John Kearney is from Ballinhassig, County Cork. He began rowing at Cork Boat Club in 2013 and is currently a member of UCC, where he is studying Biological Earth and Environmental Sciences.
After completing his Leaving Cert in 2018, John decided to take a gap year to focus on rowing. He won his first trial in February 2019 and was selected for Junior Europeans in March 2019, where he won silver in the JM4+ category and went on to place 4th in Junior Worlds in 2020.
In 2020, John raced in the coxed four at the U23 European Championships and secured a bronze medal. Shortly afterward, he was selected as the spare for the Men’s Senior double at the Senior European Championships.
While initially planning to join the lightweight category due to his build and height, John was persuaded by Fran Keane to pursue the heavyweight team as part of the development squad for the Paris Olympics. Since then, he has been rowing from the National Rowing Centre and participating in U23 and Senior events annually.
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