It’s going to be a busy weekend in Limerick with almost 500 crews from over 70 schools across the country travelling to O’Briens Bridge for Sunday’s Irish Schools Regatta, which follows the Limerick Regatta at the same venue on Saturday.
The Schools Regatta is run over a four-lane, 1,500m buoyed course with races for Junior 14s (U14) up to U23s. The annual Victor Ludorum Trophy will be presented to the most successful school at the Regatta, an honour St Joseph’s College Galway will be looking to defend.
This year’s entry sees an increase of close to 100 crews from 2016, a further vindication of Rowing Ireland’s “Get Going, Get Rowing” programme which continues to expand to schools across the country.
The programme encompasses the development, co- ordination and delivery of indoor rowing in schools and, ultimately, linkage to local rowing clubs.
In October 2016, programme coordinator Michelle Carpenter was able to confirm that 140 athletes had transitioned from school to club, and this was only across five different clubs at the time.
Many more have joined clubs in the interim, with Carpenter reporting a huge volume of interest from parents in regards to getting their kids involved in their local rowing club and PE teachers enquiring as to how to get the programme up and running in their school.
Over the past week, Get Going, Get Rowing camps were run in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway and will be followed up by summer camps.
The next step for a young athlete would be to then move into a rowing club, and as Carpenter points out, the clubs will then benefit from gaining a “ready-made” rower; i.e. they have all the basic skills learnt and are ready to develop as athletes.
Quish’s SuperValu, Cork, have committed to a two-year sponsorship of the Irish Rowing Championships in what is is a further boost for Rowing Ireland.
The Quish family business, based in Tramore and Ballincollig, provides a local and community based sponsorship, but with real national and even international impact which is anticipated to provide much support to the Irish Rowing Championships.
Quish SuperValu’s partnership involves sponsoring the Irish Rowing Championships, taking place on July 14-16.
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