#ROWING: Next weekend will see one of the biggest rowing invasion of the Mid-West since the Vikings sent their longboats up the Shannon estuary in the 9th century. With over 800 crews entered over two days it is the largest rowing undertaking ever to take place at the Limerick Regatta course in O’Briensbridge. On Saturday, Limerick Regatta has a full programme, with events running every four minutes over 11 hours, while on Sunday the biggest ever Irish Schools Regatta will be held.
The Schools Regatta was first run in O’Briensbridge in 2006 as part of the University Championships. Eleven crews from five schools battled for honours in two double sculls events. The following year additional events were added and the event started to grow. Given that the University Championships always took precedence at the combined event, there was a limit on the size of the Schools Regatta. This ceased to be the case when Limerick Regatta agreed to run the event in 2014 on a stand-alone basis: there was an entry of just over 300 crews from 45 schools. This year there are almost 400 entries from 71 schools.