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Rowing Ireland's 2021 European Rowing Championship Crews Announced

23rd March 2021
Eight Senior Irish crews will be looking to continue the successes of the Senior, U23 and Junior crews who brought home ten medals last year.
Eight Senior Irish crews will be looking to continue the successes of the Senior, U23 and Junior crews who brought home ten medals last year. Credit: courtesy Rowing Ireland

The Rowing Ireland team for the 2021 European Rowing Championships has been confirmed by Rowing Ireland's High-Performance Director, Antonio Maurogiovanni.

Eight Senior Irish crews will be looking to continue the successes of the Senior, U23 and Junior crews who brought home ten medals from their European Championships in September and October last year.

The Rowing Ireland crews will be competing at the European Rowing Championships in Varese from the 9th -11th April.

Philip Doyle and Ronan Byrne will be competing in the Men’s Double in Varese. Philip and Ronan qualified the Men’s Double by winning Silver at the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Linz. Philip missed the 2020 European Championships as he took time out during 2020 to return to medicine full time in Daisy Hill hospital to resume his role as a Doctor during the pandemic. Philip and Ronan also won Silver in the Men’s Double at the World Rowing Cup III in 2019. Ronan also won Gold in the Men’s Single at the 2019 U23 European Championships. Last year Ronan won Gold alongside Daire Lynch in the Men’s Double in the U23 Europeans and Bronze at the Senior European Championships with Daire.

Daire Lynch will be competing in the Men’s Single in Varese. Daire had a very successful 2020, winning Gold (U23 ERC) and Bronze (ERC) alongside Ronan Byrne. Daire is a member of Clonmel Rowing Club and is currently studying and rowing for Yale. Daire won five Irish championships (four singles, one pair) and previously placed 8th at the Junior World Championship. The Men’s Single can still qualify for the Tokyo Olympics at the Final Qualification Regatta in Lucerne.

The crew of Fiona Murtagh, Eimear Lambe, Aifric Keogh and Emily Hegarty will be competing in the Women’s Four. Last year Fiona, Eimear and Aifric won Bronze in the Women’s Four alongside Aileen Crowley at the 2020 European Championships. Fiona recently won Bronze at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in Poznan and has won the Head of Charles two years in a row. Eimear has been competing internationally since 2015 and won Silver at the 2019 U23 World Rowing Championships. Aifric has been a member of the high-performance team for several years, has won at the Irish Championships and set new World Records on the erg this year. Emily has been competing internationally for several years after she started rowing in 2009. Emily previously won the Silver Medal at the 2019 World U23 Championships in Sarasota and a bronze medal in the Women’s Pair at the U23 2020 European Rowing Championships alongside fellow UCC athlete Tara Hanlon.

Aileen Crowley and Monika Dukarska will be competing in the Women’s Pair. Aileen and Monika qualified the Women’s Pair for the Olympics at the 2019 World Rowing Championships. Aileen went on to win Bronze at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in Poznan. Monika is a two-time World Coastal Champion in the Women’s Solo, winning in 2016 and 2009. Monika missed last year’s European Rowing Championships due to injury. Tara Hanlon and Claire Feerick will be travelling with the team as reserves for the Women’s Four and Women’s Pair boats.

Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy will be competing in the Lightweight Men’s Double. Paul and Fintan won Gold at the 2019 World Rowing Championships and qualified the boat for the Olympics. Paul and Fintan also won Silver at the World Rowing Cup III in Rotterdam that year. Fintan went on in 2020 to win Bronze in the Lightweight Men’s Single at the European Rowing Championships. Paul is a four-time consecutive World Rowing Champion, having won Gold in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Paul won an Olympic Silver Medal alongside his brother Gary at the 2016 Rio Olympics. He also won Gold (2016) and two Silver Medals (2017 & 2018) at previous European Rowing Championships.

Gary O’Donovan will be competing in the Lightweight Men’s Single. Along with Paul, Gary won Silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics and won a World Championship in 2018. Gary previously won Gold at the 2016 European Rowing Championships in Brandenburg and won Silver in 2017 and 2018. Gary won Bronze in the Lightweight Men’s Single in the 2019 World Rowing Cup III in Rotterdam.

Margaret Cremen and Aoife Casey will be racing in the Lightweight Women’s Double in Varese after winning the Silver Medal in the same category at the European U23 Rowing Championships last year. Margaret and Aoife have competed together for several years and won Silver in this event at the Junior European Championships in 2017. They finished second it the LW2x B Final at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in Poznan. The Women’s Lightweight Double Boat can still be qualified at the Final Qualification Regatta in Lucerne in May.

Lydia Heaphy will be competing in the Lightweight Women’s Single. Lydia had a successful 2020 after winning Gold alongside Cliodhna Nolan in the Women’s Lightweight Pair at the European U23 Rowing Championships. Lydia went on to finish first in the B Final at the Senior European Championships in October.

Sanita Puspure will not be racing at the European Rowing Championships and will be travelling with the team for training camp to compete at later competitions.

A total of seventeen athletes will be representing Ireland at the 2021 European Rowing Championships in April. The team have been training together over several months in the National Rowing Centre in Cork. Alongside the Senior Athletes, there have been additional athletes training with an eye for the U23 and Junior World Championships this year and looking forward to the Paris Olympics in 2024.

Alex Byrne, Ross Corrigan, Jack Dorney, John Kearney, Alison Bergin, and Holly Davis have all been training with the senior team and supported the European Championships' preparations. These athletes have worked hard throughout as the team prepare for Tokyo and for Paris 2024. Para-athletes Katie O'Brien and Steven McGowan have been training with the High-Performance Team in the National Rowing Centre. They will continue to train alongside the Senior Team over the coming weeks.

Rowing Ireland’s High-Performance Director, Antonio Maurogiovanni, said.

“We are very happy with the team selected for the European Rowing Championships next month. A lot of hard work and preparation has gone into the camps, and I want to thank the athletes, coaches, clubs and their families for their continued support.

We are now looking ahead to another successful year and to build off the success of the last number of years. The athletes have all shown their dedication and commitment to our programme, and we look forward to competing and representing Ireland.

European Rowing Championships Irish Crews

M2x

Ronan Byrne (UCC)
Philip Doyle (Belfast Boat Club)
Daire Lynch (Clonmel)- Reserve

M1x

Daire Lynch (Clonmel)

W4-

Fiona Murtagh (NUIG)
Eimear Lambe (OCBC)
Aifric Keogh (UCC)
Emily Hegarty (UCC)

W2-

Monika Dukarska (Killorglin)
Aileen Crowley (OCBC)
W4-/W2- Reserve

Tara Hanlon (UCC RC)
Claire Feerick (Neptune RC)

LM1x

Gary O’Donovan (Skibbereen)

LM2x

Paul O’Donovan (UCC)
Fintan McCarthy (Skibbereen)

LW2x

Margaret Cremen (UCC)
Aoife Casey (UCC)

LW1x

Lydia Heaphy (UCC)
Staff Team
Antonio Maurogiovanni – HPD

Fran Keane – Rowing Ireland Coach (not attending)

Dominic Casey – Rowing Ireland Coach

Giuseppe De Vita – Rowing Ireland Coach

Feargal O’Callaghan – Team Manager

Published in Rowing
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