CrewBlu training camp in Portugal May 2023

The CrewBlu athletes attended their first Continental training camp in May 2023 as they prepare for a summer of rowing on the Corrib. Peter and Sabrina organised a fantastic 5 days of activities on the river Lima in Viana do Castelo, Portugal with the incredible help from both the VRL – Viana Remadores do Lima Rowing Club and Desporto Para Todos – Appacdm de Viana do Castelo paddle boarding club.

There was a compliment of Tribesmen RC helpers involved along with parents of the athlete’s who helped ensure that the trip was a major success.

The 2023 CrewBlu touring group on the banks of the River Lima in Portugal with the support of the Appacdm de Viana do Castelo club

The fantastic weather over the course of the five days certainly helped with the success of the tour as it guaranteed water time every day.

The world class facilities at VRL – Viana Remadores do Lima Rowing Club include an indoor rowing tank, which was used on Day 1 to help everyone get over the early morning start and flight for the athletes, with coach Katie Ryan keeping an expert eye on the technique of the athletes. Parents and helpers also took advantage of the tank.

CrewBlu men try out the rowing tank

The view from the seat in the rowing tank

Katie coaching in the rowing tank

CrewBlu parents get some time in the rowing tank

To take advantage of the good weather the whole CrewBlu group got some water time with the help of the Desporto Para Todos – Appacdm de Viana do Castelo paddle boarding club, a highly enjoyable experience for everyone.


Grace and Roisin




Gabe takes the easier option


Days 2, and 3 saw everyone get water time on the Lima.

Gabe gets to go sculling with Peter’s approval

Grace and Roisin with Maura and Mairead take cox Peter on a smooth trip

Aaron is helped back ashore by Gabe and Peter

Charlie and Jim power cox Katie down the river while Jackie takes it easy in bow

John Kiely is joined by Gabe in the safety launch under Peter’s watchful eye

Charlie, Jim Alan and Jackie with cox Katie on the Lima.

Aaron and Mihailo power up the river with Jackie in bow and Peter coxing.

Bosilka, Tiernan and Jim sweep rowing for the first time with Katie in bow and Peter coxing.

Quality pause paddling by Daniel, Francis and Sean with Jackie in bow and Peter calling the strikes.


Day 4 saw CrewBlu join up with some of the local Portuguese adaptive crews for some great rowing.

Happy crews after a great day of rowing.

Gabe sculling in a single for the first time under the tutelage of coach Katie.


It wasn’t all water time in Viana do Castelo, there was some fun to be had on dry land too.

Ronan, Sean, Daniel and Mairead enjoying the sights in Viana do Castelo

Daniel, Gracie and our lovely hostess, Treasa, in Portugal

Francis, Grace, Aaron and Charlie waiting to go out to dinner

Mihailo and Bosilkja are happy out

Aaron demonstrates his Haka to Gabe and Peter

Sean, Katie, Bosilkja and Mihailo in good spirits

Mihailo, Maura, Louise, Jackie, Roisin and Robbie taking it easy

Day 5 was a day off after a lot of work on the previous 4 days and Peter captures the thoughts of Aaron, Daniel and Sean beautifully:

Aaron the party animal.

Daniel rowed till he dropped.

A happy and excited Sean.

And to finish off the day Peter and Sabrina waved the happy crew off as they could finally relax and enjoy the beautiful town that is Viana do Castelo.

First time Peter smiled for the whole 5 days ;o)

A huge thanks to Peter and Sabrina for organising a great camp, as big a thanks to all the athletes who took part in all the activities with great enthusiasm and not forgetting to thank the parents and helpers who mucked in and created a brilliant atmosphere of co-operation and fun that made the camp such a great success.

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