Tuesday 12 December 2017

Rowing: Irish show class to stay in the mix

A stunning race by Ireland's lightweight men's quad brought them second place behind the German gold medallists from Lucerne in yesterday's heats at the World Championships on the 2,000m course on Lake Bled, Slovenia.

But despite only the leading crew qualifying direct for Sunday's final, it marks a step in the right direction for Niall Kenny, Michael Maher, Justin Ryan and Mark O'Donovan, who took silver at last year's U-23 championships in Belarus. Ireland now have a second chance to qualify in tomorrow's repechages.

Meanwhile, Ireland's adaptive coxed four qualified for the semi-finals in the Paralympic boat class events. Ann-Marie McDaid, Sarah Caffrey, Shane Ryan, Kevin du Toit and cox Helen Arbuthnot are unchanged from the line-up which reached the 'A' final at last year's championships in New Zealand.

In the lightweight women's doubles, Siobhan McCrohan and Claire Lambe struggled against Great Britain and New Zealand. The British claimed a place in the semi-finals while the rest of the field, including fifth-placed Ireland, have another chance to qualify tomorrow.


Team Sky's Chris Froome produced the time-trial performance of his life to take the leader's red jersey at the Vuelta a Espana, the final Grand Tour of the season. The Kenyan-born Briton finished second on the stage behind Tony Martin (HTC-Highroad) in the 47km time trial around Salamanca and it was good enough to see him vault up from 14th to top of the overall standings.

He leads by 12 seconds from Jakob Fuglsang (Leopard-Trek), with Team Sky team-mate Bradley Wiggins third on the day and up to third overall, 20 seconds behind Froome.

Wiggins and Froome put themselves in contention with superb rides the day before as they finished fourth and fifth respectively on the climb to La Covatilla, taking time out of most of their general classification rivals.

Irish Independent

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