Siobhan McCrohan won gold for Ireland in the lightweight women's single sculls at the World Rowing Championships in Belgrade on Friday afternoon.
The 36-year-old from Galway rowed home in 8:47.96, as she finished ahead of Mexico's Kenia Lechuga and USA's Sophia Luwis in third.
In choppy conditions, McCrohan - racing from lane one after winning her semi-final - was third after 500m and second after 1000m. Around the 1500m mark, the Irish rower made her move and wasn't going to be caught.
"Going out in really rough conditions since I was a junior to avoid doing ergs, that helped," she said.
"When you can get a bit of a run going on the boat when it's really rough, it does feel really good that you can actually get it to sit up and move.
"I'm not sure that I'd say it was fun. I was pinballing down between the two lanes, so it was a bit all over the place. I probably rowed a few extra metres on the way down. But it was a good race. All the long sessions paid off when the race is that long."
McCohan, who hails from Claregalway, made her international debut for Ireland in 2007, but had drifted away from the sport in recent years. She made a return late last year.
Five Irish boats, including Paul O'Donovan and Fintan McCarthy in the lightweight men's double sculls, the women's pair of Fiona Murtagh and Aifric Keogh, the men's pair of Ross Corrigan and Nathan Timoney, the men's double of Phil Doyle and Daire Lynch, and the women's double of Alison Bergin and Zoe Hyde have qualified for next year's Olympic Games in Paris thanks to their performances at the World Rowing Championships.
🥇 Siobhan McCrohan of Galway has won gold in the lightweight women's sculls final at the World Rowing Championships in Serbia pic.twitter.com/uLAfXvPu7h
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) September 8, 2023