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Positive results ahead of Irish finale

Published: 28 Jun 2012 13:000 comments

The weekend saw one of the last competitions of the year for the Boat Club at Portora Royal School, as seven of its athletes made the long journey down to Cork to compete at Lake Inishcarra.

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Katie Cromie and Phoebe Mulligan opened proceedings for Portora on the Friday evening, with two strong performances in the women's junior 18 sculls. Cromie came off the blocks powerfully and led the field until the last 200 metres when the larger Hilary Shinnick of Fermoy, upped her rate and came through Cromie, beating her by a second. Mulligan came in a few lengths behind second place, and in the process, beat the nerves she had felt going into this fixture.

The boys' pair of Lloyd Seaman and Henry Millar easily won their heat. In the final they were up against it, racing intermediate and senior boats, yet they kept their composure and were rewarded when they finished the top junior pair. Joe Nelson and Gary Thornton also impressed in the pair, finishing the race in second place. And in the women's junior double sculls, Cromie and Mulligan only lost out to a strong Skibbereen crew. However, this was a hard fought race for the new combination.

The two boys pairs then joined forces to race in the men's junior four category on Saturday evening. In the heats they showed a blistering pace that the four other boats could not match and they sailed through the line, a massive eight seconds ahead of the next quickest boat. In the final, there was a change of equipment which they found hard to deal with, and which resulted in a slower race for the boys. Despite this, they still fought down the course and emerged winners by a length over St Michael's.

As this was the last race before the Irish Championships on July 13, the athletes have returned to Enniskillen with some positive results for the club.

Some of the older rowers are entering this as their last Championship before they head to university in September, where many will no doubt continue to excel in sport.

However, with just three short weeks to go, all heads must now be firmly focused on the Championships as training intensifies.

If the club can put in as much work in the next few weeks as they have put in, there is no doubt there will be silverware coming back to Enniskillen in July.

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