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The 72nd Colours Boat Rowing Race between Trinity College Dublin and University College Dublin will take place on Friday, 18th March for the first time in three years.

The colours boat race sees Trinity College Dublin and University College Dublin go head-to-head again on the Liffey, racing from O’ Connell Bridge to St. James’ Gate. Watch the high tempo start at O’ Connell Bridge, the mid-course battle at Four Courts or the sprint for the line at the dedicated viewing area at St. James’ Gate on Victoria Quay with live commentary.

Tom Stevens, Dublin University Boat Club (DUBC), captain commented, "It is fantastic to be back racing for Gannon Cup and the Dan Quinn shield, particularly after such a long gap since the last time this event has been run. The colours race is such a unique event. Racing through the city is incredibly exciting and a huge privilege. It feels like sitting in a fish bowl on the start line with all of the faces looking down at you off of O'Connell Bridge. We are very excited to get out there and race on the 18th March."

Alicia O' Neill, Dublin University Ladies Boat Club (DULBC) captain commented, "Colours is certainly one of the highlights of our rowing season. It’s the only race where we can row down the Liffey through the heart of Dublin City Centre and where spectators can watch the race from start to finish. We have been waiting since 2019 to race so the excitement is like no other. Both our senior and novice squads are more than ready to race and we are looking forward to the 18th to showcase the very best of DULBC. UCD are one of our biggest rivals and we are eager to go out and challenge them and hopefully claim the bragging rights for the year."

Colours Boat Race Schedule, Friday 18th March:

  • 10:00am – Sally Moorhead Trophy
  • 10:30am – Dan Quinn Shield
  • 11:00am – Corcoran Cup
  • 11:30am – Gannon Cup

The coin toss for the 2022 Colours Boat Races took place on the Sunday, 27th February at the dining hall of Trinity College Dublin, overseen by Trinity Alumni and motivational speaker Mark Pollock. Dublin University Boat Club lost the toss and will take the south station for the Gannon Cup and the Dan Quinn shield. Dublin University Ladies Boat Club won their coin toss and chose to race on the south station for the Corcoran Cup and the Sally Moorhead Trophy.

Published in Rowing
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“So your boat goes up the size of the wave, and then it goes down a bit and sometimes you might surf it or whatever but yeah, they were very very big..”.

I’m useless at measuring things, I don’t know what height.... but they weren’t aggressive to me, which was nice. ..”

The words of Dr Karen Weekes the morning after her triumphant arrival into Barbados to become the first Irish woman to row solo across the Atlantic.

The first Irish woman to row solo across the Atlantic nears the finish in Barbados Photo: Mick MurphyThe first Irish woman to row solo across the Atlantic nears the finish in Barbados Photo: Mick Murphy

About 30 of her team, close friends and family flew to Barbados to greet her, and there was a large crowd in Tully’s Bar in Kinvara to watch her welcome on social media.

“Even this morning my body is aching, and it hasn’t been for 81 days,” she said, expressing relief at a break from the intensity of it.

“You just can’t turn off at all...”

Weekes, who has been congratulated by President Michael D Higgins and is Afloat’s Sailor of the Month, says she plans to “plant spuds” back home in Kinvara, Co Galway.

However, she also plans to keep her Shecando campaign going to encourage young women into adventure sports and to highlight UN sustainability goals and ocean conservation.

She spoke to Wavelengths (below) from Bridgetown in Barbados.

Published in Wavelength Podcast
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One of the most entertaining events of the constrained pre-Christmas season was the All In A Row charity event for all-comers - provided they were oar-driven – in Dublin’s River Liffey on Saturday, December 11th 2021. It mustered an exceptionally varied fleet including everything from classic authentic currachs to hefty big traditional coastal rowing skiffs. The widely-different craft in between including the legendary Lorelei, built by the great George Bushe of Crosshaven in 1954 using then-revolutionary construction methods to produce a very fast shell for the Cork Rowing Club.

Lorelei had become something of a sleeping beauty, as she was slumbering for many years dust-covered in a hidden corner of one of the sheds at Crosshaven Boatyard, when classic boat enthusiast Darryl Hughes – who winters his Tyrrell-of-Arklow-built 43ft ketch Maybird in Crosser where he now lives – immediately spotted that this was something very special indeed.

The classic coastal rowing skiffs – some of them as long as 32ft - can be quite a challengeThe classic coastal rowing skiffs – some of them as long as 32ft - can be quite a challenge

As the local rowing clubs already have their hands full with some of the latest craft, he contacted the Stella Maris Rowing Club with its many members in Ringsend in Dublin, and they agreed to take on the custodianship of Lorelei – she’s supposedly so called because the top movie of 1954 was Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, in which superstar Marilyn Monroe was the glamorous showgirl Lorelei.

Worth her weight in gold….the 1954 George Bushe-built Lorelei makes knots past the Central BankWorth her weight in gold….the 1954 George Bushe-built Lorelei makes knots past the Central Bank

Be that as it may, Lorelei the swift rowing skiff is a star in her own right, and she cut a speedy dash up the Liffey on December 11th when she and her fleetmates were brilliantly successful – they gave everyone a great time, they successfully demonstrated the wide range of rowing craft in Ireland, and they raised a total of €18,000 to be shared between the Lifeboats and the Irish Underwater Search & Recovery Unit. The presentation of the cheques will take place this Friday (December 4th) at 8.0pm in the Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club.

Crew of all ages contributed mightily to the fund-raising effort on December 11th.Crew of all ages contributed mightily to the fund-raising effort on December 11th.

Published in Coastal Rowing
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Going virtual for the second year, the 2022 World Rowing Indoor Championships saw nearly 800 athletes from 66 countries competing. They qualified from around the globe through either one of 19 sanctioned events or individual qualification.

When the pandemic forced the 2022 World Rowing Indoor Championships, originally scheduled to take place in Hamburg, Germany, to go virtual again, it meant finalists would have to race live from their bedrooms, balconies, bathrooms, kitchens and gyms on Concept2 indoor rowing machines. The two days of racing saw world records falling across a variety of distances and age groups as well as para-rowing and team events.

 2022 World Rowing Indoor Championships

The open men’s 2000m was one of the highlight events and the race saw last year’s indoor champion Ward Lemmelijn of Belgium come out on top again. Lemmelijn trailed Russia’s Alexander Vyazovkin for the majority of the race, and in an epic sprint to the line overtook him just before the finish, to the delight of his supporters in Belgium. He fell just short of the magic sub 5:40 mark when he finished in a time of 5:41.7, ahead of Vyazovkin with Joel Naukkarinen of Finland in third.

For the open women’s 2000m Kirsten Kline of the United States had a blistering start over Zhang Peixin of China. Then Peixin, the 2019 World Rowing Junior Champion in the Women’s Eight, took the lead and never looked back. She was racing alongside Chinese rowing teammates Lv Yang and Xu Xingye, and in front of the trio managed to secure a 1-2- 3 for China. Kline, the reigning world champion who was injured a couple of weeks before the WRICH, had to settle for fourth place.

Friday, the open men’s 500 m category saw current world record holder Phil Clapp of Great Britain securing a third consecutive gold medal in this event. Clapp scored a time of 1:11.6 and held off a late surge from Cameron Wharram from Canada. Anton Grassl from Slovakia finished third – and managed to get a gold medal half an hour later in the Masters 40-49 Category. Grassl repeated his performance Saturday when he secured another gold medal in the same age group, over 2000m this time.

indoor rowing

The best performer of the Championships was undeniably Spain’s Javier Reja Munoz. Reja Munoz competed in canoe at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games and finished a close fourth at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. He broke a first world record Friday in the PR1 Men 2000m in a time of 7:23.2, and repeated his performance Saturday with another world record in the 500m – with another supersonic time of 1:38.4. In the same race yesterday, Milan Lackovic of Slovakia and Matthew Houser of the USA also broke world records in the Men’s PR3 and Men’s PR3-II 500m.

Alida Kingswood won the hearts of the global audience when she set a new world record in the masters women’s 90-94-year-old 2000 metre category. Canada’s Kingswood broke the record by finishing in a time of 10:29.3 – smashing the previous world record by more than two minutes.

The live racing meant that the rowers had to fit in with a variety of time zones. Racing started Friday at 12 noon CET (which was midnight in New Zealand and 3 am in California) and Saturday at 11 AM CET, and was streamed live on Each rower was videoed racing from wherever they were in the world. These individual races were then linked through a virtual studio with commentators calling the races: from Camilla Hadland and Martin Cross in Great Britain, to Shane Farmer and Aquil Abdullah in California.

Each athlete was connected to a screen where they could see how they were doing against their competitors. This timing and results software was produced and operated by race
management company Time Team of the Netherlands. World Rowing Productions of Munich, Germany brought all of the elements together to create the live stream broadcast.

Rewatch the racing here. Complete results here.

Published in Rowing
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World Rowing announced that the World men's crew of the year is Ireland's own lightweight double scull of Paul O'Donovan and Fintan McCarthy. In a virtual event that celebrated the finest rowers and coaches around the World, the nominations featured three other World Rowing's premium crews from France, Holland and the Kiwi Olympic eight.

World Rowing commended the Rowing Ireland programme led by HP Director Antonio Maurogiovanni on their surge in rowing over the last number of years. Rowing Ireland's Fintan McCarthy met online during the World Rowing Awards, having just finished training at the home of Irish Rowing in the Kinetica National Rowing Centre, just outside Cork City. McCarthy reflected on the growing system of High-Performance rowing in place at present with a vital pathway and he reflected on the group of athletes all training together at the Kinetica NRC in order "to make the boat go faster". The other half of the Olympic duo, Paul O'Donovan couldn't make the awards due to his commitments at UCC, where he is studying medicine.

World men's crew of the year - Paul O'Donovan and Fintan McCarthyWorld men's crew of the year - Paul O'Donovan and Fintan McCarthy

Rowing Ireland CEO Michelle Carpenter said, "It is an absolute honour that World Rowing has awarded our men's lightweight double this prestigious award. I would like to congratulate Paul and Fintan and the whole HP team on this formidable award. As we were sitting at a Rowing Ireland Board meeting this morning the awards were announced. It was such positive news to reflect on where we have come from and where we are going as we head into the Paris cycle. It was also poignant on a day where sport seems to be opening, as one of our seasons' first events was underway on the Marina in Cork. This award and our continued Rowing Ireland strategy gives us great hope for the future in all our programme’s. Without the support of Sport Ireland, Sport NI and the OFI, together with our committed sponsors, everyone has contributed hugely to the growth and success of Irish Rowing over the last number of years. It takes a village to raise a child, and now we have such incredible role models that everyone involved in our sport can look up to and know they can achieve the same through hard work and perseverance.

Published in Rowing
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Sports psychologist Dr Karen Weekes is due to set off from the Canaries to the Caribbean today in her bid to become the first Irish woman to row solo across the Atlantic.

Weekes will undertake the 4,800 km (3,000 miles) row in her vessel, Millie, named after her mother.

Her #SheCanDo2021 campaign aims to encourage more women and girls into endurance sport.

Weekes anticipates it will take about 70 days to row from Gran Canaria to Barbados, without any support vessel.

Weekes, who lives in Kinvara, Co Galway, says she will be rowing about 16 hours a day.

She will be only the 20th woman to row any ocean on the globe solo on completing the transit.

Weekes holds a doctorate in sports psychology, and lectures at Munster Technological University.

She has sailed the Atlantic twice, circumnavigated both Ireland and the Lofoten Islands off Norway in a kayak, and has cycled solo and unsupported 4,000 miles across Canada, through Alaska and the Yukon.

She has also solo cycled from Nordkapp in northern Norway to Helsinki in Finland.

Along with Orla Knight, a physical education teacher at Castletroy College in Co Limerick, she cycled across North America from San Francisco to Washington DC.

Weekes has trekked in Nepal and Pakistan and climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya.

She says the campaign is “dually focused”, in following her preparation for, and experience during the voyage, and “providing a platform for encouraging women, and girls, to believe in their abilities to succeed”.

She also aims to illuminate two of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, specifically ‘gender equality’ and ‘life below water’, which focuses on the conservation of oceans and marine life.

Her progress can be followed on her tracker on this link here and listen to Weekes in conversation with Afloat's Lorna Siggins about the row on her Wavelength's podcast here

Published in Coastal Rowing
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‘All In A Row 2021’ is coming back to the capital’s River Liffey on Saturday 11th December with a rowing challenge for the teams to smash a 1,000km target in eight hours. Forty skiffs, kayaks, canoes and currachs will all be on the water to raise funds for RNLI Lifeboats and the Irish Underwater Search and Recovery Unit.

The organisers are hoping to exceed last year’s target of rowing 1,000km during the event on the river, which will start from St. Patrick’s Rowing Club at the Tom Clarke Bridge (formerly the East Link Bridge) and go up to the Ha’penny Bridge. The challenge is being undertaken with the aim of showcasing the River Liffey as one of Dublin’s best amenities while raising funds for the water-related charities, RNLI Lifeboats and the Irish Underwater Search and Recovery Unit. The event raised €15,000 in 2019.

The event will start at 9 am on Saturday 11th December and at 1 pm all boats will gather on the Liffey at the Sean O’Casey footbridge. A wreath-laying ceremony, attended by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, will take place to commemorate all those who have lost their lives through drowning.

Lord Mayor of Dublin Alison Gilliland, who will be attending the event, said “The River Liffey is such an important part of the city of Dublin and it is wonderful to see so many people using and enjoying the river in a range of skiffs, kayaks, canoes and currachs. Best of luck to all those taking part and well done for rising to the challenge of rowing 1,000 km, showcasing our beautiful river and raising money for two great water-related charities, RNLI Lifeboats and the Irish Underwater Search and Recovery Unit.”

Many Dublin rowing clubs have their home on the River Liffey and are a regular sight on the water. At the port end of the river is St. Patrick’s Rowing Club, Stella Maris Rowing Club, East Wall Water Sports Group and Poolbeg Yacht and Boat club. Ringsend Basin is home to the Plurabelle Paddlers (dragon boats) and the Dublin Viking Dragon boats.

At the other end of the city beyond Heuston Station, there are many river rowing clubs and kayaking clubs, including Phoenix Rowing Club. Rowing clubs from other parts of Ireland will join in this challenge to raise funds for RNLI Lifeboats and the Irish Underwater Search and Recovery Unit.

Published in Dublin Bay
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A busy few days of racing in the National Rowing Centre saw 503 crews competing over 55 categories from Friday to Sunday. There were over 130 races held with 52 finals this weekend.

Highlights of the weekend included seeing UCC Rowing Club pick up victories in all six of the Senior Women’s Categories with Margaret Cremen winning the Women’s Single Scull and Lydia Heaphy winning the Lightweight Women’s Single. University College Cork won the final race of the Championships with Jennifer Crowley, Selma Bouanane, Tara Hanlon, Lydia Heaphy, Emily Hegarty, Aoife Casey, Margaret Cremen, Aifric Keogh and Sorcadh Higgins (cox).

University College Dublin won the Senior Men’s Eight Coxed Final with Cameron Murphy, David O’Malley, Thomas Bedford, David Somers, Thomas Earley, Andrew Kelly, David Joyce, Fintan Early and Robin Keane (cox). Daire Lynch of Clonmel won the Men’s Single Scull and Gary O’Donovan of Skibbereen won the Lightweight Men’s Sculls.

Holly Davis (Lee Valley) won the Women's Junior 19 Single Scull, Niamh Coffey (ULRC) won both the Club and Intermediate Single Sculls.

Andrew Sheehan (Lee) won the Men’s Junior 19 Single Sculls, Men’s Intermediate Single Sculls was won by Colum Brennan from Neptune

Irish Rowing Championships 2021 Results

Womens Senior

Womens Senior 8+ UCCRC – Jennifer Crowley, Selma Bouanane, Tara Hanlon, Lydia Heaphy, Emily Hegarty, Aoife Casey, Margaret Cremen, Aifric Keogh and Sorcadh Higgins (cox).

Womens Senior 4- UCCRC – Aoife Casey, Margaret Cremen, Emily Hegarty, Tara Hanlon

Womens Senior 2- UCCRC – Emily Hegarty, Tara Hanlon

Women’s Senior 2X UCCRC – Aoife Casey, Margaret Cremen,

Womens Senior 1X Margaret Cremen – UCCRC

Womens Lightweight 1X Lydia Heaphy – UCCRC

Mens Senior

Mens Senior 8+ UCDBC – Cameron Murphy, David O’Malley, Thomas Bedford, David Somers, Thomas Early, Andrew Kelly, David Joyce, Fintan Early, Robin Keane (cox)

Mens Senior 4- Shandon / UCCRC – Adam Murphy, Jack Dorney, Alex Byrne, Ronan Byrne

Mens Senior 4X UCCRC – Paul O’Donovan, Alex Byrne, Ronan Byrne, Hugh Sutton

Mens Senior 2X UCCRC – Alex Byrne, Hugh Sutton

Mens Senior 2- ULRC – Ryan Spelman, Jon Cuddy

Mens Senior 1X Daire Lynch – Clonmel

Mens Lightweight 1X Gary O’Donovan – Skibbereen

Womens Intermediate

Womens Intermediate 8+ UCDBC – Claire Martin, Ava Evans, Orla Hayes, Ellie Scott, Alison Daly, Louise Watson, Aine McCreesh, Sarah Daly, Hannah Kerrigan (cox)

Womens Intermediate 4+ ULRC – Clara O’Brien, Corina Coughlan, Ava Kelly, Georgia O’Brien, Shauna O’Mahony (cox)

Womens Intermediate 2- ULRC – Clara O’Brien, Corina Coughlan

Womens Intermediate 2X ULRC – Clara O’Brien, Niamh Coffey

Womens Intermediate 1X Niamh Coffey – ULRC

Mens Intermediate

Mens Intermediate 8+ Cork BC – Michael Cronin, Sean Crean, Stephen Murphy, James Young, Barry Connolly, Andy Harrington, Sean O’Sullivan, Barry O’Flynn, Maeve Reardon (cox)

Mens Intermediate 4+ ULRC – Tom McKeon, Michael Fanning, Ryan Spelman, Jon Cuddy, Shauna O’Mahony (cox)

Mens Intermediate 2- ULRC – Ryan Spelman, Jon Cuddy

Mens Intermediate 2X QUBBC – Hugh Moore, Ciaran Purdy

Mens Intermediate 1X Colum Brennan,– Neptune

Womens Club

Womens Club 8+ UCDBC – Claire Martin, Ava Evans, Orla Hayes, Ellie Scott, Alison Daly, Aine Brady, Lauren Heyes, Sinead Egan, Hannah Kerrigan (cox)

Womens Club 4+ ULRC –Niamh Coffey, Corina Coughlan, Georgia O’Brien, Shauna O’Mahony (cox)

Womens Club 1X Niamh Coffey – ULRC

Mens Club

Mens Club 8+ DUBC – Christopher Dehaene, David McSharry, Liam Junkermam, Alfie Hayes, Thomas Stevens, Tiarnan McKnight, Ronan Brennan, Tadhg McKnight, Rowan Hamilton (cox)

Mens Club 4+ ULRC – Luke Sutton, Finn O’Sullivan, Colm Horan, Rory O’Neil, Shauna O’Mahony (cox)

Mens Club 1X Thomas Stevens – DUBC

Womens Junior 19

Womens Junior 19 4X Skibbereen RC – Alyssa Mannix, Kelly Oforji, Lauren Steele-McCarthy, Moya Knowles

Womens Junior 19 2X Fermoy RC – Aine O’Mahony, Ellie Alison Bergin

Womens Junior 19 1X Ellie Alison Bergin – Fermoy

Mens Junior 19

Mens Junior 19 8+ Shannon RC – Tom Collins, Gary O’Donoghue, Joe Tanner, Alec Ahern, Fergal Mehigan, Cillian O’Brien, Niall Murphy, Conal Balfe, Tom Moran (cox)

Mens Junior 19 4+ Skibbereen RC – Christopher O’Donovan, Daire Kavanagh, Oisin Boyle, Fionn O’Reilly, Louise Murran (cox)

Mens Junior 19 2- Skibbereen RC – Oisin Boyle, Fionn O’Reilly

Mens Junior 19 2X Skibbereen RC – Daire Kavanagh, Fionn O’Reilly

Mens Junior 19 1X Andrew Sheehan – Lee

Womens Junior

Womens Junior 8+ Enniskillen RBC – Martha McBrien, Katie Donnelly, Zoe Elliott, Chloe Thompson, Jenny Little, Laura Turner, Nikki Kernaghan, Grace Ralph (cox)

Womens Junior 4- Galway RC – Crea Elwood, Evelina Zakarauskaite, Saphira Praxmarer, Hannah Durkan

Womens Junior 4X Bann RC – Ellie Kate Hutchinson, Flynn Greene, Abby Murdoch, Kirsten Tea

Womens Junior 2X Belfast BC – Patti Mullen, Gisele Coulter

Womens Junior 2- Galway RC – Evelina Zakarauskaite, Ranya Praxmarer

Womens Junior 1X Holly Davis – Lee Valley

Mens Junior

Mens Junior 8+ St Josephs RC – Evan Forde, Peader O’Connell, Cathal Monaghan, Shane Carroll, Conaill Cunningham, Iannis Praxmarer, James Murphy, Alex McWeeney, Daragh Clery (cox)

Mens Junior 4+ St Josephs RC – Iannis Praxmarer, Conaill Cunningham, James Murphy, Alex McWeeney, Daragh Clery (cox)

Mens Junior 4X Athlone BC – Cillian Lynam, Thomas O’Brien, Martin O’Grady, Donagh Claffey (cox)

Mens Junior 2- Presentation Cork – Jack Cotter, Rory Buckley

Mens Junior 2X Athlone BC – Martin O’Grady, Donagh Claffey

Mens Junior 1X Donagh Claffey – Athlone BC

Womens Novice

Womens Novice 8 Commercial RC – Rachel Smith, Evelyn Flynn, Hodel Herlihy, Fiona McAteer, Catherin Tooher, Brid Ni Laochdha, Caroline Shaw, Jasmyn Baines, Laura McDermott (cox)

Womens Novice 4X+ QUBLBC – Grace Doherty, Abbie-Louise McCrum, Rachel Canniford, Sam McCormick, Aoife Colleary (cox)

Mens Novice

Mens Novice 4X+ DUBC– Matthew McRedmond, Ruairi Doyle, Alfie Hayes, Christopher Dehaene, Isabel Doyle (cox)

Published in Rowing
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The Irish rowing team has been given a heroes’ welcome after an historic performance at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. Rowing Ireland and Cork County Council hosted a special homecoming at the Kinetica National Rowing Centre in Cork on Saturday.

The event, to celebrate the outstanding achievements of the high-performance athletes who represented their country so admirably at the games, was attended by An Taoiseach, Micheal Martin TD; Minister for Sport, Jack Chambers TD; and the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Gillian Coughlan.

A record six crews qualified for Tokyo, which saw Rowing Ireland secure both bronze and gold medals. Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan won Ireland’s first ever gold medal in rowing. The duo also broke a seven-year world record in their Lightweight Men’s Double semi-final.

Aifric Keogh, Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh and Emily Hegarty won bronze in the Women’s Four. It is the first-ever medal for an Irish women’s crew. In total, four Irish crews finished in the top ten, with two finishing just outside. Irish Rowing is now ranked above countries like the USA, Germany, Russia, Great Britain and Poland.

The bronze medal winners in the Women's Four - Aifric Keogh, Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh and Emily Hegarty with the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Gillian Coughlan and An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin. Photo: Brian LougheedThe bronze medal winners in the Women's Four - Aifric Keogh, Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh and Emily Hegarty with the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Gillian Coughlan and An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin. Photo: Brian Lougheed

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said: “The whole country is so proud of our Olympic rowing team following their historic achievements at the Tokyo games. Team Ireland provided the country with huge inspiration and excitement over the course of the games, lifting the spirits of the nation time and time again. In securing medals, and achieving many more excellent performances, Ireland’s rowers have once again proven that they can compete and succeed at the sport’s highest level. I would like to congratulate all members of the six crews who represented our country at the Olympic Games as well as the high-performance team, coaches, and administration of Rowing Ireland.”

The Mayor of County of Cork, Cllr. Gillian Coughlan added, “Each of the athletes here today has served a higher sporting purpose. Not only did they motivate men, women and children to get up in the middle of the night to watch their races, they inspired a whole new generation. The athletes and the entire team at Rowing Ireland showed what can be achieved with hard work and dedication. The location for this event too is truly fitting - the National Rowing Centre, designed to bring out the best in our athletes, and to help them be the best that they can be. We are very lucky that nature, and a dam, provided us with such an amazing amphitheatre for rowing and I am looking forward to many similar occasions here in the years to come.”

Speaking about the homecoming Rowing Ireland’s Chief Executive Officer, Michelle Carpenter said; “We are delighted to be able to celebrate all of Rowing Ireland’s Olympic athletes and their fantastic achievements in Tokyo. All of us at Rowing Ireland take immense pride in the performances of our high-performance athletes in what was a historic Olympics for our sport in this country. Tokyo 2020 saw the largest squad of Irish rowers in history and a record six crews qualifying for the games. To return with a gold and bronze medal including the first-ever Olympic medal that Ireland has won in a women’s team event is a testament to both the athletes and the people behind Rowing Ireland, the high-performance team, the coaches, the administration, the clubs, Sport Ireland, Sport NI and the Olympic Federation, and our wonderful partners that have supported us and the teams throughout. Their historic achievements undoubtedly deserve to be celebrated. I would also like to thank Taoiseach Micheál Martin, Minister for Sport Jack Chambers and The Mayor of County of Cork Gillian Coughlan for their support with the homecoming.”

Published in Rowing
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Ireland had three crews competing in the 2021 World Rowing Junior Championships this week in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

In the first race of the day, Ronan Gibbon, Fergus Bryce, Donagh Claffey and David Foley raced in the Men’s Quadruple Sculls A Final, finishing sixth with a time of 06:11.00. The crew faced five other quads, from Belarus, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy and Switzerland.

In the Women’s Double Sculls A Final, Holly Davis and Rachel Bradley finished third to take the bronze medal. The duo finished with a final time of 07:15.62, after achieving the fastest time of all crews in the W2x Semi-Finals. Holly and Rachel faced crews from Greece, France, Slovenia, Italy and The Netherlands.

In the final race of the day, Oisin Boyle and Martin O’Grady finished fifth in the Men’s Double Sculls A Final, with a time of 06:36.52. Oisin and Martin faced crews from Greece, Italy, Poland and Germany.

Speaking after the race, Rowing Ireland’s High-Performance Director Antonio Maurogiovanni said: “I would like to congratulate all of the athletes and coaches on their performances and results in the World Rowing Junior Championships this weekend. This was the last event of the year and overall, it was a very successful weekend for our athletes and coaches.

“The Rowing Ireland National Rowing Centre has once again delivered a fantastic performance after the six crews qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics winning two medals, and the U23 crews racing at the u23 World Championships, also taking home two medals.

“Congratulations to Holly, Rachel and their coaches on winning the bronze medal in the women’s double. For all three crews to reach A Finals is a great accomplishment and continues to show how successful the high-performance program is.

“Thank you to their coaches Ciro, Janet, Nicolo and Leah for their hard work and dedication in preparing and coaching the crews over the last number of weeks at the National Rowing Centre. I also want to thank the athlete’s and coaches clubs and their families for their continued support. The experience that these athletes gained from this challenging competition will be beneficial for their future development and I look forward to seeing their progression in the coming years.

We are on the right direction, but more work needs to be done in order to support our young rowers for the future; for Paris 2024 and beyond.”


M4x (Ronan Gibbon, Fergus Bryce, Donagh Claffey and David Foley) – Sixth place
W2x (Holly Davis and Rachel Bradley) – Third place - Bronze Medal
M2x (Oisin Boyle and Martin O’Grady) – Fifth place

Staff Team

Antonio Maurogiovanni – High-Performance Director
Ciro Prisco – Coach
Janet Walsh – Coach
Nicolo Maurogiovanni – Coach
Leah O’Regan – Coach

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