International rowing regatta


Being a seafaring nation, our people have always had skill and interest in water sports, including rowing. National rowing, conditioned by requirements of everyday life, was a form of entertainment for various festivities, as well as a demonstration of strength and skill in ordinary boat races that can be seen today in our coastal towns.
On the island of Hvar exists a document that is very significant for the history of rowing in these parts; it is a letter from 1825 that Split Municipality sent to Hvar Municipality asking them to send one of their best boats to the rowing regatta that was to take place on St Domnius Day, patron saint of Split, on May 7. That regatta was then recorded in the chronicles of Split Gimnasium and several songs were written about it. The participants were crews from Hvar, Makarska, Split and five other towns, and Split was the winning crew consisting of men from the old part of Split called Varoš.


England is a cradle of rowing, as well as the cradle of the overall contemporary sport. Rowing was a pastime activity for sons of noblemen but also for young bourgeois during their time in college. The idea for the most popular rowing race, named “The Boat Race”, came in 1829. from two fellow students at Cambridge and Oxford. Friendly rivalry ended in a letter from Oxford to Cambridge challenging them to a rowing duel on the river Thames in Oxfordshire. Since then, this famous rowing competition has drawn spectators to the banks of the Thames 153 times.

The Boat Race today is one of the most viewed sport events in Great Britain. About 250 000 spectators view the race by the river Thames and about incredible 400 million people from 180 countries is watching the race on TV. BBC has been covering these duels since 1938.


In 2000, 175 years after the first regatta on St Domnius Day, it was restored by the Rowing Association of Dalmatia and has been taking place every year since. The International Rowing Regatta „Sveti Duje“ consists of two competitions: Student regatta in Spinut and Legends race in front of the Riva.