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Hard On Port takes VDLR trophy

12th July 2009

ImageSaturday's gale force winds gave way to sunshine and moderate breeze for the final day of the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta, with the 460-boat fleet sailing their last races in glorious conditions on Dublin Bay.

All was still to play for in nearly all of the 21 classes and the overall prize for the Volvo trophy. Three contenders were identified going into the final day, with the leaders of the IRC1, IRC2 IRC3 all looking like they could take the top regatta prize.

In Class IRC Zero Paul & Richards', Tanit, won the last race of the regatta, but the overall title went to Alan Hogg’s Mills 40, Argie Bargie with Richard Fildes Corby 37, Impetuous, second in class and Peter Rutter’s Corby 36, Quokka in third.

Dave Kelly, tactician on Argie Bargie describes the tense finale to the big boat class, which also gave Argie  Bargie the prize for best visiting boat:

"Going into the last race, there were four boats that were still in with a shout and we had a poor start to the race, probably last on handicap but we remained steady.

"The breeze on the other hand did not, it was all over the place and the top mark was right near the shore, making it difficult to judge the best approach, some boats hit a hard left and made some big gains, it was tense out there but we kept going and the team effort today was superb, especially changing gears as the wind veered and accelerated around the bay.”

In IRC Class One, DMYC’s Barry Cunningham, racing Contango won the last race of the day in sparkling conditions in Killiney Bay. That made sure of third place overall in class but Paul O’Higgins Rockabill V was the overall winner of class IRC One, with Steven Northmore’s Plymouth based A35, Waterjet in second.

In IRC Two, Anthony Gore-Grimes' Dux, went out with a bang, winning the last race and securing second overall behind John Murphy’s Corby 26, Kinetic, which had sewn up the class victory yesterday.

However, it was Flor O’Driscoll’s J24, Hard on Port, which took their fourth bullet of the event to win the overall IRC prize.  A Corkman, O'Driscoll sails under the burgee of the Royal St.George YC.

“This has been an extremely well run regatta and I congratulate all of the Clubs on a tremendous effort," he said.

"Thanks also to my crew - having a consistent team is so important and one of the main reasons for our success.”

Grainne Murtagh, working the bow on Hard On Port, said:  “It was just superb sailing conditions today, 15 to 20 knots in the puffs and flat water, it really doesn’t get better than that. From Sutton we could see hundreds of boats in the sunshine, an amazing sight. Flor O’Driscoll is a great guy and I am really happy that we have won at such a high profile event.”

Only one boat in the entire 460-boat fleet managed to keep a clean sheet for the entire event. David Gorman of the National Yacht Club took the Flying Fifteen title and the overall one-design dinghy trophy with his string of six consecutive victories, not dropping a single race all weekend.

In the one-design keelboats, top marks went to Laser SB3 skipper Ben Duncan, adding another event win to his incredible winning streak for 2009. Duncan and crew slipped on the last day to win the event on countback from local sailor Sean Craig, with Sligo skipper Brian Reilly putting in two wins on the final day to finish third.

Topping the J109 fleet, Christie Cancer Care put opening day jitters behind them to open up a commanding lead at the top, with a string of firsts and seconds putting them six points clear in the end.

The fireball title was one of many that went to visitors from overseas. Andy Pearce and crew Adam Broughton were the first of a pair of English entries heading the 25-boat fleet.

"It's been great racing here," said Pearce,  "fantastic conditions, and nice to get 25 Fireballs out."

As the fleets returned to the harbour at the end of racing, they formed a supporter flotilla for the returning Green Dragon, Ireland's entry in the Volvo Ocean Race. Skipper Ian Walker, along with bowman Justin Slattery and James Carroll from the Green Dragon crew, who were welcomed ashore by thousands of well-wishers gathered on Dun Laoghaire pier.

"It's just fabulous to see Dublin like this," said Slattery, "all the boats out and beautiful weather in Dublin Bay with nearly 500 boats out there - what a spectacular way to come into the bay."

Gaelgóir celebrity Hector Ó hEochagáin was on hand to compere proceedings and put the Green Dragon's achievements among Ireland's sporting highlights from 2009.

"It's like Ireland winning the Grand Slam or Paul O'Connell leading the Lions," he said.  

"If we can win this in the years to come it would be another huge sporting achievement."

"Who knows, it's a great competition, and when you see what they do out there in the middle of the ocean, they're unbelievable sportspeople."

"It's great that they finished the race and next time, let's go and win the bloody thing, get Ericsson out of there."

 Beneteau 31.7 IRC- 1. Prospect (Chris Johnston), 2. Levante (Leahy/Leyden), 3. The Flying Machine (C.O'Gallagher)                           
Beneteau 31.7 - 1. Prospect (Chris Johnston), 2. Levante (Leahy/Leyden), 3. The Flying Machine (C.O'Gallagher)                          
Class 0 Echo- 1. Tsunami (Vincent Farrell), 2. Lively Lady (Derek Martin), 3. Tiamat (Tim Costello)                                         
Class 0 - 1. Tanit (P & R Harris), 2. Quokka 7 (Peter Rutter), 3. Argie Bargie (Allan Hogg)                                             
Class 1 Echo- 1. Something Else (J.Hall/S.McDonnell), 2. Errislannan (Patrick Kirwan), 3. Xtravagance (Colin Byrne)                         
Class 1 - 1. Something Else (J.Hall/S.McDonnell), 2. Rockabill V (Paul O'Higgins), 3. Animal (Debbie Aitken)                            
Class 2 Echo- 1. Kamikaze (P.Nash), 2. Impetuous (F.Noonan/R.Chambers), 3. Voyager (Joe Carton)                                             
Class 2 - 1. Dux (Anthony Gore-Grimes), 2. FreebirdforSale (Charlie Gourley), 3. King One (David Cullen)                                
Class 3 Echo- 1. Lady Rowena (David Bolger), 2. Hard on Port (Flor O'Driscoll), 3. Whistlin' Dixie (T.Keelan/O'Sullivan)                    
Class 3 - 1. Hard on Port (Flor O'Driscoll), 2. Tango (Andy Dunn), 3. Supernova (K.Lawless et al)                                        
Dragon - 1. Diva (R.Goodbody/ Johnson), 2. Jaguar (Martin Byrne), 3. Phantom (Williams/Hegarty/Bowring)                                 
Etchell - 1. Matatu Dubh (R & D Burrows), 2. Northside Dragon (J.Bourke), 3. Ladies Who Launch (Mary O'Loughlin)                        
Fireball Race 2- 1. Butlers Ball (A.Pearce/A.Broughton), 2. South Paws (Andy Scott), 3. Zara (N.Butler)                                        
Fireball Race 1- 1. Zara (N.Butler), 2. El Rey Del Fuego (Francis Rowan), 3. NN (Peter Gray)                                                   
Flying 15 Race 1- 1. Hy5ive (David Gorman), 2. Ffangs (Lorcan Balfe), 3. Rollercoaster (Tom Murphy)                                           
Flying 15 Race 2- 1. Hy5ive (David Gorman)                                                                                                    
Glen - 1. Glenluce (D & R O'Connor), 2. Glenshesk (Henderson), 3. Glenmarissa (F.Elmes/W.Higgins)                                       
Howth 17 - 1. Oona (Peter Courtney), 2. Gladys (Cronin/Jones), 3. Pauline (S.O'Doherty/E.Ryan)                                          
IDRA 14 Race 1- 1. Dunmoanin (Frank Hamilton), 2. Starfish (Alan Carr), 3. Chimaera (Killian Sargent)                                          
IDRA 14 Race 2- 1. Starfish (Alan Carr), 2. Chaos (J.Ascoop/H.Keenan), 3. Chimaera (Killian Sargent)                                          
J109 - 1. Christie Cancer Care (T.Hyland/N.Biggs), 2. Storm (Pat Kelly), 3. Jetstream (Peter Reddan)                                    
J80 Race 1- 1. Dyno Rod (Andrew Fowler), 2. Smart Telecom (Laura Dillon), 3. KPMG (Thomas Dawson)                                             
J80 Race 2- 1. Smart Telecom (Laura Dillon), 2. O'Leary Insurances (Cian Hughes), 3. McCann Fitzgerald (Michael McCarney)                     
Laser SB3 Race 1- 1. Boomsticks (Brian Reilly), 2. Trade Credit Brokers (Aidan O'Connell), 3. Squalo Bianco (Sean Craig)                       
Laser SB3 Race 2- 1. Boomsticks (Brian Reilly), 2. Squalo Bianco (Sean Craig), 3. Tiger Lite (Marty O'Leary)                                  
Mermaid Race 1- 1. Jill (P.Smith/P.Mangan), 2. Oonagh (Marilyn Griffith), 3. Dolphin (Shay O'Toole)                                           
Mermaid Race 2- 1. Jill (P.Smith/P.Mangan), 2. Tiller Girl (J.O'Rourke), 3. Oonagh (Marilyn Griffith)                                         
Ruffian - 1. Diane 2 (Alan Claffey), 2. Ruff Nuff (D & C Mitchell), 3. Ruff N Ready (Brian Cullen et al)                                
Shipman - 1. Curraglas (John Masterson), 2. Jo Slim (John Clarke et al), 3. Whiterock (Henry Robinson)                                   
Sigma 33 - 1. Sigmatic (Donald McLaren), 2. Rupert (R.Lovegrove/P.Varian), 3. Popje (Ted McCourt et al)                                 
Squib Race 1- 1. Aquabats (B.Fogarty/F.Harrington), 2. Lola (Frank Whelan), 3. Klipbok (Emmet Dalton)                                         
Squib Race 2- 1. Kerfuffle (Jonathan Craig), 2. Femme Fatale (J.O'Byrne/V.Delany), 3. Lola (Frank Whelan)                                     
Water Wag Race 1- 1. Moosmie (David McFarlane), 2. Alfa (M & J Donohoe), 3. Pansy (Julie Delany)                                              
Water Wag Race 2- 1. Moosmie (David McFarlane), 2. Alfa (M & J Donohoe), 3. Freddie (D.Corcoran/B.Stewart)                                    
White Sail 1 Echo- 1. Persistance (Charles Broadhead et al), 2. Albireo (M.Murphy/D.Simpson), 3. Xerxes (Dan O'Neill)                       
White Sail 1 - 1. Gums'n'Roses (J & G Rose), 2. Persistance (Charles Broadhead et al), 3. Orna (Philip Dilworth)                        
White Sail 2 Echo- 1. Katanca (B.O'Connor/C.Ennis), 2. Mac Magic (P & D McCabe), 3. Bite the Bullet (Colm Bermingham)                       
White Sail 2 - 1. Katanca (B.O'Connor/C.Ennis), 2. Bite the Bullet (Colm Bermingham), 3. Chimaera (George Baird)                          


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