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London 2012: Introducing... Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern

The duo finished 10th in the Sailing World Championships last year.

Irish 49er sailing crew members Ryan Seaton (left) and Matt McGovern at a Sports Institute Northern Ireland training session last year.
Irish 49er sailing crew members Ryan Seaton (left) and Matt McGovern at a Sports Institute Northern Ireland training session last year.
Image: ©INPHO/Presseye/Darren Kidd

Event: 49er (Sailing)

Who are they? Seaton and McGovern were one of the first sportspeople to qualify for Team Ireland when they made the top 10 at the Sailing World Championships last December. Seaton, a 22-year-old from Carrickfergus has been sailing in international events for the past five years and will be competing in his first Olympic games. McGovern, two years older than his sailing partner and from Bangor, made his bow in 2006.

Road to London: The pair finished fifth in both of their 49er races in Perth, Australia last year and made it into the top 10 overall. Seaton and McGovern will be Ireland’s first Olympic representatives in the 49er class since Tom Fitzpatrick and Fraser Browne finished 16th at the Athens games in 2004.

What they says about themselves: In an interview with the Carrickfergus Times earlier this year, Seaton declared, “We’re not going to London to make up the numbers.” ISA Performance Director James O’Callaghan said last December that the early qualification of the pair was ‘something special’.

Medal chances? In June, the pair finished seventh at the Skandia Sail for Gold event. That result, combined with their strong outing at the world championships, will give the youthful duo every confidence of threatening for a medal when they compete in their skiff at Weymouth during the games.

If you meet them in a bar, ask them about… gospel singing. Ryan Seaton shares his name with a successful, American gospel singer. The singing Seaton was formerly with Ernie Haase & Signature Sound before branching out as a solo artist. His latest album, Love Songs, is available for pre-order now. Soon, all the world will be able to enjoy.

On the Twitter: The pair have a joint page @Irish49er and keep supporters regularly updated about their road, or waterway, to London.

If they were a YouTube video, they would be… Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly in action. The Northern Ireland pair are always up for a laugh so they should be able to relate to the comedy duo and their excellent (but potty-mouthed) song, Boats n’ Hoes.  Here are Ferrell and Reilly talking to Movies.ie about the song, and the movie Step Brothers.

YouTube credit:

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About the author:

Patrick McCarry

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