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#Rowing: Paul O'Donovan talks about winning the World Championships with Proteus Paparazzi. The European gold medalist and Olympic silver medalist with his brother Gary will be welcomed back to Skibbereen in a special ceremony on Monday.Thousands are expected to attend.

 

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#Rowing: Paul and Gary O'Donovan won silver for Ireland at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro today. The young men from Lisheen in Cork produced an outstanding finish, taking the middle place between France and Norway in a three-boat sprint to the line.

 As is their way, the O'Donovans hung off the leading group through the early stages, but they were wise enough to not lose touch. By 1500 metres they were second behind eventual winners France. And then the O'Donovans went hunting for gold. France held out as both Ireland and Norway closed on them. Less than three-quarters of a second covered the three crews at the finish.

Paul Gary ODonovan Olympic silver medal winnersOlympic Silver Medal winners Paul and Gary O'Donovan celebrate Ireland's first ever Olympic rowing medal

Olympic Games Regatta, Rio de Janeiro

Men

Lightweight Double Sculls - A Final: 1 France (P Houin, J Azou) 6:30.70, 2 Ireland (G O'Donovan, P O'Donovan) 6:31.23, 3 Norway 6:31.39. B Final (places 7 to 12): 1 Britain (W Fletcher, R Chambers) 6:28.81.

Single Sculls - Semi-Final (Three to A Final; rest to B Final):

4 Britain (A Campbell) 7:09.54.

Women

Lightweight Double Sculls - A Final:

Netherlands 7:04.73, 2 Canada 7:05.88, 3 China 7:06.49; 6 Ireland (C Lambe, S Lynch) 7:13.09.

Published in Rowing

Ireland's junior rowing team are racing in Poznan, Poland, where the 2016 Coupe de la Jeunesse will take place this weekend. The Coupe de la Jeunesse is an international rowing regatta for rowers under the age of 18, and rowed over 2000m every year. Ireland have 4 crews entered in the event: a men’s quadruple, men’s four, women’s four and women’s pair. The 11 nations that Ireland will be up against are Austria, Belgium, France, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland.

Three of Ireland's Rowing Ireland Olympians who are headed for Rio next week have competed in the Coupe in recent years, with this event being a great stepping stone for future success for many athletes. The 14–strong rowers from all around the island of Ireland will travel to the World Rowing renowned course at Lake Malta in Poznan this morning (Thursday), after a week-long training camp at the National Rowing Centre in Cork. Pat McInerney, Lead Junior Coach has said “The Coupe team are drawn from a wide range of clubs and have had a very good training camp at the NRC. We are looking forward to seeing them compete in Poznan on what for many is their first step towards International Rowing.”

The Irish Team is as follows:

Men’s Four: Aaron Johnston (Portora BC), Sam Armstrong (Portora BC), Ross Corrigan (Portora BC), Patrick Kennelly (Presentation College RC). Coach: Pat McInerney (St. Michael’s RC and Rowing Ireland Junior Coach)
Men’s Quadruple: Barry O’Flynn (Cork BC), Niall Beggan (Commercial RC), Barry Connolly (Cork BC), Stephen O’ Sullivan (Shandon BC). Coach: Fran Keane (Presentation College RC, Cork)
Women’s Quadruple: Margaret Cremen (Lee RC), Lucy Taylor (Belfast RC), Hannah Scott (Bann RC), Fiona Chestnutt (Bann RC). Coach: Dan Buckley (Lee RC)
Women’s Pair: Amy-Kate Mason (Cork BC), Tara Hanlon (Cork Boat Club). Coach: Fran Keane (Presentation College RC, Cork)
Team Manager: Michelle Carpenter (Commercial RC/Shannon RC)

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#Rowing: Only six Russia competitors have been cleared by Fisa, the governing body of rowing, to compete at the Olympic Games. Twenty were ruled ineligible as records were scrutinised in line with the International Olympic Committee’s guidelines on drug testing. One Irish crew, the lightweight women’s double, is affected. The Russia crew of Alena Statagina and Anastasiia Ianina will not be allowed participate, and their place will be offered to Italy.    

 The full Fisa statement reads:

The FISA Executive Committee has made a final decision related to Russian participation for rowing in Rio 2016 in accordance with the IOC Executive Board’s decision, point 2.3.

IOC Decision, point 2.3“IFs should carry out an individual analysis of each athlete’s anti-doping record, taking into account only reliable adequate international tests and the specificities of the athlete’s sport and its rules, in order to ensure a level playing field”

Russia has qualified five boats and entered 26 rowers and two coxswains for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The athletes’ names were entered by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) by the deadline of 18 July 2016. Testing information collected from FISA, WADA, the Russian Rowing Federation (RRF), RUSADA and UK Anti-Doping shows that a total of 1679 blood and/or urine tests were carried out between 2011 and June 2016 on all Russian rowers. For the Russian rowers entered for Rio, 547 blood and urine tests were conducted since 2011. None of the 28 athletes entered on 18 July have tested positive in the last five years.All of these tests are fully documented in the WADA online documentation tool called ADAMS.

However, WADA’s Independent Person (IP) report reveals that the Moscow Laboratory was under the control of the Deputy Minister of Sport and was using the Disappearing Positive Methodology scheme to manipulate test results. It also states that the IP has “only skimmed the surface of the extensive data available.” Therefore,  the FISA Executive Committee reviewed each entered Russian rower in order to assess the adequacy and reliability of their “international” testing (the analysis of the samples performed at a WADA accredited lab other than Moscow), taking into account the specificities of the sport of Rowing.

IOC Decision, point 4. “The IOC will accept an entry by the ROC only if the athlete’s IF is satisfied that the evidence provided meets conditions 2 and 3 above, and if it is upheld by an expert from the CAS list of arbitrators appointed by an ICAS Member”

The FISA Executive Committee, due to the manipulation of the Moscow Laboratory tests, has determined, based on the assessment of independent testing of all rowers, the following will be permitted to enter:

CHAUKIN, Aleksandr

EFREMENKO, Georgy

KOSOV, Artem

MORGACHEV, Nikita

RYABCEV, Vladislav

ZARUTSKIY, Anton

The remaining 17 entered rowers and two coxswains (besides the three rowers revealed yesterday) are not at all considered to have participated in doping, but do not meet the conditions established by the IOC in their decision of 24 July 2016 for participation in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Effect of this decision

The effect of this decision is that Russia has six remaining eligible rowers - one lightweight and five open weight men - for competition in Rio 2016.

Therefore, four Russian boats (LM4-, LW2x, M8+ and W8+) will be withdrawn from participation in the Games and will be attributed to the next placing crews at the 2016 Final Olympic Qualification Regatta in Lucerne, Switzerland, as follows:

LM4- to Greece, the Hellenic Rowing Federation

M8+ to the Italian Rowing Federation

W8+ to the Australian Rowing Federation

And in the 2016 European Continental Qualification Regatta in Lucerne, Switzerland:

LW2x to the Italian Rowing Federation

Russia has the possibility to form a men’s four (M4-) with the eligible six rowers for competition in Rio 2016. We await the Russian Rowing Federation’s decision on this possibility.

Any issues with the Russian participation at the Paralympic Games will be dealt with at a later date.

Published in Rowing

#Rowing - The Carrick-on-Shannon Rowing Regatta will be held on Sunday 31 July on a 400m stretch of the waterway immediately south of the town bridge.

​Hundreds of spectators and competitors are expected at the event, one of the final rowing events of the season, which is supported by Waterways Ireland through its sponsorship programme.

Events begin at 8am and will run till around 6pm. Craft wishing to make a through passage will be facilitated every two hours (approx) during the course of the regatta. Mooring restrictions will apply in Carrick-on-Shannon to facilitate the regatta.

In the interest of marine safety and to facilitate the laying of the competition course, access to the floating moorings will be restricted in the run-up to and during the event itself.

Only vessels of an overall length of 22ft/6.8m or less will be permitted on the floating jetties from Friday 29 to Sunday 31 July. Vessels berthed from Friday 29 July at 4pm will be required to remain in place until racing finishes on the Sunday evening.

The floating jetties will be closed off during this time and no vessels should approach as the entrance to the berths will be closed off and manoeuvring room will be severely restricted due to the proximity of the course. Access to the floating jetties will be monitored from Monday 25 July.

Masters are advised to proceed at slow speed and with due caution and to take note of advice from course marshals when passing through the area.

Further information can be had by contacting the Waterways Ireland inspectorate at +353 (0)87 985 2324 or North Shannon operations at +353 (0)71 96 50787.

Published in Rowing

Five women are about to enter the record books after a 3,000 mile journey rowing across the Atlantic. They will become the first ever all-female crew to row the Atlantic from West to East, one of the longest and most difficult routes, having left New York on June 7th heading for Falmouth.

And it's all down to an advert placed online 2 years ago "Wanted: an all female team who have what it takes'.

Weather conditions permitting, their Rannoch Women’s Challenge boat, Liberty of Essex, is expected to arrive in Falmouth on or around Wednesday July 27th

The crew ranges from captain 49-year-old Guin Batten, who won a silver medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, through to 20-year-old oceanographer university student Molly Brown, who will become the youngest woman to have rowed the Atlantic.

Also on board are Alex Holt, a water-ski and snow ski instructor, Gilly Mara, one of the fastest ultra-kayakers in the UK who came into the sport after breaking her neck in a climbing accident, and Mary Sutherland, an accomplished offshore sailor and racer with several Fastnet and Atlantic crossings under her belt.

Assisted on-shore by Charlie Pitcher, whose company, Rannoch Adventures, built and supplied Liberty, their vessel. Charlie is the current world record holder for the fastest crossing of the Atlantic, having rowed it in 35 days in 2013 – East to West in 2013.

Published in Coastal Rowing
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#Rowing - Galway man Gavan Hennigan aims to join an elite group of rowers who've crossed the Atlantic solo when he takes part in the gruelling Tallisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge later this year.

Not to be confused with the Atlantic Challenge for longboats, the Tallisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge is a 3,000-nautical-mile rowing route across the world's second-largest expanse of ocean from the Canary Islands to Antigua in the West Indies.

Described as "horrific" by Seán McGowan, the first Irish person to complete the route six years ago, it's a challenge that's not for the faint of heart.

And 'extreme environment athlete' Hennigan is making it even tougher for himself by heading out solo among a field that usually features teams of up to four.

But the experienced adventurer – who hopes to raise €20,000 over the coming months for charities including Cancer Care West, Jigsaw, Sanctuary and the RNLI – is taking it all in his stride.

"I suppose I like the idea of the challenge," he told the Galway Independent. "I’ve spent a lot of my time in extreme places doing mountaineering in the Himalayas, I’ve been to Antarctica, I’ve done some of the world’s longest and toughest ultra-marathons.

"I’ve also had one of the most dangerous jobs in the world as a commercial diver so I’ve lived this life of extreme adventure and this just looked like the next big challenge for me."

The Galway Independent has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Rowing

#OceanToCity - Naomhóga Chorcaí kept eight titles Leeside in this year's Ocean to City Race, according to the Evening Echo.

Cork’s currach rowing club – and race hosts – dominated the currach classes in the annual coastal rowing fixture of the Cork Harbour Festival.

But teams from across the country and abroad were strong in what festival Donagh MacArtain described as one of the most competitive races on the water.

More than 200 crews descended on Cork Harbour over the bank holiday weekend for the flagship event of the 2016 festival, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

The 12th running of the 28km race from Crosshaven to Cork City broke a new record for entries with some 600 rowers taking part.

The Evening Echo has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastal Rowing

#Rowing - Not content with rowing 80km for his 80th birthday, Donnaca Kennedy took advantage of the good weather for another fundraising row to mark his 85th this summer.

The former Weaver Boats proprietor, who will be familiar to many veteran Shannon boaters, aims to raise money for the North West Cancer Hospice and the Ethiopian Cancer Squad via his latest endeavour.

Originally planned for this June Bank Holiday weekend, Kennedy seized on the perfect rowing conditions last Sunday 29 May for the five-mile run from Carrick-on-Shannon to the Boyle River.

But he's still welcoming donations for his chosen charities, both close to his heart.

After spending some time under the care of the team at the North West Hospice, Kennedy has first-hand experience of how important this service is for those in need, according to his daughter Úna who's been getting the word out about his plans.

To read more about his row and the charities involved, visit his blog at 5at85.blogspot.ie.

Published in Rowing

Over 200 crews are set to descend on Cork City this bank holiday weekend for Ireland’s premier rowing race, the flagship event of Cork Harbour Festival 2016. Almost 600 participants will take to the water for the gruelling 28km race from Crosshaven to Cork City. This is the 12th year of the race organised by Meitheal Mara, which since 2005 has brought thousands of rowers and paddlers to Cork to compete across a broad range of classes. Many participants are regular race goers, while many more take part for the fun and challenge of completing the course.

This year’s race brings crews from around Ireland, England, Holland, France, Portugal and the United States. Albany Irish Rowing Club, from New York, who will row a three handed currach, is one crew that can’t wait for the starting line. “We’re looking forward to rowing in the best race in the world, meeting the locals and enjoying the festival!” The Rockabillies, an all-female crew from Skerries, North Co. Dublin are returning to take on the Ocean to City challenge for a second time. “We’re training together with a mix of walking, gym, running and cycling. Last year was great fun and we just had to head back again – the Rebels know how to party!” This year will see an Australian surfboat compete for the first time. The Perranporth Maniacs are surfboat rowers from Cornwall, who compete in surfboat competitions throughout the UK and Europe. “We’ve heard many good reports from other rowers that have taken part in the Ocean to City, and look forward to a new rowing experience.”

The race starts at 11.30am at Crosshaven, with best vantage points from Camden Fort Meagher, whose café terrace has the perfect vista over Roches Point. Along the race route, Cobh Tourism will host the annual ‘Cobh Cheers!’, featuring live race commentary and family fun with the Cobh Animation Team. Passage West Maritime Festival hosts the Ocean to City Picnic at 12.45, which is the destination for the ‘Harbour Pedal’, Cork Cycling Campaign’s scenic morning cycle, which departs Lapp’s Quay at 11.30am.

The festivities at the city finish line at Lapp’s Quay warm up from 1pm, with live commentary, DJ Ian Fiasco, live music, the festival market and circus street performances. The prize giving ceremony wraps up events with the after-party celebrations kicking off from 7pm along Albert Quay!

Published in Coastal Rowing
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