The picture that shows rowing is a sport for all ages

oxswain Pheilim English (left) with his crew which included Joe Gleeson at the rear of the boat.

By Bernie English

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THE MAN photographed at the end of the boat is Castleconnell Boat Club’s oldest member Joe Gleeson and the lad at the other end is the club’s youngest coxswain, 12-year-old Pheilim English.

And if a picture is worth a thousand words, it goes to show that rowing is a sport for every age.

Despite the fog, thirty crews took to the water last Saturday to compete for the Castleconnell Boat Club Captains Cup. And although the competition was keen, the rowers were happy to dress up in festive gear and raise money for Temple Street Childrens’ Hospital.

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There were even a few elves on hand to add a festive touch to the proceedings.

Names were drawn from a hat resulting in mixed crews with age ranges from eleven to the most senior rower who is still going strong at eighty and they gave it their all in the knock-out rounds.

Former Limerick Leader General Manager Joe Gleeson, the oldest member of the Masters Men’s Crew, told the Limerick Post he rowed as a teenager but dropped the sport in adult years, only to come back 17 years ago.

“Rowing is fantastic and our club has some of the best facilities going. And we have such a beautiful location on the river”.

The Masters are looking for older people to join their crew.

“There are older people who think they are too old to come back but that’s not true. We’re not pushing to look for silverware – we just want to enjoy rowing,” he said.

Juniors had the ingenious idea on the day to put it up to the coaches, some of whom had never rowed before, to race at the end of the day and got their own back watching them being put through their paces.

In all, the fun event raised a total of €1,200 for the little patients in Temple Street.