Displaying items by tag: Mermaid
Last weekend, the 8th and 9th of August, saw Rush Sailing Club host their annual regatta event. 13 Mermaids competed in a total of five races in sunshine and breeze along with Lasers and Toppers. First place overall in the Mermaid fleet went to Brian Mc Nally on 186, Gentoo from Skerries Sailing Club with his crew Valerie Cronin and Ross Galbraith. Second place was Paddy Dillon on 131 Wild Wind from Rush Sailing Club with his crew Johnny and Mo Dillon and third place overall went the Darragh McCormack on 188 Innocence from Foynes Yacht Club with his crew Tadhg O’Loingsigh and Brian Fox. It was very close and competitive racing with everyone in great form and happy to be out on the water, there seemed to be less shouting than usual (for the most part!) and more smiles, waving and joking!
Due to COVID the first three scheduled events for the Mermaid fleet this year were cancelled (Munster Championship, Leinster Championship & Skerries Regatta) as well as the 2020 National Championship due to be held in Fenit this August. The only remaining fixture was Rush Regatta so it was a huge boost to get the event in and see such a strong turnout with 13 boats. With strict social distancing and safety measures in place at the newly refurbished and extended clubhouse there were many comments on how well the event was run with crews staying to their boats and ‘pods’. Huge credit must be given to all the team and volunteers at Rush Sailing Club who put in phenomenal effort to get the refurbishment and safety measures in place and make the event happen.
Credit due to Race Officer Liam Dinneen and his team who ran 5 excellent races in difficult conditions with a strong tide, and a dropping breeze at times, a number of races were shortened to ensure all races were completed. After racing on the Saturday a BBQ was held with plenty of outdoor seating. Following on from the success of this event, Skerries Sailing Club have now rescheduled their own Regatta, originally due to take place in June, the new dates for Skerries Regatta 2020 have now been set as the 22nd and 23rd of August and, while open to a number of classes, it is hoped to see a strong turn out from the Mermaid fleet again for what will be their last event of 2020.
The Beneteau First 50-footer leads by 2.5 points from the Royal St. George Yacht Club J/97 Windjammer.
Third overall in the worst weather hit series in 20 years of Spring Chicken Series racing is the 1720 sportsboat Ricochet.
A reduced fleet sailed in bright and breezy conditions last Sunday as could be seen on the live Dublin Bay webcam.
Download the full results below.
It is with great honour and privilege that after seven years of volunteering on the committee of the Mermaid Sailing Association (MSA), I now move into my two-year term as President.
The Mermaids are a class very close to my heart, first getting involved at the age of 15 when my father brought 119 Three Chevrons into our lives. I was instantly hooked and we have been at every championship since then. It has been a fantastic experience; I now look at the Mermaid class as my extended family and every year it is the Mermaid events that I most look forward to.
As sailors, I’m sure you all echo my own personal love for our oceans and waterways. In recent years, however, the damage that has been caused from pollution of plastics and other harmful waste materials has become too serious to ignore. Now, more than ever, we need to play our part to safeguard our seas and ensure future generations get to experience what we have been so lucky to.
"values embedded in the Mermaid class are refreshingly sustainable"
This is something I am very passionate about and am trying my best in my own life to make positive changes. The reason I am highlighting it here is that I feel many of the values embedded in the Mermaid class are refreshingly sustainable. For example, appreciating and upholding skills and craftsmanship, something that many other classes have lost.
The Dublin Bay Mermaid, being a wooden boat steeped in history holds on to a lot of tradition and values otherwise dying out. Guess what? You can’t order a mermaid online, or “just throw it away” if something breaks. These boats are special and demand the effort, something incredibly rewarding for those willing to do so. We mend, we repair, we sustain, we cherish our boats and give them new life… perhaps we should look at applying for some kind of sustainability award to recognise this dedication that is so rare to come across in our modern age!
As a result of the hours and elbow grease you have to put in, often in sheds with friends, making memories, picking up the phone and actually talking to people, learning skills and spending quality time with family, you will see that most Mermaiders get unusually attached to their boats, with many refusing to part with them even after they stop sailing them. They become more than just boats, they become a part of our lives, our families and memories. Every Mermaid, each one special with its own story to tell, and all the people who dedicate themselves to upholding these values, make this class the most special one I have ever encountered.
I am really excited for the next 2 years where I will contribute as much value as I can to the class especially through my own personal skills and experience in Sales and Marketing.
"I want to get a controlled revision history process in place"
Following on from our most recent AGM, the MSA association already has a number of clear goals to tackle over the next two years. In addition to these, for myself personally in my role as President, I want to get a fully up-to-date, digital version of the ‘Blue Book’, with a controlled revision history process in place. I want to get all class documentation and processes online (as much as is possible). I want to reinvigorate club racing by working with the class captains and generating some buzz and momentum around the class in their local clubs (watch this space!).
Building on the success of a fantastic National Championship in Cork in 2019, I want to replicate this by bringing the fleet to more new venues. This gets people excited to go somewhere new, spreads awareness of our fantastic fleet getting us in front of new potential Mermaiders and, recognising that these 4-6 days are also a holiday for participants, means we get to travel to new places and experience new things. This year’s upcoming National Championship is going to be one not to be missed and we will push hard for 30 entries. Lots of new and fun incentives are currently in development so keep an eye out for updates and mark it in your diary.
The MSA is run entirely by volunteered efforts so I want to thank everyone in advance who will help to make 2020 a great year for the class. I look forward to meeting you all on the water and please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any ideas, feedback or questions.
Yours in Sailing,
Roisin Mc Cormack
The DBSC Mermaid Class and Skerries Sailing Club have lost one of their iconic long-standing members when Joe Boylan (88 years of age) died peacefully last Monday surrounded by his family in his home writes Roger Bannon.
Joe will be long remembered, in his younger days for his prowess on the rugby field and for his lifelong involvement in the Skerries sailing community. However, he is probably best known as a very skilful builder of quick elegant Mermaids and as an accomplished competitive sailor. Joe, along with his brother Matt, was in that famous group known during the 1950s as the Barkyard Mermaids when Joe’s first Mermaid creation, the famous Akita no 85, was constructed. Akita was subsequently followed by many boats built for himself and several of his friends. The most famous of these was Zeila no 138 in which he won 4 Mermaid Championships during the 1970s and ’80s. He also found time to act as Commodore of Skerries Sailing Club and ultimately become President of the Mermaid Sailing Association.
Joe never lost his enthusiasm for building boats and competitive sailing. His last Mermaid creation, the aptly named “This is it” no 177, was skippered by his grandson Mark to a Mermaid Championship win in Galway a few years ago.
Joe will be very sadly missed not only by the Skerries community in which he was a leading light but throughout Ireland’s sailing community, particularly anywhere Mermaids were sailed.
Rest in Peace, Joe.
There were jubilant scenes at Royal Cork Yacht Club on Sunday evening when Paul Smith, President of the Mermaid Sailing Association presented the Foynes Yacht Club triplets Darragh, Noel and Mark McCormack with the National Championship trophy writes Bob Bateman.
The trio successfully defended their title on the last day of the Championships coming from third overall with two races left to sail in the ten race series, as Afloat reported here.
See all Bob Bateman's reports and photos on the 2019 Mermaid Championships in one handy link here
The Championship prizegiving in the RCYC dining room also included day prize presentations by RCYC Rear Admiral Dinghies, Brian Jones and MSA President Paul Smith. See selection of photos below
Mermaid National Champion Darragh McCormack of Foynes Yacht Club has successfully defended his national title at Royal Cork Yacht Club moving from third place and into the overall lead in today's final races of the ten race championships.
McCormack eeked out a 2.25 winning margin and overtook the overnight leader Paddy Dillon to retain the title. Third overall was Wexford's Derek Joyce.
Overall results are downloadable below. Scroll down for photo gallery. Prizegiving photos here
Day 4 Mermaid Nationals Gallery below:
Dillon leads Derek Joyce (Sail number 187) by three points going into the final day of competition in the Clinker class.
Overall, defending champion Darragh McCormack of Foynes lies in third place in the 22-boat fleet.
Download results below. Racing continues tomorrow.
Scroll down for photos by Bob Bateman below
Overall, defending champion Darragh McCormack of Foynes leads on 7 points from Mark Boylan by .5 of a point. In third place is Patrick Dillon on 11 points in the 22-boat fleet.
Download results below. Racing continues tomorrow.
Scroll down for photos by Bob Bateman below
The eagerly-awaited national Mermaid Championship getting underway today in Crosshaven with the Royal Cork YC has experienced two shoreside setbacks which have served to underline what a close-knit community is to be found this very special class. Senior skipper and former ISA President Roger Bannon of Dun Laoghaire’s return to the class is now ruled out for the time being, as he was taken ill yesterday but has happily recovered – though not enough for active sailing competition – after hospital treatment.
But noted class stars Jonathan and Carol O’Rourke of the National YC have not been so fortunate. While nearing the end of their road trail with their famous boat Tiller Girl to Crosshaven, a truck collided with them, and Jonathan, Carol and his son Alan all sustained serious injuries which saw their emergency treatment in hospital for broken bones, concussion and shock.
This morning, all are reported to be doing well, and as for Tilller Girll, while there has been damage it is by no means terminal. As racing gets under way, the thoughts of the Mermaid community and indeed all Irish sailing are with Roger Bannon, Jonathan & Carol O’Rourke, and Alan O’Rourke.
For the first time, The DBSC Mermaids are holding their annual Championship in Crosshaven over 4 days from 1st - 4th August hosted by the Royal Cork Yacht Club. The fleet has enjoyed numbers in excess of 25 to 30 boats at its most recent championships but this year’s event is shaping up to be something special with a fistful of former champions deciding to rejoin the fray and relive old memories and try to put the current crop of recent younger winners under a little pressure.
Current form would have to recognise Daragh Mc Cormack, last year’s champion on home waters, in his exceptional boat Innocence no 188, as the firm favourite. He won the Munster’s earlier this year and dominated the Skerries regatta last weekend. In the hands his club mate Vincent Mc Cormack Innocence was also a clear winner in a competitive fleet at the Leinster’s during the Volvo Regatta earlier this month.
Regular winner Jonathan O'Rourke in Tiller Girl 77 will be certain to be in the hunt as will Mark Boylan, the youngest ever winner a few years ago in a very windy Galway Bay.
Sam Shields, twice winner, has bought the famous Helen 76 and completely rebuilt her and would have high expectations of being in the frame with his experienced crew.
Also returning is the noted Rush sailor Paddy Dillon, another former winner, in Wild Wind 131 who will be anxious to build on his experience with the outstandingly successful J 109 Storm Team over the last couple of years. A solid 2nd in Skerries as his first outing in years consolidates his credentials for consideration as a serious contender.
Long-time Mermaid stalwart, Derek Joyce has refurbished his unbeatable steed from the 2000s, Zeila 187 and he will be attempting to match Roger Bannon’s record of six wins over the years. It is also expected that Roger Bannon might be there with rumours circulating that Kate Grimes is returning from Dubai especially for the event to crew for him.
News is also circulating of several rebuilding projects around the country with the hope that some may make it to the starting line in Crosshaven, including Nichapando 114 and Perhaps 111.
Exciting times for this iconic class!