Alison Berger, winner of J15 single scull event.

Well done to all the crews who took part in the Castleconnell Head of the River at O’Brien’s Bridge on Saturday. The 3.2km time trial proved a competitive affair with a record entry of 400+ crews.

Fermoy Rowing Club was well represented with 50 athletes entered into twenty eight junior, and two senior crews competing in twenty two different events.

The Men’s junior 13 squad had a good day, for many it was their first event. Fermoy entered three Oct Eights in the junior 16 age group. Fermoy’s first Oct Eight comprised of Alex O’Hurlihy, Cormac Flemming, Colm Lane, Ronan Cullen, Eoin McSweeney, Aidan McCarthy, Cian McGirr, Padraig Fenton and coxed by their coach Luke McConville.

The crew put in a fantastic effort to record the second fastest time of the event out of seven entries. The second octuple included Shea Penny, Conor O’Reilly, Ronan Cullan, Padraig Fenton, Aidan McCarthy, Colm Lane, Cormac Flemming, Alex O’Hurlihy and coxed by Emma O’Shea. They narrowly missed out on third place by less than 10 seconds to Muckross Rowing Club.

The third Oct was made up of the more experienced J 14’s. The crew comprised Rory McConville, Robert Tompson, Andrew Hern, Isaac O’Donovan Campbell, Robert Prezestrzelski, Russel Crowley, John Scanlan, Eoin McSweeney and coxed by Emma O’Shea. This crew won the event by almost two minutes ahead of the next fastest crew which was also a Fermoy boat.

The men’s junior 14 squad recorded three wins. Brian Hurley won the men’s single sculls covering the course in a time of 13:49, 35 seconds quicker than any other competitor. Brian teamed up with Eoin Bartley to race in the double scull event.

The duo won the event, recording a very impressive time of 12:47. The third boat to race was the quad, the crew comprised Brian Hurley, Eoin Bartley, Eoin Condon and Russel Crowley and coxed by Cian McGirr. They also won this event, taking home 1st place in all junior 14 categories.

The men’s junior 15 squad showed its dominance by recording four wins and a second place from five separate categories. Dara O’Murchu recorded a very impressive time of 13:13 over the 3.2km course. This was not only the fastest time out of any J15 but also faster than any J16 entered on the day.

Padraig Dolan and Ben Freeman teamed up to race in the double sculls and matched the time of the J14s, covering the course in 12:47, also winning their category. Dara O’Murchu along with Ben Freeman, Padraig Dolan and Declan Geary won the quadruple coxed quad, coxed by Cian McGirr. Fermoy entered the men’s coxed four, Ciaran Hurley, Colin Shealy, Dara O’Murchu, Padraig Dolan coxed by Colm Lane covered the course in 12:12, winning the event by 20 seconds.

A fantastic and unexpected result considering the four had never practised together and the cox had never steered a boat before. The last J15 boat to race was the Men’s 8+. Fermoy finished second in this event out of 4 crews. Beaten by St Josephs from Galway. The crew comprised Colin Shealy, Murray Lacey, Eoin Condon, Eoin Bartley, Cody Penny, Declan Geary, Conor McCormack, Ciaran Hurley and coxed by Rory McConville. Again, a fantastic result as the crew had never practised together before.

The men’s junior 16 double which comprised of James Quirke and Luke McConville. The two oars people recorded a very competitive time but unfortunately had to settle with second place. Fermoy also entered the J16 8+.

The crew consisted of Dara O’Murchu, Padraig Dolan, Ben Freeman, Cody Penny, Colin Shealy, Murray Lacey, Luke McConville Declan Geary and coxed by Rory McConville had to settle for second place again, only 6 seconds behind Colaiste Iognaid from Galway. A fantastic performance from all of the Fermoy boys who together entered in 11 categories, recording the fastest times in eight of these and finishing second in the remaining three.

J16 girls rowed brilliantly, Stephanie O’Donoghue, Dervla Guinevan, Michelle Lomasney and Erin O’Sullivan. The four girls, with the help of their cox, Chloe Toland, achieved a third place in the quad. Dervla and Stephanie went on to row in the double competition where they were placed in an excellent second position, while Erin O’Sullivan came third in the single scull event.

Dervla Guinevan & Stephanie O’Donoghue who achieved second place in J16 double sculls.

The J15 girls, Caoimhe Barry, Aoife Cowman, Lauren Crowley, Alison Bergin, Laura Mellerick, Aoife O’Regon, Sarah Lewis, Laura Tonks and cox Brid Dolan came third in the eight and some of those girls competed again in the quad and double, where they were placed fourth and third. The outstanding event of the day in this age group were the results in the single sculls, where Alison Bergin won the overall competition, with Lauren Crowley achieving a well-deserved third place and Caoimhe Barry securing fourth place.

Congratulations to all the girls and boys on their achievements at their first outing of the season.