Enniskillen Royal Boat Club won a record 14 Irish Titles at the Irish Rowing Championships at the weekend finishing off a fantastic season for the young rowers and their coaches.
On Friday evening the boys J18 8+ overcame Colaiste Iognaid and St Joseph’s to win the coveted Junior eight Championship of Ireland in fine style. The crew were Michael Stewart, Odhran Donaghy, Peter Murphy, Sam Balcombe, Ben Corrigan, Rory Gamble, Lewis Nixon, Joshua Timoney and cox Frankie Reihill. This is the 5th time in the last 6 years that the Club have won this event which is quite an achievement. The girls J18 4- of Maeve Donnelly, Zoe McCutcheon, Jenny Little and Caragh Leonard won their final over Bann RC to give the Club their 2nd Championship Points.
The 1st medals of the Championships came from the future of the Club, the young MJ14 4X+ of Harry Bell, Matthew Dolan, Callum Timoney, Kyle Abraham and cox Grace Ralph. Callum Timoney is following in the footsteps of his older brothers Nathan and Joshua carrying on the family tradition of winning Irish Championship medals. There were great wins in the MJ15 1X for Luke Paton and Tim Murphy and for the WJ15 4X+ of Angel Huang, Laura Turner, Aine McCaffrey, Abigail Linton and cox Grace Ralph. The 7th win on Day 1 came from the girls J16 8+ Martha McBrien, Chloe Thompson, Abby Corry, Katie Donnelly, Nikki Kernaghan, Katie Corrigan, EnyaStewart, Caitlin O’Hare and cox Georgia Maxwell.
Saturday saw wins for the MJ16 8+ of Lewis Nixon, Charlie Smith, Tim Murphy, Tom Blake, Brett McLean, Marcus Davis-Kunze, Sean Tracey, Luke Paton and cox Frankie Reihill and the boys and the girls J15 8+. There were great silver medals for the MJ18 4+ of Michael Stewart, Peter Murphy, Odhran Donaghy, Sam Balcombe and cox Frankie Reihill and the WJ14 Octuple. On Saturday evening the girls J18 8+ of Maeve Donnelly, Zoe McCutcheon, Jenny Little, Victoria Wilson, Abby Corry, Caragh Leonard, Martha McBrien, Trudie McComb and cox Sarah Dolan were narrowly beaten by Bann RC. Most of this crew will be back for more junior rowing next year with the others still eligible to row at junior level at National Schools Regatta and Henley. This has been a very successful season indeed for the girls and they should be very proud of what they have achieved.
Sunday saw Nathan Timoney and Jack Kennedy lift the trophy for the Inter Pair. These 2 rowers have been with the Club since year 9 and they have had huge success with the Club. The high esteem in which they are both held among the younger rowers, the Coaches and all the parents was very evident when they brought the borrowed trophy back to the camp. There were wins for the MJ15 and the WJ15 Octuples and a great win for the newbies WJ 14 quad of Rachel Cullinan, Cristiona McCaffrey, Laura Turner, Keeva Corry and cox Abigail Linton.
The racing season was wound up by coach Derek Holland who thanked all the coaches for all their work and sacrifice to bring such huge success to the Club. He thanked Assistant Coach Barney Rix, part time coach Jane Willis who was on a year’s placement with the Club and the school. He thanked Patrick Madigan for the time he invested in the boys first eight and for his contribution to their success on Friday, to Iain Kennedy and the time and effort he has invested in the junior rowers in particular, to Gerry Murphy, Simon Crawford and Richard Smith and to Jo Balcombe, Alan Crooks and Jonny Gibson who stepped in to help out when Tom Noble died at the end of March. Derek acknowledged the help that the Club captains Zoe McCutcheon and Jack McDaid were to him and the role that all the parents play in the Club’s success in 2019. Derek and the Club President David Storrs made the decision that instead of awarding this year’s President’s prizes to 2 rowers the medals will form part of a memorial to ERBC coach, Tom Noble and to former Club President and wonderful supporter of the kids, Sir Anthony Hart who died last week after taking unwell while at Henley Royal Regatta. He was at the Regatta to support the two crews from ERBC and he had helped launch the boys for their race before taking a seat in the launch behind Derek following the boys down the Thames. Both of these men played a huge role in the lives of the rowers and will be sorely missed. Thanks was given to everyone who supported the Club financially this year, Sponsors, parents and supporters from far and wide.
The coaches and rowers are now on a well earned break until September. If anyone would like to get involved with coaching this fantastic group of young rowers next season please get in touch with the Club through the Facebook page
Jack Kennedy, Coach Derek Holland and Nathan Timoney, winners of Inter Coxless Pair
Kyle Abraham, Callum Timoney, Grace Ralph, Matthew Dolan, Harry Bell
MJ18 8+ Champions of Ireland
Marcus Davis-Kunze, Tom Murphy, Charlie Smith, Brett McLean, Assistant Coach, Barney Rix, cox Frankie Reihill, Lewis Nixon, Sean Tracey, Tom Blake and Luke Paton winners of MJ16 8+
Maeve Donnelly, Zoe McCutcheon, Jenny Little and Caragh Leonard winners of WJ18 4-
Odhran Donaghy and Peter Murphy