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Royal Cork's Nin O'Leary To The fore As Superyachts Battle In The Caribbean

15th March 2017
The 2015-built 60m Perini Perseus has been achieving her first wins this week in the Caribbean under Nin O’Leary’s command The 2015-built 60m Perini Perseus has been achieving her first wins this week in the Caribbean under Nin O’Leary’s command

It’s the peak of the best of the sailing season in the Caribbean, and key Irish crews are making a major impact at the sharp end of the fleet writes W M Nixon. Former All-Ireland Sailing Champion Nin O’Leary of Crosshaven, skippering the 60m sloop Perseus3 of Mark Byrne (a Royal Cork YC overseas member), has recorded a convincing class win at the Loro Piana Caribbean Superyacht Regatta & Rendezvous, an event so discreet that the precise location is really known only to the participants on the 23 superyachts taking part.

Cork interest in Perseus3 goes beyond the owner and crew, as she is a classic Ron Holland design, a Perini Navi 60. She’s a soncey big animal, even by superyacht standards. Those comfort-loving sailors who get their kicks out of being competitive with a properly-tuned standard cruiser in handicap racing will be fascinated by what’s needed to keep Perseus’s many tonnes of luxury sailing at optimum performance. But Nin O’Leary clearly has what it takes, as this is the first time Perseus has recorded wins.

It takes rare skill, very fine judgement in tight situations where a mistake could cost the equivalent of a small nation’s annual GDP, and a very large crew who know what they are doing, for with the enormous loads that you get on rigging, halyards and sheets on a boat this size, the slightest mistake can result in serious injury or worse.

Perseus superyacht 2Ron Holland, formerly of Crosshaven and Kinsale, was involved in the creation of Perseus

Persius luxury yachtComin’ atcha….that’s an awful of very expensive boat to be racing on port tack

But when it goes right, this is very rewarding sailing indeed, and the crew of Perseus – whose Cork complement also included RCYC members Clive Higgins and James Fagan – overcame problems to with one of the roller-furling systems during one contest to record a clean scoresheet of three wins.

Perseus superyacht 2How many does it take to race a boat of this size and type? You count….but that’s Nin O’Leary in the middle, right under the photo of the boat

Nin OLeary allirlwinnerBack in the day….Nicholas “Nin” O’Leary wins the Helmsman’s Championship at Royal Cork in 2009

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