SKIBBEREEN Rowing Club’s Jake and Fintan McCarthy enjoyed a positive start to the international season when they won a bronze medal at the first event of the year, the Piediluco International Regatta.
The lightweight double of Jake and Fintan had tough opposition in their race but they performed very strongly to finish behind Italy and Belgium, who finished just behind Gary and Paul O’Donovan in the A final at the world rowing championships last year.
Jake and Fintan are set to represent Ireland in the lightweight double at the European Rowing Championships next month as UCC medical student Paul looks like he will miss the event because of exams and Gary could compete in the lightweight single.
Skibbereen’s Lydia Heaphy was in action in Italy too and she was part of a new lightweight combination with Cliona Nolan from NUIG. They finished in fifth position at their first international experience together. Another pair combination of Aileen Crowley and Skibbereen’s Emily Hegarty finished seventh. It was a strong start to the year for world single champion Sanita Puspure who dominated her race on Saturday.
The Rowing Ireland High Performance team is now on a two-week training camp in Varese in Italy, just north of Piediluco. This is a big year for Irish rowers with the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Austria also acting as the Olympic qualification regatta.