Posted: 19 July 2023

Scottish Rowing is today announcing the Scotland Rowing Team for the 2023 Home International Rowing (HIR) Regatta which is being held on Lough Rinn in Ireland on Saturday 22 July.

In total, 61 athletes as well as 12 coaches and support staff, representing 20 school, university and club rowing programmes have been selected to face England, Ireland and Wales with over 90% of the team representing Scottish Rowing member clubs.  Aberdeen Schools Rowing Association (ASRA) have the largest representation with 11 athletes across the junior and senior team.

Two-thirds of the team (41 athletes) are making their Scotland Rowing Team debuts at the 2023 HIR Regatta including Edinburgh University’s Grace Dawson and Josephine Briggs (W4+) who only took up rowing in September 2022, but since then have gone on to win titles at the Women’s Eights Head of the River Race, BUCS Regatta and Henley Women’s Regatta.

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Photo – Josephine Briggs and Grace Dawson (stern pair) winning at Henley Women’s Regatta

Strathclyde University Boat Club’s Ben Parsonage (M1x) and Alexander Beeson of Glasgow University Boat Club (M4+) are the most experienced athletes in the team, having both previously represented the Scotland Rowing Team on three occasions.  For Parsonage this will be his first appearance since 2018 whilst Beeson has experience across both the junior and senior teams (2018, 2019, 2022).

Briony Wood of Glasgow Academy Rowing Club (JW1x) is one of the youngest members of the team but has already enjoyed a remarkable season which has seen her win titles in the single scull across junior and senior age groups at the National Schools’ Regatta, GB France J16 match, the Scottish Rowing Championships as well as being part of the winning junior women’s coxed four at Henley Women’s Regatta.

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Photo – Briony Wood, winner of the single scull at the 2023 GB France J16 Match

Wood was also one of a number of Scottish juniors who won titles at last weekend’s British Rowing Junior Championships held at Strathclyde Park.  ASRA won both the junior women’s coxless four and eight with many of these athletes representing the Scotland Rowing Team at the HIR Regatta.  George Watson’s College duo Conor Haughney and Lachlan Uttley won the junior men’s coxless pair but will move into the coxless four in Ireland.

Scotland will be looking to regain one or more of the four team trophies that were won by England in 2022 at the London Docklands.  The winning junior men’s coxless four from that event all return to the 2023 team, with Uttley, Campbell Wheeler (JM1x) and Andrew Wright (JM2x) being selected for the junior team and Ethan MacLachlan (M4+) stepping up into the senior team.

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Photo – The winning Scotland junior men’s coxless four at the 2022 HIR Regatta in London

The Scotland senior women’s team is the least experienced in terms of previous HIR representation but boasts the most number of GB internationals in the team (6 out of 13).  This includes Strathclyde Park Rowing Club’s Isla Wilding (W2-) and Isla Bathgate (W4-), both of whom won a silver medal in the junior women’s eight at the 2022 World Rowing Under 19 Championships.

Strathclyde Park Rowing Club’s Jake Woods, a Scottish Rowing and GB Rowing Team supported Para rower, will compete in the PR1 men’s single scull.  The senior men’s team also includes Cameron Moffatt from Oxford Brookes University who coxed the winning crew in the Island Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta earlier this month.

The Scotland Rowing Team coaches are led by Tom Young, Scottish Rowing’s Lead Performance Pathway Coach and the experienced team also features the Head Coaches from Scottish Rowing’s university performance programmes – Colin Williamson (Edinburgh), Chris Rae (Glasgow) and Ed Dean (Aberdeen).  Mike Martin (junior women) and Lindsay Flockhart (junior men) will be supported by Holly Reid (ASRA) and Kevin Plank (Stirling Rowing Club).

Team Manager Graeme Cunningham leads the Scotland Rowing Team for the 14th time, ably supported by Assistant Team Manager Mary Rouse, Scottish Rowing’s Head of Performance and Pathways Lee Boucher and Equipment Manager, Steven Kerr.  World Rowing Umpires Gary Bain and Claire McIntosh have been appointed to the HIR Jury.

Commenting on the selections, Scotland Rowing Team Manager, Graeme Cunningham said:

“Everyone in the Scotland Rowing Team is looking forward to competing in Ireland at the new venue in Lough Rinn.  The athletes and coaches have been preparing well.  We have a number of athletes who have been successful this season and we will look to them to lead the Team but I fully expect to see some of our less seasoned athletes stepping up and producing their best performances yet while representing Scotland.  I'm sure there will plenty of good quality racing and I'm excited to see who the stars of the HIRR 2023 will be.”

View the Scotland Rowing Team for the 2023 Home International Rowing Regatta

You can follow all the action on the HIR website and through Scottish Rowing’s social media channels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.