This week the Irish team depart for the 2017 European Rowing U23 Championships. An eleven-strong team of athletes, along with coaches and management, departed for Kruszwicka, Poland, earlier this week for the event which takes place across Saturday and Sunday, the 2nd and 3rd of September.
Niall Beggan of Commercial Rowing Club and UCD’s Andrew Goff, who were part of the Irish lightweight quadruple scull that won bronze at the Under 23 World Championships last month, were due to team up in a lightweight men’s double scull, while the remaining athletes will all form a women’s eight, with the added privilege of being Ireland’s first ever crew of this category to compete for Ireland at a FISA (World Rowing) event.
However, unfortunately Niall has been forced to withdraw from racing due to illness. Andrew will now instead compete in the lightweight men’s single sculls.
The women’s eight crew will be made up of seven different clubs in total, from Cork, Galway and Dublin. The athletes selected are Emily Hegarty (Skibbereen RC), Sadhbh O’ Connor (NUIG BC), Oisin Forde (Cork BC), Aoife Corcoran (DULBC), Caoimhe Dempsey (DULBC), Claire Feerick (Neptune RC), Nuala Landers (NUIG BC), Ruth Gilligan (UCD BC) and UCC’s Cormac O’ Connell is the selected coxswain. Coaches John Armstrong and Paul Thornton will travel to Poland with the Team as well as Team Manager Denis O’ Regan.
Kruszwica is a town in central Poland, situated at Lake Goplo. The Kruszwica regatta course is a natural rowing course situated in a Landscape Park, protected by the programme Natura 2000, and the members of “Goplo Kruszwica” Rowing Club have great experience in organising rowing competitions, including European Championships with over 1000 competitors.
The event includes over 150 entries from 30 different countries. Heats and repechages take place on Saturday, followed by semi-finals and finals on Sunday. The draw will be made tomorrow afternoon (Friday).
Best of luck to the entire Irish team and coaches!