THE protest committee of the Cork Dry Gin Round Ireland race has decided to drop proceedings against the Galway yacht Joggernaut this week after it retired from the race. Class four winner Joggernaut, skippered by Donal Morrissy, took the decision to retire after a protest was lodged by the race committee after they had received a report from two Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) measurers over an alleged breach of an RORC 1996 special regulation on the 34 foot yacht. The Irish Times has learned that Joggernaut received a written warning from the protest committee stating that the committee could act under Rule 75 of the IYRU rules to ban a sailor from competition if they find a gross infringement. The protest was lodged under rules 20.2 and 70.4 (b) of the IYRU yacht racing rules because Joggernaut had allegedly altered her lifeline configuration back to a previous position which failed to comply with RORC regulations.
The measurers' report stated that after carrying out a request by scrutineers to move a guardrail position, the yacht had altered her lifeline prior to the warning signal (1350 hrs) back to the previous position. This was again noted by scrutineers in the vicinity of Wicklow head at 14.30 hours. "I assume the people who brought the protest thought that the action was deliberate, which it was not. It was a minor rule infringement which I accept and so have retired," Morrissy told The Irish Times yesterday. On learning of the protest after coming ashore in Wicklow some six days later, Morrissy sought a time extension of one month to complete his declaration as he needed time to seek clarification on some RORC regulations and to prepare his defence. Usually yachts are required to sign a declaration after completing the race which states a skipper has complied with all the race rules. After a number of attempts to fix a date for a protest hearing it was agreed that Wednesday, August 14th was the only viable date taking into account the workload of some of the individuals involved. The date also clashed with Morrissy's holiday plans. "As Joggernaut has withdrawn from the race and not completed a declaration, the committee have decided to drop the matter," race organiser, Fergus O Conchobhair, said yesterday. Jim Ryan's Joliba of Poolbeg Yacht and Boat club now replaces Joggernaut as the Class four winner. On Dublin bay, Therapi (Roddy Neville and John McConnell) outwitted a competitive fleet of 23 Shipman cruiser racers that gathered for the class championships last weekend. No yacht won more than one race and in last Saturday's final race of the four race series the first eight yachts crossed the finish line, in brisk conditions, within a two minute period. Eithne and Malachy Muldoon's Malindi of the National Yacht club was second overall. Past champion, Pat Sheridan, sailing Pandy of Howth, could have improved on his third overall were it not for a buoy identification problem off the Forty foot at Sandycove in the opening race. A handicap series, run concurrently with the championship, was won by Joslim (J Connolly). Second was Kelema (K & N Blake and Z Grace) and third Fifi (P McCabe) The fourth Dublin bay Sailing club's Cruiser challenge for classes 0, 1 and 2 takes place on August 24th/25th on Dublin and Killiney bays. The 40 boat event will be decided over four races of both round the cans and windward lee ward course configuration. Staying on the East coast, the Carlsberg sponsored Malahide regatta takes place tomorrow and regatta organiser Sean Colbert says the event will have a 50 boat fleet with Squibs and Puppeteers swelling the traditional cruiser class fleets. The first gun is at noon with racing over triangular courses taking place in the region of Malahide, Howth and Lambay. Howth Yacht club will stage the penultimate race of the Royal Alfred YC Carlsberg superleague tomorrow with racing also taking place in view of Lambay. Tom Roche's Jameson of the Royal Irish Yacht club, shipped from England to Hawaii specifically to compete in this year's Kenwood International series, won the Mumm 36 Pacific region championship this week which is being raced as an integral part of the Kenwood event. The sole Irish entry finished second in the 22 mile Ocean triangle race to clinch the series.
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