In David Hickey’s memoir, The Trinity College VIII: Rowing for the Ladies Plate, David provides the reader with a delightful, light-hearted account of how the 1977 Dublin University Boat Club raced the best university crews in the world in an attempt to win the cherished Ladies Plate at the Royal Henley Regatta – almost exactly 100 years after their last win at the prestigious event.

Trinity College Dublin has a rich academic and sporting history and similarly has produced talented undergraduates with mischievous minds and a healthy disregard for establishment rules. In The Trinity College VIII the two fuse together perfectly.

David also describes the reality of competitive rowing, what actually happens in a race, what it feels like in the boat, the tactics involved and choices that have to be made. He also explains why he and his teammates were willing to spend the many gruelling hours of training required in order to be competitive.

The Trinity College VIII is a story of discipline, camaraderie, fitness, self-belief, teamwork, student antics and hard work as seen by one Trinity College undergraduate who joined the Boat Club to pursue the Ladies. Published by Liffey Press, The Trinity College VIII is now on sale on the Rowing Ireland Greenblades shop. It costs €20.00, with proceeds from each sale going directly to the club he loved so much.

The book can be purchased here

Ireland had three crews competing in the 2021 World Rowing Junior Championships this week in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

In the first race of the day, Ronan Gibbon, Fergus Bryce, Donagh Claffey and David Foley raced in the Men’s Quadruple Sculls A Final, finishing sixth with a time of 06:11.00. The crew faced five other quads, from Belarus, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy and Switzerland.

In the Women’s Double Sculls A Final, Holly Davis and Rachel Bradley finished third to take the bronze medal. The duo finished with a final time of 07:15.62, after achieving the fastest time of all crews in the W2x Semi-Finals. Holly and Rachel faced crews from Greece, France, Slovenia, Italy and The Netherlands.

In the final race of the day, Oisin Boyle and Martin O’Grady finished fifth in the Men’s Double Sculls A Final, with a time of 06:36.52. Oisin and Martin faced crews from Greece, Italy, Poland and Germany.

Speaking after the race, Rowing Ireland’s High-Performance Director Antonio Maurogiovanni said: “I would like to congratulate all of the athletes and coaches on their performances and results in the World Rowing Junior Championships this weekend. This was the last event of the year and overall, it was a very successful weekend for our athletes and coaches.

“The Rowing Ireland National Rowing Centre has once again delivered a fantastic performance, after the six crews qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics winning two medals, and the U23 crews racing at the u23 World Championships, also taking home two medals.

“Congratulations to Holly, Rachel and their coaches on winning the bronze medal in the women’s double. For all three crews to reach A Finals is a great accomplishment and continues to show how successful the high-performance program is.

“Thank you to their coaches Ciro, Janet, Nicolo and Leah for their hard work and dedication in preparing and coaching the crews over the last number of weeks at the National Rowing Centre. I also want to thank the athlete’s and coaches clubs and their families for their continued support. The experience that these athletes gained from this challenging competition will be beneficial for their future development and i look forward to seeing their progression in the coming years.

We are on the right direction, but more work needs to be done in order to support our young rowers for the future; for Paris 2024 and beyond.”


  • M4x (Ronan Gibbon, Fergus Bryce, Donagh Claffey and David Foley) – Sixth place
  • W2x (Holly Davis and Rachel Bradley) – Third place 🥉
  • M2x (Oisin Boyle and Martin O’Grady) – Fifth place

Staff Team

  • Antonio Maurogiovanni – High-Performance Director
  • Ciro Prisco – Coach
  • Janet Walsh – Coach
  • Nicolo Maurogiovanni – Coach
  • Leah O’Regan – Coach

The Irish Times Sport Ireland Sportswoman of the Month Award for July 2021 gas been awarded to Aifric Keogh, Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh and Emily Hegarty, bronze medallists in the Women’s Four rowing at Tokyo 2020.

As Eimear Lambe, from Cabra in Dublin, put it after, “We had a bit of a rocky start, so we definitely didn’t make it easy for ourselves – but we just didn’t give up.

“It’s a bit surreal, to be honest, It’s something for the future, and hopefully this will be the first of many, and hopefully it gives the young girls coming up now a bit of hope that this is completely possible. If we can do it, anyone can.”

Aifric Keogh, a native of Na Forbacha, Galway, is the most experienced of the crew and began rowing in 2006. The 28-year-old has been a member of the High-Performance team for several years. In 2020, Aifric won Bronze at the European Rowing Championships in Poznan, competing in the Women’s Four and went on to win Silver at the 2021 European Rowing Championships in Varese. 

Eimear Lambe is a member of Old Collegians Boat Club and began rowing in 2012. Alongside her W4- teammates, Eimear won a silver medal in the 2019 World U23 Rowing Championships in Sarasota, Florida while she also won Bronze at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in the W4- and went on to win Silver at the 2021 European Rowing Championships in Varese.

NUIG Rowing Club’s Fiona Murtagh won Bronze at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in the Women’s Four and went on to win Silver at the 2021 European Rowing Championships in Varese.

Emily Hegarty, another from the prolific Skibbereen school, has been rowing for 12 years and won Bronze in the 2020 European U23 Championships in Duisburg in the Women’s Pair. The 23-year-old’s other rowing highlights include winning a silver medal at the 2019 World U23 Rowing Championships in Sarasota and winning the Irish Rowing Championships.

Congratulations to Aifric, Eimear, Fiona and Emily, worthy winners of The Irish Times Sport Ireland Sportswoman of the Month award for July 2021.

Photo: Morgan Treacy INPHO