UCD complete clean sweep


ROWING:FOUR COLOURS races and four wins for UCD – the sweetest of all a victory in the Corcoran Cup for senior women which was made special by a tale of redemption.

The novel timing, early on St Patrick’s Day, actually resulted in smaller crowds than usual around the start at O’Connell Bridge. The overcrowding was mostly on the water, where both crews in the Gannon Cup for senior men complained of choppy conditions partly created by the launches.

It made no difference to the result – the big, experienced UCD crew owned the day and won by four-and-a-half lengths.

Trinity captain Charlie Landale said his crew had been competitive at the start: “From our point of view we were pretty happy with it. We are going for the intermediate (national) championships. They are going for the senior.”

It was UCD’s fourth Gannon in a row and Dave Neale (22) had been in all those boats. For Seán Jacob (38) a different boast: he first won the Gannon in 1994, and the Masters student is surely the first man to win a Gannon Cup after a 17-year hiatus.

But the story of the day was Amy Bulman’s. Last year’s Corcoran Cup was a triumph for Trinity and a nightmare for Bulman. She caught a crab (missed a stroke) near the end and saw her boat come to a dead stop. Trinity rowed through and won by a distance.

This year’s race was remarkably similar, with Trinity on South Station clinging on and even gaining slightly on their rivals under the James Joyce and Watling Street bridges, the last two on the course. But this time UCD stayed solid to prevail by just under a length.

“It feels pretty good, to be honest,” Bulman said. “It feels like I’ve had a year of being ‘that girl’, who caught a crab,” she said.

This year she switched into the fourth seat, on her more natural stroke side. One seat ahead of her was Siofra Bennett, who was winning her second Corcoran Cup – she was in the three seat of Trinity’s boat last year.

UCD’s novice men and women had surprisingly easy wins to complete a good day for the blue and saffron.

COLOURS RACES (River Liffey, Dublin) – Gannon Cup (Senior Men): UCD (C Pierce, R Murray, S O’Neill, D Neale, F Manning, S Jacob, G Duane, P Grogan; cox: J Lynch) bt Trinity 4½l. Dan Quinn Shield (Novice): UCD bt Trinity 4l.

Corcoran Cup (Senior Women): UCD (C Tanner, K Joy, C Ní Reachtagain, A Bulman, S Bennett, A Gilligan, L Reid, B Lait; cox: C McGowan) bt Trinity ¾l. Sally Moorehead Trophy (Novice Women): UCD bt Trinity 5l.