Displaying items by tag: Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race
Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race Chairman Adam Winkelmann has named the date for the next edition of the biennial offshore race as Wednesday 9th, June 2021.
The 2021 280-mile race will start, as usual, from the National Yacht Club and Winkelmann says the race – now part of the Royal Ocean Racing Club calendar – will be limited to a 50 boat fleet following the success of this month's edition that attracted a record 43, including the biggest ever entrant, Windfall that set a new course record.
Previous entrants will be offered an early entry option in the race before entry is opened to others to allow up to a maximum of 50.
More on the Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race here.
As the last of the 42-boat fleet arrived into Dingle marina in County Kerry after racing 270-miles from Dun Laoghaire on Dublin Bay photographer Dominick Walsh has captured the atmosphere at one of Europe's most westerly marinas.
The 2019 Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle “D2D” Race started from the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire on Wednesday, June 12th and the first finishers arrived in Dingle Co Kerry on Thursday night with a new course record set by Michael Cotter's Windfall and a successful defence of the overall 'D2D' title by Paul O'Higgins' Rockabill VI.
There'll be a full house for tonight's D2D prizegiving in Dingle!
Photos below by Dominick Walsh
Day #3 - 8am We concluded last night’s closing roundup of the continuing drama which is the 270-mile Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race 2019 by noting that for some crews, the race only seemed to become serious once they’d put the Fastnet astern, and the real challenge was getting along that awe-inspiring Atlantic seaboard to the welcoming haven which is Dingle as efficiently and as tirelessly as possible writes W M Nixon
For by this stage, exhaustion is becoming a significant factor, and it’s a case of the tough old dog for the long road. Boats which had been showing well for much of the race just didn’t seem to have the energy in them any more to keep up the relentless pace, whereas boats with experienced crews who knew the focused bit would come in the final seventy miles seemed to keep something in reserve for the last push, while never letting themselves get out of contention as the race progressed.
Thus having been always there or thereabouts throughout the race, Paul O’Higgins’ and his hardened team on board the defending champion Rockabill VI were fourth to cross the finishing line at 03:19 hrs this morning, and this immediately put them into the IRC lead, with second place IRC going Chris & Patann Power Smith’s J/122 Aurelia which finished at 03.23, while third slot has been grabbed by John O’Gorman’s Sunfast 3600 Hot Cookie, in which visiting rockstar Mark Mansfield has found new sources of formidable speed.
As suggested in our concluding report last night, Conor Doyle’s Xp 50 Freya did indeed get through Andrew Hall’s J125 Freya to take second in line honours, but though they were in at 02:09 and 02:13 repectively, they have slipped to 5h IRC for Jackknife and 11th for Freya, with the upper placings on IRC currently held by the J/109 Ruth (Shanahan family) in fourth, Jakckknife fifth, and another two J/109s, Outrajeous and Mojito, in 6th and 7th.
There are still many boats out racing, but those early placings look increasingly firm.
Day #2 10 pm – The Line Honours winner, the 94ft Windfall (Mick Cotter) may be finished with a new course record established, but for many boats you get the impression that the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race is only just becoming serious writes W M Nixon.
Even with the drag race in a reaching northerly for much of the south coast, it was an interesting bit of fleet sailing to monitor. But now that the bulk of the boats are beating to windward from the Fastnet Rock towards the finish, it has become utterly fascinating with a massive fleet compression and former leaders demoted by a place or three.
For some boats, the longer it goes on, the better they seem to get. Conor Doyle’s Xp50 Freya may have had a very disagreeable experience with fishing gear off Ireland’s southeast corner, but since then she’s been into the groove with increasing confidence, and has been turning to windward along the West Cork and Kerry coasts in such a convincing style that she may well pip Andrew Hall’s J/125 Jackknife to take second place on the water.
Two other boats which seem to have found unexpected reserves of extra speed are the Shanahan family on the J/109 Ruth from the NYC, and Rupert Barry’s JOD 35 Red Alert from Greystones, with sailmaker Shane Hughes on the strength.
Admittedly with the unstable wind full of holes, some crews have had the exasperation of sitting almost becalmed while another boat within a mile appears to find a private line of breeze, and seemingly within minutes there she is – gone……
Nevertheless, the showing by Ruth has been extra impressive, She was always there or thereabouts, but Johnny Murphy with Outrajeous seemed to keep the rest of the J/109s under control astern. But from the Old Head of Kinsale westward, Ruth provided an increasing challenge, and at the Fastnet itself she swept past, such that as of 2200 hrs she was ahead of Outrajeous by an entire mile, and top of the leaderboard in IRC as she put Mizen Head astern at 6.5 knots.
"Nevertheless, the showing by Ruth has been extra impressive"
Tonight and tomorrow looks like being another period of lovely soothing rain in best June 2019 style, and Kerry will get its fair share and more, so the winds could go anywhere. But the final result is wide open as first one part of the fleet, and then another, finds a brief period of extra-favourable conditions.
We’ll try to make sense of it in the morning, and then do further analysis in Sailing on Saturday on June 15th.
Read all the D2D Race News in one handy link here
Tracker & Leaderboard here:
Day #2 - 2 pm Mick Cotter’s 94ft Windfall has to average “only” 11.25 knots over the shortest course from Dun Laoghaire to Dingle if she is to break the 24-hour barrier for this classic 270-mile race writes W M Nixon.
And as she passed the Fastnet Rock at 1000 hrs this morning, while it was scarcely looking its best under grey skies above a grey sea with a decidedly grey-green Cape Clear beyond, at least the big silver-grey boat was making a reasonable speed, and many hours of 13 knots and better during the night and early morning as she reached along the south coast were giving grounds for optimism.
Yet as soon as the Fastnet was astern, the wheels came off with the wind heading then fading and finally dying for a while as she lay virtually motionless off Mizen Head.
"Windfall has 37 miles to sail, and 4 hours and 20 minutes to sail it"
But now the breeze is back from the north, she’s laying the course to the next marker off the Bull Rock, and is showing 10.4 knots while the weather predictions are indicating a freshening – albeit northerly –wind for this afternoon.
This isn’t the headwind it might at first seem, as the course to the finish is a zig-zag with an almost 90-degree turn at Skellig Michael. But nevertheless with 40 miles still to go and 1800 hrs rolling remorselessly down the track, it’s a bit fraying for the nerves, and then some.
The rest of the fleet – with IRC leading boat Jackknife now 46 miles astern of Windfall as she reaches past Castlehaven at a modest 6.4 knots – know only too well that they will have a fresh set of problems to deal with off the southwestern seaboard as the afternoon northerly gives way to northwesterlies and then westerlies tonight, falling light in the morning.
So there could well be a lot of racing to do yet, after so many miles of knocking off the distance in a soldier’s wind. Astern of Jackknife, Conor Doyle’s Freya is on the pace – admittedly 15 miles astern – with 9 knots on the clock, but overall on IRC the stability of the leaderboard is maintained with Jackknife still first, Rockabill VI comfortably in second, and Outrajeous working it well in third.
The inevitable duel between The Prof in Aurelia and Mark Mansfield in Hot Cookie has developed very satisfactorily, with Aurelia very close behind Outrajeous in fourth, and currently 17 minutes ahead of Hot Cookie in 5th, the Sunfast 3600’s highest placing so far as Mono seems to have been finding new reserves of speed for Hot Cookie’s regular crew, and they’re currently making 8 knots well seaward of the Old head of Kinsale.
Meanwhile, the attention inevitably swings back to the head of the fleet and Windfall’s battle with time – 37 miles to sail, and 4 hours and 20 minutes to sail it. It sounds eminently do-able. But don’t forget she’s now off the coast of Kerry, where normal circumstances no longer apply...
Tracker is below:
Read all the D2D Race News in one handy link here
Rosslare Harbour RNLI Lifeboat came to the aid of eight people whose 10m yacht got into difficulty off the Wexford coast in the early hours of this morning (Thursday 13 June).
The Rosslare Harbour volunteer crew launched their all-weather lifeboat at 2.45am at the request of the Irish Coast Guard following a report that a 10m yacht which was participating in the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Yacht Race had experienced steering difficulties as it approached Tuskar Rock Lighthouse off the south-east Wexford coast.
As Afloat reported earlier, the yacht, which had eight people onboard used emergency steering to continue on towards Kilmore Quay with the Rosslare Harbour RNLI lifeboat escorting alongside to Carnsore Point. At this point, the yacht was able to continue unaided to Kilmore Quay. The Rosslare Harbour RNLI lifeboat returned to its station at 4.15am this morning.
Speaking following the call out, Eamonn O’Rourke, Rosslare Harbour RNLI Coxswain said: ‘This was an early morning call out for our volunteers but we were all delighted to help and ensure that the sailors were safe and well and could safely reach their destination. We would like to wish the sailors all the best as they continue towards Dingle.’
Day #2 - 9am The Volvo Dun Laoghaire Dingle racers have left the murkier weather of the east coast astern, and this morning finds them reaching along the south coast in what could best be described as serviceable northerlies writes W M Nixon. It’s not enough to get Conor Fogerty’s Figaro 3 up on the foils and steaming along, but sufficient to have line honours leader Mick Cotter’s 94ft Windfall 45 miles clear ahead of next-in-line Jackknife (Andrew Hall).
Having taken an offshore curve during the night to avoid lighter winds reported in the Cork Harbour area, Windfall is off Toe Head and closing in towards the Fastnet at 13.6 knots, with 87 miles to the line in Dingle, though with the prospect of winds increasingly on the nose as she closes to the finish. The likelihood of a 24 hour time at 1800 hrs this evening is very much touch-and-go.
Forty-five miles back, Jackknife has led the fleet on a course closer to the coast, and is currently off the entrance to Cork Harbour and on line to pass close to the Old Head of Kinsale. She has built up a 12 mile lead on the next group, which includes Conor Doyle’s Freya (despite lobster pot snags), Chris & Patanne Power Smith’s Aurelia, and Paul O’Higgins’ JPK 1080 Rockabill VI, all of them on speeds around the 9 knot level.
In IRC overall, Jackknife has held the lead for most of the night, but occasionally Rockabill VI has slipped into the top slot, but either way the top three have continued to be Jackknife, Rockabill VI and the J/109 Outrajeous (Richard Colwell & Johnny Murphy HYC, skippered by Johnny Murphy).
Fourth place is particularly interesting, as it’s held by Windfall, which benefitted from getting swiftly clear of the messy, gusty and increasingly tide-adverse conditions in the Saltees-Tuskar area in the small hours of the morning, and is now sailing in better conditions than the rest of the fleet, fulfilling expectations that she’d be sailing her own race for much of what is now a processional dash to Dingle.
In fact, even as we write Windfall’s happier circumstances have seen her move into third ahead of Outrajeous, which in turn - now in fourth - leads from Aurelia in fifth with the noted talents of The Prof O’Connell and ISORA’s Peter Ryan on board, while nearby Mark Mansfield aboard John O’Gorman’s Sunfast 3600 Hot Cookie has been sailing a course slightly further offshore, and it’s done them no harm at all – Hot Cookie has moved up to sixth on IRC.
The Mini 6.50 Port of Galway (Dan Mill and Yannick Lemonnier) continues to delight with her performance, with this mighty atom at mid-fleet among much larger craft – she’s currently due south of Mine Head and showing a speed burst of 11 knots.
As for the most senior boat in the fleet, Paul Moxon’s 50ft 1939-built Fred Shepherd-designed yawl Amokura, she has been having a good race for a boat of her vintage, and is currently south of Tramore and making 8.3 knots in the right direction.
Today should be a reward for yesterday’s disagreeable weather and the sometimes frustrating rounding of Ireland’s southeast corner, but for the smaller craft there’s the knowledge that for those still racing through Friday, the unstable wind is likely to continue backing, and though it may eventually go round to the southwest to provide a favourable breeze for the final forty miles to Dingle, it will be a matter of luck whether or not you’re best placed to benefit from it.
Read all the D2D Race News in one handy link here
Day #1 8 pm: With Mick Cotter’s 94ft Windfall the on-the-water leader as she puts Cahore Point astern at 2200hrs, it’s intriguing to note that the unstable but brisk northerly airflow is generous if unpredictable in spreading its favours to different sections of the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle fleet at different times writes W M Nixon
We signed off at 2000 hrs with Andrew Hall’s J/125 Jackknife from Wales holding the corrected time lead. But since then for a while defending champion Rockabill VI (RIYC), Paul O’Higgins’ JPK 1080, was running south on the sluicing ebb with most purpose, and took her turn at the top of the leaderboard.
But now Jackknife is back in business in a big way with a Corrected Time overall lead of 28 minutes over Rockabill, while third - just ten minutes behind the O’Higgins boat - is a new player in the lead role drama, the J/109 Outrajeous co-owned by ICRA Chairman Richard Colwell and Johnny Murphy, with the latter skippering for the dash to Dingle.
Conor Fogerty’s Figaro 3 Raw seems finally to have found her mojo, and is moving into contention – she may be back at 7th overall on CT, but on the water only Jackknife and Windfall are ahead of her.
While most of the fleet have stayed fairly close to the coast, gallant westerners Dan Mill and Yannick Lemonnier in the Mini 650 Port of Galway have tended to embrace the offshore option, and at the time of writing it’s doing them no harm at all, as they’re logging a cracking 12 -13 knots over the ground and are still ahead of the bulk of the entrants.
Early in the small hours, the favourable ebb will begin to lose its power, and when the adverse flood begins to set in, all will depend on how far your boat has got past the Tuskar Rock, if indeed you’ve managed that at all.
Once you get west of the Coningbeg off the Saltee Islands, the tides are no longer so important. But the tidal gate off southeast Ireland could divide the fleet in a way which will have a lasting effect for the remainder of the race. Get clear of it, and the next turn at the Fastnet Rock beckons, as does the prospect of tomorrow seeing a temporary improvement in the weather.
Track Chart below:
Read all the D2D Race News in one handy link here
Day #1 (Start Time) 6 pm: The sky stayed grey, but the wind went away writes W M Nixon. There was almost a sense of anti-climax about the monochrome start to the 270-mile Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race at 1800 hrs this afternoon, but the overall weather picture is so messy and unpredictable that it’s something of a relief the fleet got away at all in a northerly breeze much lighter than expected.
The view from the Committee Boat as shot by the NYC's John McNeilly is below.
and from the pin end....
and an onboard vid of hoisting the giant kite on Windfall from crew man Diarmaid Desmond
It took the little ’uns of the Mini 6.50 class to provide a spot of excitement. Dan Mill and Yannick Lemonnier in the mighty atom known as Port of Galway shot out of the pack like men possessed, zooming along at speeds better than 9 knots, and while their fellow mini-men in Louis Mulloy’s Blackshell Farm took a while to find their groove, they too were soon showing some much bigger boats around them that when it’s tricky downwind speed you seek, the Mini 6.50s have learned a thing or two over the years.
Naturally the biggest boat in the fleet, Mick Cotter’s 94ft Windfall, was leading on the water virtually from the get-go, but it was only at modest speeds around the 12 knot mark, while astern of her Conor Doyle’s Freya was having her work cut out to put clear water between herself and the minis.
Astern of her Andrew Hall’s J/125 was coming through the fleet like the proverbial hot knife in butter, and as they passed Bray Head with everyone engaged in their own manoeuvres of tacking to lee, Jackknife had only Windfall ahead of her, and was making better than 10 knots.
But with a wind full of holes and sloppy weather patterns being driven by confused conditions being pushing in from the east, it remains to be seen if the late evening’s predicted firmer breeze from the north actually materializes. Meanwhile, when we look at the tiny Port of Galway’s position and speed relative to that of the massive Windfall, we can’t help but wonder if the sailing world as we know it has been turned upside down. As for late entry Jackknife, the Welsh wonder, we note that she is currently leading in every division for which she is eligible.
Race Tracker below:
A last-minute entry for this evening’s 280-mile Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race is a clear case of horses for courses writes W M Nixon.
Andrew Hall’s relatively new J/125 Jackknife from Pwllheli is renowned for her speed on a reach, and when her entry was finally confirmed on Monday, the weather forecasts were all suggesting a real drag race in brisk northerlies the full length of the south coast.
With her experienced crew beefed up by the addition of that noted ISORA stalwart Stephen Tudor, Jackknife has completed a very comprehensive three-boat challenge from the Pwllheli club, as her Welsh-based partners in the dash to Dingle will be the consistently successful J/109 Mojito (Peter Dunlop & Vicky Cox) and the Sunfast 3200i Jac Y Do (Mark Thompson).
While the J/109 is noted as an all-round performer which is good but not exceptional on all points of sailing, the Sunfast range is noted for its reaching abilities, so with Jackknife rating 1.143, Mojito on a very competitive 1.009, and Jac Y Do on 0.995, the Pwllheli club looks to have all options well covered for being there or thereabouts when the final handicap winner is announced.
That might be sooner rather than later, for aboard Mick Cotter’s mighty 94ft Windfall in a windy and rain-swept Dun Laoghaire Harbour this morning, their computer model was optimistically showing that they could be finished some time between 2.0 pm and 6.0pm tomorrow.
That’s fine and dandy for a big one carrying the blustery breeze all the way to the finish, with a minimum of beating at the end. But if the breeze goes round to the northwest, getting to the Fastnet Rock in a record speed will be a snare and a delusion for the smaller craft. For the 70 miles thereafter, from the Fastnet to Dingle, slugging along to windward on one of the most challenging coasts in Europe, can soon start to seem like the longest 70 miles in the world.
That said, the likelihood of Windfall seeing her line honours becoming the handicap win as well is surely a long shot. But don’t forget that George David’s Rambler 88 did that very thing in some style in the 2016 Round Ireland Race.
Nevertheless with a very solid phalanx of boats between the 40ft and 50ft mark including Jackknife, Chris & Patanne Power Smith’s J/122 Aurelia (with ISORA boss Peter Ryan onboard), George Sisk’s Xp 44 WOW, and Conor Doyle’s Xp 50 Freya, we have a group who might just manage the race’s win move of also carrying the best breeze the whole way.
And then there are the flying outsiders such as Conor Fogerty’s utterly new Figaro 3 Raw. She’s so new his experience of making best use of her foils is minimal, but that could all change tonight. It will be intriguing to watch Raw’s progress, as the word from Stage 2 of the ongoing Solitaire URGO Figaro is that two of the boats had to pull out of the Kinsale-Needles Fairway-Roscoff course to head direct for Roscoff with “water ingress” problems around the casings for their foils.
All this talk of cunning club combinations, and biggies of 94ft, and solid phalanxes of 40-to 50ft boats - plus musings of whether or not the new Figaro 3 could still be reasonably described as Work in Progress - shouldn’t blind us to the fact that there are competitive boats at every level in this best-ever 44-strong Dingle fleet, and somewhere amongst them will be the defending champion, Paul O’Higgins’ JPK 1080 Rockabill VI, quietly getting on with the business of getting to Dingle with the least fuss and in the shortest possible time.
But first, they all have to get cleanly way from Race Director Con Murphy’s start line in a vigorous onshore breeze on an evening of Arctic air with a lumpy sea coming every which way. At the start of the 2017 race in an easier-to-handle offshore wind, the adrenalin was pumping and sheer animal spirits led to some decidedly unorthodox manoeuvring. Having a significant sea running adds to the challenge. But it’s all part of the sport of this very special race, and it starts off Dun Laoghaire’s East Pier at 6.0pm this evening