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As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Irish National Marine Services are hosting a demonstration day for the RS Sailing range at the Irish National Sailing & Powerboat School in Dun Laoghaire this Sunday 28 April.

Included in the line-up will be the new RS21 keelboat, with opportunities to get sailing on the exciting design.

There’ll also be a selection of RS Sailing’s training fleet of RS Quests and RS Zests, while a demo RS Aero will be on the water for trials.

Time slots will be managed by the INSS office to ensure everyone gets out on their chosen boat for a test sail of between 60 and 90 minutes. For more details see the Facebook event page HERE.

Full changing and clubhouse facilities will be provided by the INSS ashore, and RS Sailing agent Kenneth Rumball will be afloat to chat about the boats and help out with the demos.

Ahead of the demonstration day, the RS21 will sail to Greystones tomorrow afternoon (Saturday 27 April) to coincide with the RS Easterns at Greystones Sailing Club.

Published in INSS
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The Second round of RS400 Frosties kicked off as the Spring kicked off on Sunday 24-Feb at the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club. This event followed the Autumn Series which had some 25 boats racing and very close competition right to the very last race to choose a winner.

Results downloadable below.

This series has so far up to 17 entries entered including one local helm now flying in from UK for the first weekend back on Sun 24-Feb. However, as the picture shows it started with little or no wind on the water. This did not deter the Committee boat though who launched as they normally do and wondered why on earth the fleet were doing so much tacking/gybing practice in synchronization very slowly towards them. The real reason was due to the nature of very fickle on/off wind shifting 30-50degrees every minute all the way out.

Eventually, when the fleet got there it settled a little however even the first start was a struggle to get off the line with pockets of breeze. At the windward Stephen McL/Ryan lead followed by the new black ship of Vaughan cousins Ross/Andrew and Barry McC/Andrew. The wind clocked right and a gust came in which made reversed these placings by bottom mark and in the end Barry McC won deny the Vaughan’s new boat a first race win after late charge and Stephen McL in 3rd.

Due to the wind change staying right, the course was relaid and although still v shifty was at least a Windward/leeward course. This time Barry McC/Andrew pulled away from the start to win with a handy lead with another newcomer Ruan O’T/Kat in 2nd and Tom P/Rory in 3rd. Notable performance form Brian Holmes who was 2nd most of way round but got caught out by a gust from other side last downwind but still came in 4th.

3rd race of day again still v shifty and R400 professional Liam D/Rick showed the way in this one to win 3rd race on 1st day just like in Series1 followed by Paul R/S with great performance in 2nd and Helmsman champs Peter K/Stephen in 3rd.

The next week for Day 2 on 3rd Mar the fleet hoped for more steady winds however that is anything how it turned out with more snakes & ladders racing with light/shifty winds again the state of play.

Race 4 and 5 resembled each other slightly with 40deg left shift at starts causing carnage down the pin-end and many top boats caught out further down pan at times. Race 1 included a 180-deg shift on 2nd lap but still allowed Stephen McL/Ryan to win leading from start with Sam P/Sharon (missing the first week) coming in 2nd and Barry McC/Andrew recovering to 3rd.

In race 5 Trev D’Arcy/Ginge bullied their way off the pin-end best to win the race with Stephen McL/Ryan staying steady in 2nd and the famous Dr Cheyne standing in with Stephen K for 3rd.

Race 6 the fleet got away more cleanly and this time Ed Cody lead at windward after picking a nice gust on the right with a lot of boats stranded left. Barry McC/Andrew followed and gybe-set to overtake staying in pressure and as race was shortened in end they ended in 1st with Sam P/Sharon keeping most consistent in 2nd and Tom P/Rory in 3rd.

Racing starts each Sunday at 1 or depending on rugby and Race officer dinner reservation plans and runs for a total of eight weeks with the last on 14-April. 

Published in RS Sailing
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The Irish National Sailing Club (INSC) RS Super Series continues this Saturday the 15th of December in Dun Laoghaire Harbour.

This being the last series of races before Christmas, INSC will have Mince Pies and Mulled Wine after sailing.

INSC have a diverse range of the RS fleet racing with Feva’s, 200’s, 400’s Quest’s and this week we hope to have multiple Aero’s and also RS Zests.

Irish RS Agent Kenneth Rumball will be on site all day to answer any questions and also give people the opportunity to put in last minute orders for Christmas.

Available every weekend are demo boats of most of the RS fleet for anybody to try out. For further information, contact [email protected]

Full information on the series is available here

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The 2018 RS season of 2018 kicked off over the weekend of 7/8 April with County Antrim Yacht Club (CAYC) hosting the Northern Championships for RS400s/200s/Fevas.

In total there was 35 boats entered and 70 sailors for the event from all corners of Ireland with numerous from as far as Cork so the anticipation for first event of year was high after the RS off-season.

Conditions for the weekend was to prove a mixed bag of glass like conditions so postponements onshore allowing time for extra boat tinkering and good craic among sailors. Soon enough the wind filled in to send fleet out and after a bit more waiting around a cold breeze came in from the sea around 3.30pm allowing for 3 races to happen for all fleets. In the 400s fleet king Al-Bar proved he hadn't slowed over the winter with an emphatic first race win over the fleet. The 2nd race was won right at the finish by Flipper overhauling the other Barry (this time Mac) and 3rd race won by the runaway off the pin end at start by Alan Ruigrok. Scores were very tight with a point to separate top 3 overnight and just 5 points separating 4th-10th proved how close the racing was in this fleet. In the 200s the home team Jocelyn Hill/Katie Kane stole the show with 3 bullets and in the Fevas another CAYC Boat the Corbett brothers lead overnight.

"In total there was 35 boats entered and 70 sailors for the event from all corners of Ireland"

A long day on water ended coming ashore at 6.45pm from racing, and for those interested even sacrificing majority of the Manchester derby. All more than enjoyed the soups on offer and the fleet enjoyed a great dinner spread and evening entertainment with music and much cheaper than over the border drink on offer until the early hours.

Day 2 lead to another postponement while wind decided to dance around in the sky, but the fleet launched bar a few of the top half of the 400 fleet staying ashore watching from 100m off the shore. However the wind gods did play ball around 2pm just as patience was running out allowing time for 2 races to decide the championship. Most of those boats onshore made it out including Alex Barry who after picking a few off added another 1 to his card to put himself in driving seat ahead of Barry McC in 2nd, Alan Ruigrok 3rd. The last race with championship still open Alex Barry got better off Barry McC off start to be in control to win it while Gareth Flanagan got away best of all to win the final race and in the end pip 2nd place overall. 3rd then was Barry McC, 4th Paul McL putting in consistent results ahead of Alan Ruigrok in 5th. The 200s again Jocelyn/Katie added 2 more wins to make a perfect scorecard and take a triumphant win for the home Club. The Fevas had every boat at least once win a race but in end Elysia O'leary/Lily Dwyer won.

Results downloadable below.

Published in RS Sailing
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17 RS Feva dinghies participated in the latest round of coaching for the class at Greystones Sailing Club at the weekend writes Garett Donnelly. Conditions were perfect with coaching provided for all the sailors ranging in age from 11 to 17 years of age.

Sailors from Greystones, RStGYC, RIYC, Bray SC, Malahide YC and Howth YC took part.

Next up on the Feva 2017 calendar is coaching in Malahide Yacht Club from 8th to 10th April and then Howth Yacht Club for coaching on 19,20,21.

The Eastern Championships follow on 22 and 23 April. Entry for the Easterns is here.

Published in RS Sailing

Eight RS dinghies made it on the water at Dun Laoghaire Harbour for the first of a five one day monthly race days 'Super Series' hosted by the Irish National Sailing Club working closely with the RS Committee.

The series is aimed to be run in a sprint like fashion, with a target of eight races per day. On Day one, seven races were achieved with sailors off the water by 12:30, cold but sunny! Overall Marty O'Leary and Racel Williamson lead from Barry McCartin and Simon Doran. Results downloadable below

 

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33 RS’s travelled to Schull last weekend to battle for the National title. The event, kindly sponsored by Centra, saw 10 races completed for each class across two race courses with sailors experiencing the perfect mix of conditions. IRO Alan Crosbie & team took charge of the RS400 fleet South of Long Island and NRO David Harte & team took charge of the RS200 fleet outside Schull Harbour near Castle Island.

Friday- Glorious sunshine and light steady breezes ranging from 5 – 8 knots made for challenging but fair racing. The RS400’s completed all four races, two of which were sailed outside Long Island in dying breeze and two of which brought sailors back inside the sound where the breeze was just about holding up. In the RS400’s, reigning national champions Alex Barry & Richard Leonard appeared to have had a good day with a 1,1,3,4 only to have been OCS in race 1 which meant Bob Espey and Tiffany Brien took the overnight lead with a 5,3,1,3. The weekend was to continue to be a battle between the two teams with it going right to the wire on Sunday. There were four different race winners on the day with class stalwarts Emmet & James Ryan taking race one and laser supremo Chris Penney and Simon Martin taking race four. Katie Tingle and Fionn Lyden deserve a mention for leading to the first windward mark in race four in what was their first outing ever in an RS400 and likewise, a strong performance on the day for Laser Radial sailor Johnny Durcan and crew Grattan Roberts who sat in 5th overnight.

The RS200’s managed three races on Friday, Neil Spain and crew Shane Hughes had no intentions of being bridesmaids again and lead the unstoppable Marty O’Leary and Rachel Williamson by one point overnight. It seemed this was a sign of the weekend to come with the two boats continuing to blaze a trail on the rest of the fleet for the weekend. Jocelyn Hill and Katie Kane from Antirm had a great day and lay in 3rd place overnight.

Super Saturday: An earlier start of 11am on Saturday allowed for four races to be completed by both fleets. Winds had increased considerably from Friday and sailors enjoyed the perfect RS conditions with a South Easterly wind blowing 15 – 20 knots all day. The new breeze meant for a change in faces at the top of the RS400 fleet. Class President Dave Cheyne and Stevie Kane having sat 13th overnight came out blazing with a 1,2 in the first two races and scored an impressive 15 points on the day having scored 50 the previous day. Likewise David Rose and Ian Hef had a very strong day with a 3,7,2,2 to score 14 points having scored 49 the previous day. At the top of the fleet things weren’t looking good for the leaders with Bob & Tiff scoring a DNF in race one having to return to shore with slot gasket issues and Alex & Richie broke a rudder before the race but just made the start having secured a replacement. Bob & Tiff were back out of the blocks and recovered to score a 1,4,4 with Alex & Richie under pressure after a 4,5 managing to close the day with a 1,1. This left Alex & Richie in the lead by a mere 2 points going into the last day. The day took its toll with sailors bruised and battered but still smiling and three boats on their side over night as their owners prayed that the replacement slot gaskets would dry overnight.

In the RS200’s Neil and Shane took the spoils scoring an impressive four 1st places and showing they meant business. Marty & Rachel had a DNF in the first race but came back out to take three 2nd places. Past President Frank O’Rourke with local sailors Noah McCarthy were back on form with four 3rd places on the day but consistency on day one was rewarding Royal St. George pair Toby Fowler and Greg Arrowsmith who sat in 3rd place overnight. Special mention must go to the three boats from Cullaun Sailing Club who persevered on the day and particularly Aoife Cleary Ward and Niamh Edwards who were still smiling coming up the slip.

RS200 PrizegivingThe RS200 Prizegiving

Sunday: The RS400’s had two final races on Sunday with all three medal positions up for grabs. Sailors were greeted outside by a giant Atlantic swell and very light and shifty conditions as the sea-breeze fought the thermal North Westerly. With Alex and Richie scoring a 2nd over Bob and Tiff’s 3rd in race one Paddy Power had the odds in the Cork boys favour. All they needed was for Bob and Tiff not to win the race or for them to score a fourth but having hunted each other down in two general recalled starts, the Northern team slipped away on the first beat and found the best breeze to lead by ‘miles’ at the top mark, a lead they carried safely all the way to the finish. Alex & Richie were left at the back of the fleet having fallen foul to the conditions and could only watch on as Bob Espey and Tiffany Brien crossed the line to secure the 2016 National Championships by one point, this being Bob’s second time securing the trophy and first time winning the event outright. Alex and Richie did enough for second place and Emmet and James Ryan did enough to fight off the pressure from young guns Johnn Durcan and Grattan Roberts to take third place and the bronze ISA medal.
The RS200’s needed three races to complete the card and with it all but sewn up, Neil and Shane had a scare in race 1 scoring a 3rd while Marty & Rach took the bullet. This wasn’t enough to phase the experienced pair who went on the win race two giving them the 2016 National Title and the freedom to head home early and miss the last race. A convincing win for the boys left them with 9 points and Marty & Rachel went on to win the final race giving them the silver medal on 13 points. Toby Folwer and Greg’s consistency continued as they scored a 2,5,2 on the day securing them the Bronze medal.

RS400 Prize GivingThe RS400 Prize Giving

Social: Brosnan’s Centra in Schull kindly layed on a BBQ immediately after sailing each day which was very well received by sailors. Despite the tiring conditions of Super Saturday and impromptu party kicked off in the upstairs of Newman’s bar with massive craic had, a South v North sign off, apt for the year that’s in it, adding to the banter. Special mention for John Downey and Stevie Kane who’s countries can be very proud of their performances on the night.

All in all an excellent weekend was had by all, only made possible by David Harte and his massive team in the Fastnet Marine Outdoor Education Centre in Schull including RS400 OOD Alan Crosbie, the generous support from Centra, the people of Schull for providing camping facilities, good food and tasty pints.

Full results here

The next event for the classes is the end of seasons in Blessington SC on the 24th & 25th September.

Published in RS Sailing
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Saturday 13th of August saw Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club hosted its first ever dinghy event as the RS200’s and RS400’s competed for “The King of the Liffey” title which was run as part of the club’s annual Regatta.
With a cruise ship occupying the course racing was postponed for one hour. Competitors gladly took the opportunity to enjoy the hospitality and breakfast rolls laid on by the members and staff at Poolbeg, which more than lived up to its welcoming reputation.

Once the large obstacle had departed, PRO Barry O’Neil and his team wasted no time in getting racing under way. The race officer’s briefing emphasized the aim of the event was to pack as many high quality but fun races into the allowable time and he duly delivered on all fronts. The ten knot Westerly breeze allowed for a perfect windward leeward course to be set. The start line located directly in front of the club house was the ideal spectator vantage point to view the action as boats had a beat towards the East Link toll bridge and barrelled their way back downwind to the leeward gate. There was also plenty of head turning from the passing traffic that paralleled the race course only meters from the water.

Given the tight nature of venue crews had to decide, which side of the river to play upwind. Some beats it appeared to favour going as close as helms dared to the North Wall while other times it paid to tack along the Poolbeg marina and take a chance by dodging into the forest of moorings and club boats on the South side of the river, all of which added to the excitement.

As the day went on the number of spectators grew as the Poolbeg Regatta cruiser racer fleet which include a newly adopted class of six Ruffians returned ashore. The cruisers raced in two classes, with smaller boats competing in a round the cans race on Dublin Bay and the larger yachts enjoying a costal “Three island race”, which took in Dalkey Island, The Muglins and Ireland’s Eye.

After nine races for each of the RS classes and the small matter of another sizeable ship on its way up the river, the fun was over on the water at least. With multiple race winners in each class everyone was left guessing how the final scores would tally up. The competitors had lost count long before the finish.

In RS200’s Neil and Maeve Spain had a very impressive day taking six race wins. Aaron Jones and Rebecca Rock had a very solid event to take second. In third place, with a very consistent set of results, were Triona Hinkson and Helen O’Bernie who showed plenty of potential and will definitely be a team to watch in future RS200 events.
In the RS400’s Peter Bayly and Paddy Blakely grew stronger as the nine race series went on and finished with a three point win over Dave Sweeney and John Downey who took second place on count back from Emmet and James Ryan.

With boats de-rigged crews joined in with the Regatta festivities in the Poolbeg club house just in time to cheer on fellow RS400 sailors Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern as they did all proud in Rio. The evening’s entertainment followed a distinctly Rio theme, with an authentic Brazilian Samba Band complete with Dublin Ports first man-made beach installed at the club for the occasion.
A huge thank you to everyone at Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club from all the RS teams and to Dublin Port Company who very generously sponsored the event and facilitated the racing to take place amongst the non-stop shipping operations of the port. The talk amongst the RS sailors was of making this an annual fixture.
Below are selection Youtube Clips of the day’s action.

RS200 RESULTS
Helm Crew Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Total Overall
Neil Spain Maeve Spain Howth YC 2 1 1 1 1 (5) 1 1 2 10 1st
Aaron Jones Rebecca Rock Greystones SC 1 2 2 (4) 3 2 2 4 3 19 2nd
Triona Hinkson Helen O’Bernie Royal St George YC 4 3 4 2 (5) 1 4 3 4 25 3rd
Greg Arrowsmith Toby Hudson Fowler Royal St George 3 5 5 (6) 2 4 5 2 1 27 4th
Jemima Owens Peter Naessens National YC (5) 4 3 3 4 3 3 5 5 30 5th
Emer Raferthy Herbie Fowler Royal St George YC 6 6 6 5 6 6 6 DNF DNS 48 6th

RS400 RESULTS
Helm Crew Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Total Overall
Peter Bayly Paddy Blakely Greystones SC (4) 2 2 1 1 1 3 4 1 15 1st
Dave Sweeney John Downey Bray & Monkstown SC (7) 3 4 3 2 2 1 1 2 18 2nd
Emmet Ryan James Ryan Royal St George YC 1 1 3 (5) 3 3 2 2 3 18 3rd
Sean Cleary Luke Murphy Oxford Sailing Club 3 6 1 7 4 4 (8) 5 5 35 4th
Conor Cleary Luke O’Rourke Greystones SC 5 (8) 5 2 6 7 6 3 6 40 5th
Stephen Craig Conor Foley Royal St George YC 2 4 (8) 6 8 6 4 6 4 40 6th
Kevin Brazel Henry Higgins Dungarvan SC 6 5 7 4 7 5 7 (8) 7 48 7th
John Malone Patrick Whyte Mullingar SC 8 7 6 8 5 8 5 7 (OCS) 54 8th

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The RS Fleet enjoyed a cracking weekend of racing as Lough Ree Yacht Club played host to the Waterways Ireland 2016 RS Inland Championships last weekend. Race Officer John Leech managed to play the shifty conditions better than most competitors and completed a full programme of six races with winds ranging from sub ten knots to mid-twenties for Sunday’s final blast.

As words don’t do the action justice, check out this video below by Shane Goggin.

Day 1 2016 RS Inland Championships RS400 Video:

Results Summary

RS200’s Top 3 
1st Marty O’Leary & Rachel Williamson 
2nd Neil Spain & Maeve Spain 
3rd Aaron Jones & Rebecca Rock 

RS400’s Top 3

1st Alex Barry & Richard Leonard

2nd Gareth Flanagan & David Fletcher

3rd Emmet Ryan & James Ryan

Published in Inland Waterways

After having successfully launched 20 RS Elites with the club crane on Wednesday, the event organisers could breathe a sigh of relief that they hadn’t dropped anyone! Wednesday night consisted of introducing our English visitors to Oysters and Guinness followed by copious amounts of Bushmills Whiskey; thankfully everyone woke up the next morning not the worse for wear.

PRO Davy Young had told the fleet he might avail of the option to run four races instead of the usual three, owing to the forecast for light winds on Friday. With the race area being so close to the club moorings, everyone was able to saunter out at a very reasonable hour. Race one got under way in a moderate southerly, with the gun going to RUYC’s Stephen Polly, John Gunning and David Kelso on board “Storm”, followed closely by Recent Irish Champions “KIN” (Tiffany and Simon Brien, Colin Leonard), and Hayling Island’s Mike and Caroline McIntyre and Simon Childs on board “Foudafafa” in third. The rest of the fleet was extremely closely bunched, which meant missing a shift could cost you dearly.

Race two got underway in a strengthening breeze, and it was the same three boats vying for line honours all the way round the course. This time KIN came out on top, followed by Foudafafa, and Storm in third. For the rest of the fleet, the lay line to the windward mark seemed to be busier than the M25 at rush hour; with those trying to get through on port being relegated to the back of the fleet in no time. Downwind saw the fleet split down both sides of the course; with everyone so close it was those who were able to get a clean track who benefitted most when we all converged on the leeward gates.

The committee boat thankfully gave us all time to get some lunch, but it was then straight into race three. After the committee boat end being jam packed in the previous two races, many of the fleet decided to start farther down the line and get a clean start. RNIYC’s John Driscoll, Hal Catherwood and Stephen Cartwright on “Anchorman” made the most of a pin end start, and quickly built up a small lead over the chasing pack. Foudafafa followed club mates the Fisk’s on “Legs Eleven”, but Anchorman eventually got overtaken by Foudafafa on the beat.

With tired bodies, the fleet mustered for the final race of the day, with the wind decreasing slightly. CSC’s Ryan Wilson and his RS 400 compatriots on “Eclipse” showed the fleet how to make a perfect start, and held on to their lead all the way round the course. What’s even more impressive is the fact this is pretty much a scratch crew who came 4th in the Irish Nationals last weekend. Surely a boat to watch as the championship progresses. Storm and Foudafafa had a battle for second, but Storm pulled through in the end. Once again for the rest of the fleet it was a game of snakes and ladders, with the windward mark lay line being extremely busy.

Overall then, Foudafafa lead by one point from Storm who lie on 10 points, with KIN sitting in third with 15 points. With the fleet so closely bunched, small gains in day two could propel crews up the leader board…. or the reverse could equally happen! The evening meal was held at Daft Eddy’s, where some members of the fleet managed to “fit in with the locals” in traditional Irish attire. Music from the “Folkin eejits” meant the Whiskey and Guinness went down a little too easily for some people! When the band had stopped, the Elite fleet stalwarts continued to entertain themselves, with Hank “the magnificent" Anstey tinkling the ivories well into the wee small hours.

Day 2
With four races the previous day and various libations at Daft Eddy’s the night before, the fleet was somewhat depleted in numbers. The event organizers decided to split their crew up and enable the visiting boats to get to the start line with a full complement of crew.
Race five started with a couple of boats missing from the start line: race organizers on board T’nT sacrificed their crew to sail on Charlie and Julia Egerton – Warburton’s “Soak Therapy” and “Way to Blue” (it’s a long story…). Having not been physically present at race one, and other crews having a hazy memory of what happened, we have to rely on the results sheet to say that Foudafafa took line honours, Aeolus (Ossie, Cameron and Tom Stewart) second, and Legs Eleven third. Race six got underway with a (very) light breeze from the North. Those on the pin end got the favoured start, and were looking good up the first beat. The Hayling Island boats of Foudafafa, Aeolus, Legs Eleven and Way to Blue (Nick and Kate Peters, with guest crew Mark Fletcher from T’nT) seemed to revel in the light winds, as this bunch lead the fleet round the patchy breeze. The wind became very light on the run, with some Elites deciding to take their jibs down to try and get their kites flying! On the final beat it looked like those who decided to go left made big gains, and only half the fleet finishing inside the time limit. Frustratingly for many – including Soak Therapy – the line seemed mere metres away when they were timed out.

Day 3
Memories of racing on day three were severely impaired by the class dinner that evening and copious amounts of Whiskey and Scottish dancing… The fleet was greeted by a southerly once again, and it was Foudafafa and KIN who were jostling for the bullet, but it would stay in that order for the finish. Jeff Ralston, Stuart Vaughan and Gerry Reid on Upfront showed the pace we all knew they have, to round out the podium. Foudafafa once again worked the shifts upwind in race two to take another bullet, followed by Legs Eleven and Aeolus. Although the lead bunch had a bit of a gap over the rest of us, the windward mark starboard lay line was tightly congested as the fleet seemed once again to resemble a dog fight with bad tacks or missing a shift costing over 10 places to some unfortunate boats. The final race of day couldn’t come soon enough for many of the fleet, as this was shaping up to be a tight championship all the way down the pecking order – only a few points separated a large portion of the fleet. Eclipse had the perfect committee boat start and were able to tack into clean air. They never looked back for the rest of the race, and sailed the perfect race to score their second bullet of the championship. Previous predictions of their form were obviously well founded! Class Chairman Steve Powell, Donald MacLean and Botty in E’Tu couldn’t quite catch the young guns and had to settle for second place. Aeolus were third, with Way to Blue (and yet another change of crew!) coming in fourth.

Day 4 

The morning after the night before had resulted in an unenthusiastic fleet; fortunately, the wind gods obliged and racing was postponed for an hour. The final race of the championship got underway in light air, and it was RLymYC’s Freebie Knot of the Archibald’s who made the best start by the committee boat and were first to the windward mark. Cheers were heard and the crew were spotted jumping for joy, before they then realized they had to hoist their kite! Foudafafa and Eclipse snuck through by the end, but Freebie Knot held on to lock out the podium. Once again, the rest of the fleet resembled a dogfight, with several places won or lost in a heavily congested beat and downwind leg. Not only this, but overall positions were very tight, so gains or losses were made on this final race of the championship.

Overall then, Foudafafa were crowned the 2016 Cardinal Analytics RS Elite National Champions, with Aeolus second, whilst Storm were only just a few points behind to take third overall, and best local boat. Although the winners had a comfortable margin over the chasing pack, this has possibly been one of the closest national championships in years, with the entire fleet congregating at the windward and leeward marks at the same time. It’s no wonder the Elite is proving to be such a hit with young and old, (former) Olympians and Corinthians alike: racing doesn’t get much closer than this. And the social side of things is equally competitive – with friends and family as crew mates, the après sailing events are always very friendly and welcoming. All in all then, a great event, great boat and great people. We can’t wait for the Nationals to be held at Hayling Island Sailing Club next year!

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About boot Düsseldorf: With almost 250,000 visitors, boot Düsseldorf is the world's largest boat and water sports fair and every year in January the “meeting place" for the entire industry. From 18 to 26 January 2020, around 2,000 exhibitors will be presenting their interesting new products, attractive further developments and maritime equipment. This means that the complete market will be on site in Düsseldorf and will be inviting visitors on nine days of the fair to an exciting journey through the entire world of water sports in 17 exhibition halls covering 220,000 square meters. With a focus on boats and yachts, engines and engine technology, equipment and accessories, services, canoes, kayaks, kitesurfing, rowing, diving, surfing, wakeboarding, windsurfing, SUP, fishing, maritime art, marinas, water sports facilities as well as beach resorts and charter, there is something for every water sports enthusiast.

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