Talent and Performance News September 2014

Slalom Development & Talent Squads

Slalom talent squad members enjoyed two talent camps over the past month held in Nottingham and Lee Valley, London.

Jake Cochrane has provided the following report into the Nottingham training camp;

“On Monday 25th August Eoin Teague, Elliott Davidson, myself and coach Matt McKnight set off for a three day training camp at Nottingham Holme Pierre Point white water course. We departed from Belfast on the Cairnryan boat and then made our way down to Nottingham by car. The trip consisted of three days training, with two sessions each day. It was very good to get back on a proper white water course after a considerable break since the last camp at Sault Brenaz in France. All squad members did various different sessions including technique, half runs and full runs. Our time on the white water over the three days proved very beneficial and I feel we all made good improvement. Next trip is to Lee Valley and we are all very excited to get on the Olympic course”.

The other camp held in early September was attended by Jake Cochrane, Eoin Teague, Ali McCreery and AIP athlete Elliott Davidson. Matt McKnight travelled as squad coach and the group met up with their counterparts from Canoe Wales who were also training on the white water Olympic course at the same time. The squads trained together for four days with double sessions each day focussing on technical work and decision making in the water. The opportunity for the CANI slalom athletes to train alongside their counterparts from Wales proved very beneficial and it is hoped that this relationship alongside hopefully the Scottish Canoe Association can be developed into the future, as Matt McKnight added,

“It is important that our best young athletes get the opportunity to train and compete on white water courses alongside the best young athletes from the other Home Nations as this will undoubtedly aid and accelerate their development”.

In other slalom news special congratulations to Zoe and Beth Thompson who competed along with Patrick Creber in a Div 2/3 slalom race at Fairnilee, Scotland in August, the following report was provided by Beth and Zoe’s mum Heidi;

“The weekend got off to a great success with Matt McKnight providing coaching on the water on Friday afternoon for Beth, Zoe & Patrick Creber. This put the juniors in good stead for the race on Saturday. Following a course walk with Matt, Zoe came 1st in junior 12 & also topped the whole of Division 3 (all ages), this was followed on Sunday with another gold for Junior 12 & silver in the whole of division 3. Beth won the Junior 16 category on Sunday bringing home another gold for CANI. We are very proud of both the girls & would like to thank Matt, Andy Hadfield, Huw Swetnam & CANI for all the support throughout the summer”.



ThompsonMedalsBeth & Zoe Thompson in action and collecting their medals at Fairnilee.

The development and talent squads have also enjoyed another prehab session with Jenny Ridley and a coaching weekend with Andy Hadfield and Matt McKnight at the beginning of September.

Sprint Squad

August and September have been busy months for sprint athletes Luke Fitzhenry, Jordan Calder, Craig Wilson and Darragh Murphy with Craig and Darragh racing in the Irish Championships at Lough Rinn at the end of August and all four travelling to the BCU Sprint Regatta in Nottingham on the 6th and 7th of September.

In Nottingham the group met up with AIP athletes Afton Fitzhenry and Jonny Young who are based in Nottingham and were also competing at the regatta. Notable race performances were recorded by Jonny Young who won the Men’s LTA V1 200m final, Darragh Murphy who reached the final of the Men’s C K1 200m final and alongside Jordan Calder finished runners up in both the Men’s C K2 200m and 500m events and Craig Wilson and Luke Fitzhenry who reached the final of the U18 K2 200m event. Special mention to Erne Paddler Gerry Murphy who won both the Master’s C K1 500m and 1000m events and also to sprint development squad coach Ray Sweetlove and his partner Ben Dooley who pipped Jordan and Darragh to win the Men’s C K2 200m final. The regatta was a great experience for all the junior athletes and it is hoped that they can build on this experience and work hard over the coming months to return to the regattas next year and produce even better results.

The Northern Ireland Schools Championships were held at Newferry on Sunday 14th September, the follow report and results roundup was provided by Malcolm Kerry;

“Congratulations to Luke Fitzhenry, winner of the NI Schools race and Zoe Thompson, overall winner of the girls’ event at the age of 11! Excellent racing, with 11 Juniors competing, 9 in their first season in racing boats, and with Belfast CC, Erne Paddlers, Causeway Coast and Mid-Antrim Clubs competing. Thanks to all who helped with safety, etc.”

2014 Schools Marathon Racing Championships and Lower Bann Race Finish Order

2 Laps- 6km

Luke Fitzhenry BCC 32.06 1 U-18M
Darragh Murphy EP 32.23 1 Senior M
Craig Wilson BCC 32.44 2 U-18M
Ray Sweetlove BCC 32.46 2 Senior M
Jordan Calder BCC 34.24 1 U-16M
Malcolm Kerry BCC 34.36 3 Senior M
Trevor Foster EP 35.21 4 Senior M
Gary McClure BCC 37.44 5 Senior M
Jonathan Davies CCKA40.48 6 Senior M
Zoe Thompson BCC 41.26 1 U-18F
Beth Murdoch BCC 47.54 2 U-18F
Noel Canavan/ Tommy Marrion MACC 48.29 1 C2

1 Lap- 3km

Zoe Thompson BCC 20.26 1 U-12F
Beth Murdoch BCC 20.59 1 U-16F
Catherine Scott CCKA 22.09 2 Senior W
Lyndsey McPhee CCKA 22.31 1 Senior W
Chloe Lemon BCC 23.09 1 U-14F
Aimee Fitzpatrick EP 23.09 1 U-14F
Mary Davies CCKA 24.05 3 Senior W
Owyn Powell BCC 27.41 1 U-14M
Jamie Hogg EP 27.50 1 U-12M
Hannah Mulhall BCC 34.52 2 U-16F
Tony Cowen BCC – DNF U-14M

Congratulations also to all the CANI competitors at the Irish Sprint Championships at Lough Rynn- great to see the CANI development boats being put to such good use!! Particular congratulations to Zoe & Beth Thompson and Sofia Lazarescu who all won National Championship medals in their first sprint event.


Sofia and Zoe pictured receiving their medals at the National Championships.

Surf Squad

The CANI surf development squad staged a ‘Come and Try It’ coached session at the end of August in Portrush. Angela Mylroi has provided the following report and pictures;
“The CANI surf development squad held a hugely successful come and try it surf session on Sunday 24th August. We were delighted with the attendance and hope everyone enjoyed it as much as we all did. Hope to see you all at the surf again really soon. Keep an eye on the CANI FB page, and the NISKC/CANI Surf Development Squad Page for updates and events. In the meantime, Happy Paddling!”


Juniors enjoying the surf at the ‘Come and Try It’ session in Portrush

The session was staged alongside a development squad training day with surf coaches Marty McCann, Gerry McGlinchy, Paul Harrington and Matt Pothecary all in attendance.

The Irish Open was staged in Easky, Co. Sligo on Saturday 20th September, with a number of surf AIP and junior squad surfers competing, the event was hosted by Paddlesurf Ireland and they produced the following results round up;

Irish Open Results
Open class HP -1. Tim Thomas 2. Chris Hobson 3.Mike Barry
Open class IC- 1. Chris Hobson 2.Tim Thomas 3. Dessie McGlinchey
Open Wave Ski 1. Marty McCann 2. Kieran Davies 3. Mike Barry
Junior HP & IC – Matthew Lamont
Ladies HP & IC -Aisling Griffin
Masters HP- Anthony Coyne
Masters IC -Dessie McGlinchey
Mens IC -Chris Hobson
Mens HP -Tim Thomas
Masters Wave Ski- Marty McCann
Mens Wave ski- Mike Barry
Mens Best new comers- Aenghus Bates and Darragh Walsh
Masters Best new comer- Bernard Walsh

The squad also held a successful weekend residential training camp in Donegal in the middle of September and plans are being finalised for squad members to attend the British Championships in Wales during mid October, full report and results in next month’s E-zine.

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