Irish rowing had a good day. The two final races of Metropolitan Grand League Regatta were thrillers, while at Dorney Lake in England, Molly Curry won the championship single sculls at the National Schools Regatta.
Curry, from Coleraine Grammar School, has been pre-selected to represent Ireland at the World Junior Championships in Tokyo. Her win at the 2012 Olympic venue again confirms what a talent she is. And she has another year left as a junior.
Metro Regatta at Blessington was a businesslike and calm event – with stunning finishes in the last two big finals.
Castleconnell’s women’s four covered the final 100 metres like a train to catch and pass Bann right on the line. The winning margin was .297 of a second. Both crews were juniors.
The men’s eight could hardly live up to this standard. But it did.
UCD had let Commercial go in the middle stages of their last big race, at Skibbereen Regatta. This time the college men led at halfway – only for Commercial to eat into their lead as the crowds cheered.
Commercial eked out the win on the line. The margin? Just .734 of a second.
UCD's four had taken first blood. Shane O'Connell, Andrew Goff, Shane Mulvaney and David O'Malley beat Commercial in a close race. The men in blue and saffron then went on to win the senior coxed four.
The Division One women’s eight gave Bann’s junior 18A crew the chance to notch up a win. They had been first over the line at Trinity Regatta, but were ruled out for a steering infringement. This time there were no mistakes and they were well clear of UCD at the finish.
Trinity's women's were not part of the picture here, as they had entered but not declared, but the Dublin University men's pair of Adam Browne and Mark Quigley were the best on the day, and Anna Liffey, the alumnus club of the women's boat club, took the pair.
The men's single was all about Kealan Mannix. The University of Limerick student, a Skibbereen man, was competing for the first time this season in this boat, but he was in charge all through. Niall Beggan of Commercial covered the last 500 metres very well to take second.
The women’s single went to Kenmare woman Georgia O’Brien (20), who got over recent injuries and seems to be hitting form at the right time.
Commercial’s women took both the coxed four and coxless quadruple in Division One, while Lagan were the best men’s quad.
The Killorglin junior 18 double of Anna Tyther and Rhiannon O'Donoghue took Division One honours in the double sculls.
O’Donoghue is set to team up with Molly Curry in the Ireland double for the World Junior Championships.