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#rssailing – The Royal Cork Yacht Club was buzzing at the weekend, with what was a great precursor to next year's dinghy week. The RS fleets were in town for their final event of what has been a bumper Irish calendar full of well attended competitive and fun events by David Rose (RS-Association Ireland).

Tents were being welcomed and pitched on the lawn, and dinghies were arriving in great numbers on the Friday night and Sat morning. The weather was playing ball and giving us wind and the impression that it was still summer. The red carpet was rolled out by a club that draws on its people and facilities to run top class events in a really friendly way. Small details make these occasions and there was little left undone, with shore helpers and soup waiting at the top of the slip for competitors, and a few free pints to help ease the aching bones on the Saturday night. Celine McGrath not only ran the event ashore but also helped on board the OOD boat during the racing. Results were hitting the website as the boats were finishing, just another detail that makes a noticeable difference.
Barry Rose was our race officer and employed the great help of a top notch team, including Ciaran Mc Sweeney who had ran an excellent RS sprint event earlier in the year out of MBSC, and RCYC's Eddie Rice who along with the rest of the team provided exceptional racing, with no delays of any kind all weekend. The course was changed so fast when needed that the competitors hardly noticed, and everything from course length to the quality of the line was impeccable.
First order of business for Barry and his team was to decide which of the many race area's available in Cork would best suit the forecast on Saturday, and after going out on a rib before the briefing, he established that the conditions outside Roches Point, with a small swell and a nice breeze would provide the best racing.
The 40 teams in their double handed dinghies made a fantastic sight snaking out the Owenabue River and around Camden and then Roches to do battle on Sat Morning. When they arrived they found a course ready to go and once the last competitors had arrived, racing got under way in brilliant conditions that allowed for surfing downwind and good tactical upwind racing.

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RS400 Race Report: 21 Teams, 6 Races, One discard

Race one saw RCYC's David Rose and Ian Hef lead the way for two rounds on home turf, until being reeled in and passed by John Downey and Sandy Rimmington (MBSC) and the ever present Sean Cleary and Steven Tyner on the final beat.
Race two saw National Champions Alex Barry and Richie Leonard record a bullet followed by Dave Cheyne and Stephen Kane (NDLL) who would remain consistent for the remainder of the regatta and gain a podium position of 3rd place overall.
Race three was all about Sean Cleary and Steven Tyner (GSC) who have had a fantastic season, including winning the Eastern's and recording a very credible 10th at the UK Nationals. For most of the race, they were challenged hard by John Downey and Sandy Rimmington, but there challenge was to end abruptly in a post weather mark incident that resembled losing a front wing in a formula one car. When the dust settled John's bowsprit was broken and they had to limp home in luckily for them the final race of the opening day.
Overnight Andrew Alego and P. Nolan (RSGYC) were well placed as was Andy Verso and Oisn Baugh (GSC). The racing had been close and there was a lot to play for on day two.
On day two Barry Rose decided that with a bigger swell and more breeze forecast it was prudent to race the fleet in harbour. Cuskinny is a great place to race with a strong easterly, and despite a more tidal race course, it was a great call, allowing the fleets to get in 3 more exhilarating races in great breeze, watched by a flotilla of motor boats and yachts that came out to see these exciting fleets in action.
Alex Barry and Richie Leonard had a fantastic battle with Sean Cleary and Steve Tyner in race four, and this would prove to the be order of business for the day.
David Rose and Ian Hef were back in the mix recording a two and a three in race five and six to finish fourth overall. Dave Cheyne and Stephen Kane were excellent in the conditions and a third and two sixths would earning them a well-deserved third overall.
For the top honours there was little between Alex and Richie and Sean and Steve, both teams battled hard all day, overtaking each other many times. This was a tight affair with no shortage of drama, including a swim in Race five for Alex and Richie, which they recovered from admirably.
Sean and Steve on "Yachtsman Euromarine" were in poll position going into the last race, but the margin was slim and Alex and Richie knew if they could overhaul their competitors in the final race they would win on count back, and that is ultimately what happened.
Alex Barry and Richie Leonard are 2014 Southern Champions.
Alex Barry's post event observation:
"It is very exciting to see RS dinghy sailing hitting great heights at the moment in Ireland. I hope to see the fleets in Cork again next year for Dinghy week. Thanks for great organisation and race management and to the RCYC for a great weekend."

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RS200 Race Report: 12 Teams, 6 Races, One discard

A good turnout for the final event of the season for the 200 fleet, made for some very competitive racing, and we may see a cork fleet develop next season in this exciting class. Ronan O'Driscoll and Shane Dunlea are sailing out of MBSC and many heads were turned in the RCYC at the weekend, by a boat that combines high performance and well worked out systems that are easy to use.
Day one was all about Marty O'Leary and Rachel Williamson (RSGYC), who mastered the conditions and dominated the fleet with a clean sweep of three race wins from three on day one. Marty had made the move from competing well in the 400 with Brian Fenlon recording an 8th at the Nationals in Galway this year.
Blair Stanaway and Heather King (RSGYC/Westport) were hanging in there with two seconds and a third to open, as were Stephen Craig and Conor Foley (RSGYC) with two thirds and a second.
It was to be more of the same from Marty and Rachel on day two, recording an impressive fourth race win from four, before allowing Blair and Heather to win the fifth race. Marty and Rachel however had now won the RS200 Southern title with a race to spare in a superb first outing.
Second was Blair and Heather two points back and third was Stephen Craig and Conor Foley a further five points adrift.
The 200 is a newer boat than the 400 and has a lower weight band being similar but slightly less powerful. The fleet in the UK is very large and strong, allowing easy access to affordable and fast second hand boats. There are also demo boats available in Ireland so please enquire if you are interested in getting involved. We are expecting growth next year country wide in this exciting class.

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RSFeva Race Report: 9 Teams, 6 Races, One discard

The Feva class was full of RCYC competitors, making up over fifty percent of entries.
One of the bigger challenges of Day one was getting out to the race course through the tidal rush and sea one often gets in the entry to Cork harbour.
Once out there, the Feva's started an exciting series that saw Lorcan Tighe and Cian Murphy of NYC winning race one, with Dara Donnelly and Rosemar Tyrell (NYC/RIYC) second.
Donnelly and Tyrell were to finish second in the other two races of the day and were level on points with Sarah Cudmore and Kelly Williams (RCYC) after day one. Sarah and Kelly won race two and three and established themselves as favourites.
Day two, and to the in-harbour course and more wind. It was business as usual for Sarah Cudmore and Kelly Williams winning a further two races and taking the championship in fine style with a race to spare. Lorcan Tighe and Cian Murphey who sailed really well to three seconds on the Sunday were second overall, three points clear of Dara Donnelly and Rosemar Tyrell in Third. Suzi Fitzpatrick and Aine Riche (RCYC) won the final race to sit fourth.
Other honours went to first lady crew in the 400, Laura Holohan, she finished sixth overall with helm Paul McMahon. Sheela Lewis took first lady Helm and 14th overall in the 400 (John Lewis crewing). In the 200 Sarah Byrne took top lady Helm (crewed by Tom Gillan) and champion Rachel Williamson also took home top lady crew in the 200 (Marty O'Leary at the helm).

See here for full results

Published in RS Sailing

#rs – Some statistics from the Irish RS Sprint Championships 2014 at Ballyholme YC  last weekend. 46 individual competitors (including Neill Strain's swaps), 40 Flight Starts, 214 recorded finishes, 490 individual hoists and drops (taking out DNFs etc), and a lot of weary bodies, not just the competitors! Full Sprint results are available to download below as a pdf file.

The Irish RS400 fleet has a full calendar for the year, along with the RS200s and Fevas, but with the exam season in full progress, there is usually a gap in May. The Sprints have thus been moved to fill this gap, and the excellent turn out justified the ongoing inclusion of this event in the calendar.

23 RS400s and an RS200 rolled out for the Annual Irish RS Sprint Championships, held for the first time in the North, with hosts Ballyholme Yacht Club under the guidance of our favourite Race Officer Robin Gray, putting on a tremendous event, in what always seems to me to be a complete nightmare of an event to run. Robin clearly loves a challenge, as he has offered to do it again next year!

Always a great opportunity to get some boat handling practice in, it also provides a workout for those of us navigationally challenged, and more than a few salvages were provided on my boat by Steve advising me where to point the boat next. The whacky M course was a great success, sort of slaloming to the left, and then having an on the edge kite reach across the bottom, to make sure you didn't recover too much before the next race.
We have always asked that we are not kept sitting around too long, and Robin's team kept things pinging off at a furious rate, not giving you time to realise how your body was slowly disintegrating as the afternoon progressed. That said, I was pleased to see that some of the young ones were whinging as much as we elder statesmen, about how battered they felt.

In a Northerly there are few better venues than Ballyholme, with champagne conditions (can we finally park that expression, though it does serve the purpose I guess) of 15 knots steady, a 3-4 foot short swell allowing some fruity downhill slides. As good as it gets I'd say. Also clearly suits the locals, with Bob Espey and Gareth Flanagan and their respective engineers, Mike Gunning and Dave Fletcher, leading the way, along with Sean Cleary and Steve Tyner from Greystones, current Inlands Champs, in amongst the leaders. The flights were rejigged midway through Saturday, and again for Sunday, giving no-one any idea who was winning, apart from the obvious fact the Bob and Mike were running away with it. That said, everyone had a piece of the action, and as always, when the racing is good, we all go home happy.

Biggest thanks however have to go to the mark layers, who did an unbelievable job to lay and move so many marks with so little delay, outstanding.

Next up is the slightly less chaotic RS Northerns at Strangford Lough Yacht Club in late June, with usual format windyleewards; though if the size and intensity of the Easterns was anything to go by, carnage and chaos will return. We should have some serious entertainment, as the deep southerners, from the fast growing and worryingly talent packed Cork fleet, fresh from their own Sprint event, rejoin the fray. Great times for the RS fleet.

Published in RS Sailing

#rssailing – The first event of the season proved to be a testing one for all. After the first days squally conditions which saw the Fevas getting in only one race the Sunday dawned relatively benign.

Overall results are available to download below.

All launched around 10.30 and racing got underway with a full compliment of sailors on the water. Two races were finished in near perfect conditions with a lovely force 3-4.

The third race swiftly descended into the survival conditions which we had seen on the Saturday and it became increasingly obvious that there were more hulls than sails to be seen throughout the three fleets.

Most pairings however came ashore with broad smiles whether they had finished the race or not delighted with the fun and the blasting reaches which more often than not had ended with a swim.

Top Feva pairing of Alison Dolan and Grainne Young from BISC/NYC added to their first of Saturday with an 8th and another two firsts leaving them clear leaders.

Behind them the fleet was very tightly bunched with only a point separating the next three Emer Rafferty/Laura Coleman RSGYC , Alice Brennan/Isobel O'Grady GSC, and Triona Hinkson/Helen O'Beirne RSGYC.

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Feva girls Alison Dolan and Grainne Young

In the RS200s it was old time pairing of Marshall King and Heather King who took the honours with Frank O'Rourke and son Kevin in second. Third and first junior was Stephen Craig and Conor Foley. First lady prize went to Lisa Smith ably crewed by Megan Hayes.

Newcomer to the fleet and ex Enterprise and Laser sailor Chris Arrowsmith was there with his son Greg mixing it up a bit on the Sunday to make it an interesting day.

The 400s with a great showing of 26 boats were won by a single point by local boys Sean Cleary and Steve Tyner proving that consistency pays, counting three seconds a third and a fourth. Just behind them was Alex Barry with George Kenefick form MBSC/RCYC and Bob Espey/Michael Gunning BYC, again with only 3 points to separate them. Local men Simon Herriott/Sprinkles Moran were just behind in 4th

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Greystones pairing Sean Cleary and Steve Tyner were RS400 winners

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Counting five wins Heather and Marshall King walked away with the RS200 prizes

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Three wins gave Feva girls Alison Dolan and Grainne Young the overall win

All in all it was an extremely successful event especially so early in the season and all thanks goes to Greystones Sailing Club for pulling out all the stops to make it happen. Thanks goes also to long suffering PRO Neil Murphy who had to contend with extremely shifty and squally conditions throughout the two days, and still managed to pull off a full series of 6 races place sealing a great weekend for the local fleet.

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Published in RS Sailing
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#rsaero – After several years of development testing four different hull variations and numerous rig, foil and layout options, RS Sailing unveiled what could become one of the most important new sailboats of this era at the Suzuki RYA Dinghy Show in London – the RS Aero.

In many ways you can think of the RS Aero as a 21st century Laser – with the most fundamental difference being ultra-light weight. A full size single hander that, amazingly, weighs 30kg - the same as an Optimist.

Every dinghy sailor can imagine how that changes the game. Sail the boat and you quickly realise you underestimated it. From the exhilaration on the water, to the sheer user-friendliness ashore, the RS Aero re-sets preconceptions: The rush as the boat accelerates - the ability to carry it up the beach single-handed – the convenience of youths or small women lifting it onto a roof-rack with ease.

Ultra-light weight means the hull form and rigs need not be extreme, so the RS Aero is utterly exciting without being hard to handle. Wide structural gunwales give a dry ride and make the boat quick and safe to right from capsize.

A three rig system, as per the Laser, has been envisaged from the start to cover the desired sailor range – RS Aero 5 (youths) – RS Aero 7 (women & light men) – RS Aero 9 (men). All spars are carbon fibre, with a common top mast and boom for all sails and radically different stiffness lower mast sections. The hull is so light that even the Aero 5 has a higher sail area to weight ratio than most existing single-handers and retains the Aero's incredibly dynamic feel.

Two v4 pre-production prototypes were on the RS Sailing stand at Alexandra Palace and caused a storm, with crowds around them all weekend and people lifting the boat and laughing out loud at the surprise. Final stages of the development process are underway, with every aspect of this simple boat having been examined, developed and tested for functionality over fashion, minimal weight, maximum strength and manufacturing efficiency. Perhaps the most remarkable achievement of the RS Aero is that despite being half the weight, built using epoxy resin and significant amounts of carbon fibre in the hull and all-carbon spars, the price will be close to that of a Laser.

UK roll-out of the RS Aero will take place first and a demo tour begins next weekend. Orders are now being taken with a special launch price available on the first 100 boats – well over half of which have already been reserved.

All through development, the reaction has been similar. From weekend warriors to discerning professionals, the RS Aero re-ignites passion for sailing in its purest, least complicated form. With RS Sailing's global distribution network, worldwide success seems assured.

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#RSsailing – The RS Association has announced its event calendar for 2014. These events include all three RS classes, the Feva, 200 and 400 unless otherwise specified. 

Primary RS circuit events:

April 12/13th Greystones S.C. Eastern Championships.
June 21/22nd Strangford Lough S.C. Northern Championships.
July 19/20th Lough Ree Y.C. Western Championships.
August 8-10th Galway Bay S.C. Crewsaver Irish National Championships.
September 13/14th Kinsale Y.C. Southern Championships.

Sprint events:
May 24/25th Ballyholme Y.C. RS200/400 Sprint event.
June 7th Monkstown Bay RSFeva/200/400 Southern Sprint event.

UK/European events:

July 25 – August 1st Carnac, France Feva Worlds

July 27th – August 1st Fraglia vela Riva, Lake Garda, Italy RS 200/400 Eurocup
August 17th – 21st Hayling Island, UK RS200 UK Nationals
August 24 – 28th Mounts Bay, Cornwall UK RS400 UK Nationals.

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#rssailing – A bad weather forecast means the planned RS demo day in Dun Laoghaire this Saturday has been postponed. The up and coming dinghy class is completely bucking the trend oulined in a recent piece that outlines some major problems for dinghy sailing in Ireland, acoording to class proponents.

This year 44 RS400's attended the nationals and 33 boats took part in the five event traveller series. In the past month five RS400's have been bought from the UK to join the Irish fleet. This includes the first two 400's based in Cork and one in Dun Laoghaire. 

The formula of running the RS Feva, RS200 and RS400 events together has proved hugely successful. At the combined nationals they had 72 boats in total. The classes give juniors and those above college age who may not have the aspirations or perhaps the means for Olympic sailing, a natural progressive platform for competitive racing. There are a lot people sailing in the RS classes that could have drifted away from sailing altogether.

Being a strict one design and non-trapeze the boats are very accessible. Swapping and introducing new crews is not as much of an issue, particularly for those who haven't been in a dinghy for years or in some cases ever.

Another point that is worth making is the competitive level in the classes. For example, Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern (49er Olympians) own and race a 400 when their 49er schedule allows. Gareth Flannigan is now an RS400 regular. Dave Rose from Cork and formerly of 1720 fame has just bought a 400. This will be Dave's first time back in a dinghy in fifteen years. At the competitive end of the RS200's, Sean & Heather Craig have just bought a boat from the UK. Their son has commandeered the current family 200.

The boats are deemded good value due to the large UK second hand market. An RS400 cost €4,000 and has no problems competing at the right end of the fleet. 

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#RSsailing – Blessington Sailing Club is hosting the 2013 RS Inland championships and after three races Franks and Kevin O'Rourke lead the biggest fleet, the 12–boat RS200s. Blessington's own Alison Dolan and Grainne Young top a 6–boat Feva fleet. Another Greystones boat, sailed by Simon Herriott and Tom Moran, lead the 11–boat RS400 fleet. Results to date are downloadable below as a html file.

 

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RS – After five races sailed Robert Espey and Mike Gunning won the RS400 Northern championships hosted by Ballyholme Yacht Club this weekend.

Despite the absence of wind forecast, and despite Charlie Horder not showing up, the weekend turned out to be a roaring success, with ever reliable Robin Gray as PRO slotting the perfect duration races into the various wind slots that existed, giving the three fleets great racing.

It was exciting to see some new faces in the RS Fevas, since McCready Sailboats took over dealership, and have been promoting and lending out boats. All 6 of the boats, in the fleet that normally travels from Dublin or Greystones, were from the North. This must augur well for the future, with several parents present realising they could have actually have been sailing in the 400s instead of acting as shore crew.

In the RS200s, Clive Coffey from Newcastle, was dominant in the generally f2-3 conditions, taking first overall from Greystones regulars Frank O'Rourke in second, and Sarah Byrne in fourth, with East Down's Trevor Fisher splitting them in third.

The main event though was in the RS400s, where a super strong line up including current Irish Olympic 49er sailors, and winners of this year's Weymouth Sail for Gold World Cup Series' Championship, Ryan Seaton and Matty McGovern headlined a strong line up of past National and European Championship winners from a multitude of classes. Racing was tight, with the front 6 or 7 generally working through, but with anyone capable of making a podium slot. Overnight it looked to be all about Bob Espey vs Emmet Ryan, but Sunday saw things get a lot tighter, with Gareth Flannigan and Dave Cheyne staying consistent, and nearly turning things around in race two, when Flannigan's lead was slashed on the final run of race two, in what would prove a decisive moment, allowing the Olympic duo a little breathing space as the 3rd,4th and 5th boats rolled the leading pair on the final approach, Espey grabbing an essential win. Race 4 saw Emmet and brother James struggle and take a discard, so it was advantage Espey/ Gunning again.

Race 5 was held in sparkling Ballyholme sea breeze and sunshine, with Dave Cheyne and Stevie Kane from RNIYC breaking clear of the pack, chasing the Ryan brothers. As the two teams extended, it looked like the goose was cooked for Espey, but a last attack on the right corner gybe allowed the fat old boys from Royal North to roll Ryan, and take the win. This instantly threw the result back to Espey and Gunning, who were suddenly back level on points, but with a pair of bullets, to the Ryans only one now, the title went to Espey in dramatic fashion, and past Irish Champions Emmet and James left to lick their wounds. Awesome racing as ever, with some new faces feeling the heat, as those new in last season starting to move up the leader board after a year of hard racing under their belts.

Lots of new boats arriving by the week, with several more expected in Ballyholme in time for the Autumn Grange Wine Merchants Series at Bangor on Sundays from the 8th September, before the fleets head to Crosshaven on September 21/22nd. The hope is the 4 or 5 potential new 400 owners in Monkstown SC in Cobh will have boat boats in time, to compliment the new arrival of Aidan Macsweeney, and also Dave Doherty who currently have boats in the area.

Full results for all divisions are downloadable below as an attached html file.

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#RSELITE – RS Elite Works Boat skipper Jono Brown made a clean sweep of the RS Elite British National Championships at Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club leading the ten race event from start to finish. Brown had no result out of the top five in the 28–boat fleet giving him a clear ten point cushion over Royal North's own Tiffany Brien in second. Third was Martham Wadham. Scroll down for full results below.

RNIYC served up another truly fantastic Championship on Belfast Lough from 22-25 August, sponsored by Brewin Dolphin and North Down Tourism. With top Elite Class sailors from Ireland, Scotland and England as well as two Irish Olympians and a touch of glamour added by ex Miss Northern Ireland, Tiffany Brien (fresh from a season competing in a 49er FX) it was always going to be tense racing with light winds forecast throughout the event. Place changing to the finish in every race meant there was never a chance to relax in the evenly matched one-design fleet.

Jono, Lyn and David Brown in Aeolus were on top of their game in these conditions and put together a remarkably consistent series that sees them take the trophy to the Royal Burnham YC for the third time. A thirty degree right hand shift on the first beat of Race 1 favoured them and dropped several other top teams to the back of the fleet, making their first victory look lucky, but there was nothing lucky about their follow up results. A 5th place was Aeolus' lowest result meaning victory was theirs with a day to spare – truly impressive given the vagaries of the breeze in several races.

Behind the Brown's a serious battle for second place developed between local boat Kin, sailed by Tiffany, Simon and Jack Brien and the Royal Lymington YC based team of Martin & Amanda Wadhams sailing with Michael Browne on Kiss. Kin was more erratic with scores including several race wins but also a couple in double figures, whereas Kiss won only one race but discarded a 6th. Going into the final race the pair were tied on points, safe for second or third, so a gripping battle all around the track ensued with the lead changing many times. After splitting gybes at the final leeward gate Kin managed to tack ahead of Kiss on the finish line to snatch second overall by a length.

Fourth place overall went to another Irish boat Storm from the Royal Ulster YC, sailed by Stephen Polly, David Kelso and John Gunning despite their two OCS results which they managed to drop from the ten race, two discard series. New to the Class this year, they are clearly a force for the future. One of the biggest cheers at the prize giving was reserved for past champion Shaun McClean in Elixir sailing with his son Donald and Kevan Gibb from the Royal Forth YC, who finished fifth overall including winning race 7.

Title sponsors for this Championship, Brewin Dolphin, have a long association with sailing and made this event possible, including the excellent social program with typical Irish craic that tested the stamina of many sailors off the water as well as on it. Regional Director Hal Catherwood commented "Brewin Dolphin has been delighted to support such a high profile sailing event in Northern Ireland. It's fantastic to see world class sailors come together and battle it out on Belfast Lough." The RS Elite Class hopes this will be the first regatta of many alongside Brewin Dolphin.
Associate sponsor Charles Hurst, purveyors of some fine motor cars, added even more glamour with an Aston, Bentley and F-Type parked on the club lawn. We'll never forget event director Gerry Reid's face when someone faked a scratch on the Bentley with a strand of duct tape!

Next year the RS Elite Class will return to the Royal Burnham YC for its Nationals, followed by the Royal Yacht Squadron for the Southern Areas and then Cowes Week - a tempting three week schedule of awesome one-design racing and great socials with the band of friends that now make up the Class.

Full results from the Brewin Dolphin RS Elite Nationals are at www.rniyc.org and information about the RS Elite Class can be found at www.RSelite.org and www.RSsailing.com

Overall results – top six
1st – Aeolus – Jono, Lyn & David Brown -14pts
2nd – Kin – Tiffany, Simon & Jack Brien - 26pts
3rd – Kiss – Martin & Amanda Wadhams & Michael Browne – 27pts
4th – Storm – Stephen Polly, David Kelso, John Gunning – 39pts
5th – Elixir – Shaun & Donald McClean & Kevan Gibb – 43pts
6th – Sea Breezes – John McDowell, Trevor D'Arcy & T McMillan - 53pts

Published in RS Sailing
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#rselite – Next stop for the RS Elite Class is the Brewin Dolphin sponsored National Championships, this year hosted by the Royal North of Ireland YC on Belfast Lough, home of the largest RS Elite fleet but before that regatta takes place there was ultra short course racing at the Crewsaver RS Elite Stadium Cup this year when adverse tide upwind also made winning the pin and the dash for the shore the way only to go in Cowes.

With near perfect breeze and blue skies, conditions couldn't have been much better after the day's Cowes Week racing was over. The format followed previous editions at Cowes last year and on lay day at Antigua Sailing Week earlier this year. Each race lasted just 15 minutes, despite packing in three rounds of a windward / leeward course just metres from the shore - with the top two boats from two knock-out heats going through to a four boat final. The whole event took place within an hour, with live commentary on Cowes Radio.

The start of the Heat 1 saw competitors slow to get their heads around the short line, rapid fire start sequence and importance of pin end advantage over line bias. E'Tu sailed by past RS Elite Champion Donald McClean made the best of it to win from the Proctor team in Wombat.

By heat 2 the start line battle was on. Derek Priestley sailing Kiss looked to have it nailed, but while spectators thought he could push up the fleet and hold back from the line against the tide the team lost their bottle with 10 seconds to go and bailed out, gybing around to take sterns on port – too much of a deficit to regain...

In the final Jono Brown, another ex RS Elite champion, in Aeolus pulled off a perfect pin end start with the other three boats perfectly stacked up above him a metre back from the line. Putting the bow down Aeolus accelerated the fastest and was never challenged. The race for second was a different story, however, with Mark Allerston's Escapade team and E'Tu coming into the leeward mark nose to tail with a momentarily hot dispute over room. Escapade stood their ground forcing E'Tu to spin around before the mark, dropping them back to last place behind Wombat.

So, Jono, Lyn and David Brown added the 2013 Stadium Cup title to their list of RS Elite victories, walking away with the trophy and three of the fantastic new Crewsaver Ergofit lifejackets.

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