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National Championships, 1968

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National Championships, 1968 ~ On Friday 19th July 1968, the Senior VIII Championship of Ireland was held at the 99th Dublin Metropolitan Regatta, Blessington Lakes, Co. Wicklow. This year it also incorporated the Home International event which was held on Saturday. Racing in lane one, Garda lined up beside UCD, Trinity and Neptune. It was Trinity who took an early lead, but by halfway Garda had regained control and went on to win our third Senior VIII Championship by two lengths. Trinity were second and UCD third. We also added the Blue Riband for first senior IVs, with Tom Walshe sitting in for Frank Callinan who wasn’t available. The Eblana for elite single sculls was won by Neptune (Sean Drea) with Jim Muldoon second and Peter Fitzgerald third. The Irish Independent (20/7/68) reported:

Garda Boat Club, kingpins of Irish rowing, regained the Irish Senior Eights Championship and retained the Metropolitan Grand Challenge Cup for first senior fours at the opening stage of the Dublin Metropolitan Regatta on Blessington Lake and were immediately nominated to be Irelands representatives in the Quadrangular International Match with England, Scotland and Wales which will be the highlight of today’s second session…. This was their most convincing victory yet, for they reproduced their excellent Henley form to emerge the clearest of winners by two lengths from Trinity…. Even though there was no sun, the oarsmen had no complaints, for conditions on the water were good under overcast sky. Trinity started smartly, and were three quarter of a length up on Garda after 400 yards of the shortened 1,900 metres course. But by half-way, the Garda eight had not only made up the leeway but had put a length of water between themselves and Trinity, and indeed, in the smoother going over the final stretch, rowed away to win by a two length verdict, which was extremely flattering to the runners-up. Two of the Garda eight, Peter Duffy and Mick Drew, had been on duty until 6a.m. and at the end of the days proceedings were booked for another such stint.

Irish Senior VIII Champions, 1968

Bow     P.J. O’Connor                          (5)        Jim Muldoon

(2)        Gay McCarthy                         (6)        Peter Fitzgerald

(3)        Larry Barron                            (7)        Peter Duffy

(4)        Tom Walshe                             Str.      Mick Drew

Cox                 Tom Ticher

Coach             Ivor Kenny

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