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Displaying items by tag: Olympic

#OLYMPIC SAILING–As the important Olympic sailing Qualifier event in Perth, Australia draws closer Ireland had Laser, Laser Radial and 49er teams competing in Sail Melbourne as a warm up event last week.

49er dinghy men Ryan Seaton and Matthew McGovern took six third places over a series of 14 races to finish fourth in their seven boat fleet.

Dun Laoghaire's Annalise Murphy from the National Yacht Club, a medal hope for Ireland in London next year, was ninth from 25 starters, second being her best individual race score in race eight of here ten race series. She finished eighth in the final medal race.

Belfast Lough's James Espey from Royal Ulster YC made the gold fleet in the Laser class finishing 27th from 32.

Published in Olympics 2012

#OLYMPIC – One of Ireland's seven International Race officers (IRO) has been short-listed for the Olympic regatta next July at Weymouth. The National Yacht Club's Jack Roy is one of only 25 rated for one of the most prestigious roles in a race official's career.

As reported in April last season Roy is now part of a panel of 25, from which 19 will be chosen but the process will not be confirmed until January.

Roy has already run this year's sailboard and Laser races at the Olympic test event as part of a 180–strong race management team.

Roy is based in Dun Laoghaire and is a former Flying fifteen champion sailor. A member of the National Yacht Club, he has acted as Race Officer for many World and European championships run on Dublin Bay in recent years including Flying Fifteen Worlds, Laser 4.7 Europeans, 2007 Etchell European Championships, Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta, Cork Week, and SB3 Worlds 2008.

Published in Olympics 2012
Tagged under
#OLYMPIC – Ireland's Olympic sailing heavyweights Peter O'Leary and David Burrows are catching the new media wave and have launched a new twitter, facebook presence.

The team say they're completing final testing on a new website too. It will be live in the next week or so.

olearyburrowsstar

Downwind dazzlers – The Irish Star pair are renowned for their offwind speed

After a string of top results in 2011 the duo are bound for Perth 2012, a regatta where team officials remain confident of a top result.

Follow the Star keelboat duo here on twitter, facebook here and the team website will be here.

Podcast with Peter O'Leary here

Published in Olympics 2012
The road to 2012 glory has just got one step closer for some of the nation's top sailors who today became the first British athletes to be officially selected to compete for Team GB at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Ben Ainslie, the triple Olympic gold and silver medallist and Britain's most successful Olympic sailor, heads the list of 11 athletes confirmed by the British Olympic Association as being on the startline at Weymouth and Portland for next year's sailing events.

Sailing is the first of the 26 Olympic sports to have officially selected any of its athletes, with the 11 sailors revealed today at the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, competing across seven of the ten Olympic classes and representing a mix of both established Olympic medallists and first-time Olympians.

TeamGBR_M1249

Picture shows L-R Skandia Team GBR sailors Stephen Park (Olympic Team Manager, Kate Macgregor (Womens Match Racing), Hannah Mills (470), Lucy Macgregor (Womens Match Racing), Bryony Shaw (RSX), Ben Ainslie (Finn), Nick Dempsey (RSX), Andrew Simpson (Star), Iain Percy (Star) Annie Lush (Womens Match Racing) and Saskia Clark (470).

Ainslie, 34, has earned the right to race for his fourth Olympic gold in 2012, gaining selection in the heavyweight Finn dinghy event, while Iain Percy will aim for a third gold in total and a second in partnership with best friend Andrew Simpson in the Star class with whom he won the Olympic title in Beijing.

Paul Goodison will look to defend his Laser class crown on his home waters of Weymouth and Portland, while Nick Dempsey and Bryony Shaw will look to build on their respective Olympic bronze medals in the RS:X Men's and Women's windsurfing events (Dempsey, Athens 2004; Shaw, Beijing 2008).

The 2010 World Championship-winning trio of Lucy Macgregor, Annie Lush and Kate Macgregor have earned the nod to race at their first Olympic Games in the Elliot 6m Women's Match Racing event – a new event on the 2012 programme – with Lucy and Kate the first two sailing sisters ever to compete for Great Britain at the Olympics.

A whirlwind seven months after teaming up and following a string of podium finishes, Olympic debutant Hannah Mills and Beijing Olympian Saskia Clark have earned the confidence of the Royal Yachting Association selectors in the 470 Women's event. Mills joined forces with Clark in February 2011 following the retirement of Clark's former helm Sarah Ayton.

Selection trials are ongoing in the remaining three Olympic classes – the 470 Men, the 49er and the Laser Radial events. Team GB Chef de Mission Andy Hunt commented:
"This announcement is a key milestone and an exciting and important moment for us - it represents the beginning of the creation of Team GB, Our Greatest Team of approximately 550 athletes. Having the first athletes confirmed for Team GB for the London 2012 Olympic Games is fantastic. The eleven sailors are a good mix of experience, including six Olympic medallists, as well as promising Olympic debutants who are World or European medallists in their own right.

"There is certainly some fierce competition within sailing and there are no free passes to compete for Team GB in any sport in London 2012. In fact, in terms of overall depth and talent, we believe Team GB in London 2012 will be the most competitive British Olympic Team in modern history. Our aspiration for Team GB in London 2012 is to win more medals across more sports than for
over a century."

RYA Olympic Manager/Team GB Sailing Team Leader Stephen Park added (from Helensburgh, Scotland): "We're delighted to be announcing the first sailing members of Team GB. All the sailors selected today have had a fantastic year of performances which has resulted in them gaining selection at an early opportunity, allowing them good time to focus their campaigns specifically on the challenges of Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour in preparation for the 2012 Games.

"The mix of experience we have with the six Olympic medallists, one Olympian and four first-time Olympians provides an exciting balance that will hopefully deliver the required results in 2012 while at the same time increasing the pool of 2016 Olympic triallists."

Ben Ainslie said (born: Macclesfield; grew up in: Restronguet, Cornwall; currently living in: Lymington): "It's an honour to be selected to compete for Team GB at the 2012 Olympics.
This qualification process was definitely the hardest compared to the previous four I've been through. The previous experiences helped, but at the same time having the Olympics in the UK puts that added bit of pressure on, we all want to compete on home waters, it's a once in a lifetime opportunity.

"The competition was strong, having four top British sailors (Giles Scott, Ed Wright, Andrew Mills and Mark Andrews) battling for qualification meant I had to be at my best in every race. Certainly that is a credit to those guys, how well they were sailing and how they pressured me all the way in every event. At the same time pressure has always brought the best out of me and the competition with the British sailors gave me that added edge in competition. It's now all about getting the plans right for my fitness and preparation to peak at the right time, you don't want to reach burnout and
the Olympics are the end goal!"

Paul Goodison commented (born/grew up in: Sheffield; currently living in: Weymouth, Dorset): "It feels really good to have been selected early for the 2012 Games – I know it's still 10 months away but for me it's really important that selection's out of the way so I can start to focus on what I need to do to put myself in the right position to deliver in 10 month's time.

"This will be my third Olympic Games – it's going to be very different to the last two but with a home Olympics I'm sure it's going to be an advantage to be on home waters with a home crowd. We spent a lot of time training out there in Weymouth and hopefully this will pay dividends next year.

"Winning the Games in China was just an amazing experience for me – from the lows of finishing fourth in Athens to then winning the gold medal in China was fantastic. I can only imagine what it would be like to repeat this feat again in Weymouth with my family and friends there on British waters – it would be an amazing experience so I'm looking forward to 2012."

Bryony Shaw said (born: Wandsworth, grew up in: Oxford; currently living in: Tunbridge Wells): "For me this will be my second Olympics, and it's exciting that I've been able to keep on improving. It's amazing to be part of such a strong and special team and to feel the vibe that we're all focussed and confident with the task ahead.

"To earn my selection by winning medals in Weymouth was the main focus for me and it's given me great confidence to have been able to do that, and gives me a great feeling that I can perform there. My windsurfing has transformed, everything is on track and we're pretty confident that there are some more gains to be made on the physiological side."

Nick Dempsey added (born/grew up in: Norwich, Norfolk; currently living in: Weymouth, Dorset): "It's great to have gained selection, but really it's just another step on the way. You still get the feeling that it's the start of the build-up, and little things like starting to get your bits of Olympic kit are quite exciting and bring home how close it's getting.

"This is my fourth Olympics, and this one is just everything to me. It's the one – the Games that I've been waiting for my whole life. You're never going to get better than winning an Olympic medal on home waters. I've performed really well in Weymouth this year but there are still some big gains to be made, so everything for me is about preparing for Weymouth and
fine-tuning everything – learning more, getting fitter, stronger and faster."

Lucy Macgregor said (born/grew up in/currently living in: Poole, Dorset): "It's pretty exciting, and it's great to be part of such a strong team. Gaining selection feels like the next step on the road, and the start of more hard work ahead of us. None of the three of us has any Olympic experience, so we don't entirely know what to expect, but we're confident in the plans we have in place and we can learn from the other members of the team and from our coach Maurice on that side of things.

"We have some more training time ahead of us in Weymouth this year, but the next big competition for us is the World Championships. For the other nations it will be vital for country qualification so the competition will certainly be tough, and will give us the chance to race against the best teams and see what else we need to work on."

Kate Macgregor added (born/grew up in/currently living in: Poole, Dorset): "It's really exciting to be selected – it didn't hit me for a few hours after I'd heard as we were off sailing, but it's really exciting and makes everything that little bit more real now!

It's our first Olympics, but being part of such a great team and having all these people around us with Olympic experience that we look up to means that it won't be such a scary thought.

A medal is our ultimate goal and we have the potential to achieve that – we've just got to keep working hard over the winter and throughout next year and hopefully will things will continue to fall into place for us."

Annie Lush said (born/grew up in/currently living in: Poole, Dorset): "It took a while for the news to sink in! Even though we haven't had a clear competitor in our trials, I have been trying for eight years to make it to the Games so to have that finally confirmed is an exciting moment.

"There's a lot of work still to do – the goal is not just to go, but to go and win a medal, and gaining selection makes you realise how close it all is. It's our first Olympics, so the key will be trying to predict what those unique challenges of the Games will be and preparing for them. We'll be trying to learn from the others within the team, and our coach as well, who already have that experience, and the Test Event was a real learning experience for us in that regard.

"It would be a massive, massive achievement to win a medal next year and an amazing marker of the best part of a decade of hard work that went into it."

Iain Percy commented (born/grew up in: Winchester, Hampshire; currently living in: Emsworth, Hampshire): "That's the first hurdle over, but really ever since Beijing we've been focussing on 29 July 2012 and all the hard work over the past few years has been to make sure we're in the best possible shape come that day.

"I'm really proud to be representing Team GB at my fourth Olympics. It's every athlete's dream to win an Olympic medal at home – it's a once in a lifetime opportunity, so we'll be giving it our all to be up there on the podium again next year."

Andrew Simpson added (born/grew up in: Chertsey, Surrey; currently living in: Sherborne, Dorset): "It's a real privilege and a special moment to be selected for the London 2012 Games, but selection alone is not enough – it's just a means to an end. We want to be there on the startline in 2012 with a real shot at retaining our gold, so everything we've been working on since Beijing 2008 has been geared to towards optimising our racing, our equipment and ourselves towards the challenges we expect from Weymouth as a venue."

Hannah Mills said (born/grew up in: Cardiff; currently living in: Portland, Dorset): "I didn't believe it when I first heard the news – although we'd had a great few months and some fantastic results since teaming up, I'd built it up in my mind that our trials would be carrying on so it came as a big surprise.

"Things were all looking a bit different for the both of us seven months ago, so to be given this chance is really, really exciting, but really it's just a stepping stone on the way with lots of hard work still ahead of us.

The Test Event was a great eye-opener in terms of how things might be at the Games. We've been given this massive task and now we just need to sort out all our plans so we're in the best place to achieve it."

Saskia Clark added (born/grew up in: Colchester, Essex; currently living in: Weymouth, Dorset): "I'm so pleased and relieved! We've had some really good results since teaming up but didn't know if it was enough. I'm so pleased for Hannah as this will be her first Olympics and we've had a good start to our campaign with much more, we feel, still to come.

"It was a dark time for me back in February [when Sarah Ayton retired] but Hannah and I gave it everything in the time we've had. When we teamed up we knew we didn't have a lot of time, and our aim was to do enough to try and push the trials on to Perth or further. We surpassed our expectations winning medals in all but one event we've done together, but there's a huge amount of hard work still to do and I know that a lot of the other girls will come back stronger next year."

Sailing's 2012 legacy is already in action, proven by a number of youth attending the team announcement. These youngsters are part of the RYA's OnBoard (OB) programme to introduce sailing and windsurfing as a sport for young people. The children are all year 6 pupils from the Jubilee Primary School, located in the London Borough of Hackney, which is one of the five London Olympic Boroughs. Over ten years, OB is working to introduce half a million children into sailing and windsurfing. Jubilee Primary School attends regular sessions at the North London RYA OnBoard Centre based at Stoke Newington Reservoir Centre and has exchange visits to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic sailing venue.

Published in Olympics 2012
Crowning the world's best match racing nation, the Grand Final of the ISAF Nations Cup comes to Sheboygan, Wisconsin, USA from 13-18 September.

Hosted by Sail Sheboygan, the competition will see some of the finest sailors from across the globe mixing it up along the Lake Michigan shore in identical one-design class sailboats for this culmination of a series of eight match racing regattas that started in Porto Alegre, Brazil, on 24 March.

The ISAF Nations Cup is a global competition to find the world's top match racing nation in open and women's events, while also promoting and developing the sport of match racing in sailing, which pits one boat against another. Gaining popularity, women's match racing will make its debut as an Olympic Sailing event for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The 2011 Nations Cup included seven regional finals, from which the top teams will compete in Sheboygan. The Grand Final will be sailed in the Sonar class for the open event and the Elliott 6m for the women's event.

Ten teams will compete in the women's event, and ten entries have been confirmed in the open event. In the women's event, two-time defending champion and number one ISAF ranked women's match racing skipper and #4 in the world, Claire Leroy (FRA) and her crew will go up against the American team led by Genny Tulloch, ranked #11, and Olympic medallist Mandy Mulder of the Netherlands, ranked #17. Further competition is expected from the Brazilian team led by Nations Cup veteran Juliana Senfft.

The open event will see American Shawn Bennett and his crew of Dave Perry and Craig Healy take on the Danish team led by Mads Ebler, ranked #8 in the ISAF open match racing division rankings, and New Zealand match racing winner Laurie Jury and his team. Racing for Poland will be three-time Polish match racing champion Przemek Tarnacki. Teams representing Australia, Great Britain, South Africa, France, China, Pakistan, Greece, Turkey and Canada will also be sailing for the cup.

Antonio González De Le Madrid, ISAF Competitions Manager, said, "We are delighted that some of the world's best match racers will be making the trip to Sheboygan for the ISAF Nations Cup. There are some very experienced sailors lining up alongside those who are in the early stages of their development. Nonetheless it should make for a fantastic few days of match racing action."

According to Sail Sheboygan's, Executive Director, Rich Reichelsdorfer, said, "Sail Sheboygan is excited and honored to be hosting the Grand Final of the Nations Cup. We have assembled a top-class race management team backed up by a dedicated corps of volunteers for this premiere match-racing event and we can't wait to show the world our facility. With dozens of the best match-racing sailors in the world coming to Sheboygan, the ISAF Nations Cup will be a spectacle to be enjoyed both by sailors and spectators alike. The racing is sure to be fast and furious and the onshore activities will be equally fun."

A non-profit organization, Sail Sheboygan, was formed in 2004 to promote national and international sailing competition and education. As one of only four US Sailing Centers, its mission is to develop sailing and seamanship at all levels, regardless of age, income, ability or disability.

Published in Match Racing

Ireland's Peter O'Leary and David Burrows lie third and only six points off the overall lead held by Italian's Diego Negri and Enrico Voltolini after the first two races of the Star European championships in Dun Laoghaire.

The staging of the Contintental Championship of the Olympic Class, in which Ireland has reasonable aspirations of taking an Olympic medal next year, is being run by the Royal St. George Yacht Club under Howth race officer David Lovegrove.

staritaly

Star racing in big breeze on Dublin Bay yesterday. Photo: Gareth Craig. More pics on the Afloat Gallery here.

Ireland's other entry in the 27-boat fleet, Max Treacy and Anthnoy Shanks, of the host club lie 12th.

Second overall is France's Guillaume Florent and Pascal Rambeau. Britian's double Olympic gold medallists Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson, despite leading the first race for a time this afternoon, have posted an eighth and a seventh to lie eighth overall.

Racing on Dublin Bay continues tomorrow – under the threat of gales – until Friday.

Italians Negri and Voltolini delivered two consistent results of a race win and a second place in the 27-boat fleet from 17 nations.

The Italians leaders were the 2006 European champions and overcame challenging post-frontal weather conditions that delivered 20-degree wind-shifts at times on an otherwise smooth race course off Seapoint on the south shore of Dublin Bay.

France's Guillaume Florent and Pascal Rambeau also had a consistent day with a second and third while the home fleet delivered a strong showing as Olympic veterans

Star European Championship 2011 at Royal St. George YC, Dun Laoghaire, Ireland

(Provisional overall standings after two races):

1st ITA Diego Negri & Enrico Voltolini
2nd FRA Guillaume Florent & Pascal Rambeau
3rd IRL Peter O'Leary & David Burrows
4th FRA Xavier Rohart Pierre & Alexis Ponsot
5th CAN Richard Clarke & Tyler Bjorn
6th POR Afonso Domingos & Frederico Melo

Published in Olympics 2012
Britain's most successful Olympic sailor Ben Ainslie will skipper Oman Sail's 'Oman Air' Extreme 40 in the next three Acts of the Extreme Sailing Series™ in Trapani (Sicily), Nice (France) and Almeria (Spain). The 34-year-old already has three Olympic gold medals and one silver to his name, and is gunning for a fifth Olympic medal next year in the Finn dinghy class, if selected to represent his country in 2012.

Ainslie recently competed in the Olympic test regatta in Weymouth and will return to his Olympic ambitions at the ISAF World Champions and Finn Gold Cup in Perth, Australia at the end of year. In the meantime, he has selected the opportunity to step from one hull to two in the Extreme 40 class, and step in to the cauldron of hot competition in the Extreme Sailing Series. Multihull sailing may have been around for a few decades, but the current trend puts the multihull platform firmly at the forefront of professional sailing whether it is the America's Cup, the new MOD70 circuit, round the world speed records (fully crewed or solo) or the Extreme Sailing Series – the ground-breaking circuit that has pioneered the Stadium sailing format since its creation in 2007 – and now a global circuit visiting three continents. "I'm looking forward to competing in the Extreme Sailing Series," said Ainslie. "I've had the chance to watch some of the previous events, the sailing is very close and a great spectacle. This will be my first competitive experience of the circuit and it's an exciting prospect."

But Ainslie will feel the pressure of stepping into a new multihull class: "There is definitely a bit of pressure stepping on the boat at this stage in the Series, and I think it is going to be a lot about me not letting the guys down as they have been doing a great job so far this year," said Ainslie. "We have just a couple of days training in Trapani before our first event together, so it is going to be tough going in cold, but hopefully I can pick it up quickly and we can get some good results."

Ben Ainslie will be replacing French skipper Sidney Gavignet following his move to Oman Sail's new Multi One Design 70 campaign. The 'Oman Air' Extreme 40 team lie 8th out of 11 in the overall 2011 Extreme Sailing Series rankings and Ainslie will be racing with the regular crew of bowman Nasser Al Mashari, tactician Kinley Fowler and trimmer David (Freddie) Carr.

Double Olympic gold medalist and skipper of Red Bull Extreme Sailing, Roman Hagara, commented: "I'd like to welcome Ben Ainslie to the circuit. We both have a big Olympic background and know how to sail under pressure. This is the right place for him to show his skills on big multihulls. For sure we will have some great racing going on against each other in the coming events."

Paul-Campbell James, winning skipper on The Wave, Muscat in the 2010 Extreme Sailing Series, now skipper of the Italian entry Luna Rossa is looking forward to the next Act in Trapani (Sicily) where the Italian team can expect some good 'home' support, commented: "It's great to have Ben in the fleet and in the winning boat from 2009. I've never raced him before and am fascinated to see how he gets on."

Act 7 of the 2011 Extreme Sailing Series will be staged in Trapani on the island of Sicily starting on the 14th September with Stadium racing staged over the 16th-18th September.

Published in Olympics 2012
Tagged under

Olympic keelboat duo Peter O'Leary and David Burrows face one of the sternest tests of the summer season but this time its on waters st least.

All 32 boats for the Star European Championship (2nd-10th September) have arrived in Dun Laoghaire and are busy training on Dublin Bay prior to Sunday's first race. Current world champions and double Olympic Gold medallists Iain Percy (GBR) with Andrew Simpson top the entry list while defending title-holders Johannes Polgar (GER) with Markus Koy are also competing.

Beijing 2008 helm O'Leary along with Olympian Burrows, (who crewed a Star at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996) will be in the hunt for a top three place on home waters while Max Treacy and Anthony Shanks will be competing from their home club for the first Star class event in Ireland.

Percy will be seeking to improve on his second place at the recent London Olympic 2012 test-event at Weymouth while the championship will also be an indicator of form before the ISAF Sailing World Championships at Perth in December.

"This fleet is certainly an example of quality rather than quantity," commented Martin Byrne, Commodore of the Royal St. George YC, organising host club. "Looking at the entry-list, a large number of boats could form a typical world top ten and are capable of winning this championship. We expect Dublin Bay will live up to its reputation as a great racing area and deliver good conditions for the seven races."

Five Star world champions or Olympic medallists are included in the line-up while several more are also former champions in other Olympic classes. Polgar and Koy won last year's championship in Viareggio (Italy) in a record turn-out for the Star class. Second-placed runner-up Andrew Campbell (USA) from 2010 is also in Dun Laoghaire, this time with Ian Coleman and are up against 2009 world champion George Szabo (USA) with Mark Strube in the lead-up to selection for next year's Olympics.

Tornado class Gold medallist Fernando Echavarri (ESP) with Fernando Rodriguez Rivero will be competing along with double world champion and Olympic bronze medallist Xavier Rohart (FRA) and Pierre Alexis Ponsot. Former Finn Gold medallist and 2008 world champions Mateusz Kusznierewicz (POL) and Dominik Zycki are also certain contenders next week.

 

Published in Olympics 2012
Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar has announced that the British water polo team will travel to Ireland to train for the London Olympics in the run-up to the National Aquatic Centre in Blanchardstown.

Minister Varadkar said today (Thursday) that he is delighted to make this announcement, which highlights the importance of the National Aquatic Centre as a key sporting facility.

Minister Varadkar said: 'The British team was so impressed by the National Aquatic Centre when they came here in March, they have decided to come back to Ireland to train for the London Olympics'.

"The fact that the British water polo team has chosen Ireland, and the National Sports Campus in Blanchardstown in particular, for its pre-Olympic training demonstrates what a magnificent world class facility we have at the National Aquatic Centre."

The British water polo team will use the NAC for a two-week training session in July 2012, immediately before the London Olympics. The development is a direct result of the international matches held at the NAC earlier this year, between the British and Hungarian water-polo men's senior squads.

The news was also welcomed by Minister of State for Tourism & Sport Michael Ring, who chairs the Inter-Agency Committee in the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport which is promoting Irish involvement in the London Olympics.

Minister Ring said: 'I'm delighted that the Committee's hard work is once again bearing fruit. We have already secured the US Olympic synchronized swimming squad and the British paralympic swimming squad, which will both be using the NAC as a training base for the Olympics'.

"The Inter-Agency Committee will work right up to the Olympics. As well as seeking to attract national teams to train in Ireland, we are staging Irish cultural events in London, and promoting Ireland as a destination for Londoners hoping to escape the Olympics."

Published in Olympics 2012
Tagged under

Predictably Olympic campaigners were to the fore at the 2011 Irish Laser National Championships yesterday but host club Lough Derg Yacht Club in Dromineer, Co. Tipperary are celebrating the first time in thirty years that a Laser sailor has won a National Championship division at their home club.

Belfast Olympic campaigner James Espey came top of the combined 151 boat fleet but yesterday the local cheers were for Derg sailor, Eoin Keller won the Irish Laser Radial National Championships.

Eoin_Keller

Eoin Keller with his parents Josephine and Pat, and LDYC Commodore Lucy Sanders. Photo: Geraldine Wisdom

Lough Derg Yacht Club hosted the Irish Laser National Championship from 25 to 28 August. A total of 151 sailors participated in the event. Sailors travelled from all over Ireland and the UK to race in the event. The Laser class has three rig categories according to the sail size: the 4.7 Lasers (48 boats), the Laser Radials (71 boats) and the Standard or full rigs (32 boats).

Hosting a National event for such a large fleet requires considerable organisation, both on and off the water. LDYC Sailing Secretary, Michael McCarney, said that the "seventy plus volunteers, helping out at the event, ensured four great days of racing". He said that the "wildly varying weather conditions provided quite a challenge for sailors and race management". He added that "events such as this help to promote tourism and the local economy of this scenic area".

Laser_race_on_lough_Derg

Laser Racing starts on Lough Derg

The Principal Race Officer for the event was John Lefroy. He conducted the races from his boat the 'Phoenix', and managed to get ten races in very changeable weather conditions. Liam Moloney and his team managed the finishing line on his yacht, 'Synergy'. John Lefroy said that he was "very impressed with the mark laying and rescue", and added that "the sailors were well tired at the end of the four days as I set demanding courses. Competitors at this level want to be stretched at these events". Jack Bayly and Teresa Hassey collated and posted the race results promptly every day.

Club Manager Claire Toohey coordinated Safety and Rescue for the Championship. This is a vital task, and Claire's organisational skills were very much in evidence. Claire commented that her brief was made easier by "top notch, well-trained local rescue crew, who did a superb job in quite testing conditions".

Summing up at the prize-giving, LDYC Commodore Lucy Sanders said, "I was impressed by the number of members who gave of their time to help out, particularly the younger members, who are the future of this Club". She went on to praise the work of the shore crew, including P. Keller and his helpers who efficiently managed the launch and recovery of boats, and Anne Atkinson and her team, who ensured the visitors were looked after with the hospitality for which the Club is well known.

RESULTS Irish Laser National Championship 2011

Laser 4.7

1st Seafra Guilfoyle - Royal Cork Yacht Club
2nd Cian Byrne - Royal Cork Yacht Club
3rd Eoin Curran – East Down Yacht


Laser Radial

1st Eoin Keller – Lough Derg Yacht Club

2nd Robbie Gilmore – Strangford Lough Yacht Club
3rd Finn Lynch – National Yacht Club


Standard Laser Sailors

1st James Espey – Royal Ulster Yacht Club

2nd Ryan Seaton – Carrickfergus Sailing Club
3rd Matthew O'Dowd – Royal St. George Yacht Club

Published in Laser
Page 19 of 26

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