat in 1997, Coulton rowed in the quad sculls at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Sam Conrad - Grammar
The son of State High Olympian Tim Conrad and grandson of NSW rower Maurice Green, who rowed at the 1956 Olympics, Conrad was part of the Australian eight at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and won a world championship in the coxed pair a year later.