Rowers brave Dundrum chill to do battle on the water

Rowers brave Dundrum chill to do battle on the water

10 January 2018

DUNDRUM Coastal Rowing Club held their annual Ice Breaker Regatta on Saturday in the relative calm of Dundrum’s inner bay.

Crews from Strangford, Killyleagh, Sketrick, Donaghadee and Portaferry, along with Dundrum, took to the water in sunny but bracing conditions in what was a strongly contested regatta.

With thanks to Paul and Roger Noblet for providing the safety/start boat, crews lined up in their St Ayles skiffs to compete over the two-kilometre course.

Categories included junior and novice race as well as an over 40 women’s and men’s, under 50 and over 60 mixed , plus a two-kilometre open mixed challenge race.

A good crowd of supporters gathered to watch the races unfold from the excellent vantage point that the quay provided, nourished with welcome and essential hot teas and coffee from a marquee kindly powered by Paddy Fitzpatrick.

Strangford started and finished well, winning both the junior and novice races. However, Dundrum took the overall spoils, winning all five of the senior race categories, showing great technique in the increasingly blustery conditions.

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council had kindly allowed the Dundrum club to make use of their floating pontoon which was a great help in assisting safe crew changeover.

The club would also like to thank the crew of the Newcastle RNLI for their reassuring presence on the water and Newcastle Coastguard for their assistance in helping crew members in and out of the boats. Thanks also to Richard Fitzpatrick for the use of his farm buggy for boat launching.

After all the races were completed, crews, together with their friends and family, gathered in the cosy Dundrum Inn with special thanks to Gerard and Amanda Trainor for allowing the club the facilities and kitchen for the after-race festivities and medal ceremony.

Club chairman Andrew Boyd would like to congratulate the club members, not only for their success on the water but for showing such great teamwork in organising a wonderful event for the village and the local coastal rowing clubs whose attendance was also greatly appreciated.