HomeWorldIrish Rowers Have Strong Start at World Cup II in Rotsee

Irish Rowers Have Strong Start at World Cup II in Rotsee


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World Cup II is off to a good start for Irish rowing. The weather stayed good in the morning for the majority of the racing. However, the Rotsee saw a big change in the afternoon, with strong winds, rain, and thunder, which saw the afternoon session postponed.

2023 World Champion Siobhán McCrohan dominated her heat of the Lightweight Women’s Single, leading from the start and finishing almost 10 seconds ahead of the rest of the field. There was only one spot up for grabs for direct progression into the A Final, and McCrohan was making sure that place was hers. Great Britain, Uruguay, Japan, Czechia and the Netherlands will have to go through the repechage to make it to the race for medals tomorrow.

Galway girls Fiona Murtagh and Aifric Keogh are through to the Women’s Pair A/B Semi-Final after a win in their heat this morning. Ireland led from the start but it was the crew from the United States that stuck with them as the race progressed. Stroke seat of the US double, Jessica Thoennes, was part of the silver medal-winning eight at last year’s World Championships and bow seat Azja Czajkowski won gold in the U23 Women’s eight. Murtagh and Keogh are up first for Ireland tomorrow morning at 8:27 am for the A/B Semi final.

A new combination in the Men’s Pair sees John Kearney sitting in with Ross Corrigan instead of Nathan Timoney as he returns from a small injury. Kearney and Corrigan worked their way up from the back of the pack, moving through the first marker in fifth place and sitting in fourth into the last 500m. Making their move at this point, Ireland was the fastest-moving boat on the water in the last quarter and took second place behind the reigning World Champions, Great Britain.

Alison Bergin and Zoe Hyde pulled out all the stops in the Women’s Double, winning their Heat and progressing to the A/B Semifinals with the fastest time out of the three Heats. In quite a tight race, less than three seconds was separating the four crews through the 1500m mark. Tomorrow morning, they race the Semifinal with the top three crews progressing to the A Final.

U23 athletes Brian Colsh of University of Galway BC and Andrew Sheehan of UCC RC, raced the Men’s Double this morning. Only one boat from each of the heats would progress to the A Final, so it’s into the Repechage for Ireland with Cuba, France, Norway, New Zealand and Italy. The first four across the line will make it to the A Final with the remaining two going to the B Final.

The Lightweight Women’s Double of Margaret Cremen and Aoife Casey finished third in their Heat, just outside the top two spots that got direct qualification to Sunday’s A Final. They head into the Repechage with the quickest time and it’ll be the fastest two that secure their place in the race for medals.

The Tokyo Olympic Champions, Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy are back in the Lightweight Men’s Double and have started as they mean to go on. A win in their Heat sends them directly into the A/B Semi which will take place tomorrow morning. 2024 European Champions, Switzerland, won the first heat with Italy, the European silver medallists winning the second heat. With their past success, its O’Donovan and McCarthy that will be the crew that every country will want to avoid in the draw.

Ireland’s two PR2 Men’s Scullers went head to head in today’s Prelim Race. This was the first race for Steven McGowan in the single, and Tiarnán O’Donnell’s first international race. Stefanoni from Italy took the lead initially and held his position right through the race, but there was only three seconds between second and fifth place. O’Donnell took fourth place and McGowan took fifth. With such tight margins it’s all to play for in tomorrow’s final.

Day 1 Results (Irish interest)

  • Lightweight Women’s Single Heat 1st -> A Final
  • Women’s Pair Heat 1st -> A/B Semi
  • Women’s Double Heat 1st -> A/B Semi
  • Lightweight Men’s Double Heat 1st -> A/B Semi
  • Men’s Pair Heat 2nd -> A/B Semi
  • Men’s Double Heat 4th -> Repechage
  • Lightweight Women’s Double Heat 3rd -> Repechage
  • PR2 Men’s Single (O’Donnell) Preliminary Race 4th -> Final
  • PR2 Men’s Single (McGowan) Preliminary Race 5th -> Final

Saturday Schedule (IST)

  • 8:27am – Women’s Pair A/B Semi
  • 8:37am – Men’s Pair A/B Semi
  • 8:42am – Women’s Double A/B Semi
  • 8:52am – Men’s Double Repechage
  • 10:30am – Lightweight Women’s Double Repechage
  • 10:35am – Lightweight Men’s Double A/B Semi
  • 11:15am – PR2 Men’s Single Final
  • 11:48am – Lightweight Women’s Single Final

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