Supporting Coleraine rowers: past, present and future

Archives 2000s


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2000 - 2001 Season

The Colt VIII+ won at Castlewellan, Portadown and Belfast Sprints Regatta, which was the Craig Cup, the J16 Ulster Championships.

The 1st VIII+ competed at Henley Royal Regatta for the first time in five years, and became the first CAIBC crew to progress past the first round of the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup. They defeated Oundle School in the first round, before being defeated by the seeded Abingdon crew.

The 1st VIII+ competed in the Irish Junior Championships, finishing 5th.  The 1st IV+ went one better and finished 4th in the J18 IV+ championship final.

1st VIII+ - S. Feeney (bow), C. Campbell (2), C. Black (3), C. Stewart (4), C. Bradley (5), K. Martin (6), I. Giffin (7), C. Athanasiou (stk), J. Taggart (cox). 1st IV+ - italicised oarsmen.

Captain: Chris Bradley
Vice Captain: Kyle Martin

CAIBC 2001

Members of Coleraine Inst Boat Club, 2001

2001 Junior 16 VIII+

Junior 16 VIII+

2001 1st VIII at Henley

The 1st VIII+ at Henley Royal Regatta


2001 - 2002 Season

The Head of the River season saw victories at Lagan Head for the Intermediate and Novice IV+ and the 1st VIII+ obtaining a credible 147th place at the London Head of the River Race.

During the regatta season there were wins at Castlewellan (J18 VIII+ & IV+ and J16 IV+), Portadown (Intermediate VIII+, J18, J16 & Novice IV+), Portora (J18, J18B and J16 IV+), Belfast Sprints (Intermediate VIII+, J18 & J16 IV+) and Nithsdale Regatta in Dumfries (Novice IV+).

For the second year in a row, the 1st VIII+ competed in Henley Royal Regatta, and again progressed to the second round of the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup, beating Yarm School in the process. The VIII+ was defeated in the second round by Monmouth School.

1st VIII+ - J. Rosbourgh (bow), C. Athanasiou (2), D. Dunlop (3), C. Stewart (4), C. Bradley (5), K. Martin (6), I. Giffin (7), C .Campbell (stk), R. Cochrane (cox).

J18 VIII+ - J. Haslett (bow), J. Taggart (2), J. Rosbourgh (3), R. Beggs (4), D. Dunlop (5), C. Stewart (6), .I Giffin (7), C. Campbell (stk), R. Cochrane (cox).
J18 IV+ - stern 4 of the above crew.

J16 VIII+ - J. Purce (bow), C. Cochrane (2), J. Humphrey (3), C. Smyth (4), J. Haslett (5), D. Ewart (6), D. Dunlop (7), R. Beggs (stk), VJ (cox).
J16 IV+ - stern 4 of the above crew, with A Humphrey (cox).

Nov IV+ - P. Braithwaite (bow), J. Taggart (2), G. Blair (3), P. Topping (stk), U. Wali (cox).

Captain: Kyle Martin
Vice Captain: Chris Bradley
Secretary: Jason Rosbourgh

2002 1st VIII+

The 1st VIII+ at the London Head of The River Race


2002 - 2003 Season

The Head season saw a win at Erne Head for a 2nd IV+, at J18 level, and a 276th position at the London Head of the River Race.

The regatta season saw wins at Queens (J18 & J16 IV+), Portadown (Intermediate, J18 & J16 VI+), Belfast Sprints (Intermediate & J18 VI+) and at Athlone Regatta (J18 IV+). These regattas also saw the J18 and J16 VIII+ performing well, with a number of close 2nd places.

At the Irish Champs, the J18 IV+ continued its run of good form by finishing a very close 3rd, behind two St Josephs crews, finishing the 2nd fastest club. The J18 VIII+ also reached the final, and crossed the line in 4th place (this time the 3rd fastest club).

Iain Giffin was selected to represent Ireland at the Home International Regatta, were he was in the winning J18 VIII+ and IV+.

J18 VIII+ - P. Braithwaite (bow), J. Humphrey (2), C. Smyth (3), D. Ewart (4), D. Dunlop (5), J. Taggart (6), I. Giffin (7), C. Campbell (stk), A. Humphrey (cox).
J18 IV+ - italicised oarsmen, D. McNeill (cox).

J16 VIII+ - B. Ruddock (bow), M. Reid (2), D. Taggart (3), R. Boyd (4), J. Purce (5), J. Humphrey (6), C. Smyth (7), D. Ewart (stk), A. Humphrey (cox).
J16 IV+ - italicised oarsmen.

Captain: Iain Giffin
Vice Captain: Colin Stewart
Secretary: Jason Taggart

CAIBC 2003

Members of Coleraine Inst Boat Club, 2003

2003 1st VIII+

The 1st VIII+ at the London Head of The River Race

Junior 18 IV+

Junior 18 IV+ at Queen's Regatta

1st VIII+ at Henley

The 1st VIII+ at Henley Royal Regatta


2003 - 2004 Season

The J18 IV+ competed in the Irish Championships, and qualified for the final, where they finished 5th.

The J16 VIII+ won a number of races including Lagan Head, Portadown and Belfast Sprints Regatta.  The highlight of their season was winning the Craig Cup by 1 length over Methody who beat RBAI by a third of a length.

The Ulster J16 VIII+ Championship race was held in Belfast, from the Ormeau Bridge to the Albert Bridge, a distance of over 1,500m. Although Methody took an early lead of over a length, CAI were up to the task, and gradually pulled through to finish ahead of their Belfast rivals.

The J16 IV+ also had a successful season winning all their races.

The J15 VIII+ had good wins over St Josephs A & B at Portadown, and Methody at Belfast Sprint Regatta to remain undefeated in their races. The J15 IV+ also managed to beat the Methody J15 VIII+ at Lagan Head.

J18 IV+ - C. Cochrane (bow), C. Smyth (2), D. Ewart (3), D. Dunlop (stk), A. Robinson (cox).

J16 VIII+ - C. McAteer (bow), A. Robinson (2), R. Dinsmore (3), M. Reid (4), D. Taggart (5), R. Knight (6), B. Ruddock (7), A. Khan (stk), D. McNeill (cox).
J16 IV+ - italicised oarsmen.

J15 VIII+ - M. McNaul (bow), R. Hart (2), J. Goodman (3), M. Topping (4), R. Dinsmore (5), A. Robinson (6), B. Ruddock (7), M. Reid (stk), D. McNeill (cox).
J15 IV+ - italicised oarsmen, A. Humphrey (cox).

Captain: Philip Braithwaite Vice Captain: David Dunlop Secretary: Alex Humphrey

2004 Junior 18 4+

Junior 18 4+ training


2004 - 2005 Season


2005 - 2006 Season

The season started off with the annual trip to Lagan Head of the River. The J18 8+ had a good race, despite being held up by a certain Commercial Crew. The J16 4x+ had a well deserved victory, winning their class by 40 seconds, over the likes of RBAI and Methody.

The next race was Erne Head of the River, which only the J18 8+ participated in. The crew had an amazing row over the 6km course but came second to Neptune.

Regatta season began with a trip to Neptune Regatta, where the J18 4+ was striving to show their worth in Southern Ireland, and came close second to Commercial in a nail-biting final. The J16 4x+ was desperate to overcome the bad luck in racing down South, but came through beating Waterford and Portora comfortably.

Queens Regatta

The J18 4+ came third in an exciting race which involved the usual suspects, Methody and RBAI.  The J18 8+ had a disappointing result, (which was mostly due to the fact that half of the crew was racing a mere 20 minutes earlier), coming third to RBAI and Methody.  The J16 4+ had an unexpected, but well deserved, victory over Portadown and Methody. One of the guys was so chuffed over winning he wouldn’t take his medal off!  Yet again, the J16 4x+ won, but were a length down to Portora after 200 metres. There were two victories in this race as the cox managed to break Methody’s steering without doing any damage to CAI’s boat at all!

Portadown Regatta 

The J18 4+ lost out in an exciting semi final to Methody, which was our first race of the day.  The J16 4+ were eager to carry on winning but lost by half a length to Portadown in an eagerly anticipated final.  The J16 8+ won their category, beating RBAI and Portadown in a close final, winning a certain Gibson Cup for their victory.  The Novice 8+ lost out on medals in a final against Portadown, after sitting at the start waiting for the other crew to arrive after a staggering 40 minutes.  The J18 8+ were defeated after a rudder failure causing them to bow out of the race.  The J16 4x+ won convincingly in good style after beating Methody and RBAI.  And of course, the Novice 1x lost out to RBAI in a convincing final.

Portora Sprint Regatta

There was another win for the J16 4x+, They had very tough opposition in the form of Carlow, undefeated south of the border.  A very close final saw the Coleraine crew pull through to win by 6 feet over the 500m course.

Belfast Sprint Regatta

The trip to Belfast saw another win for the J16 4x+ as well as a win for Johnny Mitchell in the J15 1x, a win for the J16 VIII+ and a win for the J18 4x-.

Athlone Regatta saw the J16 4x maintain there undefeated season by 2 feet over Offaly.

The Craig Cup (Ulster J16 championships) was hosted by the holders of the Cup (CAIBC) between the New bridge and Bann boathouse in Coleraine.  Five crews entered the race which saw a win for Portora by half a canvas from Coleraine Inst.  Methody finished third in the final, while Belfast Inst and Portadown were beaten in the semis.

Captain: Darren Taggart
Vice-Captain: Mark Reid
Secretary: David Stafford


2006 - 2007 Season

Schools championships (Castlewellan)

Sen Pair - J McBurney and R Hart won their straight final comfortably, beating Methodist College.
J18 Four - P Calvin, R Dinsmore, M McCullough and M McNaul lost narrowly to Portora and Methodist College.
J16 Scull - J Mitchell & E Clarke
J18 Quad - M McNaul, R Hart, M McCullough and J McBurney
J15 quad - C McBurney, M Stynes, B McMullan, G Clarke and P Stynes won the J15 quad

Queens Regatta Castlewellan

J18 Quad - M McNaul, R Hart, J Mitchell and J McBurney won their semi final beating Methodist College but lost narrowly to commercial in the finals.
J18 Eight - P Stynes, P Calvin, M McNaul, R Hart, R Dinsmore, M McCullough, J McBurney, J Mitchelle and E Clark. The eight had a tremendous row with a very tight race against Methodist and St. Josephs but couldn’t catch their opposition in the last 100m.
J18 Double - M McNaul and R Hart won in their semi final but unfortunately lost in their final to Carlow A’s

Portora Regatta

J18 Double - R Hart and M McNaul won their heat but lost marginally in the final.
J18 Quad - lost to Carlow.
J18 Eight - This was a straight final against commercial, portora and Coleraine Inst. The race had to be re – raced with only Portora and Coleraine due to such an extremely close finish. The outcome of this race resulted in Portora winning the final by half a canvas.

Belfast sprints

J18 Pair - R Hart, and J McBurney unfortunately lost in their straight final by half a canvas. Nevertheless the race was very exciting to watch by the crowd as it was neck and neck most of the way
J18 Four - R Hart, R Dinsmore, M McCullough and M McNaul had a tremendous row in a straight final against Methodist College. The race was very nerve racking to watch for the crowd who looked on. Coleraine inst got off to a flying start taking MCB by half a length, although as the race progressed, Coleraine Inst unfortunately steered on to MCB’s lane causing the opposition to slow down. Even though Coleraine Inst's first four was leading, the race was awarded to MCB for jeopardizing their chance in the race.

Wray and Craig Cup

On the 19th of June, the rowers from Coleraine Inst participated in the Wray and Craig cups held at Portora Royal on lough Erne. The Wray cup is an annual race between Portora and Coleraine’s 1st four, this however is the first time that it had had been raced in 17 years. It is an ancient tradition started in 1930 and both schools were eager to re-establish this race on the rowing calander. The Craig Cup is raced between the Junior 16 8’s in the province of Ulster, it is a highly coveted race as the winners become Ulster champions.

There were five crews entered in the Craig cup, Coleraine Inst, Belfast Inst, Portora Royal, Portadown and Methodist College. Due to the number of crews, there had to be heats to qualify for the final. The first heat was between Portora Royal and Portadown. Portora won easily progressing to the final. The second heat was between the remaining crews, Belfast Inst, Coleraine Inst and Methodist College. In this heat two crews would proceed to have a three boat final. This was a very close race all round with Coleraine taking second place, one length behind Belfast Inst. An hour later the final of the Craig Cup took place and the eventual winners were Portora Royal closely followed by Belfast Inst then Coleraine Inst.

Next on the agenda was the Wray cup. This was to be held on the same 1500 meter course as the Craig cup, and is a traditional race between Coleraine Inst and Portora Royal School. After a competitive start to the race, Inst edged there way out in front of the hosts. With this lead our boys from Coleraine slowly crept further in front of the their opposition to secure a comfortable win of the three lengths.

Irish Championships

The Irish Champs saw a CAIBC coming 5th in the J18 pair, 6th in the J18 four and 5th in the J18 quad. Our J18 eight failed to qualify for the finals

Robert Hart - secretary CAIBC

Captain: Michal McNaul
Vice-Captain: Ryan Dinsmore
Secretary: Robert Hart


2007 - 2008 Season

Lagan Head

The J18 4x-, Novice 1x of Ryan Dinsmore and J15 4x+ all came first in their categories, the J16 4x+ had a strong row but were defeated by RBAI, coming second in their category.

Erne Head

The J18 4x- once again won their category, the J16 4x+ had another string race but were pipped at the post by only 2 seconds by the home crew, Portora.

Schools' Championships / Queen's Regatta Castlewellan

Due to poor weather, both the Schools' Championships and Queen's Regatta were first postponed then cancelled, much to the disappointment of the oarsmen who traveled to Castlewellan for the two day event.

Portadown Regatta

With the cancellation of Queen's reatta Portadown was the first regatta of the season, it saw wins for J18 4+, J184x-, J18 2x and the J18 1x of Jonathan Mitchell. Both the J16 and J15 8+s made it to their respective finals, and raced well but were unable to overcome the competition from Bann and RBAI respectively.

Portora Regatta

Only the junior club traveled to Eniskillen to take part in Portora regatta, they all put in strong performances, though were left disappointed with no wins but did record numerous second place finishes.

Irish Championships

The CAIBC quad of Jonathan Mitchell (stk), Robert Hart, Michael McNaul and Jamie McBurney (bow) won the silver medal at the Irish Champs.

The crew finished their heat in first place to earn their place in the final. In the final, the race started with the fancied Carlow crew getting off to the quickest start, but CAIBC pulled through to gain the lead by 500m. They maintained this lead to 1000m, when Skibbereen made their push.

The school boys fought hard, but were unable to contain the challenge from Skibbereen, and were squeezed into 2nd place.  Carlow finished lengths back from the two front runners in third place.

Captain: Jamie McBurney, Ryan Dinsmore
Vice-Captain: Robert Hart, Jonathan Mitchell
Secretary: Elliot Clarke

CAIBC 2008

Members of Coleraine Inst Boat Club, 2008

Junior 18 quad

The Junior 18 Quad at Irish Championships


2008 - 2009 Season

Bann Head of the River

Due to rough conditions on the day, only one of the scheduled races took place, over a shortened course and a reduced number of crews. Only 4 boats took to the water, one of them being a CAI/CAI Old Boys composite eight, who after a shaky start settled well and pulled away from an impressive Bann crew, the race was touch but enjoyed by all.

Belfast Mini-Head

CAI and COBRA once again took part in three pre-Christmas mini heads organised by the Belfast clubs. The first one, organised by Belfast Rowing Club, rowed over a 4,500m course, Jonathan Mitchell in the single, finished 2nd overall, beating some well established scullers in the process. A CAI Old Boys pair of Michael McNaul and Steven Archibald won the pairs category and finished 9th overall, despite it being only their second outing in the boat.

Lagan Scullers Mini-Head

Jonathan Mitchell, Michael McNaul and Steven Archibald all raced singles and performed well. These three, along with Elliot Clarke combined to form a quad, who recorded the fastest time in their race, beating a seasoned Bann/BBC crew in the process. In the third race, Mitchell and McNaul raced a double, again performing well and winning their category.

BRC Festive Mini-Head

This was the last race of the pre-Christmas season. Due to illness the Old Boys were unfortunately not represented, however Jonathan Mitchell raced the single, finishing with a time not far behind the Junior 4x, again showing his increasing ability in the boat.

Irish Championship Regatta

Intermediate Pair of CAI Old Boys Michael McNaul and Steven Archibald won their heat easily and raced well in the final against their more experienced competition where they finished fifth in a very good field.

Senior Coxless Four A CAI/CAI Old Boys composite of Jonathan Mitchell, Michael McNaul, Robert Hart and Steven Archibald. This was the first CAI crew in modern times to race a Senior Championship event, the acquitted themselves well in the six boat field where they finished fourth, being narrowly beaten by the crew from Belfast in third.

Intermediate Single of CAI Old Boy Chris Black unluckily drew the eventual winner and a number of other very fast scullers in his heat. He made a solid effort within the race, but was unfortunately not able to progress beyond this very classy heat.

Junior Single of Jonathan Mitchell won both his heat and semi-final, however just before the final the weather took a turn for the worse. During this time, in boat-sinking conditions, Jonathan's boat got over-turned by a freak wave. He gathered himself together and rather than back out decided to race the final with far from ideal preparations. Jonathan raced really well and acquitted himself fantastically in the conditions. On the line he was judged to have come sixth only a matter of feet behind the fourth place boat.

Intermediate Coxed Four the main event for CAI at the Championships, last raced by the school 12 years before. Another CAI/CAI Old Boys composite of Jonathan Mitchell, Michael McNaul, Robert Hart, Steven Archibald and Peri Stynes. The crew qualified for the final, coming second in their heat. In the final the crew raced well, keeping in the top three for the first half of the race, and pushing them for the whole race. The crew finished in fourth place, a very admirable position considering the time spent in the boat and the high standard of the competition.

Captain: Jonathan Mitchell
Vice-Captain: Peri Stynes, Elliot Clarke
Secretary: Calum McBurney


2009 - 2010 Season

The 2009 – 2010 season was one of great change, with Bobbie Platt, now in his nineties, understandably deciding it was time to retire from coaching at CAIBC after 23 years, 10 of which as head coach. Given the lack of a teacher with sufficient rowing knowledge to run the club, the school set about appointing its first dedicated rowing coach, Colin Lawson filled the position for a few months in the 2009/10 season but unfortunately had departed before the regatta season had taken off. The membership of also underwent a great change, with the last remnants of the silver medal winning quad from previous years having moved on to University, this meant that the juniors in the club greatly outnumbering the seniors.

The Head Season was disappointing, with the club failing to win any races throughout the winter.

Queen’s Regatta

Queen's Regatta was once again the first regatta of the season, The only medal at the regatta was the J18 2x, with other crews racing well which resulted in the J16 8+ and 4+ both finishing 3rd, J16 4x+ finishing 5th and the J18 4+ finishing 6th.

Belfast Sprint Regatta

Belfast Sprints saw a number of crews racing well, often making their finals, but unable to overcome their opposition, meaning that the J18 2x, J16 8+ J16 8+ and J15 4x+ all finishing 2nd

Athlone Regatta

Only the Junior 18 double traveled to compete in Athlone Regatta, the field was large and of high quality, as this was seen as the last regatta before the Championships. They raced well, securing a place in the final, but were unable to push their way past the competition, finishing 4th overall.

Captain - Milo Stynes


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