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North Sails Ireland Role in Swan 50 Podium Finish

20th October 2018
Racing at the Swan 50 Worlds Racing at the Swan 50 Worlds Credit: Carlo Borlenghi

North Sails Ireland want to congratulate Team ‘Mathilde’ on their podium finish at the inaugural Club Swan 50 World Championship in Porto Cervo. The Swiss-flagged yacht owned and helmed by Morten H Kielland is now in her second year of campaigning on the super competitive Club Swan 50 circuit.

Leading up to the Worlds, the team had already secured podium finishes in the other class regattas competed in 2018 thus far. A 2nd place finish at the first event of the year in Monaco last April followed by another 2nd place at the Palma Vela regatta in May and then a 3rd place finish at the Rolex Giraglia regatta in June. This delivered the team to the final class event of the year in confident mood and ready to take on the extremely talented International fleet.

swan 50 worlds

The Championship, contested by 12 talent-laden teams was held as part of the Swan Worlds in Porto Cervo, September 11 to 16th. Mathilde added a new J1 / Light jib and A2 (running Asymmetric) for the event. Both sails performed superbly in the predominantly light conditions alongside the rest of Mathilde’s full North Sails inventory. The extra speed the new J1, in particular, gave us was a game changer and gave us a small edge over some of our competitors in the light conditions. The J1 (3Di Raw 870) is very reactive to small adjustments in trim and allowed us to get every ounce of speed out of the boat. Add that to solid boat handling and some great tactical calls by Leigh McMillan and it produced a 3rd place podium finish for the team.

Actually Mathilde went into the final race tied on points with ‘Cuordileone’ and eventual winner ‘One Group’, all three boats vying for the championship win, unfortunately Mathilde finished on the wrong side of that result but overall the team was delighted with the progress throughout the year and to be able to fight for the championship right up to the last leg of the regatta. The finish replicated the competitive nature of the event. 7 different race winners in 10 races and the whole fleet finishing within 1 minute 45 seconds in all of those races. The One Design element and tight controls are producing very even performance in the fleet and like any great One Design class, the results are coming down to who makes the least mistakes and who can find the small gains out on the track.

A contributory factor for Mathilde is the support of North Sails Ireland and in particular, Shane Hughes who is sail co-ordinator and trimmer onboard. The team also had a larger Irish contingent onboard in 2018 with Howth sailor Sam O’Byrne and Schull duo Jay Stacey and Oisin O’Driscoll onboard for some of the events. The Mathilde CS 50 program represents a great opportunity for young sailors like Sam, Oisin and Jay to experience high-level international keelboat sailing and the guys performed very well and will hopefully be back for more in 2019. More generally the input from North Sails into the Club Swan 50 class has helped push our own standards higher. North Sails dominated the results with the podium teams all exclusively powered by North Sails and
using our standard CS 50 designs. The continuous development led by Arnd Howar and lead designer Juan Meseguer is relentless. With so many North Sails representatives sailing in the fleet and feeding into the product review and refinement process, the sails simply get better and faster and keep our customers at the front of the fleet.

Looking forward; the review and refinement process will continue at pace and we look forward to supporting team ‘Mathilde’ into the 2019 season and beyond.

Published in North Sails Ireland

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Cois Chuain
O'Regan's Field
Myrtleville, Cork P43 V997
 353 0212061769


Bend on / Bend off, Canvas, Certified Service, Sail Hardware Upgrades, Sail Inspection / Evaluation, Sail Measurement, Sail Repair, Sail Storage, Sail Washing



09:00 – 17:30


The Boatyard
Sea Road, Newcastle Wicklow
Leinster A63DT26 Ireland


Certified Service, Sail Repair



08:30 – 17:30


Nigel Young

Loft Manager, One Design Expert
[email protected]

Shane Hughes

One Design Expert, Sales Person
[email protected]

Maurice O’Connell

One Design Expert, Sales Person
[email protected]

Shane Hughes

About The Author

Shane Hughes

Email The Author

Shane Hughes is a One Design Expert, Sales Person at North Sails Ireland

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North Sails Ireland is operated by Loft Manager and One Design Expert Nigel Young at his Cork Harbour base at Myrtleville. The company specialities include Bend on / Bend off, Canvas, Certified Service, Sail Hardware Upgrades, Sail Inspection / Evaluation, Sail Measurement, Sail Repair, Sail Storage and Sail Washing. Working with Nigel are Maurice O'Connell, Shane Hughes and Richard Marshall.

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