A new era for DUBC

Rowers get first ever female captain

For the first time in its 187-year history, the men’s rowing club of Trinity, the Dublin University Boat Club (DUBC) will be led into the new season by a female Captain.

Law and Business student Isabel Ormiston-Doyle has returned to DUBC to follow in the steps of her brother, William, and father, Michael, who captained the club in 2019 and 1984 respectively. 

Commencing her rowing career in 2020/21, Doyle took with remarkable capability to the sport, coxing DUBC’s Novice 4x+ to victory, and a course record at the 2021 National Championships. Last season, she coxed crews to wins at Erne Head of the River, Trinity Regatta, Dublin Metropolitan Regatta, and more, as well as being selected as coxswain for the Senior Irish Men’s Sweep Squad for the 2022 Home International Regatta. In only her second racing season, gaining national squad experience was a clear statement of her capabilities as both a cox and a leader.

Outside of the symbolic significance of her appointment, however, Doyle is also eminently qualified to take on such a prominent role. An accomplished violinist, she held the position of Auditor of Trinity Orchestra last year, while simultaneously serving as Honorary Secretary of DUBC. In the same vein, considering DUBC’s old-boys-club reputation among College communities, Doyle’s achievement becomes all the more impressive, while also speaking volumes about the path that DUBC is on towards becoming a more inclusive, welcoming and diverse club. 

Elsewhere among College rowing, DU Ladies Boat Club has created its own piece of history by reappointing a Captain for the first time in its 47-year history. At its AGM last May, DULBC re-elected physiotherapy student Alicia O’Neill as Captain, a feat last carried out by DUBC between 1961-62, and never before by DULBC.

DUBC and DULBC are expected to formally open their seasons at Lagan Head of the River on October 29.

Jane Prendergast

Jane Prendergast is Co-Sports Editor of Trinity News. She is a Junior Sophister student of Law.