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Capital events this weekend

28th August 2008

Two major one-design events take place this weekend in Dublin, with Lasers on the north side and SB3s on the south side. Between the two events, nearly 200 boats will hit the water in Dun Laoghaire and Howth.


A fleet of over 115 Lasers, sailing in Standard, Radial and 4.7 rigs, will contest the Kia Motors Laser National Championships which started today at Howth Yacht Club.

Ballyholme’s James Espey will be defending the title he won in Tralee last year and he arrives in Howth with 1st, 2nd and 4th overall placings in this season’s Munster, Connaught and Ulster Championships respectively.

Among his rivals will be his brother Robert, Stephen Penney from Carrickfergus, John Simms of Royal Ulster, and Ryan Seaton of Ballyholme, winner of the Ulsters and Munster runner-up. Two other Ballyholme brothers, Russell and Matthew McGovern, who have been campaigning a 49er together, will race as individuals on this occasion.

The leading southern contender, based on results so far, is Ben Lynch, a junior from Blessington, who has had three top seven finishes at the regional events.

In the Radial division, Ballyholme’s Oliver Loughead has a 2nd and 3rd to his credit in regionals while Chris Penney (Carrickfergus), Barry McCartin (Cushendall) and Annalise Murphy (National YC) will also be considered serious contenders as will Olympic contender Debbie Hanna of East Antrim.

With the Laser 4.7 Worlds currently on in Croatia, some of the leading lights are away, giving an opportunity for others to shine in their absence in this division.


Meanwhile, around the corner in Dublin Bay, it's the SB3s who fight it out, and with the World Championships just three weeks away 80 boats from eight different nations will compete in this year's Irish National Championships.

The strong international flavour to the event sees boats entered from as far away as the Netherlands, Italy and Dubai.

Many sailors are using the Irish Nationals as a Pre-Worlds as the Inaugural SB3 World Championships will take place three weeks later also on Dublin Bay.

Among the top contenders for the Nationals are Geoff Carveth, the reigning European Champion, Gareth Flanagan on McCready Sailboats fresh from a win at last weekend’s Southern Champs in Cork, along with class stalwarts Dave Cheyne, Ronan Collins, Dave Quinn and Ben Duncan.

More on the RSGYC's SB3 page here. Team

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