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Fri, Feb
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More sports star to watch in 2021

Sport

In part three of our series, we look at some outstanding young Mayo sporting talent

Motorsport
Lorcan Moore
Crossmolina

THE 22 year-old has been calling pacenotes for the past six years. But 2021 has the potential to see him take the next step as Lorcan continues his involvement with the Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy Programme.
The Academy (which identifies, develops and supports talented drivers and co-drivers who have the potential to reach elite level in rallying) provides performance management, coaching and driver/co-driver specific education.
In 2017 Moore became the first Irish co-driver to win the Belgian two-wheel drive championship, capping a busy year which saw him compete on 26 events throughout Ireland, UK and Belgium. As only a handful of events ran due to Covid in 2020, this year Moore has been working on reigniting a partnership which seen him compete in select rounds of the American Rally Championship back in 2019.
Having formed a successful relationship with a Monaghan native, now working and living in New York, the deal for the coming year would see the Mayo man travel to rounds in Atlanta, Portland, Ohio, Colorado, Missouri and New England.
However, with the first round in Michigan roaring into action on February 20 the current travel restrictions between Ireland and the United States have temporally put the brakes on this fast-talking athlete.
Like many aspiring young drivers and co-drivers, Moore’s ambition is fixed on making it to the top level of rallying.

Rugby
Sean Masterson
Connacht
A RISING star within the Connacht ranks, Sean is coming into form at just the right time on the national stage. The back row forward has played six times for Connacht this season having notched three appearances last year. His performances against the likes of  Munster in Galway and away to Racing 92 in Paris have caught lots of attention already.
Having just turned 23 last week, he’s right on schedule in terms of normal development paths within professional rugby and his performances this season have been catching a lot of attention. His older brother, Eoghan, is also well-established within the Connacht ranks having been part of the PRO12 title winning squad of 2016.
The Mastersons have very strong links to Mayo, their mother Ann (nee McNamara) hails from Westport and their father, Pat who is originally from Scotland.
Pat spent many years in Westport playing rugby at senior level for Westport RFC, and he and Ann now live in Aughagower having moved from their previous base of Portlaoise.
Sean is a dynamic forward with lots of energy and a tremendous work-rate.
He captained the Irish under 19s, and after suffering a setback with injury during his Irish under 20s days, fought back slowly to the point where he made three appearances last year before making a full breakthrough this season.

Triathlon
Ethan Doherty
Westport Triathlon Club
THE youngest of the Doherty brothers, Ethan already looks like he will be a chip off the block and will go on to replicate the success of his brothers.
Recently turned 15, the Westport teenager is strong in each of the single disciplines that make up triathlons, but plans on primarily focusing on the hybrid sport in 2021.
Over the past two years he has enjoyed vast amounts of success.
In 2019 he won the Maplewoods Youth Triathlon, took gold in the National Community Games cycling event, and was second in the National Youth Triathlon Championships.
The following year, Doherty showed his class on the bike by winning the adult ‘Covey League’ which ran in August and against competitors over twice his age.
A Third Year student in Rice College, Doherty’s season in 2020, like most, was hampered by Covid-19. However he is hopeful that 2021 will be less turbulent and he can continue his meteoric rise.

Dressage
Rebecca McGrath
Ballyjennings Stables
THE 12 year-old has been on a pony from as young as 8 weeks-old, growing up in Ballyjennings Stables, Ballinrobe and has been Regional champion at dressage at her level in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Rebecca was one of two of the youngest ever riders at the Dressage Ireland championships in 2016 and featured in an article published in ‘Euro Dressage’.
She represented Dressage Ireland in 2019 as part of a dressage display in the RDS to showcase the discipline to a wider audience.
The youngster is also a member of the Ballyjennings Branch of the Irish Pony Club, while she also enjoys the other disciplines and regularly participates in local one-day events and showjumping competitions.
This year she is part of the High Performance Development squad for Dressage Ireland which is a pathway for young riders to participate in European competitions.
She also aims to compete at the Home International in 2021, providing restrictions are lifted sufficiently, with her pony, TickerLevan Sunrise. Rebecca is also hoping to bring he pony to international level.
Lockdown has allowed her to spend more time on her ponies in between the home-schooling!

 

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