fbpx

Category: Press

IRISH MIRROR- MAY 3, 2022

This June, lifelong friends and former rugby players Damian Browne and Fergus Farrell will attempt to row 3,000 nautical miles across the Atlantic Ocean together from New York to Galway.

Former Connacht and Leinster lock Damian Browne is no stranger to the agonies and ecstasies offered up on the water; back in 2018, he rowed solo east to west across the Southern North Atlantic and ultimately arrived to the island of Antigua to a hero’s welcome.

He is well acquainted with physically enduring quests; the Covid-19 pandemic recently delayed his plans to conquer the highest peaks in all seven continents of the world.

He is now bidding to become one of a select few to successfully row across the Atlantic Ocean in both directions, however he will not be alone as he sets out on this expedition.

Fergus Farrell represented Connacht at U18, U19 and U20 level while he was also capped for the Irish Youths at U18 level.

It was subsequent to his playing days that Fergus faced his biggest test, however. In 2018, an accident in his back garden resulted in him rupturing three spinal discs, one of which leaked onto his spinal cord and almost shredded it entirely.

Read More »

INDEPENDENT.IE – APRIL 17, 2018

On this week’s episode of The Left Wing, Will Slattery and Luke Fitzgerald are joined by former Leinster and Connacht second row Damian Browne to discuss his epic 4,800km solo row across the Atlantic ocean.Damian set off from the Canary Islands and 63 days later set foot on dry land in Antigua. He tells Luke and Will of the tough fitness regime he underwent to prepare for his marathon feat, and how his first day turned into a disaster.He also reveals the mental and physical struggles of navigating across the ocean on your own, and opens up on the challenges of acclimatizing back to normal life after spending so long at sea.Luke also talks about his toughest ever training session and match as a professional rugby player.

Read More »

RUGBY PLAYER IRELAND -JULY 2017

Leinster are prepared to sign former Connacht lock Damien Browne as a replacement for Nathan Hines, who will leave the province at the end of the season.

Browne (pictured in Northampton colours above), who currently plays for French outfit Brive, is out of contract with the French side in the summer and is set to return to Ireland having left Connacht seven seasons ago to join Aviva Premiership side Northampton Saints.

According to the Irish Independent this morning, Leinster set their sights on Browne once it became clear that former Perpignan second row Hines is to return to France next season to join Joe Schmidt’s former side Clermont Auvergne.

The former Ireland under-21 international, brother of current Connacht forward Andrew, has spent the last three seasons with Brive and although he did not feature in the Amlin Challenge Cup defeat to Munster at the weekend due to a back injury, he is in line to play against Biarritz in the Top 14 this weekend

Read More »

SPORTS JOE 

Solo rower Damian Browne has completed the Atlantic Challenge rowing race.
The former Leinster and Connacht lock came through the strong winds and strong currents in English Harbour to finish his row after 63 days, six hours and 25 minutes at sea.

He finished the incredible journey at 9.30pm Irish time on Wednesday.

#AD
Learn more

Over two months after leaving San Sebastián for Nelson’s Dockyard, Antigua, the 37-year-old docked his boat after a gruelling voyage.

Browne was rowing for the cause of his chosen charities Médecins Sans Frontieres, MADRA Dog Rescue & Adoption and the Strong Roots Foundation School Rwanda.

The Galway man came through fierce adversity at various stages during the race, suffering some serious facial injuries along the way.

But surviving is his game and it would take something serious to stop this insanely driven man from achieving his goals.

Read More »

THE IRISH TIMES – DECEMBER 18, 2017

Damian Browne is back on track in the Atlantic Rowing Race.

The retired professional rugby player had a rough few days at the start of the row from the Canary Islands to Antigua, as he was buffeted by strong winds and suffered seasickness and cramp.

But on Monday evening he was in good form and reported that he had overcome his early struggles.

“I’ve processed that real quickly,” he said in a Facebook post. He was 19th of the 25 boats which took to the water on Thursday, and third of the solo rowers.

Relentless, the four from Cork and Dublin, also had battled with seasickness, but were making steady progress.

They were sixth overall on Monday, after four days of the race. Just behind were Home to Portrush, also a four.

Fighting it out at the head of the field are Team Antigua and British crew The Four Oarsmen.

Read More »

L’EQUIPE – AUGUST 10, 2018

It’s been a few months now since Damian Browne rested his feet on the ground, after his solo rowing across the Atlantic. His emaciated body was able to strengthen, his cracked palms calmed down, his tense fingers were able to regain some flexibility, and looking back, he says he enjoyed hurting himself during those two months. Is it really surprising for this Irishman who says laughingly that for his first rugby session, as a kid, in Galway, he missed a tackle, hurt his face, and had a revelation: “It ‘s was as if my body was giving me a signal: this sport is for you!”

He committed himself to it body and soul for sixteen years of professionalism, across Ireland (Connacht, Leinster), England (Northampton) and the Top 14, for five seasons in Brive (2008-2011) then Oyonnax ( 2013-2015). Arnaud Méla pushed alongside him in the Corrèze pack: “He had two personalities. On the ground, he was a strong, tough, hardworking man. He did bodybuilding by hitting the bars, he was very physical and advanced on the ground. And, on the side, he loved to read a cushy book, alone under a tree!

Read More »

IRISHCENTRAL – 0CTOBER 3, 2020

Two extreme adventurers from County Galway plan to set a new Guinness World Record by rowing almost 5,000 kilometers across the Atlantic Ocean in 2022. Damian Browne, a former professional rugby player, and his friend Fergus Farrell will row across 4,937km of treacherous sea conditions in a traditional Irish currach in an attempt to break a 124-year-old world record. The duo, both of Traditional Currach Baycrossing, launched “Project Empower” on Sept. 29 by sailing from Inish Oirr in the Aran Islands to Galway City since that voyage will be the last leg of their transatlantic crossing in two years. The launch was also a nod to Ireland’s seafaring tradition as the route was often used by travelers journeying between the Aran Islands and the Irish coast. The 26-mile arduous journey took the sailers eight hours and 45 minutes to complete.

Read More »

JOE – 2017

Damian Browne doesn’t do holidays.Or, at least, he doesn’t do holidays in a conventional sense. Two weeks lounging by a pool in Lanzarote wouldn’t be his thing.Some of his most recent trips abroad have involved excursions in locations as remote as the Congo, Afghanistan, Tanzania and Tajikistan. And, in April of this year, he took on a challenge that is scary to read about, never mind physically participate in. You’d think that after retiring from a professional rugby career that took in spells with Connacht, Leinster, Northampton, Brive and Oyannax, a man might relax and put his feet up, but Damian Browne decided to take it up a notch instead.#AD Learn moreWhen JOE caught up with Damian, he was back in Ireland having just returned from the Marathon des Sables, which doesn’t carry the tag ‘the toughest footrace on Earth’ lightly.

Read More »

THIS IS GALWAY

To limit Damian Browne to the confinement of any one box would be a disservice. Exuding a calm charisma and undeniable passion for what he has devoted his life to, a sense of adventure is at the very core of his being.

With over sixteen years of professional rugby under his belt, Damian has been using the world’s most extreme environments to test his physical and mental capabilities. Having trekked through the Sahara Desert on a 257km marathon and spent 63-days rowing solo across the Atlantic, Damian has decided to kick it up a notch. Between July 2018 and May 2020, Damian will scale the highest peaks of all seven continents. We caught up with the adventurer to ask the question on everyone’s mind; why?

Having carried out a thorough social media stalk, I saw ‘my life will be my masterpiece’ displayed proudly as Damian’s Instagram bio. “I’ve got one shot at this, and these are the things that feed my soul,” Damian says, delving further into the sentiment. “I want to explore myself and I want to explore the world. Adventures like these give me so much. When I look back, whenever it may be, I want to be very content, happy and fulfilled with what I’ve done. I feel I am on that path and I am very enthused and full of energy for that path, so I don’t see anything stopping me but me – and I will not let that get in my way.”

Read More »

JOE – 2012

Leinster are prepared to sign former Connacht lock Damien Browne as a replacement for Nathan Hines, who will leave the province at the end of the season.

Browne (pictured in Northampton colours above), who currently plays for French outfit Brive, is out of contract with the French side in the summer and is set to return to Ireland having left Connacht seven seasons ago to join Aviva Premiership side Northampton Saints.

According to the Irish Independent this morning, Leinster set their sights on Browne once it became clear that former Perpignan second row Hines is to return to France next season to join Joe Schmidt’s former side Clermont Auvergne.

The former Ireland under-21 international, brother of current Connacht forward Andrew, has spent the last three seasons with Brive and although he did not feature in the Amlin Challenge Cup defeat to Munster at the weekend due to a back injury, he is in line to play against Biarritz in the Top 14 this weekend

Read More »