Kim Brennan was watched by millions of people worldwide when she rowed her way to a gold medal in the single sculls at the recent Rio Olympic Games.
The proudest of all those observers was, no doubt, big Max Crow.
Max is a TWU (Vic/Tas Branch) honorary member and a former VFL footballer who played 188 games for Essendon (136 games), St Kilda (40) and Footscray (12) between 1974 and 1986 as a key forward and ruckman.
Max travelled to Rio and was beside Lagoa Lagoon for the race with his wife Sue and son Justin, a strength and conditioning coach with the Bombers.
Having watched his daughter train privately for a decade before that very public event on August 14 Max, who joined the TWU in June 1979 and was a member for 34 years, reckoned Kim worked a great deal harder than most AFL players. “She’d do more in a day than they’d do in a month. She’s incredible I reckon. She’d be up at 5 in the morning and still be working at 8 o’clock at night — and have every minute of that day organised,” he said. “On the exercise bike at home she trains to exhaustion twice a day and she’d fall off the bike, she was that exhausted.
“She’s been doing that for years. It’s either the rowing machine or bike … and it’s just amazing the dedication she’s got.”
Max – who mainly worked for Regal Cream Products in Derrimut – said that being a hard worker helped Kim successfully switch from athletics to rowing after a leg injury
ended a hurdling career during which she finished second to fellow Olympian Jana Pittman.
Kim previously rowed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics without earning a medal but brought home a silver and a bronze medal from the 2012 London Games.