Sanita Pušpure

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Sanita Pušpure
Ruder-EM 2016 62.JPG
Personal information
Nationality Latvian and Irish
Born (1981-12-21) 21 December 1981 (age 35)
Riga, Latvian SSR, Soviet Union
Residence Ballincollig
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 72 kg (11.3 st)
Country  Latvia
Sport Rowing
Event(s) Single sculls
Club Old Collegians

Sanita Pušpure ([ˈsɑn̪it̪ɑ ˈpuʃpure]; born 21 December 1981) is a Latvian and Irish professional rower. She initially competed for Latvia at a junior level, but she moved to Ireland in 2006 and began competing for the country in 2010, gaining Irish nationality in 2011. She was selected as the sole rowing competitor for Ireland at the 2012 Summer Olympics, where she did not win a medal. In May 2016, she qualified for the Women's single sculls at the 2016 Summer Olympics.[1]


She began her rowing career in her native Latvia. In 2003, she placed third in the single scull competition at the World under-23 Championships, and the following year took the gold medal in the double scull at the World Student Games.[2]

She moved to Ireland in 2006, as her husband Kaspar got a job at Dublin Airport,[3][4] and they initially lived in Cork.[5] In 2009, she won the single sculls event at the Irish Championships,[2] repeating that success at the following year's competition and taking the double sculls title too.[6]

Pušpure began competing for Ireland in World Cup events during 2010, but was only allowed to compete at the World Championships after she gained Irish nationality in 2011.[4][5] She was in the winning teams in the double and quad sculls at the Henley Women's Regatta in 2011.[6] She initially aimed to qualify for the 2012 Olympics in the double scull, partnered with Lisa Dilleen. The duo finished in twelfth place at the 2011 World Championships, where the top eight teams qualified for the Olympics.[7]

She competed in the single scull event for the first time at a World Cup event in Belgrade in May 2012, finishing in fifth place.[8] At the Olympic qualification event in Lucerne, Switzerland, she placed second in her heat in order to make it through to the semi-final.[9] After finishing third in the semi,[10] she placed fourth in the final, giving Ireland a place in the women's single sculls competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics.[11] She was selected for the Irish team at the Games as the country's only rowing competitor, and their first female single sculler since the 1980 Summer Olympics.[2] She reached the quarter-finals of the event.[12]

Personal life[edit]

She lives with her family in Ballincollig, County Cork.[7] Both of her children were born in Ireland.[6] Pušpure races for Old Collegians Boat Club.[13]


  1. ^ Gorman, Liam (24 May 2016). "Sanita Puspure the latest to reach Rio". Irish Times. Retrieved 5 August 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "Sanita Puspure: single scull". RTÉ. 17 July 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  3. ^ "Sanita’s Olympic bid – a special appeal for your assistance". Old Collegians Boat Club. 6 June 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  4. ^ a b "London 2012: Introducing… Sanita Puspure". The Score. 2 July 2012. Archived from the original on 22 July 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  5. ^ a b "Puspure scrambles onto Irish team". Irish Times. 23 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c Kelly, James (15 May 2012). "Sanita Puspure – competing in Olympic qualifiers". Old Collegians Boat Club. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Gorman, Liam (24 May 2012). "Puspure seals place at Games". Irish Times. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  8. ^ "Rowing Round–up: Puspure Fifth in Belgrade, Keohane Wins in Ghent, Black and Cassells in the Hunt". Afloat. 8 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  9. ^ "Puspure finishes strongly to book place in semi-final". Irish Times. 21 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  10. ^ "Puspure in Final at Olympic Qualification rowing Regatta". Afloat. 22 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  11. ^ "Ireland Olympian Sanita Puspure is Afloat Rower of the Month". Afloat. 31 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Puspure joins Ireland's to compete for Ireland". Irish Examiner. 23 May 2012. Retrieved 17 July 2012.