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Displaying items by tag: DMYC Frostbites

A fleet in the mid-fifties braved a chilly Dun Laoghaire harbour today for the third race of Series 2 of the 2019/20 DMYC Frostbites. Wind strength during the morning in advance of racing wasn’t as brisk as forecast but the direction was right – westerly. The team racers were enjoying good conditions to confirm that the stronger winds forecast for the day hadn’t arrived.

However, the dominant weather feature was the chill factor and some preliminary soundings in the DMYC dinghy park suggested that the idea of a single long race to keep everyone active wasn’t a bad call. And so, the dye was cast! A five-lap Olympic course was signalled by Race Officer Cormac Bradley.

The committee boat set up just off the weather station on the East Pier and the 270° wind direction allowed a weather mark to be set just off the leading starboard leading light into the marina. The first reach took the fleet eastwards beyond the HSS gantry to a position off the Carlisle Pier, leaving the leeward mark between the weather station and the Boyd Memorial.

The PY fleet numbered 23 boats and included Wayfarers (2), GP 14s (2), Kona Windsurfers (3), RS Aeros (3), RS 200s (3), RS 400s (2), the Paralympic 2.4 (1), a Solo, and Fireballs (6). They had a General recall to start, one of the Aeros and one of the Fireballs leading an early charge over the line, causing the limit mark to disappear. That relegated them to the back of the queue! When they did get away, the trend seemed to be to go left into the middle of the harbour before picking a port-hand tack to get upwind towards the weather mark. The first rounding of the weather mark by the PY fleet looked busy and it wasn’t a red spinnaker that was first to break. Instead it was the blue of Alistair Court and Gordon Syme (14706) and another couple of reds were seen before Butler & Oram (15061) showed! Following what looked like two good reaches under spinnaker, the pecking order was Court, Frank Miller & Grattan Donnelly (14990), Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe (15016) and Ciaran Harken and Michael Keegan (14676) may have been ahead of the aforementioned Butler & Oram. Court/Syme lost their lead with a subsequent capsize on a beat and McKenna/O’Keeffe took on the mantle of leaders though they were hard-pressed by Miller/Donnelly. This latter combination also led the race for a period. However, it seemed that everyone in this race within a race was waiting for the “fat lady to sing”. Rounding the weather mark for the last time, two red spinnakers were well ahead of the fleet, followed by a third red spinnaker. It seems (in the post- race banter) that the first two reds were McKenna and Miller, who it was claimed had a double-digit lead of boat-lengths over Butler. For reasons that weren’t forthcoming, a severe luffing match ensued and there may have been turns taken, which opened a huge door of opportunity for Butler & Oram – which they availed of with both hands to take a win on the finish line. A “squeaky-bum” performance by the pair!!

However, the result on the water wasn’t good enough for them to occupy the podium places on handicap – those places went to the GP14 of Peter & Stephen Boyle (1st), followed by the Solo of Shane McCarthy and the Wayfarer of Dave Mulvin and Ronan O’Beirne. The three RS Aeros (7s) were led home by Kenny Rumball in 5th, followed by Brendan Foley in 6th and Mark Gavin in 7th respectively. Sarah Byrne led the two-person RS contingent home in 4th place while the Fireball of Butler & Oram had to be satisfied with 8th. There was some consternation at the handicap results with the GP 14 finishing 6:25 down on the Fireball but winning by 2:14 on handicap. The Solo was 55 seconds down on the GP14 but 42 seconds ahead of the Wayfarer. The “delta” between the Wayfarers on the water was 1:02, but on handicap, seven boats got in between them.

The three-boat Laser Standard fleet had three starters but only two finishers with Alan Hodgins taking the honours over David Field.

Four 4.7s raced with Kitty Flanagan taking the wing over siblings Luke and Hugh Turvey and Eimear Farrell closed the account in 4th place.
Twenty-six Radials assembled at the start line for racing with a transfer from the 4.7s in the form of Rian Geraghty-McDonnell. This young man has dominated the 4.7s thus far so clearly has decided to up his game for the balance of the series. He started off where he left off with another win on the water, but it was a very close race at the front with the lead boats overlapped every time they cam down past the committee boat on the sausage leg. There were no raised voices throughout any of the manoeuvres to get around the leeward mark and if there had been “fun and games” the senior fleet in this fleet, one Sean Craig would be quick to restore proper order. As it was, he finished in third behind the Geraghty-McDonnell and Kate Fahy. Behind him, in turn, were Judy O’Beirne and Alanna Coakley, leaving the males in the minority of the top five places.
Only one Laser seemed to be disappointed that there wasn’t a second race – everyone else seemed to be happy to go home.

DMYC Frostbites: Series 2; Round 3

PY Fleet:
1st Peter & Stephen Boyle (GP14), 2nd Shane McCarthy (Solo), 3rd David Mulvin & Ronan O’Beirne (Wayfarer).
Standard Lasers:
1st Alan Hodgins, 2nd David Field.
4.7s:
1st Kitty Flanagan, 2nd Luke Turvey, 3rd Hugh Turvey, 4th Eimear Farrell.
Laser Radials:
1st Rian Geraghty-McDonnell, 2nd Kate Fahy, 3rd Sean Craig, 4th Judy O’Beirne, 5th Alanna Coakley.

A quieter than usual DMYC clubhouse saw Peter & Stephen Boyle pick up a Frostbite Mug for their endeavours. There were other Mugs available for collection, but the rule is that you have to be there to get it!

Published in DMYC
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Fifty-eight boats took to the water for the first Frostbite Sunday of December, which for a lot of people is the trigger for the countdown to Christmas, writes Cormac Bradley.

From Friday afternoon this column’s favoured web-based weather forecasting site was predicting northerly winds up to 10 knots for the afternoon but at 9.30 on the morning the direction wasn’t correct, although the grey skies were as predicted.

The larger keelboats left the harbour with breeze outside but by the time I returned to the waterfront area at noon, the omens for vigorous racing in the afternoon weren’t good. A walk of the east pier to just beyond the bandstand revealed a very flat outer area of the harbour wind-wise and outside, the latter half of the Turkey Shoot fleet were struggling to get their morning race finished.

On repairing to the DMYC clubhouse, the wind conditions there were not healthy, either, and the final nail in the scene was the upward movement of the steam from the incinerator. All in all, not a good projection for racing.

But, by 12.30 there was a distinct movement of air around the DMYC clubhouse; the smoke from the incinerator was being blown from the top of the chimneys at an angle and in the distance, over the inner walls of the harbour, the tops of Laser sails could be seen moving quite healthily. Racing was on!

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram execute a gybe en route to the leeward mark in Race 2 | Photo: Cormac BradleyNoel Butler & Stephen Oram execute a gybe en route to the leeward mark in Race 2 | Photo: Cormac Bradley

The PY fleet had a healthy turnout of 27 boats with a full complement of 11 Fireballs, excuse the bias! On the Frostbite director’s orders, a long line had been set and the fleet availed of the increased length to generate a fairly even distribution of boats. They all headed to the left-hand side before breaking off to take a hitch to the right.

However, by the upper end of the beat to the weather mark on a two-lap triangular course, the fleet was spread across the width of the course – always a good sign for any race officer.

While there was a cluster of Fireballs at the first weather mark, the first boat to break out a third sail was the RS 400 of Phelan & Leddy. This would trigger a race within a race as the Fireballs chased the RS down but ultimately the Greystones boat with the asymmetric spinnaker would hold out to record an eight-second winning margin, which was overturned on handicap to give the Fireball of Butler & Oram (15061) an eight-second win on handicap.

The RS reps were enjoying a good day as Sarah Byrne and crew, in an RS 200, finished third on handicap, only 51 seconds behind the RS400. Another Fireball took fourth on corrected time, Daniel Thompson & Cara McDowell, sailing Josh Porter’s 14695, while fifth went to the Wayfarer of Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy.

And speaking of McCarthys, the Solo of Shane McCarthy made its seasonal debut. Special mention should be made of a seventh-place finish of Sailing in Dublin’s Laser Vago, helmed by Rose-Marie Daly and crewed by Pat McGrath. The Fireballs also enjoyed good racing within the fleet.

The subsequent starts for Lasers and 4.7s and the Radials saw a similar approach to the start, an even distribution of boats along the line, an initial hitch out to the left and then varying degrees of bail-out to go right towards the weather mark that was situated close to the outer elbow of the West Pier.

The westerly winds gave a gybe mark position downwind of the entrance to the marina, while the leeward mark was situated off the East Pier between the weather station and the Boyd Memorial.

Five standard Lasers were led home by Vasily Shramkov, Alan Hodgins and John Marmelstein, while the four 4.7s had a finishing order of Rian Geraghty-McDonnell, Jacques Murphy and Evan Dorgan-Hayes. In the 22-boat Laser Radial fleet, the youth sailors led the way with a first and second for Conor Gorman and Alana Coakley respectively, before the more seasoned campaigner of Sean Craig closed out the podium places, with Adam Walsh putting himself between Craig and the next adult member of the fleet, Shirley Gilmore in fifth.

While the wind was fluctuating between 280 and 300º and had built to just under 10 knots, there was no real reason to ‘tweak’ the course, so course X3 was signalled for the second race. This three-lap Olympic configuration was sailed in better sunshine until later on the sun dipped behind a bank of cloud, making the single-digit temperature that bit cooler.

Frank Miller and Grattan Donnelly (14713) stole a march on the whole PY fleet with a port-tacked start at the pin end and led all the way round until the last weather mark when they lost out to Butler & Oram. This latter pair could not save their time on handicap, losing out to the RS Aero 7 of Brendan Foley by 18 seconds. Sarah Byrne and crew had a good second race, grabbing another third-place finish on handicap.

But while the Fireballs also enjoyed good racing by way of their numbers, the best race of the day was between the two Wayfarers of David Mulvin & Ronan Beirne and Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy. The latter pair had a healthy lead on the water by the first leeward mark but the former pair worked their way closer and closer to their prey, eventually finishing behind the Greystones pair by seven seconds on the finish line. In their race within a race, their efforts were rewarded with fourth and fifth on handicap.

Conor O’Leary in his Laser | Photo: Cormac BradleyConor O’Leary in his Laser | Photo: Cormac Bradley

Having complained of the cold at the conclusion of the first race, just succeeded ex-captain of the Dun Laoghaire Flying Fifteen fleet and Laser sailor, Conor O’Leary, upped his body heat and the competition in the second race by taking second place behind Shramkov, with Hodgins in third. In the 4.7s, Geraghty won again while Dargan-Hayes and Murphy swopped places from the first race.

In the Radials, Craig again had to be satisfied with third place behind Coakley and Gorman respectively, while Walsh and Jack Fahy took the next two places. And from a Flying Fifteen perspective, as the day’s race officer has been campaigning these boats for the past three seasons, there is a growing participation level in the Frostbites with David Mulvin & Ronan Beirne sailing a Wayfarer, Ciara Mulvey & Peter Murphy sailing a GP 14, Conor O’Leary sailing a Standard Laser and Hugh Cahill (Flying Fifteen 3606) making a Frostbite debut in the Laser Radial.

With ten races completed and a second discard kicking in, the overall situation(s) are as follows:

PY Fleet Overall (Total entries 29 boats)

  1. Noel Butler & Stephen Oram, Fireball, 13pts
  2. Brendan Foley, RS Aero 7, 33pts
  3. Sarah Byrne & crew(s), RS 200, 38pts
  4. Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy, Wayfarer, 44pts
  5. Jemima Owen & Henry Start, RS200, 48pts

Laser Standard (Total entries 13 boats)

  1. Chris Arrowsmith, 21pts
  2. Alan Hodgins, 23pts
  3. John Marmelstein, 24pts
  4. Marc Coakley, 29pts
  5. David Field, 42pts

Laser 4.7s (Total entries 11 boats)

  1. Rian Geraghty – McDonnell, 9pts.
  2. Jacques Murphy, 23pts
  3. Kitty Flanagan, 26pts
  4. Evan Dargan-Hayes, 32pts

Laser Radials (Total entries 33 boats)

  1. Conor Gorman, 12pts
  2. Sean Craig, 27pts
  3. Adam Walsh, 29pts
  4. Alana Coakley, 56pts
  5. Adam Leddy, 56pts.

And in a blatant case of bias, the pecking order in the Fireballs is;

Fireballs (Total entries 11 boats)

  1. Noel Butler & Stephen Oram, 10pts
  2. Alistair Court & Gordon Syme, 31pts
  3. Frank Miller & Ed Butler, 32pts
  4. Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe, 35pts
  5. Neil Colin & Margaret Casey, 38pts
Published in DMYC
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For the third weekend of the DMYC Frostbites series, an early call was made that the fleet would race outside the harbour. The move was warmly welcomed by competitors as the wind inside the harbour was quite fragmented. Outside the wind was a fairly steady WNW rather than the anticipated NNW wind forecast. For race one an Olympic Triangle was set and the PY fleet got away cleanly though the pressure was uneven over the first part of the beat and there were a couple of fairly big shifts before the weather mark was reached. Leading the pack were new entrants Andy Boyle sailing with Tedz Byrne in their Fireball. They were pursued by the rest of the seven-boat fireball fleet and various PY boats with a more favourable handicap in the semi-trapezing conditions. Ultimately the pair took line honours by a few seconds over series leaders Noel Butler and Stephen Oram, with Louise McKenna and crew Joe O’Reilly about 30 seconds behind.

"David Mulvin and Ronan Beirne in a Wayfarer who showed great speed over the course"

The winners though on handicap were David Mulvin and Ronan Beirne in a Wayfarer who showed great speed over the course. In the three Laser class divisions, the races were won respectively by Marc Coakley, Conor Gorman and Katie Flanagan.

For race two the course was rejigged slightly to allow for a shifting wind and once again the PY fleet crossed the line to the welcome call of “all clear”. Louise McKenna and Joe O’Reilly led to the weather mark with Cariosa Power/Marie Barry, Kieran Harkin/Michael Keegan and Frank Miller/Ciaran Hickey all in close pursuit. This time the course was triangles and the wind had improved enough to allow full trapezing for many on the beat. Due to the shifting wind, the first reach was extremely broad and, unsurprisingly, the second extremely tight forcing competitors to drop the kite about two-thirds the way along the leg. At the leeward mark for round two McKenna rounded just ahead of Harkin/Keegan with Miller/Hickey immediately behind that pair.

While McKenna/O’Reilly tacked away quickly Harkin/Keegan and Miller/Hickey kept going on port hoping to get into stronger breeze visible to the right. How wrong they were – the shifting breeze meant that any boat which tacked immediately could more or less lay the weather mark. Thus when Miller/Hickey spotted their error they found the chasing boats including Butler/Oram and Power/Barry under them and happily laying the weather mark. To add insult to injury Boyle/Byrne were also back in the game.

On the next broad reach, Miller/Hickey managed to overtake Power/Barry but on the subsequent reach, now tighter than ever, the women pairing were right on their heels, with Boyle/Byrne not far behind. Two-thirds down that reach increased pressure forced everyone to drop their kites though no place-changing occurred. However, at the leeward mark Power/Barry remained on port too long and Boyle/Byrne tacked immediately and managed to catch the women pair on the finish line. The race was well won by McKenna/O’Reilly both in the eleven boat Fireball fleet and in PY, followed home by Fireballers Butler/Oram, Miller/Hickey, Boyle/Byrne, Power/Barry.

On handicap, Brendan Foley took second in the RS Aero and Mulvin/Beirne took third in their Wayfarer. In the Laser divisions, winners were again Marc Coakley, Conor Gorman and Katie Flanagan. The series continues next Sunday with every sign of more boats pitching into this very popular winter series.

Published in DMYC
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XCWeather was promising 8/9 knots of breeze for the critical part of Sunday afternoon and at 09:00 the breeze looked good as the keelboats went out for their DBSC Turkey Shoot! Three hours later as I came back down to Dun Laoghaire for the DMYC Frostbites the latter finishers from the morning's racing were struggling to get over the finish line in very light conditions. Inside the harbour, it had gone very flat and in the inner harbour, there was mirror-like conditions. Sailing Manager of the National Yacht Club, Olivier Prouveur, however, assured me that there would be wind for the Frostbites, coming out of the south! By 13:15 when a decision to go afloat was necessary, the die was cast, we could see the weather-mark laying boat in a probable location from the slipway at the National Yacht Club. It turned out to be another pleasant afternoon of racing albeit without the sunshine of the previous Sunday.

Rather than doing Race Officer, today I had a Fireball berth with Louise McKenna,15016, and there was a good turnout from the class with seven boats on the water. The PY fleet had another good turn-out of 22 boats with the Kona Windsurfers making their seasonal debut and all the other players from the previous Sunday were in attendance. The first start got away under an individual recall and one Fireball went back. By the time the finish came around, it became obvious others should have gone back with them. And, having called out people who were OCS/black-flagged last Sunday, in this column, I have to admit that I was on one of the boats that should have gone back. The other "errant starter" was another Fireball, Neil Colin & Margaret Casey (14775). This decision caused consternation on the water, and even more discussion in the DMYC post-mortem after racing. However, given that it is difficult to dissuade a Race Officer that he is wrong on these calls, due to his relatively fixed position at the start, we just had to swallow our medicine. Race Officer, Ben Mulligan (Flying Fifteens) was clear on the water - we had transgressed!!

"This decision caused consternation on the water, and even more discussion in the DMYC post-mortem after racing"

For the first start there was cluster of boats at the committee boat end - Frank Miller & Grattan Donnelly (14713) in the Fireball and the RS clan of 200s and 400s. In "our view" we were hidden by this cluster of boats and ultimately Miller & Donnelly answered the call of the individual recall. Noel Butler & Stephen Oram, meantime, were at the outer end of the line and they led the charge to the left-hand side of the course taking the majority of the Fireballs with them. It proved to be a good call as the leading boats around the first weather mark of the 2-lap Windward-Leeward course came in from that side. The Fireballs dominated the lead bunch but the RSs were mixing it with them! Butler/Oram led the fleet around the weather mark but were closely followed by Colin/Casey, Alistair Court & Gordon Syme (14706), Josh Porter, down from N. Ireland and crewed by Cara McDowell (14695), Cariosa Power & Marie Barry (14854), Team Keegan, Michael crewing with his daughter helming (14676) and your correspondent. On the downwind leg, the Aero 7 of Brendan Foley was also keeping company with the Fireballs as was the RS 400 of Phelan & Leddy. McKenna/Bradley sailed a straighter line to the leeward gate and caught up some of the Fireball places ahead of them to round in fourth. They then went left and found themselves up to second place and within a respectable distance of Butler/Oram going up the port lay-line. They held onto this position ahead of Court/Syme only to cross the finish line in silence. This short race may have been influenced by the progressive pre-race shift of the wind in a southerly direction leaving the Race Officer with a beat across the shorter dimension of the harbour with a weather mark close to the ferry dolphins and the gate in the vicinity of the harbour mouth. In handicap terms, the RS200 of Jemima Owens & Henry Start came second, a mere 9 seconds behind the Fireball and 34 seconds ahead of Patrick Hassett in the 2.4. The Owens/Start result gave them the Frostbite Mug.

In the standard Lasers, in an eight-boat fleet, Chris Arrowsmith took the honours with Mark Coakley and David Field taking the other podium finishes. That gave the day's Frostbite Mug to Coakley. In the 4.7s (5 boats) Jacques Murphy ramped up his game to finish first, after his third last week, and was followed home by Rian Geraghty-McDonnell and Kitty Flanagan. While in the Radials, Alana Coakley carried on where she left off last Sunday with another first, chased by Conor Gorman and Adam Walsh.

For Race 2 an "X" course was signalled - Olympic configuration with three laps. Having "blown" the first race there was some conservatism applied to the second start by the correspondent's helm and the trick was to sail along the line and tack on the starting signal. A hail of "All Clear" generated some relief!! The committee boat end was "cluttered" while Butler/Oram were to tell everyone afterwards that the pin-end was like a deserted town - there was nobody there!! These two walked away with this race, beating the next Fireball, Porter/McDowell, by two minutes. Behind them the balance of the Fireball fleet fought it out with the two RS 400s and the two RS 200s. Team Keegan fell away with a broken jib car while Power/Barry had a spinnaker problem on the last lap of the course. The top reach of this course was "touch and go" for flying spinnakers. On the first lap the early part of the reach was tight but it eased a bit towards the gybe mark. Butler/Oram flew it, the 2nd placed Colin/Casey held back until the latter part of the leg. By the time the second triangle came around, it was even tighter and fewer Fireballs flew bags.

In handicap terms the 1-2 was unchanged from Race 1, the RS 200 of Owens/Start taking second place but nearly a minute behind the Butler/Oram Fireball. Brendan Foley in the Aero 7 took third, 37 seconds behind the RS 200, a Frostbite Mug-winning performance. Patrick Hassett in the 2.4 finished fourth on handicap. This represents a considerable improvement in Patrick's Frostbite record this season. In the four races he has sailed he has scored two fourth places and a third. This is surely evidence of the benefits of practice and regatta sailing! One place down the pecking order we find Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy in their Wayfarer and making his seasonal debut with a new crew, Brian O'Hare finished 10th in his RS 400.

In the standard Lasers, the win went to Mark Coakley which resulted in second-placed David Field taking the Frostbite Mug, with John Marmelstein third. In the 4.7s, Geraghty-McDonnell took the win, upping his game from Week 1, with Kitty Flanagan and Evan Dargan-Hayes third. In the Radials, Sean Craig got to grips with the lighter conditions to take his first race win of the series and the Frostbite Mug. Behind him came the younger generation in Conor Gorman and Hugh O'Connor.

Entries to the Frostbites stand at 87 boats as of this second weekend so there are still places available to enter. On the water, there were 58 boats.

Race 1 PY Class:
Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (FB),
Jemima Owen & Henry Start (RS 200)
Patrick Hassett (2.4)

Race 1 Standard Lasers
Chris Arrowsmith
Mark Coakley
David Field

Race 1 Laser 4.7s
Jacques Murphy
Rian Geraghty-McDonnell
Kitty Flanagan

Race 1 Laser Radials
Alana Coakley
Conor Gorman
Adam Walsh

Race 2 PY Class
Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (FB)
Jemima Owens & Henry Start (RS 200)
Brendan Foley (Aero 7)

Race 2 Standard Lasers
Mark Coakley
David Field
John Marmelstein

Race 2 Laser 4.7s
Rian Geraghty-McDonnell
Kitty Flanagan
Evan Dargan-Hayes

Race 2 Laser Radials
Sean Craig
Conor Gorman
Hugh O'Connor

Published in DMYC
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Is it still the Annalise effect, now morphing perhaps into the Finn Lynch effect? Is it the Laser Master Worlds effect from last September on Dublin Bay writes Sean Craig? Is it the emergence of the Radial rig as what "Afloat" recently described as the "boat for all ages"? Is it just the latest chapter in the local rebirth of a great dinghy, driven on by an inclusive community of enthusiasts? Or is it the realisation, finally, that young and old dinghy sailors CAN and maybe must race together to share resources and give our youth sailors real race practice, rather than just endless hours of drills and theory sessions?

The answer might just be all of the above. Regardless, the end result was a great turnout of 75 Lasers with up to 60 on the water, each Sunday from November to March, comprising 37 Radials (the largest ever locally assembled fleet of the mid-sized rig in Ireland), 19 Full rigs and 18 4.7s. How great it was to also see an equally healthy entry of 40+ PY dinghies, with lots of Fireballs and good pods of RSs and Wayfarers amongst others. Getting the entries in is all well and good but the host club still has to deliver and, as you would expect after 40 odd editions, the famous old DMYC delivered in spades. This is due to superb race management (thank you rising Race Officer star Cormac Bradley) and fantastic organisation (including comprehensive market research on format) spearheaded by Organiser Neil Colin and backed up by dozens of DMYC volunteers. Nor can we forget Bob Hobby who, in between pulling marks up and down for the meticulous RO Bradley, took some fairly exquisite photos for the DMYC Frostbite Facebook page

Plenty of plaudits there already but what really warmed the cockles this winter was seeing the youthful participation of eighteen 4.7s, about a dozen Radials and even a couple of young up and coming Full rig sailors like Peter Fagan and Hugo Kennedy. Dun Laoghaire is a dinghy sailing and racing centre par excellence but for too long the generations have been kept apart on the race course, causing wasteful duplication of efforts and resources. Perhaps this was part stigma, often the dreaded Health and Safety was trotted out as an excuse but it never really made sense and great kudos is due to both DMYC and DBSC for helping local Laser organisers in this area. A real powerhouse in making this happen this winter was Rob Walker of the Royal St George, in concert with Laser class captain Gavan Murphy. Rob put together a very comprehensive youth winter training programme for the combined clubs with top coaches but, crucially, the youths knew the idea was to stop training around midday and join in the Frostbites for some great sport with the, erm, somewhat older guys and gals ! Their coach would also observe the racing for debrief later. It is to the immense credit of these sailors and their parents that they embraced all this so great thanks go to some of the most active DL sailing families like the Gormans, Fahys, Walkers, Flanagans, Coakleys, Simingtons and many others too. Some clans had 3 or 4 family members out there! Kind of amusing - watching Kitty Flanagan carving up her Dad Sean at the leeward mark! Nice also to see something similar in PY with Morgan Lyttle in his 420 and the Thompson lads up from Wexford and storming around in a Fireball.

Results somehow don't seem very important when one has the gut feeling something rather special just took place in terms of the tribe on the water each Sunday. But for those of a statistical inclination, follow this link here What is perhaps noteworthy here is that the famous old Laser Frostbite trophy went to Conor Gorman who held off a strong field in the 4.7 division. By the way, older Laser heads learnt a hell of a lot by watching those guys start! No lining up from 3 lengths out with these racers. Anyway, the point is that this great old trophy (won by Olympians for example) has always been awarded to the Full rigs since the smaller sails simply didn't exist 40 years ago! But the senior sailors were unanimous this year that it should go the 4.7s to recognise their arrival in such good numbers and here's hoping we see 30 or 40 of them next winter! Indeed, the aforementioned DBSC welcome all ages and Laser rigs for their DBSC series (Tuesday nights) starting April 23rd here

Thanks again to the DMYC and all the competitors for turning up. What a fantastic bounceback from a couple of years ago when we were hearing a cruise-liner pier carving the harbour in two was no big deal since dinghy sailing was dying out anyway! Nothing could be further from the truth these days. Frostbiters are joined each Winter weekend by team racing students in Fireflies, Oppie training, Topper training, INSS and SID dinghy fleets and plenty of brand new 29-ers and Waszps, tearing around the harbour. With the brand new IS High-Performance centre on the Irish Lights site as well, you'd be tempted to ask if there's a more vibrant dinghy hub anywhere in the world? And that’s even before thirty Water Wags hit the water for Summertime!

Conor GormanConor Gorman (left) with the famous Laser Frostbite Trophy. Photo; Bob Hobby

Read Afloat.ie's weekly DMYC Frostbite reports here

Published in Dublin Bay
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With howling gales on Saturday, courtesy of Storm Deirdre, the weather forecast for today was a lot more benign with a base wind of 9 knots with gusts up to 15 knots from a WSW direction. Or at least that’s what XCWeather was saying during the morning. Arriving at the office to get a piece of work done before racing, the view from the 3rd Floor of my office location suggested that the Tukey Shoot participants were having a good race but there was nothing excessive about the wind. They had a fleet in excess of 50 boats.

With a solitary double points scoring race on the Agenda for today, there was a debate as to whether we should go outside, but with hindsight, staying in was the better call. Race Officer Cormac Bradley and Frostbites co-ordinator Neil Colin decided that a long race would fit the bill and we would stick with triangles. Thus a five-lap course was set with the weather mark initially set about two hundred metres west of the former HSS berth. By 13:40 the full course was set and while there was some fluctuation in the breeze, the location of the weather mark held true for quite a while. A well-known Laser Radial sailor advised me that he could almost fetch the mark on port tack and no sooner had that been acknowledged that a substantial shift to the left happened. This, in turn, prompted a call to the mark layer to drag the weather mark eastwards.

Three clean starts were managed today but there were OCSs in the PY fleet, with one of the Kona Windsurfers called back and at least one Fireball going back with him. Somehow or other the K1 (Tom Murphy, NYC) sneaked a star that neither the recorders nor the RO saw and he was not amused to find himself recorded as an OCS at the clubhouse afterwards.

While the race sequences had started in about 9 knots of breeze, it became apparent that the wind was fading rather than strengthening and there was certainly no sign of the 15 knots that had been promised. The RS Aero was well up the pecking order at the first weather mark in the company of two Fireballs – Noel Butler and Stephen Oram (15061) and the ladies, Cariosa Power & Marie Barry (14854), who after the racing told me of their position at the first weather mark. The tendency to flick left made the first reach tighter than originally intended and Messrs Butler & Oram didn’t gybe at Mark 2 but sailed on for quite some distance before adjusting course to get to Mark 3. Behind these two the remaining Fireballs were in close proximity to each other. Power & Barry had a systems failure with putting up and taking down their spinnaker and while it cost them places and distance on the water, and one imagine huge frustration, it was not the sort of day where it could have been much more catastrophic! The Aero stuck with the Fireballs for the first lap but then more of them caught and passed him. Butler and Oram were racing against the clock, with Shane McCarthy being their principal opposition on the water for the overall Series 1 lead. They “streaked away”, figuratively, not physically, from their own fleet and took a 16:14 winning margin over McCarthy into the results machinations, which converted into a 7:25 win. The next three Fireballs were overlapped on the finish line and in a very tight call the Thompson brothers, Daniel & Harry (1500) got the nod ahead of Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe (14691) who sneaked in ahead of Neil Colin & Margaret Casey (14775).

frostbite 2Noel Butler (L) and Stephen Oram – 2nd Overall, Series 1, PY Fleet Photo Frank Miller.

By this stage, the wind was down to a measly 3 knots so with Butler & Oram having such a big lead on the water a belated decision was taken to relocate the finish boat at the weather mark. We made it just before the Fireball pair!! At least it meant that the fleet had a much shorter sail home in wind that was rapidly disappearing.

Chris arrowsmithChris Arrowsmith – Winner Standard Lasers, Series 1 Photo Frank Miller

I am not sufficiently familiar with enough of the Laser fleets to know “Who’s who” so a blow by blow account is not as forthcoming. However, Adam Walsh did lead the 4.7 fleet from start to finish as did Chris Arrowsmith in the Standard Rig. While in the Radials, I can confirm that the leading three boats throughout the race were Conrad Vandlik, Conor Clancy (ex-Fireball) and Sean Craig.

Given that this was the last Sunday of Series 1 the prize-giving for the Series was held in the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club after racing with snacks and soup provided for our sustenance. Thus the tables that follow will detail the day’s winners, followed by the Series results of the same Class.

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018

PY Fleet*

1

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram

National Yacht Club

FB 15061

2

Shane McCarthy

Coal Harbour/Greystones Sailing Club

Solo 5-0-

3

Daniel & Harry Thompson

Wicklow Boating & Tennis Club

FB 1500-

4

Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe

Royal St. George Yacht Club

FB 14691

5

Neil Colin & Margaret Casey

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club

FB 14775

  

*Provisional – subject to the K1 being reinstated.

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018;

PY Fleet, Series 1 Overall

Class

Sail No.

Club

Nett

1

Shane McCarthy

Solo

5-0-

Coal Harbour & Greystones Sailing Club

11

2

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram

FB

15061

National Yacht Club

14

3

Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy

Wayfarer

111152

Greystones Sailing Club

47.5

4

Daniel & Harry Thompson

FB

1500-

Wicklow Boating & Tennis Club

60

5

Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keefe

FB

14691

Royal St George Yacht Club

66

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018

Standard Lasers

1

Chris Arrowsmith

2

Conor O’Leary

3

Garvan Murphy

 

(Only three entries today.)

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018;

Laser Standard Rig, Series 1 Overall

1

Chris Arrowsmith

20

2

Gary O’Hare

30

3

Niall Cowman

36

4

Garvan Murphy

42

5

Alan Hodgins

43

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018

4.7s

1

Adam Walsh

2

Conor Gorman

3

Kitty Flanagan

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018;

Laser 4.7s, Series 1 Overall

1

Alana Coakley

15

2

Adam Walsh

19

3

Conor Gorman

25

4

Hugh O’Connor

29

5

Haemish Munro

59

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018

Radials

1

Conrad Vandlik

2

Conor Clancy (Mug winner)

3

Sean Craig

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club Frostbites: 16 December 2018;

Laser Radials, Series 1 Overall

1

Marco Sorgassi

37

2

Conrad Vandlik

38

3

Sean Craig

56

4

Jack Hall

73

5

Shirley Gilmore

78

 

Frostbites Co-ordinator Neil Colin MC-ed the prize-giving and in addition to the 1-2-3 overall prizes in each fleet, there was recognition for the Laser Radials and 4.7s who have managed to swell the numbers of entrants to the Frostbites to over 100 boats this year. The “junior” Laser sailors were invited to take a small token prize from the “top table” to acknowledge their participation.

frostbites 3Marco Sorgassi – Winner Laser Radials, Series 1 Photo Frank Miller

Given the onset on the festive season, there was also a prize today for “Best-dressed boat”. Two of the Junior Lasers were given special mention by way of using festive bows and suitably coloured tinsel, but the easy winner of the “concours d’elegance” in a festive theme was the Wayfarer of Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy.

dMYC volunteerLiam O’Brien, Volunteer winner of the Tyrconnell Whiskey Photo Frank Miller

The Fireball Worlds in 2020 are coming to Howth Yacht Club and part of the sponsorship package for the event involves Tyrconnell Whiskey. A donation of three bottles of this gold elixir was made by Judith Malcolm and her husband for a draw with all Fireball crews eligible and a draw for all the volunteers. Marie Barry and Cariosa Power picked up the competitor prize, while the volunteer prize went to Liam O’Brien.

This concludes the Frostbites for 2018. Racing resumes in January, so from this correspondent, “Happy Christmas and a Peaceful & Prosperous New Year”!

Published in DMYC
Tagged under

‘Louis is coming to get us" exclaimed Noel Butler to crew Stephen Oram. Looking over his shoulder he was watching the young Thompson brothers, Daniel and Harry, and perhaps a ghost, closing in rapidly during the second PY race in yesterday’s DMYC frostbite series. The Thompsons are sailing the Fireball of late veteran dinghy racer Louis Smyth who died in June. The pair have been awarded the youth boat for the Frostbites series in an initiative by Louis’ family and the Irish Fireball Association. While the Wexford based pair, who normally sail 420s, had a slow start the previous Sunday yesterday’s races saw them begin to find their stride. In race one they narrowly missed 2nd place to Louise McKenna and Hermine O'Keeffe. In race two the pair were close on the heels of leaders Butler/Oram and by the finish were just a few seconds behind. Aldo back in action in Fireballs is the class boat, a composite Winder on loan for the winter to SID member Nick Miller sailing with an enthusiastic range of crews and helms from the Sailing in Dublin stable.

Thompson FireballThe Thompson brothers Daniel and Harry with their Fireball dinghy for the DMYC Frostbites Photo: Frank Miller

Sunday’s racing in Dun Laoghaire harbour saw challenging conditions for all participants. The challenge wasn’t so much the wind strength as the variations in pressure and direction around the course. The game for all fleets was one of snakes and ladders.

"The game for all fleets was one of snakes and ladders"

For this winter season, the fleets are divided between three Laser starts and a very mixed PY start, dominated by the ten Fireball entries. With a Met Eireann small craft warning in force some crews expected decent wind but in the event, the Wind Guru forecast proved the more accurate one and with the exception of the occasional gust winds were relatively light. While the line bias may have pointed towards the pin those who started at the committee end of the line tended to come out best at the windward mark with the breeze, when it did occasionally fill, coming from the south. The fleets remained well spread out around the triangular courses though the PY fleet occasionally had to work around a delayed laser start after the leeward mark– a first world complaint and a symptom of the growing frostbites numbers in a confined harbour. For race two the wind shifted right just before the start making the first beat a near fetch and the second reach quite tight.

Nevertheless, the usual suspects managed to find their way to the front. On handicap, the ever consistent Butler/Oram won the first PY race in a Fireball while Shane McCarthy won the second PY race in his Solo. PY mug winners were Fireballers Louise McKenna and Hermine O'Keeffe for race one and Monika Schaefer and Miriam McCarthy in their Wayfarer for race 2. The large fleet of Lasers with multiple starts challenged the recorders but the results show the 4.7s races were won by Adam Walsh and Alana Coakley respectively, Ali Robinson and Sean Craig won the Radial divisions and Gary O’Hare and Chris Arrowsmith won the full rig divisions.

The series, growing again in popularity, continues until late March with intermissions at Christmas and the New Year.

Published in DMYC
Tagged under

Women on Water at the National Yacht Club are entering two 1720 Sportboats in the DBSC Turkey Shoot — and you could be a part of the action.

Experienced women sailors will have their own boat (€100pp) but those newer to racing won’t be left out as a second vessel will have a coach on board (€150pp).

The Turkey Shoot series, now sponsored by Citroen South Dublin, will run for seven Sundays from 4 November.

Women also have the option of sailing Wayfarers in the DMYC Frostbites in the afternoons (€100pp).

And Women on Water are running a coaching session on Saturday 3 November to familiarise those taking part with the 1720 and Wayfarer boats.

Register online at the NYC website HERE.

Published in Turkey Shoot

Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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