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The RS Aero 1066 is back afloat... She is one of the first generation, and she has plenty of fun to give to its third owner. After four sessions afloat (and finally a bit of hiking at the weekend frostbite races), I am asking myself the question, "Why did I resist so long the idea of trying out and sailing this little dinghy?".

Sail the boat, and you quickly realise you underestimated it. I certainly did!

In many ways, you can think of the RS Aero as a 21st-century laser, with the most fundamental difference being that it is ultra-lightweight. A full-size single-hander that, amazingly, weighs 30kg - the same as an Optimist. So, just another single-hander to operate in the shadow of the laser? I don't think so.

5-10 minutes to rig (at a casual pace, I promise), an easy launch, and here you go. 1066 will be my lunch break guilty pleasure at the NYC, no doubt.

"Sail the boat, and you quickly realise you underestimated it. I certainly did!"

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

A four-rig system to cover the desired sailor range – RS Aero 5 (youths) – RS Aero 6 and 7 (women & light men) – RS Aero 9 (men). All spars are carbon fibre, with a common top mast and boom for all sails and radically different stiffness in the lower mast sections. The hull is so light that even the Aero 5 has a higher sail area-to-weight ratio than most existing single-handers and retains the Aero’s incredibly dynamic feel.

Having sailed the Laser (now ILCA) at the highest racing standard at the youth and senior level, I now certainly understand the reasons behind the recommendation made by the evaluation panel for the Olympics a few years ago. The boat was described as fun, fast and appealing, with simple and well-executed concepts, which were appreciated by the testing sailors. The feel reminds me of the Europe, without the drawback of the super low boom.

A great start for RS Aero 1066 at the Viking Marine DMYC Frostbite Series at Dun Laoghaire HarbourA great start for RS Aero 1066 at the Viking Marine DMYC Frostbite Series at Dun Laoghaire Harbour

What about racing? And the Irish fleet?

The Irish fleet is healthy, with a bunch of talented "Weekend Warriors" leading the way and many ex-lasers joining the fleet. The second-hand market is becoming affordable to the average income sailor, and new boats (or ex-charter) are readily available at our doorstep (get in touch with Kenny Rumball, and he will sort you out with a smile). The atmosphere is friendly, and there are opportunities to enjoy sailing and racing pretty much every weekend. Word on the street is that Ireland is about to host one of the major international events within the next 3 years.

The National YC is at the forefront of class development with now 6 boats regularly sailing, and the club launched the concept of the 3-day open event with a day of coaching to start with at the 2023 nationals. It was a clear success, which the class is hoping to reproduce in 2024 with the aim of progressing the skills of the fleet.

In Dun Laoghaire, the INSS super series 23-24 has 10 entries so far, with two weekends sailed (and 3 to go). After seven races sailed, we had three different race winners and close battles at all levels.

The Aeros also feature strongly at the DMYC frostbites, with three sailors inside the top 5 overall of the first series, with the inevitable Noel Butler (NYC) as a clear winner.

This little boat certainly has all the features to be successful

  • Easy to rig
  • light, responsive and fun
  • plenty of racing for all levels, from club to international
  • a growing second-hand market
  • a reactive RS agent next door who has a few demo boats

I am certainly hooked.

Published in RS Aero
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Following on from a busy 2023 the Irish RS Aero fleet are looking forward to an exciting 2024 both home and abroad.

A full schedule of regional events took place this year at venues across the country. The highlight of the season was a record attendance of twenty-four boats at the Irish Nationals in the National Yacht Club. A big attraction of the Aero is the ability to travel to international events in wonderful locations with charter boats readily available at a reasonable cost.

This year, a six-strong Irish team travelled to the World Championships in Calasetta, Sardinia. Irish sailors also attended events in Italy, UK, and America.

In 2023, the Irish class introduced an Aero Traveller Series, which wrapped up with the Aero Easterns in October at Howth Yacht Club. The Traveller Series Results are here

Next year promises to be even better for this young class. A full calendar of events will take place with the Nationals taking centre stage on June 15th & 16th at Howth. There is already interest from sailors in the USA who are keen to take part. A key part of these regional events will once again be the coaching sessions on Friday aimed at helping everybody improve their skills.

2024 will see both European and World Championships taking place in locations that are easily accessible for Irish sailors. The Europeans take place in Carnac, France a week after the Irish Nationals with the Worlds in Hayling Island at the end of August.

RS Aero Ireland 2024 calendar

RS Aero 2024 calendar

If you would like to get involved in this fantastic class, please contact the class association at [email protected] for more information. We have boats and sailors in all regions who can help with having a go in an Aero. Also, if you are interested in getting a boat there are a number for sale second hand both privately and with Irish RS agent Kenny Rumball of Irish National Marine Services who can also provide you with a nice shiny new Aero. Contact: [email protected] or 01 2844195

Published in RS Aero
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9th November 2023

RS Winter Sailing is On Form!

November is here, and although some would call it winter sailing, conjuring images of hats, gloves, rain and all-round miserable sailing conditions, the reality is that the weather this time of the year is perfect for sailing! And not only sailing but RS Sailing, the world's biggest sailboat manufacturer, has something for everybody!

RS21 at the Turkey Shoot

In Dublin, there is the very successful and popular Turkey Shoot series in the run-up to Christmas. Kenny Rumball has swapped his trusty 1720 for the sporty RS21. The 21-footer from RS has already been seen in the bay competing throughout the summer series and in Dun Laoghaire week with some of the other boats that travelled far and wide to race. Kenny and his crew of instructors from the Irish National Sailing & Powerboat School were on form on Sunday. With a nice steady but at times windy Westerly breeze, the team sailed well to finish just behind the 1720s and one or two of the faster J109s. Sharing the same start as the 1720, J80 and SB3 classes, the crew of four were third on the water from that start!

 The sporty RS21 dockside after the DBSC Turkey Shoot series on Dublin Bay The sporty RS21 dockside after the DBSC Turkey Shoot series on Dublin Bay

Before and after racing, the futuristic RS21 motored on and off its berth silently using its EPropulsion electric pod drive that retracts into the hull to make sailing as seamless and hassle-free as possible while also being caring to the environment. MarineServices.ie also had the all-new EVO series of Propulsion outboard on display in the Royal Irish Yacht Club after racing. If you are interested in trialling an electric outboard or the RS21, don’t hesitate to contact [email protected]

DMYC Frostbites

The DMYC frostbite series cracked off the same Sunday afternoon in a slightly dying westerly wind. A total of 11 RS Aeros are racing, with also 3 RS200s, one more to join by the end of the series! The popular modern Aero was being sailed by crews with a mixture of the 6 and 7 rig, with sailors having to choose their weapon of choice of the series from the start.

RS Aero sailor Noel Butler (left) collects his winner's mug from DMYC Frostbite organiser Neil Colin RS Aero sailor Noel Butler (left) collects his winner's mug from DMYC Frostbite organiser Neil Colin 

Close racing as always from the Aeros, with Noel Butler coming out on top in the PY division in his Aero, with Sarah Dwyer on equal points to Noel in the overalls after two races sailed on the first weekend. A nice gender mixture demonstrating an equal playing field for all sailors in the modern single-hander.

Don’t forget, if you want to try your hand at the RS Aero, don’t hesitate to drop [email protected]

RS400 winter series at the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club

Meanwhile, in the North of Ireland, the RS400 winter series kicked off at the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club. A whopping 17 RS400s were on the water, with some returning names to the fold, no doubt buoyed by the UK Championships coming to RNIYC in 2025!

Strong tidal currents resulted in the right of the downwind being advantageous for most of the day, with Ross and Andrew consistently making a nuisance of themselves by sailing high, though they may argue that perhaps everyone else could have sailed faster. A gusty end to the final race did little to unsettle Ross and Andrew, who won the day with a convincing 9-point finish. 

Published in RS Sailing
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The Irish RS Aero fleet completed their 2023 Summer Season at the KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship held at Howth Yacht Club over the weekend.

The sixteen competitors enjoyed classic Howth conditions with an Easterly breeze and waves providing challenging but exhilarating racing.

A key part of the Irish RS Aero class events has been providing a coaching or training session on the afternoon before the event to improve the levels of all sailors. At the session on Friday afternoon, the Irish fleet got to benefit from the expertise of top UK Aero sailors Noah Rees and Jack Miller, who were fresh from coming second and third at the Aero World Championships held in Sardinia in August. The two lads were so generous with their time and knowledge with go-faster tweaks, tips, and tricks which the Irish fleet would put into practice in the racing over the weekend.

HYC's John Phelan crossing the finish line at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship held at Howth Yacht ClubHYC's John Phelan crossing the finish line at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship held at Howth Yacht Club

On Saturday, three excellent forty-minute races were completed under the guidance of PRO Harry Gallagher. The efficiency and quick turnaround between races meant the fleet adjourned to HYC to enjoy some excellent food and drinks before all retired to watch the Rugby World Cup final. Only one race took place on Sunday as the race committee made the sensible decision to call it a day following a large squall and wind against tide conditions.

"Easterly breeze and waves provided challenging but exhilarating racing"

The event was won by HYC’s Daragh Sheridan, enjoying “home court” advantage in his local waters.

The win by one point from Jack Miller in second and Noah Rees a further two points back in third was a testament to the close nature of the racing.

1st place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Daragh Sheridan of HYC and was presented by Scorie Walls of HYC1st place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Daragh Sheridan of HYC and was presented by Scorie Walls of HYC

2nd place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Jack Miller from the UK and was presented by Scorie Walls and Daragh Sheridan of HYC2nd place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Jack Miller from the UK and was presented by Scorie Walls and Daragh Sheridan of HYC

3rd place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Noah Reese from the UK and was presented by Scorie Walls and Daragh Sheridan of HYC3rd place at the RS Aero KODC Advisory-sponsored Eastern Championship in Howth went to Noah Reese from the UK and was presented by Scorie Walls and Daragh Sheridan of HYC

The Howth event concluded another successful season for the Irish class. Alongside the choice of rigs for sailors of all sizes and abilities, a popular attraction of the Aero class is the training.

Also, the ease of travelling to international events in interesting venues where charter boats are available has seen Irish Aero sailors travelling far and wide. Next year will see plenty of Irish participation at the easily accessible Europeans in Carnac, France, and the Worlds in Hayling Island in the UK.

Next year will also see a full calendar of regional events and a return to Howth for the Irish Nationals in June 2024 which will again be supported by KODC Advisory.

Full results below

Published in RS Aero
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There is a bumper-packed calendar for the RS Aero class, the rapidly growing singlehanded dinghy class; the RS Aero is the most technically advanced boat in its sector, which explains why it’s the most exciting and best-selling modern single-hander. And easily handled, too.

Astonishingly, the RS Aero weighs about the same as an Optimist. That drives everything about its incredible user-friendliness through transporting, rigging and launching – before you even experience the addictive sensations afloat.

Four rig sizes enable youths, women and guys to enjoy the ride. Already an International Class and winner of the 2019 World Sailing Equipment Trails for the 2024 Men’s and Women’s One-Person Dinghy Event.

Brendan Foley of the Royal St. George Yacht Club with his RS Aero 6Brendan Foley of the Royal St. George Yacht Club with his RS Aero 6

Speaking of getting afloat, the exciting winter season kicks off this weekend in Howth Yacht Club with the final regional event of 2023 for the Aeros, their Eastern Championships. Organised by Aero ace Darragh Sheridan and sponsored by KODC Advisory Limited. In keeping with developments in the class, there is an optimal training for participants on Friday the 27th with boats launching at 1400 hours to get a few hours of focused practice in. RS employees and experts in the Aero and RS 21 Classes, Noah and Jack, will be on hand to explain the latest go-faster techniques to all sailors.

At present, there are 17 boats entered for the event, Kenny Rumball, the local agent for RS in Ireland, has a number of boats still available for charter. The cost is only €246 for the weekend, which also includes delivery to Howth! Drop Kenny an email [email protected] to reserve your boat. To enter the event, click this link 

Soon after the Eastern Championship, the Irish National Sailing Club is hosting is annual Super Series in Dun Laoghaire. The Super Series is held over a number of Saturday mornings throughout the remainder of 2023 and into 2024, October 28th, November 25th, December 16th, January 27th, February 24th, and March 23rd. The aim is that boats are launching at 915 a.m. for a first gun at 945 a.m., yet still be off the water by 1230. Four or Five quick short sprint-style races are sailed of about 20 minutes duration.

Multiple dinghy champion Noel Butler has commented, ‘The Super Series is THE BEST way to improve your skills in a short period of time; where else do you get five races in 3 hours? It is the best form of training!’

Entries can be made online here

Kenny will have charter boats available for those who are thinking about dipping a toe in the class. Don’t hesitate to drop him an email, [email protected]

Lastly, the DMYC Frostbite Series kicks off very soon on the 5th of November; this is dinghy racing for those sailors who want to race all year round, no matter what the temperature. DMYC try to hold racing on most Sunday afternoons from November to March. The course is usually inside Dun Laoghaire Harbour, with permission from the Harbour Master, but DMYC sometimes races outside the harbour when the conditions are suitable.

And you guessed it! Charters are available for this too!!!!!

Oh, and if you thought the class wasn’t exciting, check this video out!

Published in RS Aero
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The final Irish regional event of the year for the RS Aero class is coming up in Howth Yacht Club on the 28th and 29th of October!

The Aeros in Ireland have been going from strength to strength over the last number of years, with over 25 boats competing in the regional events and 14 boats in Dun Laoghaire, the class continues to attract a wide variety of competitive sailors of all ages across Ireland.

The addition of the ‘6’ rig last year has bridged the gap often found in the boat as the 5 rig was deemed underwhelming for some sailors while the 7 rig was too powerful in the strong winter winds. The 6 rig has been adopted by male and female sailors and is giving the class another option to appeal to an even wider variety of sailors.

This last event for the season is the home event for some of the class's most competitive sailors, Daragh Sheridan and Paul McMahon who have found considerable success in the class both at home and on the international stage.

This last RS Aero event in Howth for the season is the home event for some of the class's most competitive sailorsThis last RS Aero event in Howth for the season is the home event for some of the class's most competitive sailors

The entry list also includes some of the RS works team sailors, including Noah Rees who while working for RS 9-5 is also usually found at the pointy end of the fleet in both the RS Aero and 21 classes!

Kenny Rumball of MarineServices.ie the Irish agent for the entire RS range in Ireland who is always keen to see the class grow, has charter boats available for those wishing to dip their toe in the class and see what all the fuss is about. There will be a training session on the Friday evening for the entire class to ensure all the cobwebs are well and truly gone before heading racing on the Saturday morning.

For more information on chartering a boat or a demo sail, interested individuals can contact Kenneth at [email protected].

More information about the championship, including registration and event details here

Published in RS Aero
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Howth Yacht Club's Paul McMahon is the 2023 Bretzel Bakery Irish RS Aero National Champion after a masterful display of sailing, winning the event with a race to spare - counting four firsts and a third at the National Yacht Club hosted event.

He was pushed hard by UK visitors, runner-up RS Sailing’s Noah Rees (Lymington Town SC) and Jack Miller (Felpham/Paignton SC) in third overall.

Noel Butler (National YC) and Daragh Sheridan (Howth YC) completed the Irish Nationals podium.

First Junior: Alexander Trickett (National YC), First Lady: Sarah Dwyer (RStGYC), First Master: Robert Howe (Monkstown Bay SC), First Novice: William Despard (National YC). Among the competitors was Irish ILCA Masters champion Marco Sorgassi (RStGYC), who was rewarded with a Bretzel Bakery “Mug of the Day” award for a truly spectacular ”missed the toestrap” capsize!

24 entries, the largest Irish RS Aero fleet to date, competed in six races over two days in medium SE winds on Dublin Bay.

PRO Ed Totterdell and his expert race management team with mark layers Mal Nowlan and John McNeely ran three Olympic courses on Saturday and three windward/leeward courses on Sunday, deftly dealing with a stubborn fog bank on the Sunday morning. On the water jury, Ailbe Millerick and Eunice Kennedy kept the fleet on their toes with regard to Rule 42 as they enjoyed full hiking conditions upwind and surfing conditions downwind with the wind against the building ebb tide

National YC Head Coach Thomas Chaix, ran a class coaching session on the Friday. This was open to all sailors in the class and designed to prepare sailors at all levels for the National Championship on the Saturday and Sunday. 14 sailors participated and mark roundings, starts, boat trim, sail shape and use of controls were the learning points of the day with excellent video analysis and notes circulated on the event group chat. Thomas was also on coach duty during the racing and facilitated a de-brief on the Saturday evening where hints and tips were shared by the race winners and interesting discussions were had over delicious catering provided by the National YC.

Thanks to title sponsor Bretzel Bakery whose MD Dymphna O'Brien presented the prizes (see photos below). Bakery owner William Despard competed in the event and provided delicious bread and pastries for the fleet each day.

Bretzel Bakery MD Dymphna O’Brien presents Paul McMahon (HYC) with Irish RS Aero National Championship Trophy and gold medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023. Photo: Noel ButlerBretzel Bakery MD Dymphna O’Brien presented winners with their prizes at the National Yacht Club. Above Paul McMahon (HYC) with Irish RS Aero National Championship Trophy and gold medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023. 

Noah Rees (Lymington Town SC) with the prize for 2nd overall, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023. pic: Stephen OramNoah Rees (Lymington Town SC) with the prize for 2nd overall, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023. 

RS Aero Class Treasurer Roy Van Maanen presents Jack Miller (Felpham/Paignton SC) with the prize for 3rd overall, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023RS Aero Class Treasurer Roy Van Maanen presents Jack Miller (Felpham/Paignton SC) with the prize for 3rd overall, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

Noel Butler with his silver medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals, 2023Noel Butler with his silver medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals, 2023

Daragh Sheridan with his bronze medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals, 2023Daragh Sheridan with his bronze medal, Irish RS Aero Nationals, 2023

Alexander Trickett (National YC) with the prize for 1st Junior, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023.Alexander Trickett (National YC) with the prize for 1st Junior, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

William Despard (National YC) with the prize for 1st Novice, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023William Despard (National YC) with the prize for 1st Novice, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

Sarah Dwyer (RStGYC) with the prize for 1st Lady, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023Sarah Dwyer (RStGYC) with the prize for 1st Lady, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

Robert Howe (Monkstown Bay SC) with the prize for 1st Master, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023Robert Howe (Monkstown Bay SC) with the prize for 1st Master, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

Marco Sorgassi (RStGYC) with the “Mug of the Day” prize for his spectacular “missed the toestrap” capsize!, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023Marco Sorgassi (RStGYC) with the “Mug of the Day” prize for his spectacular “missed the toestrap” capsize!, Irish RS Aero Nationals 2023

Thanks also to RS Sailing Ireland and Kenneth Rumball for providing complimentary charter boats for the visitors.

The RS Fest next weekend in Blessington Sailing Club will have racing for all RS classes with boats available to try/charter, more info here.

Seven of the Irish sailors who competed at the Nationals will represent Ireland at the upcoming RS Aero World Championships in Sardinia at the end of July.

Full results below

The RS Aero fleet plans to continue the very popular format of coaching/racing as the fleet develops. The National YC also runs weekly coaching sessions open to all. Anyone who would like to participate is very welcome and should get in touch with the class by emailing [email protected]

Published in RS Aero

With just over three weeks to go to the inaugural RS Fest hosted by Blessington Sailing Club incorporating the RS200/400 National Championships, the RS Feva Nationals, RS Aeros & RS Teras, we thought it would be good to get a quick update out!

Entries are live and bookable on the all new RS Ireland Website, this website has been constructed to cater for all the RS classes in one dedicated website giving the entire RS Class Associations within Ireland a concise place for all news, information and entry links for each specific fleet! Entry for the Fest which incorporates all these classes is available here. Just find the relevant link for your class below and follow the few simple steps to enter.

Racing will be across two race courses, the 200s & 400s will start their National Championships on the Friday, racing through until Sunday. The Fevas & Aeros on course two kick off on the Saturday and racing Sunday too with the potential for a smaller course for the fledgling Tera fleet depending on take up!

RS FevasRS Fevas

Camping accommodation is available on site in Blessington Sailing Club, however, it is booking up fast, even more of an incentive to get your entries in sooner rather than later! Blessington Sailing Club always cater excellently for camping on site… Coffee, showers & good vibes guaranteed!

RS AeroRS Aero

The Avon resort is booked for Saturday night craic and entertainment for all the classes. Meal and drink vouchers will be provided, and within their food court, there is plenty on offer from the Big Blue Pizza Bus, Big Dog Burgers, Sweet Churros, Brew Twenty one and an outdoor Bar! For all the info, have a look here. The Avon Food Court has a marvellous selection of premium sweet & savoury food trucks to choose from. Take your pick and fill your belly while you take in panoramic views of the lake. See you at The Food Court! 

Local RS agents who are supporting the event, Kenny and his team have some great prizes available to raffle off with all proceeds going to the RNLI, the charity that saves lives at sea. Rumour has it that sails, clothing and boat parts are up for grabs, however you have to be there to win! Kenny & His team will be on hand all weekend to keep boats on the water with a trailer full of spares, tools, ropes, sails etc all there to keep the fleet on the water.

Charter boats are available for all classes, Feva, 200, 400, Aero & Tera. However pre booking at least 5 days in advance is essential as boats would need to be transported, rigged etc. Please do not hesitate to contact [email protected] if you require a boat!

Don’t forget to book in now for this fantastic weekend of RS Sailing at Blessington Lakes Sailing Club!

Published in RS Sailing
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Commodore Paddy Wodhams welcomed some of the RS Aero fleet to Swords Sailing and Boating Club at Broadmeadows, Malahide, in County Dublin, for class coaching with Noel Butler (NYC) in advance of the class national championships. After a quickfire bow-to-stern rigging and tweaking session, boat handling and trim were to the fore for the on-the-water coaching in Zephyrs. Starting practice and a few short races followed before we retired to the club.

The light air forecast sadly didn’t fail, and on Saturday morning, under the limp flags, we took the opportunity to wash down our boats. Siobhan Broaders RO, however, was certain the breeze would fill in, and so it did.

Many had been debating with themselves whether to stay with the smaller 6 rigs or trade up for a more enjoyable sail, so just 4 x 6 rigs took to the water with the rest of the fleet in 7s and one sailor quickly regretting not going to his 9 option!

In the first race of the weekend, Sarah Dwyer (RStGYC) in a 6 rig made it to the windward mark in first, but by the end of the second reach of the 3 lap Olympic course, Daragh Sheridan HYC and Kevin Stallard BLSC in 7 rigs, had overtaken her. Towards the end of the second downwind leg, Daragh finally secured a solid lead. However, there was still doubt at the finish if he had taken the win on PY from Sarah, which was later confirmed, by 3 seconds. “One bad tack”.

From there on Daragh dominated almost from every start, heading out of the boat and choosing pressure over pointing, Kevin always in close pursuit at the top of the fleet. A few battles ensued elsewhere with several regretting the choice of the smaller rig in the tricky air. With racing cancelled up and down the East Coast, it was extraordinary we got four races in, although some of us half wished we hadn’t! The benefit of almost zero tidal flow in Broadmeadows and an RO with great local knowledge.

A good stretch, the Leinster game, chats, great burgers and salads welcomed us ashore.

Overnight, Daragh and Kevin were almost assured of first and second with four great scores under their belts, but just two points separated the next three sailors, Noel and Sarah in 6 rigs and John Phelan (HYC) in a 7. The draw of the Leinster game had taken Roy Van Maanen (GSC) out of two races.

Much to the relief of all those on the water, races 5 and 6 were in more breeze, although still some floaty and tense cramp-inducing downwind legs. We were even rewarded with a very welcome ‘almost hiking’ upwind on the second beat of the final race.

Daragh (7 rig), having dominated with two more bullets, Kevin (7) with 2 & 3 and Sarah (6) with a 3 & 2, made up the podium.

1st 6 rig prize went to Noel Butler (NYC); John Phelan (HYC) 1st 7rig; Emmet O’Sullivan, up from Monkstown Bay, took first Master; Christina Cunnigham of Ballyholme, 1st Lady and the Novice prize went to local laser sailor Shane Peel, who finished 7th overall and took a 3rd in race 2 from many more seasoned Aero sailors, sailing a loan boat provided by Kenny Rumball of RM Marine Services, the Southern RS dealer.

It may not have been the weather for exciting sailing, but it was nail-biting, fairly close racing, tense and competitive, with plenty of roll-tacking. Huge thanks to Siobhan Broaders RO and her team, to a lovely club and all its members’ hospitality.

Results below

There will be plenty of learning opportunities from the weekend, which we will take forward to the RS Aero National Championships in three weeks in Dublin Bay hosted by the National Yacht Club and officiated by their own Eddie Totterdell and team. A Class Association coaching day will be held by excellent NYC Club coach, Thomas Chaix on the Friday, open to all members of the class.

Published in RS Aero
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The lightweight RS Aero made up the bigger fleet at the RS Westerns at Galway City Sailing Club at the weekend alongside double-hander RS200 and 400s.

On Saturday, the wind gods delivered flat water and gusts of 28/29 knots. We launched, some apprehensively, from Deadman’s Beach near the docks at LW.

Four short but lively races ensued in ‘exactly as forecast’ airs.

Daragh Sheridan (HYC), in the Aero 6 rig, took his first of four bullets with a lead right off the start line, with Noel Butler (NYC, 6 rig) second and John Phelan (HYC, 6 rig) third. John took second in race 2, with Stephen Oram (NYC, 7 rig) in third.

Rig failure had Noel discard the second race, but he followed with two more seconds to Daraghs firsts. Places thereafter chopped and changed, and much depended on the ability to keep the hull flat on the water.

After discards, Daragh held a solid lead overnight on 3 points, Noel Butler with six, and Stephen Oram in third, closely followed by John Phelan (HYC) and Sarah Dwyer (RSGYC).

Two light races were run on Sunday. Race five finally gave Daragh a chance to check out Noel’s transom, and Sarah, the lightest of the pack, came in third. Daragh was back on form for the last race of the event to win on just 5 points, Noel on ten and Sarah (also 6 rig) sneaked a third from the lads on 17.

It was an event of two testing distinct days, and having dominated, Daragh’s will be the first name on a stunning RS Aero Western Championship bog oak trophy.

RS Aero demos can be arranged with Heather Wright in Irish National Marine Services in Dun Laoghaire.

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Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

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