On behalf of Rowing Ireland, I would like to take this opportunity to Wish you all a very Happy Christmas and every good wish for 2019.
2018 has been an extraordinary year for Rowing in Ireland. We got off to a great start in January with the hugely successful indoor Rowing Championships in UL. Whilst at the same time some of our High-Performance team went to sunnier climates of Australia and New Zealand for a packed Winter of training.
In February and March, we struggled with unprecedented snow and water levels. As our Sport continues to grow we battled further weather elements during the Grand league regatta season. This year was busier than ever with Rowing Ireland hosting a Festival of Rowing at the National Rowing Centre in Cork. In addition to hosting the Irish Coastal Rowing and Offshore Championships. A huge thank you to the committees and volunteers for their endless time and patience over the 2018 season.
As the Summer unfolded on the International stage we had a feeling that it was going to be a good one. A silver medal at the European’s. U-23 Gold and Silver medals. Coupe medals in addition to a big team at the World Junior Rowing Championships. It is evident our new High-performance programme led by Antonio Mauro Giovanni together with Dominic Casey and David McGowan are making their mark.
Results at the World Rowing Championships were outstanding Two Gold, fifth, sixth, ninth and more notable placings. Second in World Olympic boat ranking as we head into the qualification year, punching well above our weight.
September saw the Get Going…Get Rowing programme on target to engage 30,000 individual participants in 2018. With the programme expanding to Sligo, Cork, Tipperary and Belfast engaging all ages and including every one of all levels and abilities. We are now getting Ireland rowing. While at the same time our Coach Education programme has engaged 100’s of volunteers and members in the principals of coaching.
As the Winter season has come upon on us the well-deserved nominations came flooding in. Dominic Casey was honoured with the title of World Rowing coach of the year whilst the rest of the team both coaching and athletes have received endless plaudits from their peers.
My thanks go to the volunteer board of Rowing Ireland, the clubs, the volunteers and the staff who work long hours to make rowing in Ireland a better sport.
2019 will be an exciting and challenging year for us at Rowing Ireland as we engage in the four pillars of our Strategic Plan.
We will endeavour to continue on our quest for excellence in all area’s as we head into the Olympic qualification year. We will raise the bar in the process and continue to raise funds to support our heroes and those on the developmental pathway #greenblades.
On behalf of everyone in Rowing Ireland Board, Staff and Athletes may we thank you for your continued support and wish you and those you love a Happy Christmas with every success and Good Wish in 2019.
Yours in Rowing
Michelle McElligott Carpenter