Rowing: cuts lead to a reduced schedule for Irish internationals
Plan to have three overseas camps has been cut back to just one
Sanita Puspure: has been named Afloat Rower of the Year for 2014. Photograph: William Cherry/Presseye/Inpho
Irish international rowing faces a reduced programme this year on what it had hoped for just weeks ago. The plan to have three overseas camps has been cut back
to just one, around the international regatta in Piediluco in Italy in April, which will involve self-funding by the participants.
The senior teams will then be targeted at the European Championships and just one World Cup regatta, in Lucerne, before the World Championships.
It is understood that the Sports Council funding for the extended programme was initially thought to be in addition to figures for this year, but has since been included in the 2015 figure.
This season is a crucial one as boats for the 2016 Olympics can be qualified at the World Championships in France in August/September.
Ireland lead coach Don McLachlan is determined to form a lightweight women’s double by the conclusion of trials in February.
While Sinéad Jennings has been the outstanding figure in trials so far, the unavailability through injury on different occasions of Siobhán McCrohan and Claire Lambe has hampered the process of creating a crew. McCrohan and Lambe made up the crew in the run-up to the London Olympics but the effort fell apart after McCrohan was cut for not being able to make the weight.
The next mandatory stage in the trials process is the Irish Indoor Championships in Limerick on January 24th. Ireland’s top performer, Sanita Puspure, is hopeful she may be able to compete, though she is recovering from a serious rib injury. Puspure has been named the Afloat Rower of the Year for 2014.
The Ireland heavyweight men’s camp last weekend drew 17 athletes to the National Rowing Centre, including Dara Alizadeh of University of Pennsylvania in the US and David Duffy from Edinburgh. Despite the lateness in the year, there was a day of on the water activity.