24 May 2023

~4 minutes read

ROWING: European Championship Preview

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ROWING: European Championship Preview

There are five Galway rowers involved in the European Championships that begin tomorrow (Thursday, 25th May 2023) in Slovenia.

Katie O’Brien, Stephen McGowan, Aifric Keogh, Fiona Murtagh and debutante Fionnan McQuillan-Tolan are all competing.

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The 2023 European Rowing Championships begins tomorrow morning in Bled, Slovenia. All ten of the crews from Ireland will race tomorrow in the heats.

The PR2 Mix2x of Katie O’Brien and Steven McGowan will be first to hit the water at the Championships. The Galway duo are up against the current World Champions, Laroslav Koiuda and Svitlana Bohuslavska of Ukraine. At last year’s European Championships in Munich, Katie and Steven finished 21 seconds behind Ukraine and reduced that gap just a month later to 12 seconds at the World Championships. This week they’ll be looking to reduce that gap even further.

The lightweight team are fielding some new combinations with Hugh Moore and Fintan McCarthy in the Men’s Double and Siobhan McCrohan in the Women’s Scull. Hugh won silver in the lightweight Men’s double at U23 Worlds last year and raced the single at the 2022 World Championships. Siobhan previously raced in the lightweight Women’s Double with Rio Olympian, Claire Lambe, in the lead up to the London Olympics. Making her return to the international stage since 2016, McCrohan will be aiming to put down a solid race in tomorrow’s heat. 2022 World Bronze medallists, Margaret Cremen and Aoife Casey race again in the Lightweight Women’s Double.

Philip Doyle and Daire Lynch will race the Men’s Double in one of the largest events with 22 entries. This combination raced in April at Memorial Paolo D’Aloja International Regatta in Piediluco. After taking away silver medals from that event they’ll be eager for more this weekend. The Men’s Coxless four of John Kearney, Ross Corrigan, Nathan Timoney and Fionnán McQuillan-Tolan is also a relatively new combination, and will be an exciting watch after the strong performance from Ireland’s Four at the World Championships last September where they finished in 8th position. The Men’s Single will see Brian Colsh race head to head against some of the worlds best. Colsh also raced the scull at the 2022 World Championships, finishing in 15th position.

2022 World bronze medal winners Zoe Hyde and Sanita Puspure face silver medallists, the Netherlands, in the Women’s Double heat in the morning. Due to illness at last year’s European Championships, Hyde and Puspure had to withdraw from the event so it’s all to play for this weekend. A new addition to the squad, Imogen Magner, makes her debut with Rowing Ireland this weekend in the pair with Natalie Long.

The Women’s Coxless four also sees a new combination with a line up of Eimear Lambe, Tara Hanlon, Fiona Murtagh and Aifric Keogh. These athletes are highly versed on the international scene, with three of the four racing in the silver medal performance at Europeans last year. Tomorrow they’re up against the current World Champions, Great Britain.

Follow the Racing

  • Live Race Tracker and Live Audio for all races on the World Rowing.
  • Live Video Stream will be available for the A Finals on Saturday and Sunday on the World Rowing.
  • The A Finals on Saturday and Sunday will also be on RTE News Channel and RTE Player.
  • Race updates will be published on all Rowing Ireland social media channels.

Thursday Schedule (IST)

  • PR2 Mix2x Heat – 8:32am
  • W2- Heat – 8:45am
  • W2x Heat – 9:05am
  • M2x Heat – 9:20am
  • LW1x Heat – 9:40am
  • LM2x Heat – 10:00am
  • W4- Heat – 10:25am
  • M4- Heat – 10:30am
  • M1x Heat – 10:55am
  • LW2x Heat – 11:20am

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