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Video: More than 1,000 boat crews descend on Farran

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 Double Sculls champions Aoife Lynch and Margaret Cremen of Lee RC with coach Dan Buckley.
Double Sculls champions Aoife Lynch and Margaret Cremen of Lee RC with coach Dan Buckley.

THREE stunning days, not just the weather but on the water at the Irish Rowing Championships.

Ireland pride were on display at the National Rowing Centre, where over three days, with an astonishing 1,049 crews entered to compete in 264 races.

Irish Rowing Championships at the National Rowing Centre, Farran on Friday

That represents 3,000 competitors and when added to the spectators attending the three-day showcase of Irish rowing, the National Rowing Centre put itself into high performance this weekend to welcome 10,000 to the magnificent setting.

A Cork BC crew after competing in the Irish Rowing Championships at the National Rowing Centre, Farran. Picture: David Keane.
A Cork BC crew after competing in the Irish Rowing Championships at the National Rowing Centre, Farran. Picture: David Keane.
Yesterday was the final day, and it was spectacular. As wind has disturbed racing late Saturday evening, crews hit the water from 7am to fulfil the Sunday schedule.

And we had champions of Ireland coming from all corners in ideal conditions.

Irish Rowing Championships at the National Rowing Centre, Farran on Saturday

While there were many highlights the big race of the championships is always the senior eights, to see who are the finest senior crew in Ireland, and this year the finals were classic.

In the ladies UCD/Old Collegians took a quick lead over rivals Skibbereen/UCC, last year's winners.

And what a competition it was. UCD/Old Collegians led at the 1,000m mark, with a crew that included Olympians Sanita Puspure and Claire Lambe, and the visitors proved too strong while holding off a strong by the Cork crew in the closing stages.

Irish Rowing Championships at the National Rowing Centre, Farran on Sunday

Then it was the turn of the men, and a new Skibbereen crew (featuring Olympic silver medalists Gary and Paul O'Donovan and European and World Cup gold medalists Shane O'Driscoll and Mark O'Donovan gave holders Commercial of Dublin a thrilling race, despite being freshly formed.

Commercial led from the start and held off the challenge from NUIG (who won the most titles of the championships at nine) and Skibbereen, who are certainly the crew to watch for in the future.

Sanita Purpure won the senior women's single sculls, while Skibbereen's Gary O'Donovan won the men's lightweight single sculls, and Skibbereen's European silver medalist Denise Walsh was crowned champion of Ireland in women's lightweight single sculls.

Results from Sunday:

Morning Finals Men’s Novice Eight: 1. QUBBC 06:21.561, 2. UCD 06:25.296, 3. DUBC 06:43.812 Women’s Senior Pair: 1. UCD 07:37.408, 2. Skibbereen 07:47.471, 3. Cork 07:48.002, 4. Bann 07:49.143, 5. Commercial A 08:10.097, 6. Commercial B 08:24.878 Women’s Senior Single Sculls: 1. Old Collegians (S Puspure) 08:02.636, 2. Skibbereen (O Hayes) 08:28.887, 3. Methodist (R McBrinn) 08:52.357 Women’s Junior Pair: 1. Fermoy 07:53.373, 2. Enniskillen 08:04.061, 3. Lee 08:18.374, 4. Commercial A 08:23.624, 5. Commercial B 08:25.749, 6. Galway 08:44.718 Men’s Lightweight Single Sculls: 1. Skibbereen (G O’Donovan) 07:22.320, 2. Skibbereen (A Burns) 07:32.367, 3. NUIG (T Dillon) 07:33.820, 4. Carlow (N Murphy) 07:35.664, 5. Waterford (R O’Mahony) 07:48.680, 6. QUB (M McNamee) 08:08.868 Women’s Intermediate Coxed Four: 1. NUIG 07:23.647, 2. Shannon 07:30.335, 3. Cork B 07:31.976, 4. St Michaels 07:34.038, 5. Cork A 07:38.585, 6. Commercial A 07:41.929 Men’s Intermediate Pair: 1. NUIG 06:56.088, 2. Shandon 06:58.401, 3. Cork 07:07.901, 4. Skibbereen A 07:08.417, 5. UCC B 07:13.776, 6. Commercial A 07:16.667 Women’s Lightweight Single Sculls: 1. Skibbereen (D Walsh) 08:09.960, 2. Bann (A O’Donovan) 08:33.992, 3. Carlow (A Byrne) 08:49.774 Men’s Junior Double Sculls: 1. Three Castles A 06:50.217, 2. Castleconnell A 06:52.061, 3. Clonmel 06:53.639, 4. Carlow A 07:05.562, 5. Lee 07:15.937, 6. Three Castles B 07:24.094 Men’s Club Coxed Four: 1. NUIG A 06:43.381, 2. Enniskillen 06:47.881, 3. Neptune A 06:48.647, 4. St Michaels A 06:50.366, 5. Skibbereen 06:52.663, 6. DUBC 07:06.304 Men’s Intermediate Single Sculls: 1. Clonmel (D Lynch) 07:10.250, 2. St Michaels (D O’Connor) 07:16.578, 3. UCC (R Byrne) 07:18.906, 4. Castleconnell (F Crowley) 07:20.031, 5. Skibbereen (K Mannix) 07:21.610, 6. Sligo (G Patterson) 07:27.407 Women’s Club Single Sculls: 1. Carlow (C Nolan) 08:15.218, 2. Lee Valley (E O’Mahony) 08:32.593, 3. Neptune (E Power) 08:34.328, 4. Kenmare (E Crowley) 08:41.688, 5. Belfast (O Donnelly) 08:43.797, 6. Belfast (E Cassidy) 08:55.438 Evening Finals Women’s Club Eight: 1. NUIG 06:46.973, 2. DULBC A 06:51.849, 3. Enniskillen 06:55.208, 4. Skibbereen 07:00.333, 5. QULBC 07:05.052, 6. Cork B 07:14.928 Men’s Junior Pair: 1. Enniskillen B 06:52.043, 2. Cork 06:53.184, 3. Shandon B 07:01.044, 4. Methodist A 07:08.810, 5. Waterford A 07:12.075, 6. Commercial B 07:24.013 Women’s Junior Quadruple: 1. Lee 06:54.964, 2. Workmen’s 07:06.230, 3. New Ross 07:25.262, 4. Clonmel 07:33.512, 5. Offaly 07:40.544, 6. Belfast RC 07:49.122 Women’s Senior Eight: 1. UCD/Old Collegians 06:24.836, 2. Skibbereen/UCC 06:27.961, 3. NUIG/Cork 06:33.665, 4. St Michaels 06:42.243, 5. Commercial 06:43.821, 6. DULBC 07:13.588 Men’s Intermediate Double Sculls: 1. Clonmel 06:37.168, 2. UCC 06:44.934, 3. Skibbereen 06:48.479, 4. Castleconnell 06:51.433, 5. Commercial 07:00.606, 6. Cappoquin 07:37.585 Men’s Senior Eight: 1. Commercial 05:46.307, 2. Skibbereen 05:47.948, 3. NUIG 05:48.385, 4. DUBC 05:53.714, 5. UCD B 05:55.979, 6. UCD A 06:03.308 Women’s Intermediate Single Sculls: 1. Bann (H Scott) 07:55.583, 2. Bann (A O’Donovan) 08:13.709, 3. Commercial (R Morris) 08:17.865, 4. Neptune (C Feerick) 08:19.037, 5. Garda (B Larson) 08:29.553, 6. Galway (F Murtagh) 08:34.225