More debate likely on the optimum shape for the Irish rowing season

Bounane and Cremen entered as a UCC senior double for the Skibbereen head at the NRC

Those who argue for the Irish Championships moving from July to September say it offers the prospect of internationals competing and showcasing the sport

Those who argue for the Irish Championships moving from July to September say it offers the prospect of internationals competing and showcasing the sport

 

British Rowing has announced that its senior championships will revert to summer, having been held in October. It will provoke more debate in this country on the optimum shape for the season.

Those who argue for the Irish Championships moving from July to September say it offers the prospect of internationals competing and showcasing the sport.

However, asking this group to seek more prizes at the end of an overseas campaign may be risking shooting at two targets and missing both. Many club athletes like a conclusion to their season in summer, while top guns seek a rest period.

One way forward may be to persist with the autumn combination of the Irish Open, a less testing forum that the Championships, and the new All-Ireland Youth Regatta.

Junior rowing is a growth area at the moment – and not just in terms of numbers. The Irish Indoor Championships were revelatory. Fran Keane, who heads up junior rowing in Antonio Maurogiovanni’s Ireland system, said he was impressed with the general improvement: a cohort of boys coming in under 6 minutes 20 seconds and girls under 7:20. “We must be doing something right,” he said.

This growth is matched by that of masters rowing. Both groups are well represented in the entry for Skibbereen and Lagan heads. The Belfast event has an interesting senior men’s pair of Fionnán Crowley and Patrick Boomer, two men who hope to represent Ireland this year, while Selma Bounane and Margaret Cremen are entered as a UCC senior double for the Skibbereen head at the NRC. Both events are set for February 9th.

The expose of hazing rituals at the Dublin University Boat Club, covered in this newspaper, is troubling. While Trinity sources offered no comment on the record, one man who has been heavily involved in the club said: “I’ve been with them since the 1970s, and I’ve never come across behaviour like this.” He said people had not been dropping out, as would be expected in the case of unacceptable behaviour.

Old Collegians will make a presentation to Sanita Puspure on February 1st at the UCD Club Dinner. The world champion in the single sculls will have an event at the Irish Championships named in her honour.

Cappoquin Rowing Club recently lost a stalwart in Jim Murray, one of the Murray brothers who have straddled decades in the sport.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

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