Tullamore Time Trial 2011 – Saturday 1st October

A time trial over 2250m on the Grand Canal, Tullamore.  Four sessions will be held, at 8:30, 10:30, 12:30 and 2:30 pm.

Food and drink will be available in the boathouse.

The Course

See the start here and the finish here.  The race will be from west to east.

This is an old view of the boathouse, slip, holding area, and start from google maps.


See the local weather forecast, from our friends in yr.no.


Safety please see our  Safety Statement which incorporates some controls for the Time Trial.

Instructions to competitors

Stewards will be appointed to manage the area around the boat house to allow for safe parking of boat trailers and vehicles, and safe storage and movement of boats.

The road outside the boathouse is a public road with some traffic on it.  At this time of year there may be some agricultural traffic.  Please do not obstruct the road with vehicles or equipment.  It is especially important that no vehicles are parked where they obstruct the sight lines of oncoming traffic or people leaving the boat house area.  There are limited areas where vehicles can pass along the road, please be courteous, allow others to pass and do not obstruct these areas.

A Slip Steward will inform scullers of when they should slip.  The slip will accommodate 3 scullers at a time, scullers should launch when they are asked to.  Close your gates and launch immediately.  Do any adjustment necessary in the storage area or on the water, please do not block the slip.  The launch order has been designed to avoid excessive waiting times for younger competitors above the start.  We would be very grateful for your assistance in achieving this.

Scullers should stay in the middle of the canal while travelling in either direction, unless they need to pass another sculler.  The canal was recently cleaned very thoroughly by Waterways Ireland, but there are still some weeds near the banks that may slow competitors.  Scullers will be started at intervals which should avoid the need to overtake.  There will be a number of safety stewards on the far bank to assist anyone who requires assistance.

Stewards and a starter will be present at the start area.  Please obey their instructions so that everyone can have an enjoyable and fair race. Scullers will be held in the area above the start.  This area extends for approximately 300m.  Competitors will not be able to practice in this area.  It may be possible for competitors who are waiting for the start to pull their boats in and get out onto the bank.  Coaches and parents may facilitate this with e.g. shoes, coats etc.

Competitors will be started at intervals, and will be called up in turn.  A flying start will be used. There are two small bends on the course, at about 750m and about 1000m.  When you have finished racing, please continue paddling and make your way to the slip, which is 250m from the finish line.

Visiting clubs are invited to bring a few bicycles to allow them to observe the racing and accompany younger competitors.

Offaly take Gold, Silver and Bronze at National Championships 2011

The National Championship regatta was held at the National Rowing Centre at Farran Wood, Cork.  The regatta was held over three days from Thursday to Saturday.  Nine Offaly crews raced in various junior categories.  Offaly Rowing Club brought home one gold, one silver and one bronze medal.

On Thursday, in good racing conditions, Alison Mooney won a gold medal in the womens junior 14 single scull.  Alison was competing in her first championship event, and against older competitors.  She started steadily, but soon made her way to the front and powered away to a substantial win.  Based on this performance, Alison will be a force to be reckoned with in this category next year.

Claire Mangan raced in the womens junior 16 single scull, also on Thursday.  Claire raced well, finishing fifth in her heat and missing out on a place in the final.

Also on Thursday, four club members raced in the mens junior 18 single scull.  The competition, with 26 competitors, started with a time trial for eighteen places in the semi finals.  John Neale, James Houlihan, Anthony Gannon and Mantas Pukelis all made it into the semi finals.  There were only two qualification places in each semi final, and the standard was very high.  James Houlihan was sixth in his semi-final, in a hard fought race.  Mantas Pukelis and John Neale were drawn in the same semi-final.  Mantas finished third, and John fourth, racing well, but outside the qualifying positions.  Anthony Gannon was in the third semi-final.  He finished third, a length away from the last qualifying place.

On Friday, in fair racing conditions, Cathal Phelan and Patrick Grogan raced in a field of 42 in the mens junior 16 single scull.  The race started with a time trial, with eighteen places in three semi-finals.  Both Patrick and Cathal qualified.  Cathal, who was tagged as Offaly B, came home in the fastest qualifying time, with an enormous lead.  Patrick also won his heat, cruising home in the 13th fastest time.  Both Offaly scullers were in the first semi-final.  Cathal raced a strategic race and slotted into second place to qualify for the final.  Patrick was sixth in the semi-final, and didn’t progress.  In the final, Cathal was a length off the pace to half way, but made a push to go in front.  Buckley from Cork responded and a dogfight ensued.  At the line, the margin of a few feet unfortunately went in favour of the local man, and Cathal came away with silver.  The times achieved by the junior 16 compared well to the junior 18s the day before.

Also on Friday, James Houlihan and Mantas Pukelis raced in the mens junior 18 double sculls, against a large and extremely competitive field.  In the heat, the crew qualified comfortably for the semi-final.  The semi-final was a test of character, and the Offaly crew had to race out of their skin to scrape the last place in the final, less than a length ahead of fourth place Lee from Cork.  In the final, the double found it difficult to stay with the pace but battled bravely and finished in a very good fifth place.

On Saturday, condition deteriorated steadily, with rain showers and high winds whipping up difficult waves.  The Offaly mens junior 18 quadruple scull of James Houlihan, Anthony Gannon, Mantas Pukelis and Cathal Phelan faced another semi final with only two qualifying spots.  In a re-run of the double sculls, Offaly fought Lee over the full course and just managed to hold them off to secure a place in the final.  In the final, with conditions having deteriorated further, the race was very competitive.  Castleconnell, fresh from winning the single and doubles events, took an early lead from Skibbereen, Portora (Enniskillen) and Bann (Coleraine).  Offaly were fifth early on but battled through the middle of the course to challenge the two leading crews.  The boys almost caught Skibbereen and were threatening to push into second place, but didn’t quite manage to move into the sliver position before the end of the race, finishing less than half a length (4 metres, 0.8 seconds) behind.  The bronze medal was a very good result in probably the strongest field ever in this event.

Congratulations to former members David Neale and Peter Grogan who both won two championships for UCD, Ciaran Brady and Adam O’Donoghue who won for Carlow and Eimear Moran who was runner up for Three Castles in two events.  Sheila Clavin and Rory O’Connor also raced for St. Michaels (Limerick) and Queens University, Belfast respectively.

A big thanks to Frank Durkin who, as for so many years, expertly coached all the Offaly crews.

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Offaly Rowing Club compete in Athlone and Castleconnell Sprint Regatta 2011

In preparation for the National Championships in mid July, Offaly Rowing Club competed in Athlone Regatta at Coosan last weekend. There was a win for the club in the junior 16 single sculls. This weekend saw the Offaly Rowing Club girls compete over 500m at Castleconnell Sprints, Limerick


Offaly Rowing Club competed in Athlone Regatta in the mens Junior 18 single sculls, mens junior 18 double sculls,  mens junior 16 single sculls and the womens junior  15 double scull and the womens 15 and 16 quadruple sculls. Four scullers rowed in the mens junior 18 single sculls. Mantas Pukelis made it to the final, which was rowed in quite difficult conditions.  He came second.  James Houlihan was second in his heat and made it through to the semi-final.  He was third in his semi-final, and did not qualify for the final. Anthony Gannon and John Neale also raced in this event.  They were both third in their respective heats and did not qualify for the semi-final.

In the mens double sculls two doubles raced for Offaly, Anthony Gannon and John Neale and Mantas Pukelis and James Houlihan.   There were three heats of three boats in this event, and only a win in the heat was good enough to get through to the final. Both Offaly crews were second in their respective heats.

Cathal Phelan raced in the junior 15 single sculls. He won his heat and in the final and handled the rough conditions very well to win comfortably.

The Offaly women competed in the womens junior 16 quadruple scull and the double scull categories. The quadruple scull consisted of Claire Mangan, Alex Vickers, Alison Mooney, Leah Maher and cox  Kaylin Maher.  Alex Vickers and Leah Maher also raced in the double scull. The girls put in a good performance in their races but did not qualify for the finals.

This weekend the Offaly women travelled to Limerick for the Castleconnell Sprint Regatta. Competing on behalf of the club in the womens junior 16 category was a quadruple scull, double scull and single scull. In the junior 15 category a quadruple scull, double scull and single scull and junior 14 double and single. Racing in the junior 16 quadruple scull was Claire Mangan, Chanelle O’Dwyer, Leah Moran and Alex Vickers, coxed by Kaylin moran.  In the junior 15 quad was Molly McKeagney, Alison Mooney, Leah Moran and Alex Vickers, with Kaylin Moran coxing.

Claire Mangan raced in the junior 16 single scull, Alex Vickers in the junior 15 scull and Alison Mooney in the junior 14 event.  In the doubles, Claire Mangan and Chanelle O’Dwyer raced in the junior 16 double, Alex Vickers and Leah Moran in the junior 15 double and Alison Mooney and Molly McKeaghney in the junior 14 double. Alison was pipped at the finish line in her heat of the single sculls and was unfortunate to make the final.

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Offaly Rowing Club compete in Carlow and Metropolitan Regattas 2011

On Sunday a smaller than usual group of rowers from Offaly Rowing Club travelled to Carlow Rowing Club to compete in the two lane regatta course on the River Barrow. Offaly Rowing Club took first place in the mens junior 16 single sculls and mens junior 16 double sculls. The club was also represented in the womens junior 14 double scull and mens junior 18 single scull.

Cathal Phelan and Patrick Grogan represented Offaly Rowing Club in the mens junior single scull and double scull category at Carlow Regatta.  Cathal beat Runcorn Rowing Club from the UK in the heats, Carlow Rowing Club in the semi-finals and cruised to victory against Graiguenamanagh Rowing Club, Kilkenny to cross the finish line first. Patrick Grogan made it to the semi finals of the single scull but was beaten in the semi-finals by Commercial Rowing Club Dublin by two boat lengths.

In the mens junior 16 double scull the crew of Cathal Phelan and Patrick Grogan were unbeatable. Comfortably beating Fermoy Rowing Club Cork the crew of Cathal and Patrick led from the start in the final against the home club Carlow Rowing Club. After taking an early led the crew settled into a comfortable pace and crossed the finish line well ahead of the Carlow crew.


A very competitive field in the mens junior 18 single scull saw Offaly Rower John Neale reaching the semi-final. In a close first heat with a canvas or in time terms a half a second between John Neale of Offaly and Schone of Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny, the Offaly sculler just held onto a lead crossing the finish line. In the semi-final the Offaly Rower lost out on a place in the finals to Neptune Rowing Club, Dublin.


For the Offaly Rowing Club junior 14 womens double scull crew Carlow Regatta was the first side by side race for Alison Mooney and Molly Mc Keagney. Although Alison had competed in the winter time trial season for Molly this was her first rowing race of this season. And although the Offaly girls were behind St. Michaels Rowing Club, Limerick in their race by three boat lengths, the Offaly Rowers steered a good course on a bending river course.  They raced hard all the way in unfamiliar conditions and with flow quite unlike the training conditions on the canal, and produced a good performance on the day.

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Offaly Rowing Club compete in Gent, Belgium on 7th and 8th May 2011

Eight junior men and a junior woman from Offaly Rowing club, together with coach Frank Durkin and a number of parents travelled to Gent to race in the Sport Gent International May Regatta to race against the best in northern Europe.  The junior mens squad consisted of Anthony Gannon, Mantas Pukelis, James Houlihan, John Neale, Maurice Harnett, Cathal Phelan, Patrick Grogan and Patrick Walsh with Claire Mangan representing Offaly Rowing Club junior women. Other countries competing at the regatta included Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, France and the United Kingdom.


Offaly Rowing Club crews competing on the first day of competition, namely Saturday, included a junior mens quadruple scull, junior mens and junior women single sculls and a mens junior double and a womens junior eight composite crew with Methodist College, Belfast. In the junior womens sweep oar 8 Claire Mangan of Offaly Rowing Club along with fellow crew members from Methodist College Belfast Rowing Club were behind Cork Boat Club taking second place. Claire also competed up a category in the junior womens single scull and finished 34th.


The mens junior quadruple scull of Cathal Phelan, John Neale, Mantas Pukelis and James Houlihan were placed sixth in a field of 29. Four of the five crews ahead of them were composites of more than one club, including two from the French national team. In the mens junior 18 single scull a total of 83 competitors participated in the race. The best of the Irish was Anthony Gannon from Offaly Rowing Club who finished 10th ahead of fellow club members Cathal Phelan (12th), Maurice Harnett (21st), Patrick Walsh (64th), Patrick Grogan (72nd) and John Neale (78th). In the mens junior 18 double scull two crews represented Offaly Rowing Club Mantas Pukelis and James Houlihan finishing 20th ahead of  Patrick Grogan and Patrick Walsh.


On Sunday the wind conditions had improved with a lighter headwind travelling up the course from the finish to the start. Claire Mangan from Offaly Rowing Club had continued success in the junior womens sweep oar 8 with Methodist College Belfast Rowing Club finishing in second place. She also raced with Methodist College Belfast in a junior womens quadruple scull.



Offaly Rowing Club junior men were represented in the junior 18 quadruple and single scull, junior 16 double and single scull.  John Neale, Anthony Gannon, Mantas Pukelis and James Houlihan represented Offaly Rowing Club in the junior 18 quadruple scull finishing 8th of 17 crews and the best of the irish. In the junior 18 single scull Mantas Pukelis finished 6th of 46 scullers that raced, followed in by Anthony Gannon (15th), James Houlihan (19th) and Maurice Harnett (27th). John Neale and Maurice Harnett also competed in the mens junior 18 double scull finishing 26th of 35.


Competing for Offaly Rowing Club in the mens junior 16 single scull were Cathal Phelan, Patrick Grogan and Patrick Walsh. In a field of 58competitors from Germany, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Israel, Tunisia and Ireland the Offaly rowers finished in 8th, 30th and 44th respectively.  In the mens junior 16 single scull Patrick Grogan and Cathal Phelan put in a great performance to finish in 9th in a field of 42 crews beating fellow irish men from Cork Boat Club by two seconds.

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Offaly Senior Women compete in Limerick Regatta 2011

Offaly Senior women of Joanne Moran and new Offaly Rowing Club member Anne Claffey competed in their first regatta race of the season. The women competed in both the single sculls and the double sculls category.

In the single scull category the Offaly women were drawn in separate heats with two boats to qualify for the finals. Crews competing in the heats included Killorglin Rowing Club, St. Michaels Rowing Club, University of Limerick Rowing Club, Skibbereen Rowing Club, Shandon Rowing Club and Offaly Rowing Club. Joanne Moran of Offaly Rowing Club qualified from the heat and came fourth in the final. Unfortunately for Anne the competition got the better of her as she missed out on a place in the finals.

Later in the day the girls teamed up to represent Offaly Rowing Club in the finals. Similar to the single sculls there was a series of qualifying heats for final selection. In the heats the girls had a good start and maintained their position to guarantee themselves a place in the finals where the girls finished in third place.

For the junior members of Offaly Rowing Club this coming weekend will see eight men and an Offaly woman competing in Ghent, Belgium.  The junior men will compete in the single scull, double scull and quadruple scull categories. In the junior womens competition Offaly Rowing Club will be represented in the single sculls but will also form a composite crew with Methodist College Rowing Club, Belfast to compete in the junior womens eight sweep oar.  Good Luck to all our competitors.

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