For the second month running, we have been able to draw on the categorisaton of Ireland’s sailors as either Olympic or non-Olympic in order to provide two “Sailors of the Month” in a way which accurately reflects the diversity of Irish sailing, and the current high level of achievement.
And our May “Sailor of the Month” also reflects the Irish diaspora.
We find that when the voting opens on who should be “Sailor of the Year”, more than half the votes cast come from Irish sailors currently based abroad. So it’s a special pleasure that the Sailor of the Month for May 2916 should be one of these ex-Pats.
Dara O’Malley of Westport in County Mayo still had to spread his sailing wings when he left Ireland straight from school around 1994 to study chemistry at Aberdeen University, and it is in Scotland that he has built his career both ashore in industry, and afloat with Port Edgar Yacht Club on the Firth of Forth on Scotland’s East Coast
However, one of his favourite events is on Scotland’s West Coast, at Tarbert on Loch Fyne, venue for the annual Silvers Marine Scottish Series. The O’Malley team, racing the Hunter 707 Seaword, have been in the frame in Tarbert in previous years. But on Monday they moved onto a new level by finishing the 2016 series with an almost flawless scoreline, a feat which won them the overall trophy and made Dara O’Malley our “Sailor of the Month” (non-Olympic) for May 2016.