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The club is expecting a turnout of up to 300 sailors that will make it the biggest dinghy sailing event in the country this year. "We will have a large contingent from the UK and many sailors from far away – we have had interest from Korea, Japan and Hong Kong, for example". Says Margaret Margaret Kneafsey, Chairperson of the Organising Committee.
Carlow sailor Finn Lynch, 16, who is the reigning British and Irish champion finished third in the 2010 World Championships in Lake Como, Italy.
The event has its own website with details on accommodation and logistics and entries.
Fergus and Kay Quinlan live in the Burren in County Clare, and in 1997 they launched the steel van de Stadt 12-metre cruiser Pylades, which they'd built themselves. They've made several voyages and have been in the Irish Cruising Club's award list before. But at the ICC's AGM in the National YC on February 18th they deservedly got the big one, the Faulkner Cup, for the first stage of a global circumnavigation which began from their home port of Kinvara in the summer of 2009, and a year later they'd reached Tahiti.
Their cruise continues, so the award was made in absentia. Adjudicator Brian Cudmore of Cork made the point that their informative log included much general and often entertaining information, and it becomes even more interesting the further you got into it, so he's keenly anticipating the next inmstalment.
The Strangford Cup for an alternative best cruise could not have been more different, both in location or boat type. The 44ft Young Larry may have been built of steel in 1995, but she was based fairly precisely on the design of a gaff cutter built in 1907. And though the rig has been made more manageable through being a yawl, even the mizzen is gaff-headed, while the main sets a topsail. Not the most-easily handled rig for challenging seas, you might well think, but Maire Breathnach (originally from Dungarvan) and her partner Andrew Wilkes, crewed by Maire's niece Sibeal Turraoin, took Larry Og – which looks for all the world like a smaller Asgard I – right through the Northwest Passage to Alaska, an extraordinary one-season achievement.
The ICC members logged some other notable Atlantic voyages, with Michael Coleman of Cobh, a Port of Cork Pilot before he got the free bus pass, making a fine Atlantic triangle to the Azores, then Newfoundland, and so home to Cork, visiting many islands with his well-found 1988 Oyster 53 Oyster Cove. It was all done with a crew of average age 66, senior member Tom Noonan aged 76, and worthy winners of the Atlantic Trophy.
Over the years since its foundation in 1929, the Irish Cruising Club has become the trustee and adjudicator of many trophies, twenty in all, and two of them were special presentations in 2010. The Donegan Memorial Trophy went to Ruth Heard, an ICC member since 1967. She has cruised both to the Azores and Iceland, but is honoured this year in celebration of her remarkable contribution to the rebirth of the inland waterways, and to mark the re-opening of the Royal Canal. Ruth Heard was on the crew of Harklow, the last boat to transit the Royal in 1954 before its half century of official closure which was gloriously reversed in 2010.
And once upon a time, the ICC was the organiser of Ireland's Admiral's Cup campaigns. Though many members still race offshore as individuals, the club has long since focused totally on cruising. But it has a general trophy, the John B Kearney Cup for Services to Irish Sailing, and for 2010 it was awarded with acclamation to the successful Irish Commodore's Cup Team.
- Asgard I
- Sibeal Turraoin
- Oyster Cove
- Ruth Heard
- John B Kearney
On loan from the Oracle America's Cup Team, Northern Ireland ace navigator Ian Moore is the navigator on board the Carbon built 80-footer Aegir for this week's RORC race in the Caribbbean.
Antigua Yacht Club is buzzing with excitement, with two days to go to the start of the 600-mile race around the central Caribbean. Yacht crews are busy at work making final preparations for the Royal Ocean Racing Club's (RORC) Caribbean 600. Falmouth Harbour is an impressive sight with the RORC fleet safely moored up next to the yacht club.
RORC Yacht of the Year ready for battle
Piet Vroon's Ker 46, Tonnerre de Breskens - the RORC 2010 Yacht of the Year - arrived just before dusk on Friday. The delivery crew, all six of whom will also be racing, endured a 1,000 mile beat to Antigua from Jamaica: "This will be our fourth and final event in the Caribbean." Explained Piet Vroon. "This is the first time that I have done this race and it is the main reason that we came to the Caribbean. All of my crew said that this is a race that they want to do and I am very much looking forward to it."
Tonnerre is one of three boats that competed in the Pineapple Cup, the opening rubber of the Atlantic Ocean Racing Series. George David's Rambler 100, Richard Oland's Vela Veloce and Hugo Steinback's Dubois 90, Genuine Risk also competed in the Pineapple Cup which Genuine Risk won on corrected time. Vela Veloce is a Southern Wind 52, which cleaned up in Key West race week in January.
Entries from Australia and 14 other nations
Yachts representing 15 Nations have come to Antigua to compete in the 600-mile spectacular, but none have come as far as Chris Bull's Cookson 50, Jazz. The canting-keel flyer arrived in Antigua on Friday, having made an epic journey bycontainer ship and sail from Australia, after a fantastic performance in the Rolex Sydney Hobart.
"It's been hard work getting the boat here from Australia, but we have done it, which just goes to show it is possible." Commented Boat Captain, Anthony Haines. Jazz's journey started on January 8th from Sydney, Australia to Savannah, Georgia. After which the delivery crew sailed 1400 miles to get Jazz to Antigua on time.
"Ever since the RORC conceived the idea of this race I have wanted to do it," said Chris Bull on he dock in Antigua. "I am also keen to do the Transatlantic Race and try and win the Atlantic Ocean Racing Series which I think is an excellent initiative which the RORC are involved with."
Rock Stars and Corinthian Sailors Rub Shoulders
From Lithuania, the Volvo 60, Ambersail debuts in the Caribbean and counts veteran round the world sailor Magnus Olsen in their crew. Ambersail is well travelled, having competed in last year's Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race and the Rolex Middle Sea Race.
Ondeck's Farr 65, Spirit of Minerva counts British solo-sailor Hannah White amongst the crew: "Effectively there are 10 legs and well over 600 miles of racing in fantastic trade wind conditions which I am sure will be a strong test for navigators and crews in equal measure." Commented Hannah.
Class 40 World Champions on the line
Six Class 40s are expected, possibly more. Tony Lawson's Concise and Gonzalo Botin are past and current Class 40, world champions. Tony Lawson, owner of Concise expects a close duel with Tales: "There is no doubt that the Spanish team will be fast and possibly more suited to lighter conditions, but I am confident that the team on Concise will be fully focused and they are in control of a quick, well prepared boat."
Power and Elegance Combine
RORC Commodore, Andrew McIrvine has chartered the elegant and powerful 154 ft schooner, Windrose of Amsterdam. The crew has taken the magnificent yacht through its paces, spending two days practicing manoeuvres: "It is a very different kind of sailing to my First 40." Commented Andrew McIrvine. "The sheer size of the sails and equipment make for extremely physical work and manoeuvres are far more complex. Communication from front to back is only possible by hand signals. We had some good pressure during our practice session, which confirmed that Windrose is a powerful yacht, literally built for Caribbean sailing."
Navigator's make their Predictions
Brian Benjamin's Carbon Ocean 82, Aegir has been out testing sails and the crew, visiting the top part of the race course all night Friday. Night sailing makes up close to half the time during the race. Boat captain Shreda Duke confirmed that the exercise was very successful in bedding in the crew to their proposed watch-system. Aegir's navigator for the race is Ian Moore on loan from the Oracle America's Cup Team. Moore concurs with Hugh Agnew, ICAP Leopard's navigator, the prediction of stable trade wind sailing but added: "The first key area of the race may well come as night falls. Aegir should be approaching Nevis at dusk and the first really tricky part of the course. The islands of Nevis and St Kitts are high, which will throw out quite a wind shadow through this area; there will be a lot of gear changes in between the lulls and puffs of acceleration. The big decision from a navigator's point of view will be how far off the leeward side of these islands to go."
In Falmouth Harbour, the air temperature is a balmy 27º C and a fair breeze is flowing in from the northeast, meaning that the trade winds are functioning, but it's an ever-changing picture. Read John Burnie's expert summary on the RORC Caribbean 600 web site: http://caribbean600.rorc.org/
100 footers Go Head to Head
ICAP Leopard set the monohull course record in 2009, completing the course in 44 hr 5 min 14 sec and Mike Slade's team believe that they could beat the record, although they may not be the first home. George David's stunning Maxi, Rambler 100 is dockside in Falmouth and are favourites to take line honours. George David has secured the assistance of Ken Read to the afterguard and some of Ken's Puma Volvo Ocean Race crew. It is the first time that these two 100 foot canting keel maxi's have raced each other with ICAP Leopard having taken an interesting strategy and dropped their rating considerably, in a bid to gain handicap honours.
Local Knowledge from Caribbean Entries
Local interest comes from Bernie Evan-Wong who is competing in the race for the third time in his Mumm 36, High Tension. From Guadeloupe there is a Class 40, Territoires Attitudes, skippered by David Ducosson.
34 boats are expected on the start line on February 21st February. The RORC Caribbean 600 web site contains regular updates on the race, blogs from the boats and the progress of the boats, which have trackers, can be followed via the website: http://caribbean600.rorc.org/
In a message to members this week Commodore Peter Ryan said Conneely 'has been a huge part of the Club for 21 years and it will be a difficult task to find a replacement of his quality and commitment'.
The newspaper advertisement says the successful candidate 'will have a strong hands on approach to managing a tight knit, highly motivated team of professionals'.
Applicants are requested to email [email protected] before March 1st.
The centre will provide facilities for all the watersports organisations in the city and region and is located in the new Galway Harbour Enterprise Park adjacent to the new harbour slipway that was built specifically for the Volvo Ocean Race in 2009. The 25,000 sq ft premises is being provided by Cold Chon (Galway) Ltd for a nominal rent and the land is being provided free by Galway Harbour Company.
Some of the clubs that have already committed to this new facility include the Galway Sea Scouts, Galway Sea Sports Association, Galway Sub Aqua Club, Bádoiri an Cladaigh, OYTI, Galway Coastal Rowing, Kayak Mor and Galway Bay Sailing Club.
'The Harbour Company is pleased to assist in pulling together the various water sport bodies under one roof and in the heart of the harbour. The new facility and the recently constructed slipway will be the focal point for Galway's marine leisure, getting Galwegians afloat and established in the city, commented Harbour Master', Captain Brian Sheridan.
The Centre is also hosting Let's Do It Global which ran the very successful Green Dragon campaign and the Galway Volvo Ocean Race Festival. The team is now working towards hosting a spectacular finish to the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 in July 2012.
The centre will provide operational facilities such as offices, changing rooms and storage facilities. There will be no social amenities or bars at the centre however it is anticipated that the establishment of the centre will provide impetus for attracting further watersport events to Galway.
The launch will take place at The Galway Ocean Sports Centre, Galway Harbour Enterprise Park, Galway City.
A remarkable performance throughout all 8 races by John Twomey and his team aboard Shillelagh resulted in a clear victory in division 3 IRC by a margin of some 12 points to swoop the coveted Sovereign's Cup.
Dave O'Sullivan served as Regatta Director for Sovereigns Cup 2007 in Kinsale Yacht Club.
Bob Bateman's photos of Sovereign's Cup 2007 are BELOW.
Anthony O’Leary’s Corby 35 ‘Antix’ won sailing's Sovereign’s Cup at Kinsale Yacht Club, and Paddy Gregory’s Elan 31 ‘Benola’ the Portcullis Trophy. Eamon Conneely’s Transpac 52 ‘Patches’ was the winner in Division 0 IRC, gaining National Champion title for that Division and the Saab Trophy for IRC.
‘Antix’ was the yacht deemed by the organising committee to have put in the best overall performance under IRC across the four fleets. She and Eamon Crosbie’s ‘Voodoo Chile’ had quite a duelling match in Division 1, with ‘Antix’ emerging as National Champion. ‘Benola’ finished first overall in both IRC and Echo in Division 2, winning double National Championship titles. Neil White’s Sigma 400 ‘Barafundle of Mumbles’ was the Division 1 winner and Champion.
Photos of the 2007 event by Bob Bateman BELOW:
L'Aberwrac'h Light house. Image courtesy of Rush Sailing Club Photo Gallery
Rush Sailing Club was founded in 1954 by a group of local enthusiasts with no facilities and less money. Nonetheless, several of them built their own Dublin Bay Mermaids. Designed in 1933, a fleet of these beautiful clinker-built 17-foot dinghies are still the mainstay of racing in the club over fifty years later.
Since those early days, the club has developed beyond recognition, with a fine clubhouse, yard, private slipway and fenced and serviced boat park.
In addition to the Mermaids, there are now a substantial fleets of cruisers and motor boats moored in the estuary, an active Junior section sailing Optimist, Pico and Feva dinghies, and members involved in a wide range of water sports, from fishing to kayaking and diving. Courses are also organised for adult beginners and for developing more advanced skills.
New members are always welcome. The Club Bar is open to members on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. The clubhouse is also available for private hire for functions. For bookings, contact Marguerite Carthy, 087 253 7860.
Left: Irish U–12 Squad at UK Optimist Nationals
Galway Bay Sailing Club is based in Renville Oranmore, approximately 7 miles from Galway City. The club is renowned for the warm welcome it extends to its members and visitors alike. It organises and facilitates the racing and sailing of dinghies, cruisers and multihulls for adults and junior members. The club also offers training and instruction to adults, juniors and non-members.
The clubhouse with bar and catering facilities opens on Sundays afternoons and also Tuesday and Wednesday nights from April to September to facilitate the various racing fleets During the remaining months it opens on Sundays for dinghy racing and on Wednesday nights for talks and social events. The club has played host to many successful Regional and National Regattas with racing taking place against the backdrop of beautiful Galway Bay.
Galway Bay Sailing Club (GBSC), Rinville, Oranmore, Co. Galway
(Details and image courtesy of Galway Bay Sailing Club)
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