Ireland had eight crews competing at the 2021 European Rowing Championships in Varese on Day One. Four of the Irish Crews qualified for their A Finals, three crews moved to the A/B Semi-Final and one to the C/D Semi-Final.
The Women’s Pair of Monika Dukarska and Aileen Crowley finished second in their heat. The Irish crew beat the boats from Czech Republic and Denmark. The Romanian boat took first place in the heat. The Romanian and Irish Crews advance directly to the A Final on Sunday morning. Monika and Aileen finished with a time of 07:22.04
The Irish Men’s Double of Philip Doyle and Ronan Byrne finished second in their heat. Ronan and Phil were racing against crews from Croatia, Russia, Romania, Italy and Moldova. The Russian won the heat after leading from the start. Ronan and Phil almost caught the Russian boat but the Russians held on at the end. Ronan and Phil finished with a time of 06:17.96.
Phil and Ronan went on to compete in the Repechage with crews from Moldova, Finland, Serie and Hungary. The Irish crew finished second with a time of 06:36:00 and will compete in the A/B Semi-Final on Saturday.
Lydia Heaphy won her heat in the Lightweight Women’s Single Scull Heat after an excellent performance against strong crews. Lydia beat out crews from Romania, Switzerland, Netherlands, and Italy to win the Heat. Lydia held the lead from the start and finished with a time of 07:50.15. Lydia will now race in the A Final on Sunday.
Gary O’Donovan finished second in the Lightweight Men’s Single Scull Heat. Gary finished behind the German boat and finished ahead of crews from Belgium, Slovenia and Bulgaria. Gary was second throughout the race and made a sprint at the end to catch Joachim Agne in the German boat but just missed out on taking first. Gary finished with a time of 07:07.23 and goes straight to the A Final on Sunday.
The Women’s Four of Emily Hegarty, Eimear Lambe, Aifric Keogh and Fiona Murtagh won their Heat with the quickest qualifying time in the Women’s Four category. The Irish crew beat crews from Russia, Ukraine, Italy, France and Germany. Emily, Eimear, Aifric and Fiona finished with a time of 06:36.98 and they have progressed straight to the A Final on Sunday.
Daire Lynch finished fifth in the Men’s Single Scull Heat. Daire faced competitors from Norway, Great Britain, Spain, Hungary and Israel. Kjetil Borch from Norway won the heat with Britain and Spain taking second and third. Daire finished with a racing time of 08:14.87 and moved to the Men’s Single Scull Repechage later in the day.
Daire raced later in the day in the Repechage. Daire finished fourth after competing with boats from the Netherlands, Switzerland, Belarus and Moldova. Daire finished with a time of 07:19.01 and will race in Saturday’s C/D Semi-Final.
The Lightweight Women’s Double of Aoife Casey and Margaret Cremen finished second in their heat. They finished second behind the crew from the Netherlands and were comfortably ahead of the chasing pack. Aoife and Margaret finished with a time of 07:56:00 and progressed to the A/B Semi Final on Saturday.
The final heat of the day for Irish crews saw the current World Champions Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy compete in the Lightweight Men’s Double Sculls. Paul and Fintan won their heat with a dominant performance ahead of the crews from Ukraine, Spain and Estonia. Paul and Fintan finished with a time of 06:54.75 which was the quickest time across the three Lightweight Men’s Double Heats. They will now race in the A/B Semi-Final on Saturday.
Saturday Racing Times (IST)
09:37/09:44 – LW2x – Aoife Casey & Margaret Cremen – A/B Semi-Final
09:51/09:58 – LM2x – Paul O’Donovan & Fintan McCarthy – A/B Semi-Final
11:35/11:42 – M2x – Phil Doyle & Ronan Byrne – A/B Semi-Final
13:27/13:34 – M1x – Daire Lynch – C/D Semi-Final
Sunday Racing Times (IST) – confirmed so far
09:51 – LW1 Lydia Heaphy – A FINAL
10:06 – LM1x – Gary O’Donovan – A FINAL
11:21 – W2- Monika Dukarska & Aileen Crowley – A FINAL
12:21 – W4- Emily Hegarty, Eimear Lambe, Aifric Keogh & Fiona Murtagh – A FINAL
RTE will be covering Saturday and Sunday of the racing and will have a highlight show on the Sunday evening.
- Saturday – RTÉ Player
- Sunday – RTÉ Player
- Sunday – Highlight show and interviews RTÉ 2 at 7pm