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Laser Radials competing in the DMYC Frostbites are now the largest club Laser fleet in Ireland and look likely to surpass last winter’s 37 boat entry, with weekly turnouts in the mid-20s.

Not bad, given there were just one or two Radials a couple of years ago and it’s a great accolade for the versatility of the mid-sized Laser rig. Series Two kicks off this Sunday, January 5th and sailors can enter here at effectively half price. New arrivals for the second series include Marco Sorgassi (who took a short break after an excellent 5th overall in the 50-boat Italian Masters in October) and John O’Driscoll, SOD and SB20 supremo, who will return after a nasty skiing injury twelve months ago.

With our sibling 4.7 and Standard rigs also out in healthy numbers, total Dun Laoghaire Laser numbers on the water each Winter Sunday are in the 40-50 range.

"Total Dun Laoghaire Laser numbers on the water each Winter Sunday are in the 40-50 range"

Somewhat accidentally, the Radials are also very on-point in terms of the buzzy catchphrases and promotions you hear bandied about. “Women on the Water” ? Box ticked, with ten female entries so far! “Sport for Life” and “Sport for All”? Well, yes indeed, with sailors aged 15-60 + and weights from 50 to (at least) 85 kgs.

Finally, we can rightfully claim some of that much sought-after “Youth Retention”, with graduates from 4.7s, some more experienced Radial Youths practising for the Europeans in Ballyholme in July and also some twenty-somethings getting back in after a few years out.

So….Retirees, Boomers, Generations X to Z, Millennials and even Frostbiting Snowflakes (sorry, couldn’t resist)….we’ve got them all ! The fleet breaks down into 80% adults and 20% youths.

Gavin Murphy LaserGavin Murphy of the RStGYC Photo: Bob Hobby

Anyway, regardless of how we all arrive on the starting line together, it’s certainly been super racing before Christmas, great fun and as competitive back in the twenties as it is in the top ten. Alas for the older guard, the young ‘uns have won the day so far. These guys are in fact anything but “Flaky Snowflakes”! They train hard on Sunday mornings before joining in for the Frostbites, seemingly oblivious to low temperatures. Under the stewardship of rotating DMYC Race Officers, Cormac Bradley and Ben Mulligan, race-management has been top-notch. At the sharp end of the fleet, Conor Gorman and Alana Coakley have taken most race wins. Ex-Topper star Hugh O’Connor has a bullet too, but a “Master” (over 35) has won one race only. Other young guns showing really well are Adam Walsh and Adam Leddy.

Conor Gorman1Conor Gorman of the National Yacht Club Photo: Frank Miller

Overall, it was Conor Gorman (NYC) who took Series 1 with a very commanding points lead, discarding a 2nd place! Judy O’Beirne (RStGYC) was the first lady in 6th overall. Other Master sailors have had their moments and here there’s plenty of newcomers in the more mature category. DBSC Laser Class captain Gav Murphy has been trying out the Radial and plenty of other new Masters have appeared, but are well known in other classes, including Owen Laverty, Pierre Long and Hugh Cahill. Some may be long-term Radial converts, while others will just be staying fit and sharp for Summer campaigns in other fleets.

With mainly light winds so far, the bigger grislier sailors will surely feature when the Sundays turn squally and nasty. Or at least that’s what they’ve been saying in the bar after sailing!

Series 1 Results here

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Series 1 of the DMYC-hosted Frostbites closed with a marathon race, in relative terms, yesterday with a modest turnout of 44 boats, a wind that fluctuated between 170 and 180º with a high of just over 10 knots and some sunshine, though there was a distinct coolness in the air. Indeed, there was a light covering of white on the hills behind Dun Laoghaire.

The PY fleet had the best turnout of the day with nineteen boats - Fireballs, Wayfarers, RS200s, Aero 7s, Laser Vagos, an RS400 and the Solo of Shane McCarthy. This fleet got off to an almost clean start with only one OCS, a Fireball that didn’t come back, though another Fireball DID come back. Initially, the fleet went left on their way to a weather mark that was located just to the west of the HSS gantry, making the beat one of the shorter legs across the harbour. The first four or five boats around the weather mark were all Fireballs, not quite bow to transom but close enough! Of these, the last in the group was Neil Colin & Margaret Casey (14775) who had returned to the start in response to the flying of the individual recall even though they weren’t the transgressors. In contrast to everyone else they took to the right-hand side of the beat and were only just off the leaders at the first mark.

Noel ButlerStephen Oram & Noel Butler (Fireball) – Series 1 PY Fleet Winners (Overall) Photo: Frank Miller/Irish Fireball Class

Having had the top reach “sail-tested” by a Fireball before the start, the wind “played ball” in keeping it a challenging “three-sailer” and the Fireballs, in particular, seemed to enjoy stretching themselves with the crews on the trapeze. Inevitably, Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (15061) were first to show, but the chasing bunch was close behind them – Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe (15016), Alistair Court & Gordon Syme (14706), Josh Porter & Cara McDowell (14695) and Frank Miller & Ed Butler (14713). McKenna and Court had their own race within a race all the way round the five-lap Olympic configuration course and at the finish, they were overlapped with McKenna getting the result by one second. Butler & Oram simply sailed away from the rest of the fleet and were never troubled on the water.

"The PY fleet had the best turnout of the day with nineteen boats"

On corrected time, however, it was a different story. Despite being 1:32 ahead of the 2nd and third-placed Fireballs on the water and 7:28 ahead of the Solo, Butler & Oram were relegated to third place on corrected time behind the Solo and the 2nd Aero 7, sailed by a Frostbite debutant. There were only 45 seconds between 1st and 3rd on corrected time.

Brendan Foley Aero 7Brendan Foley (Aero 7) – PY Fleet Series 1 Overall – 2nd Place.Photo: Frank Miller/Irish Fireball Class

Yet again the two Wayfarers had a great race between themselves. Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy (Greystones) ultimately won out but not by a huge margin and indeed their class competition, David Mulvin & Ronan Beirne (National Yacht Club and Flying Fifteens) led them at different stages within the race and at one stage gave up a lead due to a mix-up of the lap they were on! Their performance was significantly enhanced by a fresher set of sails – brand new, but never used from at least fifteen years ago – saved from an ignominious landfill fate!

Monica LeeMiriam McCarthy (L) and Monica Schaeffer (Greystones) – winners of the Best Dressed Boat. Photo: Frank Miller/Irish Fireball Class

The Standard Lasers and 4.7s had a small turnout of four and three boats respectively. In the larger rigs, the finishing order was Marc Coakley, John Marmelstein, Hal Fitzgerald and Conor O’Leary, the latter helming by way of a rope tied to his tiller when his tiller extension broke off. In the 4.7s, the finishing order was Rian Geraghty-McDonnell, Evan Dargan-Hayes and Jacques Murphy.

Eighteen Radials contested the last day of Series 1 where Sean Craig continues to represent the more mature Laser sailor with aplomb in a fleet of much younger competitors. Yet again, he was pipped at the post by the much younger Conor Gorman with Alana Coakley flying the flag for the girls in 3rd place, ahead of Adam Leddy and Haemish Munro.

Conor GormanConor Gorman – Laser Radials, Series 1 Winner (Overall) Photo: Frank Miller/Irish Fireball Class

The weather forecast was suggesting a much more robust day on the water than actually materialised, with winds of the order of 14 knots, gusting to the low twenties predicted as late as Saturday night/early Sunday morning. This didn’t materialise and the decision to have a single long race was prompted by the fact that an early prize-giving was deemed to be the order of the day!

As to be expected with the completion of the Series a larger than normal crowd congregated at the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club for the prize-giving, where in addition to the racing prizes, a number of bottles of whiskey were raffled off, courtesy of Ian and Judith Malcolm who are very involved in Howth’s hosting of the Fireball Worlds in August 2020. There was a raffle for the volunteers and a raffle for the Fireball competitors on the day. DMYC’s Vice Commodore, Frostbites Coordinator and Fireball Sailor, Neil Colin, officiated at the prize-giving where daily Frostbite Mugs and Series 1 prizes (calendars) were awarded.

Josh Porter Newtownards SC Cara McDowell DL Josh Porter (Newtownards SC) & Cara McDowell (DL) win the Fireball competitors’ raffle Photo: Frank Miller/Irish Fireball Class

Yet again, the subject of going through the finish line with the blue flag flying was a topic of conversation in the clubhouse port-mortems – the ruling is that when the blue flag is flying you may not cross the finish line unless you are finishing. Policing of the rule is down to the competitors.

Frostbites; Day 6.

PY Fleet
1. Shane McCarthy (Solo)
2. A. N. Other (Aero 7)
3. Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (Fireball)
4. Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe (Fireball)
5. Alistair Court & Gordon Syme (Fireball).

Standard Laser
1. Marc Coakley
2. John Marmelstein
3. Hal Fitzgerald
4. Conor O’Leary

Laser 4.7
1. Rian Geraghty-McDonnell
2. Evan Dargan-Hayes
3. Jacques Murphy

Laser Radials
1. Conor Gorman
2. Sean Craig
3. Alan Coakley
4. Adam Leddy
5. Haemish Munro

2019 – 2020 Frostbites Series 1 Overall

PY Fleet
1. Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (Fireball) 17pts
2. Brendan Foley (Aero 7) 40pts
3. Sarah Byrne & Crew (RS 200) 49pts
4. Jemima Owens & Henry Start (RS 200) 56pts
5. Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy (Wayfarer) 58pts.

Standard Laser
1. Chris Arrowsmith 26pts
2. John Marmelstein 26pts
3. Alan Hodgins 28pts
4. Marc Coakley 30pts
5. Conor O’Leary 48pts

Laser 4.7
1. Rian Geraghty-McDonnell 9pts
2. Jacques Murphy 25pts
3. Evan Dargan-Hayes 30pts
4. Kitty Flanagan 31pts
5. Eimear Farrell 42pts

Laser Radials
1. Conor Gorman 13pts
2. Sean Craig 29pts
3. Adam Walsh 35pts
4. Alan Coakley 59pts
5. Adam Leddy 60pts.

As this is the last Frostbite Report for 2019, I close by wishing you all a Happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year! See you on January 5th!

Published in DMYC
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Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club (DMYC) has made an early decision to cancel its Sunday afternoon dinghy frostbite series in Dun Laoghaire Harbour.

Met Eireann say South to southwest winds will reach gale force later today on all Irish coasts and on the Irish Sea.

Southwest to west winds will further increase strong gale to storm force on Irish coasts from Roche's Point to Slyne Head to Fair Head Sunday morning and afternoon.

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A misty, almost windless start to the day left frostbiters wondering if they would get afloat all at the DMYC Dinghy Frostbites. Earlier DBSC Turkey Shoot Keelboat racing was cancelled on Sunday morning with north-westerly zephyrs peaking at two knots. However, by about 12.30 the ghostly air had started to swing in the forecast direction so dinghy racers gathered at the waterfront clubs and optimistically pulled off covers and prepared their boats in almost zero wind. Their positivity was rewarded as the air settled into the predicted southeasterly and reached five or six knots. So it was that racing got away with only the slightest delay.

The mixed PY fleet included nine of the eleven Fireballs entered in the series, along with an assortment of Wayfarers, RS 400s, 200s and single-handers. The start line was frankly messy with a favoured pin end and anyone who got away cleanly counted their blessings!

Amongst those were Fireballers Neil Colin and Alistair Court who led the mixed fleet most of the way around the course. Ultimately Neil Colin sailing with John McAree prevailed on the water but on handicap Monica Schaefer won the Windward-Leeward race in the light airs by impressively steady and fast sailing in patchy conditions.

"Special mention for the volunteer race team for getting two races under the belt in challenging conditions"

For race two the pin end bias on the start line was even more pronounced and again the trick was to get off the line in good shape, with an individual recall flag flying to nag those with a guilty conscience. In this race, Newtownards sailor and heroic commuter Josh Porter crewed by Cara McDowell got clean away and led around the course. Followed by series leaders Noel Butler/Stephen Oram they held their lead to the finish. Again in the light airs, they were denied the mug which went to Des Fortune in his Finn who maintained a steady, fast and trouble-free path around the windward-leeward course.

Amongst the three laser fleet divisions the races were won in race one by John Marmelstein, Conor Gorman and Rian Geraghty McDonnell; and in race two by Vasily Shamkov, Hugh O'Connor and Rian Geraghty McDonnell.

Special mention for the volunteer race team led by PRO Ben Mulligan for getting two races under the belt in challenging conditions. The popular series continues until the end of March. Entries at present remain open with more sailors welcome to join the fray.

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The opening round of the 2019/2020 Frostbites, hosted by the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club was sailed in sunshine and air temperatures that were around the 9 - 11º mark in a westerly wind that fluctuated a little during the first race and necessitated a shift of the weather mark for the second race writes Cormac Bradley.

Sixty-one boats took to the water with the fleets split as follows; PY – 21 boats, Laser Full Rig – 8 boats, Laser 4.7s – 10 boats and Laser Radials – 22 boats. In the PY fleet there was a very healthy turnout for the Fireballs with eight boats, including one helmsman that we haven’t see for a while – Dr Kieran Harkin sailing with Michael Keegan in 14676. Given that the Fireballs will be having their Worlds hosted by Howth Yacht Club in August 2020, maybe this is the start of a new injection of enthusiasm for the class in the build-up to the Worlds. Also included in the PY fleet were two Wayfarers, sailed by Frostbite regulars Monica Schaeffer & Miriam McCarthy and newcomers from the Dun Laoghaire Flying Fifteen fleet, David Mulvin and Ronan Beirne. Another combination with Flying Fifteen connections raced the solitary GP14, Ciara Mulvey and Peter Murphy. Sailing in Dublin (SID) had four Laser Vagos on the water, one sailing single-handed, and the RS fraternity were represented by the RS 200s of Sarah Byrne and Jemima Owens/Henry Start and a RS400 from Greystones in the form of Paul Phelan & Alan Leddy. We also had a RS Aero 7 sailed by Brendan Foley. Conspicuous absentees on Day 1 were the Kona Windsurfers, the Solo of Shane McCarthy and the K1 of Tom Murphy – maybe they are affording the others a chance to get warmed up. Also conspicuous by their complete absence were the IDRA fleet without a single representative.

In the Laser fleets my knowledge of the names isn’t as good but regular “Frostbiters” in the form of Shirley Gilmore, Sean Craig, Gavan Murphy, Chris Arrowsmith, Kenny Rumball, fresh from a line honours win in the big-boat Turkey shoot that morning, Conor Kinsella, defending Frostbite overall champion Conor Gorman, Alana Coakley, Mary Chambers and a number of others were in attendance.

With the wind direction being around the 290º mark, the committee boat set up close to the weather station on the East Pier and set a triangular course with the weather-mark close to the INSS’ green raft, the gybe mark, about 150m downwind of the entrance to the marina and the leeward mark down by the East Pier. As per the race management team briefing in advance of the racing, the committee boat was offset from the line between the leeward and windward marks to afford the recorders a better chance to get sail numbers.

General Recalls were the order of the day for the first starts of the new Frostbites season with both the PY fleet, led by the Wayfarer of Schaeffer/McCarthy and closely followed by Court & Syme in their Fireball and the other Fireballs breaking the line early to the extent that the limit mark completely disappeared with the Laser/4.7 fleet following suit. That left the Radials as the only fleet to get away cleanly and based on last year’s experience, that was a turn-up for the books.

In the restart of the PY fleet, under black flag, there were only two transgressors a Fireball and a RS. It might be argued that the use of the black flag was premature but given the day’s ambition for two races and the time of year, there is pressure to get races away promptly.

The trend appeared to be for the fleet to go left off the start line and my sense was that the leaders stayed left for the majority of the beat before making their way left to right to get around the weather mark.

In the PY Class Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (Fireball 15061) led both races from start to finish to get the business of securing a Frostbite Mug out of the way early. They had an easy opening win on the water relative to the second-placed boat on handicap, the RS 200 of Sarah Byrne, but the 2:25 margin on the water was whittled down to 25 seconds on corrected time. But even from within the Fireball Class itself, the challenge to this pair was modest, with the RS400 of Phelan/Leddy leading the chase. In Fireball-only terms the finishing order was Butler/Oram, Alistair Court/Gordon Syme (14706) and Neil Colin & Margaret Casey (14775). In the second race, it was more competitive but Butler/Oram still got home by 1:05 relative to Kieran Harkin/Michael Keegan with Frank Miller & Ed Butler (14713) completing the podium. Of note in Race 1 was the fourth-place finish on handicap of Patrick Hassett in the 2.4.

In the Lasers, two competitors each took a podium place in each race. While Alan Hodgins took the first race win of the new series, Chris Arrowsmith scored a 3,1 to take the second Frostbite Mug of the day and Kenny Rumball scored a 2,3 for the day. In the second race, John Marmelstein finished between Arrowsmith and Rumball.

In the first race of the 4.7s it was a family affair with Kitty Flanagan taking the win with her sister (assumed) taking third place. Rian McGeraghty – McDonnell Rian separated the sisters and repeated his second place in the second race, finishing behind the other sister, Katie and ahead of Jacques Murphy, with Kitty fourth.

Juniors dominate the Radial entry list and Alana Coakley gave them all something to aim for by taking the first two races wins of the 2019/2020 season. Hugh O’Connor and Conor Gorman trailed her home in Race 1 while in Race 2 Gorman went up a place to second while one of the “more-seasoned” Radials, Sean Craig, took third.

As stated, the races were sailed in sunshine and wind that started out at about 10 knots and dropped to as low as six knots as recorded on the committee boat. An adjustment to the weather mark was needed for the second race as the wind went northwards, resulting in a placement that might have been a “smidgeon” too close to the West Pier. It was either that or move the committee boat and re-jig the course. Fortunately for me, only one person whispered in my shell-like ear to point this out. I’ll put it down to a first-day default!

Results are here

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After a Bumper DMYC Dinghy Frostbite on Dublin Bay last year with approximately 70 Lasers spread over three rig sizes and approximately 40 various Portsmouth Yardsticks  (PY) taking part, the DMYC has set its stall out again to replicate the format and success of last year’s series, with a few “lessons learnt” adjustments writes series organiser Neil Colin.

Starting on Sunday 3rd November, series 1 runs to Sunday 15th December, and Series 2 from Jan 5th to March 29th.

The option is there to enter either the series before Christmas, after Christmas, or both on a reduced entry fee.

While we hope to race inside and outside the harbour, the emphasis will be on shorter multiple races on each day, with the objective of at least two races per afternoon.

Subject to numbers we hope to run the same start order as last year, with the Radials having a dedicated start.

Entries are online here where we can also view the entries to date. The entry list currently stands at 33 of which 12 are Radials.

Entries will be capped at 120, almost reached last year!

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Leslie Parnell's Beneteau First 34.7 'Black Velvet' is the 2019 winner of a shortened DMYC Kish Race on Dublin Bay today, the “last major” in the Bay summer season.

Second was the National Yacht Club J109 Jalapeno (William Despard) with Greystones Champion Eleuthera, a Grand Soleil 44, skippered by Frank Whelan in third.

As Afloat reported earlier, Handicapping was based on ECHO Standard, giving those with revised ECHOs a good chance at the prizes.

Fifty-two boats entered the race this year, and 47 showed up on the start line. Neil Colin, the Race Officer, delayed the start until 1110, to give a few stragglers a chance to get out of the harbour and up to the line.

Jalapeno J109William Despard's J109 Jalapeno was second Photo: Afloat

Eleuthera 2Wicklow visitor Eleuthera was third overall Photo: Afloat

The pin end was favoured by most of the bigger boats, with Aster1x joining in. A flooding tide ensured the start was all clear (by several boat lengths in many cases), and the fleet was away. Well, most of it was away; the last boat cleared the line at 1140 – the flooding tide and a falling wind close to the land was the undoing of several competitors. Those who favoured the pin end, despite a stronger tide, benefited from more of the wind that was sweeping over the Muglins and Dalkey.

After a bit of rain, the wind filled in again, and reigning champion Eleuthera was first around South Burford (the course was shortened due to a forecasted lack of wind) and back just after 1245. The rest of the fleet came home over the next two hours, with the final boat crossing the line at 1520.

Results for the race are here.

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While last year it was the threat of a gale warning decreased numbers, this year, it is an unfortunate clash with the opening Irish match at the Rugby World Cup. Accordingly, the DMYC has postponed the first gun to 10.55 this Sunday to allow sailors to see the bulk of the game and still have time to enjoy competing in the Annual DMYC Kish Race.

In the event the breeze is not as strong as last year, the organisers may use a shorter course length, to ensure a good duration of a sail, for the last major race of the year, despite the later start time.

The event is designed to attract recreation and cruiser sailors as well as the regular racing community.

The DMYC looks forward to welcoming all sailors to the prize giving and Après Sail after their voyage.

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Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club (DMYC) has published the Notice of Race for the 2019 Edition of its annual Kish Race.

The round Kish and back race will take place on Sunday 22nd with the first gun at10.25 a.m.

Starting at the town's West Pier and racing to the Kish and back, it is a distance of approximately 28 km.

As Afloat reported in 2018, the last race saw Hot Cookie (Sunfast 3600 - John O’Gorman) leading to the Kish Lighthouse some 13.9 km out from Dun Laoghaire. An inside overtake at the mark by the bigger Eleuthera (Frank Whelan) saw them lead all the way to the finish. The reward for Hot Cookie (second on the water) was an overall win, on corrected time.

Race organiser Neil Colin says that 'as this is the “last major” in the Dublin Bay summer season before the lift out or winter racing, the club is looking forward to an enthusiastic entry'.

Handicapping will be based on ECHO Standard, giving those with revised ECHOs a good chance at the prizes.

The Notice of Race and entry can be found here 

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The last Sunday of the 2018/19 DMYC Frostbites coincided with the first day of BST – British (and Irish) Summer Time and the race management team and contestants were treated to a good day on the water to close out the event.

Race Officer Cormac Bradley, having discharged his Mother’s Day responsibilities the evening before in Warrenpoint, travelled down from the north in what looked like favourable conditions, only to find that Frostbites Coordinator Neil Colin was suggesting that what wind we had was dropping rapidly in strength! On getting out to the race area, a host of Lasers were already afloat – seemingly having a Royal St George Yacht Club facilitated coaching session in advance of the days racing proceedings.

At this stage the wind was from due East - 90º putting the weather mark somewhere between the weather station and the Boyd Memorial on the upper level of the East Pier. Bob Hobby was despatched to the area with instructions not to lay immediately as the wind was flicking a bit. Ultimately, it settled, and the weather mark went in closer to the Boyd memorial. Early participants in practice beat were able to report that the beat was fair but there were holes at the upwind end of the leg. The leeward gate was set up just north of the entrance to the marine and the fleet of over 60 boats were set a three-lap Windward-Leeward to get the day’s proceedings underway.

A substantial PY Fleet of 20-boats was dominated by an 11-boat Fireball entry with the regulars being joined by David Turner, sailing with his daughter (14362), the Keegans (Owen and Michael) (14676), the SID Team and the all-girl team of Cariosa Power and Marie Barry (14854) who in the recent heavier Sundays have stayed ashore. Also getting their new boat wet for the first time were Louise McKenna and Hermine O’Keeffe (15116), though they disguised the fact by dressing her in Louise’s former sails (14691). After a couple of weeks’ absence, Shane McCarthy (Solo) was back out again as was the IDRA of Frank Hamilton and Jenny Byrne and the Wayfarer of Monica Shaefer and Miriam McCarthy (11152) had the company of a couple more. The two Kona Windsurfers were also in attendance.

A shorter than usual start line saw boats along its full length with a concentration at the pin. One Fireball was adjudged to be too early, was signalled accordingly but sailed on. In getting the next starts away, I was able to glance upwind and see that the leading Fireballs were tightly clustered after the spreader mark – a good sign that the beat was one-sided. At this stage, Neil Colin and Margaret Casey (14775) were well up but Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (15061) were in close contact and despite the lighter airs Frank Miller & Ed Butler (14713) were well to the fore. Also having a good session was Louise and Hermine. The favoured approach to the downwind leg was to go to the right-hand side of the downwind leg and leave the gybe in to the gate late.

FB IMG 1554107387236Frostbite volunteers

The Lasers adopted a more direct route and it was great to see the total fleet (of 60-odd boats) spread across the full width of the course. The Laser starts also had a single OCS, neither of which went back but the errant competitor in the Laser start took his silent crossing of the finish line in extremely good humour by admitting that al least it was evidence of his trying to get a great start. The full Laser rigs had a modest entry of 6 boats, but the other Laser number were very healthy.

Reports from the top of the course suggested that the wind was light, and on the committee boat the wind dropped to a low of about 5 knots, but at our end of the course the boats were moving well.

For the second race of the day, adjustment was necessary! At the start of the afternoon the wind had been showing a tendency to flick right, but at the latter stages of the race the suggestion was that it was itching to go left – northwards. In the process of finishing the fleets, the course was re-jigged to set up a four-lap Olympic configuration to accommodate a 30º shift in the wind direction to 60º. This allowed the weather mark to be placed just inside the end of the East Pier, with a top reach across the harbour mouth to a mark that was laid in the approximate location of the blockhouse on the West Pier and a gybe mark that sat in the entrance to the marine. The breeze also increased giving us a steady 10 knots plus for the last race of the series.

Again, OCSs were a feature of the second set of starts with individuals identified but not returning and some admitting afterwards that they had benefitted form being hidden by those identified. From a RO perspective, it was great to see that the verbal warning to unfurl the Black Flag in advance of the key starting signals was acted on by the normally (over) enthusiastic 4.7 Laser fleet, who all kept their noses clean for the last Sunday of the Series.

In the PY fleet, Neil Colin and Margaret Casey stole a march on everyone and enjoyed a start to finish lead on the entire fleet. It was very fitting that they should enjoy this success given the work that Neil has put into the Frostbites and their finishing signal was enhanced by a cheer from the team on the committee boat.

In order to try and speed up the results processing to accommodate the Series prize-giving, the day’s racing had started 30 minutes earlier at 13:30 and the results of the first race were processed on the water by Brian Mulkeen.    

DMYC Frostbites: 31st March Race 1

 

PY Fleet

Full Rig Lasers

Laser 4.7s

Laser Radials

1st

Monica Schaefer & Miriam McCarthy

(Wayfarer)

Peter Fagan

Kitty Flanagan

Moss Simington

2nd

Shane McCarthy

(Solo)

Gavan Murphy

Adam Walsh

Sean Craig

3rd

Sarah Byrne

(RS200)

Conor Kinsella

Conn Murphy

Jack Fahy

4th

Frank Hamilton & Jennifer Byrne

(IDRA 14)

Gary O’Hare

Hugh O’Connor

Conor Clancy

5th

Aidan Geraghty & Bernadette Fox

(Enterprise)

Alan Hodgins

Conor Gorman

Marco Sorgassi

DMYC Frostbites: 31st March Race 2

 

PY Fleet

Full Rig Lasers

Laser 4.7s

Laser Radials

1st

Shane McCarthy

(Solo)

Peter Fagan

Conor Gorman

Sean Craig

2nd

Monica Schaefer & Miriam McCarthy

(Wayfarer)

Alan Hodgins

Hugh O’Connor

Jack Fahy

3rd

Neil Colin & Margaret Casey

(Fireball)

Gary O’Hare

Kitty Flanagan

Clare Gorman

4th

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram

(Fireball)

Conor Kinsella

Adam Walsh

Conor Clancy

5th

Alastair Court & Gordon Syme

(Fireball)

Gavan Murphy

Oisin Hughes

Judy O’Bierne

 

Race day Frostbite Mugs went to Maeve Rafferty (RS 200) and Lucy Nicol in the Laser Radials in Race 1. In Race 2, the PY Frostbite Mug went to Dave Turner & his daughter Deirdre in the Fireball.

And so! Onto the overall prizegiving! The DMYC Clubhouse was well filled for the Series Prizegiving and Frostbites Coordinator, Neil Colin and DMYC Commodore, Frank Guilfoyle welcomed the competitors to the prize-giving. Neil opened the proceedings by thanking all the participants and acknowledging the huge entry for this version of the Frostbites – 115 boats. In particular, he acknowledged the efforts of the Dun Laoghaire Laser Fleet in encouraging the Junior fleets to get involved. This has manifested itself in a very big 4.7 fleet. Frank Guilfoyle said he was delighted to see so many people in the club and assured them that they would be most welcome all year round, not just on the occasion of the Frostbite prize-giving. Neil then went on to highlight some future events in Dublin Bay – the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta – for which early bird entries were about to close – and the Flying Fifteen Worlds scheduled for September under the burgee of the National Yacht Club. He also referenced the Wayfarer Worlds scheduled for Greystones and put no pressure whatsoever on Monica and Miriam by wishing them every success in that event.

Thanks were recorded to the Race Management Team, the RIB drivers and assistants, the Results Team and the DMYC staff and volunteers who provide the food every Sunday. Without these dedicated volunteers, it was stated that the Frostbites simply couldn’t happen. Tokens of appreciation were handed over to all these individuals.  

Neil Colin highlighted the fact that the format of the Frostbites had been subjected to a rigorous review over the past “post season” which had resulted in changes which he felt has benefitted the running of the 2018-19 event. However, he assured the fleet that if more changes were felt to be necessary, he was quite happy to receive a justification for these by text or E-mail or, indeed by general conversation. One thing he intended to change was the number of discards that would be applicable as these had already been exhausted before we got to the end of the scheduled racing.

Series 2 Overall places were announced but prizes were only awarded to those who had not been placed inside the top 1-2-3 in the Frostbites overall, i.e. the combination of Series 1 & 2.

DMYC Frostbites: Series 2 Overall

 

PY Fleet

Full Rig Lasers

Laser 4.7s

Laser Radials

1st

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram

(Fireball)

Peter Fagan

Conor Gorman

Sean Craig

2nd

Shane McCarthy

(Solo)

Chris Arrowsmith

Pepe de Sintas

Marcon Sorgassi

3rd

Monica Schaefer & Miriam McCarthy

(Wayfarer)

Gavan Murphy

Hugh O’Connor

Judy O’Bierne

4th

Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe

(Fireball)

Conor Kinsella

Adam Walsh

Conor Clancy

5th

Frank Miller & Ed Butler

(Fireball)

Conor O’Leary

Kitty Flanagan

Shirley Gilmore

The results for the 2018-19 Frostbites were initially posted and were then subjected to a stewards’ enquiry when it turned out that the start time for the last race of the series had not been properly inserted into the handicap results for the PY fleet. This had the effect of creating a one-point swing in the final overall results.

DMYC Frostbites: 2018-19 Overall Results (Series 1 & 2)

 

PY Fleet

(43 boats)

Full Rig Lasers

(19 boats)

Laser 4.7s

(18 boats)

Laser Radials

(37 boats)

1st

Noel Butler & Stephen Oram

(Fireball)

Chris Arrowsmith

Conor Gorman

Sean Craig

2nd

Shane McCarthy

(Solo)

Gavan Murphy

Adam Walsh

Marcon Sorgassi

3rd

Monica Schaefer & Miriam McCarthy

(Wayfarer)

Gary O’Hare

Hugh O’Connor

Shirley Gilmore

4th

Louise McKenna & Hermine O’Keeffe

(Fireball)

Conor O’Leary

Haemish Munro

Judy O’Bierne

5th

Frank Miller & Ed Butler

(Fireball)

Alan Hodgins

Kitty Flanagan

Sean Flanagan

Winners in the four classes complimented the various on-the-water volunteers and the frostbites management team who had contributed to what they believed was one of the best Frostbite Series that they had ever participated in – and there are some individuals with very substantial records of participation. They noted the willingness to change courses, to use different course types on the same day, the speed with which races were reset and the commitment to maximise the opportunity to facilitate racing even when the weather forecast suggested otherwise. Early calls to abandon racing in severe conditions were just as welcome as late calls when the weather was marginal. The support of the families of the younger participants was also acknowledged – the likes of the Gormans, the Fahys, the Flanagans, and others and, in the Fireballs, the Thompsons (editor’s addition) is very welcome and critically important. The point was made that while training in the Bay is essential, race exposure in a series such as the Frostbites is equally valuable in the development of our young sailors.

The prize-giving the concluded by noting that the 2019/20 Series gets underway on 3rd November 2019.  

FB IMG 1554107396744Miriam McCarthy (L) & Monica Schaefer

FB IMG 1554107396744Conor Gorman

FB IMG 1554107396744Adam Walsh

FB IMG 1554107396744Sean Craig

FB IMG 1554107396744Marco Sorgassi

FB IMG 1554107396744Shirley Gilmore

FB IMG 1554107396744Pepe de Sintas

FB IMG 1554107396744Frank Guilfoyle & Cormac Bradley

Published in DMYC
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Page 5 of 19

Ireland's Offshore Renewable Energy

Because of Ireland's location at the Atlantic edge of the EU, it has more offshore energy potential than most other countries in Europe. The conditions are suitable for the development of the full range of current offshore renewable energy technologies.

Offshore Renewable Energy FAQs

Offshore renewable energy draws on the natural energy provided by wind, wave and tide to convert it into electricity for industry and domestic consumption.

Offshore wind is the most advanced technology, using fixed wind turbines in coastal areas, while floating wind is a developing technology more suited to deeper water. In 2018, offshore wind provided a tiny fraction of global electricity supply, but it is set to expand strongly in the coming decades into a USD 1 trillion business, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). It says that turbines are growing in size and in power capacity, which in turn is "delivering major performance and cost improvements for offshore wind farms".

The global offshore wind market grew nearly 30% per year between 2010 and 2018, according to the IEA, due to rapid technology improvements, It calculated that about 150 new offshore wind projects are in active development around the world. Europe in particular has fostered the technology's development, led by Britain, Germany and Denmark, but China added more capacity than any other country in 2018.

A report for the Irish Wind Energy Assocation (IWEA) by the Carbon Trust – a British government-backed limited company established to accelerate Britain's move to a low carbon economy - says there are currently 14 fixed-bottom wind energy projects, four floating wind projects and one project that has yet to choose a technology at some stage of development in Irish waters. Some of these projects are aiming to build before 2030 to contribute to the 5GW target set by the Irish government, and others are expected to build after 2030. These projects have to secure planning permission, obtain a grid connection and also be successful in a competitive auction in the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).

The electricity generated by each turbine is collected by an offshore electricity substation located within the wind farm. Seabed cables connect the offshore substation to an onshore substation on the coast. These cables transport the electricity to land from where it will be used to power homes, farms and businesses around Ireland. The offshore developer works with EirGrid, which operates the national grid, to identify how best to do this and where exactly on the grid the project should connect.

The new Marine Planning and Development Management Bill will create a new streamlined system for planning permission for activity or infrastructure in Irish waters or on the seabed, including offshore wind farms. It is due to be published before the end of 2020 and enacted in 2021.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE. Is there scope for community involvement in offshore wind? The IWEA says that from the early stages of a project, the wind farm developer "should be engaging with the local community to inform them about the project, answer their questions and listen to their concerns". It says this provides the community with "the opportunity to work with the developer to help shape the final layout and design of the project". Listening to fishing industry concerns, and how fishermen may be affected by survey works, construction and eventual operation of a project is "of particular concern to developers", the IWEA says. It says there will also be a community benefit fund put in place for each project. It says the final details of this will be addressed in the design of the RESS (see below) for offshore wind but it has the potential to be "tens of millions of euro over the 15 years of the RESS contract". The Government is also considering the possibility that communities will be enabled to invest in offshore wind farms though there is "no clarity yet on how this would work", the IWEA says.

Based on current plans, it would amount to around 12 GW of offshore wind energy. However, the IWEA points out that is unlikely that all of the projects planned will be completed. The industry says there is even more significant potential for floating offshore wind off Ireland's west coast and the Programme for Government contains a commitment to develop a long-term plan for at least 30 GW of floating offshore wind in our deeper waters.

There are many different models of turbines. The larger a turbine, the more efficient it is in producing electricity at a good price. In choosing a turbine model the developer will be conscious of this ,but also has to be aware the impact of the turbine on the environment, marine life, biodiversity and visual impact. As a broad rule an offshore wind turbine will have a tip-height of between 165m and 215m tall. However, turbine technology is evolving at a rapid rate with larger more efficient turbines anticipated on the market in the coming years.

 

The Renewable Electricity Support Scheme is designed to support the development of renewable energy projects in Ireland. Under the scheme wind farms and solar farms compete against each other in an auction with the projects which offer power at the lowest price awarded contracts. These contracts provide them with a guaranteed price for their power for 15 years. If they obtain a better price for their electricity on the wholesale market they must return the difference to the consumer.

Yes. The first auction for offshore renewable energy projects is expected to take place in late 2021.

Cost is one difference, and technology is another. Floating wind farm technology is relatively new, but allows use of deeper water. Ireland's 50-metre contour line is the limit for traditional bottom-fixed wind farms, and it is also very close to population centres, which makes visibility of large turbines an issue - hence the attraction of floating structures Do offshore wind farms pose a navigational hazard to shipping? Inshore fishermen do have valid concerns. One of the first steps in identifying a site as a potential location for an offshore wind farm is to identify and assess the level of existing marine activity in the area and this particularly includes shipping. The National Marine Planning Framework aims to create, for the first time, a plan to balance the various kinds of offshore activity with the protection of the Irish marine environment. This is expected to be published before the end of 2020, and will set out clearly where is suitable for offshore renewable energy development and where it is not - due, for example, to shipping movements and safe navigation.

YEnvironmental organisations are concerned about the impact of turbines on bird populations, particularly migrating birds. A Danish scientific study published in 2019 found evidence that larger birds were tending to avoid turbine blades, but said it didn't have sufficient evidence for smaller birds – and cautioned that the cumulative effect of farms could still have an impact on bird movements. A full environmental impact assessment has to be carried out before a developer can apply for planning permission to develop an offshore wind farm. This would include desk-based studies as well as extensive surveys of the population and movements of birds and marine mammals, as well as fish and seabed habitats. If a potential environmental impact is identified the developer must, as part of the planning application, show how the project will be designed in such a way as to avoid the impact or to mitigate against it.

A typical 500 MW offshore wind farm would require an operations and maintenance base which would be on the nearby coast. Such a project would generally create between 80-100 fulltime jobs, according to the IWEA. There would also be a substantial increase to in-direct employment and associated socio-economic benefit to the surrounding area where the operation and maintenance hub is located.

The recent Carbon Trust report for the IWEA, entitled Harnessing our potential, identified significant skills shortages for offshore wind in Ireland across the areas of engineering financial services and logistics. The IWEA says that as Ireland is a relatively new entrant to the offshore wind market, there are "opportunities to develop and implement strategies to address the skills shortages for delivering offshore wind and for Ireland to be a net exporter of human capital and skills to the highly competitive global offshore wind supply chain". Offshore wind requires a diverse workforce with jobs in both transferable (for example from the oil and gas sector) and specialist disciplines across apprenticeships and higher education. IWEA have a training network called the Green Tech Skillnet that facilitates training and networking opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

It is expected that developing the 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy identified in the Government's Climate Action Plan would create around 2,500 jobs in construction and development and around 700 permanent operations and maintenance jobs. The Programme for Government published in 2020 has an enhanced target of 5 GW of offshore wind which would create even more employment. The industry says that in the initial stages, the development of offshore wind energy would create employment in conducting environmental surveys, community engagement and development applications for planning. As a site moves to construction, people with backgrounds in various types of engineering, marine construction and marine transport would be recruited. Once the site is up and running , a project requires a team of turbine technicians, engineers and administrators to ensure the wind farm is fully and properly maintained, as well as crew for the crew transfer vessels transporting workers from shore to the turbines.

The IEA says that today's offshore wind market "doesn't even come close to tapping the full potential – with high-quality resources available in most major markets". It estimates that offshore wind has the potential to generate more than 420 000 Terawatt hours per year (TWh/yr) worldwide – as in more than 18 times the current global electricity demand. One Terawatt is 114 megawatts, and to put it in context, Scotland it has a population a little over 5 million and requires 25 TWh/yr of electrical energy.

Not as advanced as wind, with anchoring a big challenge – given that the most effective wave energy has to be in the most energetic locations, such as the Irish west coast. Britain, Ireland and Portugal are regarded as most advanced in developing wave energy technology. The prize is significant, the industry says, as there are forecasts that varying between 4000TWh/yr to 29500TWh/yr. Europe consumes around 3000TWh/year.

The industry has two main umbrella organisations – the Irish Wind Energy Association, which represents both onshore and offshore wind, and the Marine Renewables Industry Association, which focuses on all types of renewable in the marine environment.

©Afloat 2020

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