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Ross and Stuart Vaughan, newcomers to the Irish Squib fleet, are the 2013 Rodgers & Browne Squib Northern Champions.

Hosted over the first weekend of June at Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club, the event attracted 17 entries, with visitors from Killyleagh Yacht Club, Royal St George Yacht Club and Howth Yacht Club.

Light, tricky conditions prevailed throughout the weekend, with several major wind shifts adding to the difficulties. Race 1 was won by locals Denis Todd/Al Boston in Contender who had a good lead over fellow club mates and brothers, Ross and Stuart Vaughan, in Joint Venture and the father and daughter team of Fred and Holly Campbell in Halloween.

In Race 2 the wind increased significantly and Greg Bell/Leah Anderson on Prodigal led throughout the race to secure the gun at the finish. Joint Venture managed another second, beating last year's winners Davy Eccles/Phil Hutchinson on Inshallah, who were third.

With the wind continuing to clock around to the right, the third race was initially abandoned as a further 100 degree shift to the right materialised. The restarted race saw Halloween take line honours, followed by Inshallah and visitors from Howth, Jonathan Craig/Hazel Ruane on Kerfuffle securing third place.

Having completed the three races scheduled for that day, the fleet returned to the shore for a night of revelry.

Bleary eyed, the hardened Squibbers appeared one by one on the Sunday morning to be faced with minimal breeze, as predicted. After some persuasion the fleet made its way out to the inevitable postponement. However, experienced PRO Nigel Kearney's patience was rewarded when the sea breeze started to fill in after midday and, after an abandoned start as the wind settled, he got two of the races away in steady breeze.

Joint Venture added to its impressive score card with its first win of the event. Previous Northern Champions, Gordon Patterson/Ross Nolan on Quickstep III, secured a second place with David Mellor/Leandre McCollum on Conquest taking third.

With the time limit for a final start fast approaching, it was clear that the fifth race would be the last and so the PRO took opportunity to extend it to three rounds, ensuring that the fleet got value for money. Prodigal got a great start, and led from start to finish. Inshallah and Halloween took second and third place respectively.

Fourth place was enough for the Vaughan brothers to return to the club moorings as Northern Champions.

Overall:

1st: Joint Venture: Ross and Stuart Vaughan, RNIYC

2nd: Prodigal: Greg Bell and Leah Anderson, RNIYC

3rd: Halloween: Fred and Holly Campbell, RNIYC

Published in Squib
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#squib – The Squib keelboat class will be returning to the southern shores of Belfast Lough and the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club this weekend.

The Rodgers & Browne sponsored Squib Northern Championship will attract Squibs from across Ireland to compete for the coveted trophy.

The Squib Class is one of the largest one design keelboat classes in Ireland. It is sailed by two people and is well known for its distinctive brown sails. Over the last decade fleets have flourished at Killyleagh Yacht Club, Quoile Yacht Club, Royal St George Yacht Club and Kinsale Yacht Club, in addition to the traditional strongholds of Howth Yacht Club and Cultra.

The reigning champion pairing of Davy Eccles/Phil Hutchinson on Inshallah, from the host club, will again have to mount a strong defence if they are to retain the trophy for a second year. Likely contenders include previous champions, Gordon Patterson/Ross Nolan on Quickstep III and Sam Lyness/Eric Heyes on The Worm, who have both been showing promising form of late.

However, it would be foolish to dismiss the presence of previous Irish National pairing Greg Bell/Leah Anderson on Prodigal and Jonathan Craig/Hazel Ruane on Kerfuffle.

Wendy McCullough, Commodore of Royal North commented, "I am delighted to welcome the Squib Northern Championship back to Cultra and our new partnership with Rodgers & Brown. The Squib Class has been the backbone of our Club for several decades and it is fantastic that the fleet will be showcased through this event. In addition to the excellent sailing waters of Belfast Lough, the Club's well known hospitality will ensure that this event will be well worth attending."

Published in Squib

#loughderg  – Beautiful Autumn sunshine greeted the combined fleets of Dragons, SB20's, Squibs and J80's as they started the final day of the Lough Derg Yacht Club Freshwater Keelboat regatta. Not a ripple stirred Lough Derg as the fleet left the dock but the forecast South Easterly 10-20 knots soon made its appearance for race 1.

In the Dragon Class, Martin Byrne from RSGYC crewed by Anthony Shanks and James Espey stormed to a decisive victory counting five 1sts and two 3rds to win by a 12 point margin over RSGYC stablemates Gerry Treacy, Paul McGuire and Don O'Dowd. Byrne didn't have to race the final race in the series and left it up to the pack to decide second overall.

The SB20 class clearly enjoyed the fresh and gusty conditions on the trapezoid course today. It was neck and neck between rivals Ben Duncan and Peter Kennedy going into the final races but it was Duncan who scored a 1,3 today over Kennedy's 6,2 to win the midlands title for the first time in its 6 year history. Kennedy who has won this event for the past three years running had to contend himself with second. Third place had to be fought over today by Aidan O'Connell and James Gorman but the Black Flag that Aidan received for being over early in race 1, upset his chances and James took his podium result by a single point lead over Aidan in the end. O'Connell did manage to finish on a high by winning the final race of the series.

In the 2012 SB20 circuit Duncan has all but shown a clean set of results having only lost 1 event this year.

The squibs also shared the Windward/Leeward course today with the Dragons. No results were available last night due to protests but it was James Matthews from Kinsale who scored 3,1,3,1,3 to win over Jonathan Craig's very solid 1,4,2,4,2 Only two points separated the leaders in the end.

The J80's were given a lesson in consistency this weekend by Andrew Deacon who's lead was never in doubt. Scoring 1,1,1,1,1 and discarding a first to win by an 11 point margin over second place Hetty Sanders (5,4,3,2,2). Next on the podium was team "Cougars" helmed by Sue Smithwick and crewed by Adair Leech, Mary Hughes and Alison Smithwick who scored 4,5,2,3,2.

Dinner in the yacht club last night followed by a charity night in the Whiskey Still where Johnny Logan made a guest appearance, keeping the crews entertained.

PRO Claire Toohey and her team did a great job this weekend running the side by side courses. Lough Derg Yacht Club are past masters at this type of event and the combined classes look forward to keeping this an established part of their calendars.

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#loughderg – This weekend sees the gathering of the biggest of the keelboat one design fleets in Lough Derg for the annual freshwater keelboat regatta. For what is fast becoming a popular feature in the trailer sailor one design classes, Lough Derg Yacht Club is hosting a one design weekend for the Dragons, SB20's, Squibs and J80's.

The classes share the same race area but split between windward/leeward and trapezoid courses with a common start line.

The dragons assembled early on Friday with 2 races sailed and with a further 4 races today out of a 8 race series. Martin Byrne from the Royal St. George YC is clear ahead by the end of racing with a massive 11 point lead over RIYC rival Richard Goodbody. Martin counts 5 race wins in the 6 races sailed.

In the SB20 class 4 races sailed leaves the two front runners on tied points overnight with two first places and a second each for Ben Duncan and Peter Kennedy (RNIYC) each discarding a 10+ point race for 4 points nett, this being a somewhat familiar result between these two top boats. Further back James Gorman and Aidan O'Connell battle it out for 3rd but the Lough has proven a formidable challenge for all crews with the shifting and gusting southerly breeze. Who will emerge as overall leader is very much yet to be decided.

In the J80s Andrew Deacon is having it all his own way with 3 first places but discarding a Joint first (1.5). He is leading overall by 3.5 points to nearest rival Hetty Sanders with a 1.5,2,3.

At the time of writing the squibs overall was dependent on the outcome of a protest so were not available.

A beautiful October sunny day on Lough Derg, some more trying and difficult conditions tomorrow in the heartland of Ireland.

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#squib – Racing in the shadow of gale warnings the Irish Squib title hung in the balance on Dublin Bay yesterday but after a a one hour postponement a full race programme was completed. The lead of both race and event changed three time before Aidan O'Connell and Ben O'Donoghue of the Royal St. George YC finally broke away to lift the trophy. Overall results are available to download below as a pdf document.

Published in Squib

#squib – With more protests scheduled last night and a gale warning issued for the Irish Sea today there is some doubt about the final race of the Irish Squib championships in Dun Laoghaire this morning. The host club's Aidan O'Connell and Ben O'Donoghue lead by a single point from Vincent Delany and Fergal Gaynor also of the Royal St. George. One point behind in third place in the 23-boat fleet is Kinsale duo Marcus and Megan Hutchinson. Full results after day two are downloadable below as a pdf document.

 

Published in Squib

#squib – Vincent Delany and Fergal Gaynor sailing Femme Fatale are in charge after the first day's racing of the Irish National Squib championships on Dublin Bay. Scroll down for photos from Gareth Craig below. The Royal St. George YC paring have established a lead of six points after thre the first three races. Kinsale visitors Marcus and Megan Hutchinson are second on 15 points. Third is another local pairing Aidan O'Connell and Ben O'Donoghue Provisional Day one results subject to protest are posted below as a pdf for download.

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#squib – There is an unwritten tradition that the Irish Championship is always won by a Northern boat but perhaps 2012 is the year for a winner from Kinsale, Howth or Dun Laoghaire?  The Irish National Championships is to be held from 25th to 27th August at the Royal St. George Yacht Club, which is conveniently located almost equidistant from the main centres of Squib racing at Wexford, Kinsale, Glandore, Mayo, Belfast Lough and Strangford Lough.

Already in 2012 we have had two regional championships which produced very different results. The South Coast Championship in Kinsale with a fleet of 17 boats was won by husband and wife team- Marcus and Meghan Hutchinson from the home club in 'Sensation'. Second was James and Bruce Matthews in 'Mucky Duck' also from Kinsale. Third place was taken by the consistent 'Toy for the Boys' sailed by Peter Wallace and Kerry Boomer from Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club. None of the Dublin boats featured in the results.

The Northern Championship in Killyleagh Sailing Club on Strangford Lough in June with a fleet of 21 was won by Inis'allagh steered by David Eccles and Philip Hutchinson from Royal North of Ireland, second was Gordon Patterson and Ross Nolan in 'Quickstep' from the same club, with Brian O'Hare and Tonya Mc.Allister in 'Nimble' from Royal St. George in Dun Laoghaire in third place.

At the U.K. National Championships in Dartmouth in July the best Irish boat was husand and wife Johnathan Craig and Hazel Ruane in 'Kerfuffle' followed by Vincent Delany and Fergal Gaynor in 'Femme Fatale'.

This should be one of the most open Irish Squib Championships for years.

A Squib keelboat is a modest two man sailing boat, almost 6m. long but with a small sail area. It was designed some 40 years ago and retains its popularity with more than 870 boats throughout Britain and Ireland.

Published in Squib
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#SQUIB – Marcus and Meagan Hutchinson sailing 'Sensation' won a heavy air South Coast Squib keelboat championships in Kinsale on Sunday. Big swells and 20–knot easterly winds led to many retirals in the 17-boat fleet. Second overall were James and Bruce Matthews followed by Peter Wallace and Kerry Boomer from Royal North Ireland Yacht Club.

Six races were sailed with one discard.

Series PlaceSail NoBoatHelmCrewClubSeries Points
1523SensationMarcus HurchinsonMeghan HutchinsonKYC5
251Mucky DuckJames MatthewsBruce MatthewsKYC6
3818Toy for The BoysPeter WallaceKerry BoomerRNIYC12
4667ServusBobby ConlonDazMAYO SC22
5150EspressoVictor FuscoBen FuscoKYC22
6820Quick StepGordon PattersonLindsay NolanRNIYC25
7548Yacht Services IrelandColm DunneRob GillKYC26
883NebuletteDave MatthewsKatie Matthews/Dave PowerKYC27
9729MackPaul McCarthyDunocha KielyKYC35
1079SeditionCian O'ReganDominic FalveyKYC41
11497SamphireJoe ConnellJez GibsonKYC48
1246LolaFrank WhelanBrian HareDUBLIN BAY49
13528ChocoholicSarah-Louise RossiterIan RossiterWEXFORD HARBOUR51
14700SerendipityMichael FieldDeclan FoxKYC53
15344ChuckleMichael JonesAndrew BellinghamWEXFORD HARBOUR63
16348Lucy JayneGraham FilesMary MooreWEXFORD HARBOUR66
17711RebelGemma TwohigTom TwohigKYC73
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