Dublin Head of the River 2007
posted by Roy R Sinclair ( Vice President
- 6 Feb 2007
The two Inverness Rowing Club crews which travelled to Dublin last weekend for
the annual Dublin Head of the River Race on the River Liffey on Saturday
provided a distinctly International flavour to the proceedings, both on and
off the water.
Arriving in the Irish capital, both crews took to the upper reaches of the
Liffey on the Friday to familarise themselves with the conditions and make
necessary adjustments to the equipment which had been kindly loaned to them by
the Old Collegians Boat Club and the An Garda Siochana College Rowing Club. A
brief foray into the Guinness Storehouse to discover the age-old brewing
traditions of this famous amber liquid was followed by a short tasting session
in the rooftop Gravity Bar from which 300 degree views of the city and the
surrounding countryside were enjoyed.
An early night was had by all in preparation for the energetic activities of
Saturday dawned bright and cold with a crisp hoare frost covering the grassy
banks of the upper reaches of the River Liffey.
Both crews arrived at the boathouses in good time to make final adjustments
and preparations for the day's event which started off with a coxes briefing
meeting shortly after 9am. The men's crew cox Thomas Prag carefully considered
the variety of instructions provided which were to be of significant
assistance in steering his crew over the course which would involve passing
through a total of thirteen bridges of differing configurations, and received
suitable encouragement from his crew in negotiating the tricky portage over
the cascading weir on the route to the starting line right in the middle of
the city. The women's crew had the benefit of an experienced cox from the host
club and joined their male colleagues in the marshalling area beside the world
famous O'Connell Street Bridge
By start time at 11.30am, crowds had gathered to support the crews in the
bright midday sunshine on the walkways and bridge parapets of the riverside.
The Inverness men's crew stroked by Neil Wallace with Colin Sinclair, Duncan
Alexander, Ken Sinclair, John Sharkey, Dave Rothwell, Ken Andrews and Roy
Sinclair in support was superbly coxed over the 3.7 km course by Thomas Prag
(wearing suitably Scottish headgear) and reached the finishing line in 14
minutes 52 seconds narrowly missing second place to the crew from host club
Old Collegians Boat Club.
The women's crew stroked by Susanne Standish-Hunter, ably supported by Ailie
Ord (Strathclyde Park RC), Hilary Cook (Sons of Thames RC), Hazel Smith, Beth
West (Sons of Thames RC), Mary Clouston, Cathy Mordaunt, Hazel Geddes and
Kevin Towey (cox from Old Collegians Boat Club) also had a fine race to cover
the course in 15 minutes 22 seconds and in doing so became the fastest crew in
their event category.
Both crews and their supporters took time to relax and refresh themselves
after their exciting experience on the water and later enjoyed the buzz of
Dublin night life before travelling back to Inverness at the end of a most
enjoyable weekend - across the water.
Next weekend sees the Scottish Indoor Rowing Championships taking place at the
'Timecapsule' in Coatbridge on Sunday11th February when the club will be
represented by the Sinclair brothers in respective Junior 18 and Under 23