By Keelin Riley
Congratulations to the Arklow Ladies Rowing Team who won the women’s title in the Celtic Challenge for the fourth time in a row this Bank Holiday weekend. The ladies finished the race with an impressive time of 19 hours and 48 minutes.
The Celtic Challenge is the world’s longest true rowing race where teams race from Arklow to Aberystwyth, Wales, a distance of 144 kilometres (90 miles).
The Arklow ladies started the race fantastically, gaining the lead early, pulling 7.2 knots off the start and maintaining the lead for the rest of the race.
The team, managed by Eamon Kavanagh, all displayed true signs of teamwork, working together through the gruelling challenge.
“My body is so, so sore now but it really was an amazing experience”, said first time Challenge rower Lisa Mellon.
The team would like to commend and thank Eamon and their great support crew for all their work.
Team members included Vanessa Annelsey (also first time race rower), Tamara Penston, Meave Kealy, Jeanne O’Gorman, Tilly Jordan, Jess Lee, Deirdre Maghery, Lora Kavanagh, Sandra Dunbar, Emma Fitzgerald and Amy Snell.
After months of preparation and training the ladies all enjoyed some well deserved R&R and a few drinks after the race in Aberystwyth with the rest of the races contenders.