Ireland trials set to defy the weather

Top rowers bound for Cork but format restricted due to one day

 Leitrim Tourism and Leitrim County Council  recently launched the opening of an International standard rowing facility in Lough Rynn, Co. Leitrim. Photo: David Maher/Sportsfile

Leitrim Tourism and Leitrim County Council recently launched the opening of an International standard rowing facility in Lough Rynn, Co. Leitrim. Photo: David Maher/Sportsfile

 

The Ireland trials set for this weekend at the National Rowing Centre in Cork will go ahead in a restricted format because the weather forecast is poor. There will be time trials early tomorrow morning, if the weather permits, and this will give rankings for finals. If the weather rules out on-the-water work, there will be ergometer (rowing machine) tests.

Well over 100 entered for the trial and the original programme covered both Saturday and Sunday. However, as the prospect of good conditions receded, the event was cut to just one day.

The weather played spoilsport at last weekend’s World Coastal Rowing Championships in Thessaloniki in Greece. After calm conditions on the first two days, rough water disrupted the final day and robbed Ireland’s John Keohane – a World Coastal champion in 2010 – of a medal chance.

Second place

He finished in a promising second place in his heat, covering the four-kilometre course in 19 minutes 24.17 seconds.

However, he decided not to compete in the final. “I haven’t done enough training in those conditions to risk it,” he said.

Peter Berg of Sweden, whom Keohane had beaten into third in the heat, won the A Final, which was run over an shortened course.

In the B Final of the single sculls, Cormac Kelly of Arklow finished sixth, but Laura O’Neill of Kilmacsimon abandoned her challenge in the B Final of the women’s single after capsizing twice as she prepared to go to the start. Ireland’s other two crews were Courtmacsherry units which competed in the B Final of the quadruple sculls. The senior crew had to abandon after an oar lock broke, while the under-21 crew finished 12th.

The British Championships at Nottingham were cut short because of bad weather, and medals were presented to the fastest crews in the time trials. Richard Chambers took gold in the eight, while Peter Chambers and Joel Cassells took silver. Matthew Wray was part of the Oxford Brookes D team which won the University plaque.

The win for the women’s eight featuring Sanita Puspure was the Irish highlight at the Head of the Charles in Boston.

Fionnán McQuillan-Tolan had his own reason to celebrate as the Boston University crew he stroked finished eighth in the men’s Championship Eight. They were just 19.5 seconds behind the winning crew, the Great Eight of the world’s top scullers.

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