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SB20 crew Aidan O'Connell, John Driscoll and Andrew Vaughan were the winners of the inaugural SB20 visit to Carlingford Lough at the weekend. The 12–boat fleet were treated to a brand new venue at Carlingford Sailing Club for the first SB20 regional event of the 2016 season on 23rd/24th April and it proved a tremendous success. Overall results are downloadable below.

The warmth and hospitality of the club members, flag officers and event management team combined with perfect 15-25 knot breeze meant that there are plenty of sore, but very happy, bodies after racing on Sunday.

The fleet launched on Saturday morning from the pier beside the clubhouse and headed out for a very civilised 1.30pm start. Conditions on the Lough were ideal for downwind SB20 sailing with speeds of over 15 knots being recorded across the fleet. Although the northerly breeze was moderate to fresh, it was still oscillating through 50° so the race officer called a short postponement to allow the wind direction to settle. After a brief delay, the fleet were off from a heavily committee boat biased line. As with all new venues, there were differing views about how best to approach the first upwind leg with seemingly better breeze to the right but less tide inshore to the left. In the end, those boats holding on starboard tack up the shore line fared best. At the first mark, Sin Bin (Michael, John and Gareth) led narrowly from MSS (Colin, Chris et al). A better hoist from MSS saw the old boys career over the top of Sin Bin and take the lead as the boats hurtled down the run towards the leeward mark. Also making a charge for the front were Ruby Blue (Aidan, John and Andrew), 2 Men and their Monkey (Daragh, Shane and John) and Venuesworld.com (Ger, Chris, Maeve and Blair). There were massive gains and losses to be made on the downwind legs and catching an extra gust could mean the difference between 1st and 8th place. At the finish, Ruby Blue showed a great turn of speed to win convincingly from 2 Men and their Monkey in second and MSS in third.

Race 2 again saw a heavily biased committee boat and there was a drag race out left once more to get out of the adverse tide. 2 Men and their monkey were again showing good pace up the first beat with Project Mayhem (Davy, Joe and Ric – welcome back lads!) in the thick of it at the weather mark. By now, the wind was beginning to howl and cheeks were firmly clenched on the downwind sleigh ride… Sin Bin was able to take advantage of a big gust down the left hand side of the run to come in just ahead of the pack at the leeward mark. They held on to their lead and at the finish it was Sin Bin from Project Mayhem followed by Ruby Blue in third.

Race 3 saw the wind build further to a punchy 20 knots but the fleet managed to get away cleanly. Unfortunately, a collision up the first beat put an end to Bad/Kilcullen’s (Enda, Jerry and Jimmy) mast and regatta but we hope to see the lads back on the water very soon. It’s a measure of the men and the venue that they still had smiles on their faces and pints in their hands by that evening’s après sail. Back up the course, there was a terrific battle for the lead between the boys on Ruby Blue and the boys and girls on Venuesworld.com. The boats were neck and neck down the last run with Ruby Blue eking out the narrowest of leads by the last leeward mark. However, a better spinny drop by the crew of Venuesworld.com and a quick tack at the leeward mark enabled Venuesworld.com to get to the favoured left side and get their nose out in front. Ruby Blue tacked to cover once their spinnaker was stowed away but when Venuesworld.com tacked back for the cross, they had snatched the lead and were leading by a couple of boat lengths. Ruby Blue was not done yet however and they somehow managed to reel Venuesworld.com in by the finish line, finishing by a nose in front. Ruby Blue were really beginning to dominate the regatta now having claimed their second victory of the day from Venuesworld.com in second and Lia (Dave, Ollie and Ben – welcome back Ben!) in third. The Race officer decided that a fourth race was not on the cards and sent the boats back ashore for pints and steaks. Carlingford is a party town and the SBs partied…
Sunday dawned with a fresh northerly, shifty breeze once more and the Race Officer informed the fleet before launching that he would attempt to get the races off quickly as the forecast was for the wind to build further. A few sore heads and many sore bodies made their way out to the race course to do battle once more. Race 4 saw Aidan and the lads on Ruby Blue take up where they left off showing great pace and cool heads to take their third race win of the series. Lia had begun to get into their stride after some “difficulties” on day one with marks attacking them and stormed into a very well-deserved second place ahead of the resurgent Manamana (Graeme, Ronan and Diana) who were showing the fleet how you are supposed to pick your way around Carlingford Lough.

Race 5 saw the wind start to abate slightly and begin to shift around more making the upwind and downwind legs more about making sure you were in phase with the shifts than favouring one side of the course over the other. At the last leeward mark the three lead boats rounded within 2 boat lengths of each other with Sin Bin getting water inside Lia and 2 Men and their Monkey right on their transom. 2 Men and their Monkey had a slick drop and rounding and tacked straight away at the mark. Sin Bin tacked to cover once up to speed and Lia kept on going a few lengths further into fresher breeze before tacking onto starboard. The three boats were neck and neck drag racing up the short last the beat. After a three-way tacking duel, there was a photo finish at the end of the race with Sin Bin taking the win by a quarter of a boat length from 2 Men and their Monkey with Lia a further few feet astern.

Ruby Blue struggled for the first time all weekend and uncharacteristically found themselves back in 6th place. As the points stood, Ruby Blue were on 6 points (12 points without discard), 2 Men and their Monkey were tied in second with Sin Bin on 12 points and Lia was back in fourth on 16 points. Unbeknownst to themselves, Ruby Blue had managed to seal the event with a race to spare… like true champions though, they came out fighting in Race 6 and after a storming second downwind leg, climbed up from third place to take the lead and their fourth race win out of 6 for the weekend. Project Mayhem finished in second in another close finish, this time pipping Sin Bin into third with Lia a close fourth.

When the dust had settled, Ruby Blue emerged victorious on an impressive 7 points with Sin Bin in second place overall on 15 points, a single point ahead of 2 Men and their Monkey in third overall. After a most enjoyable weekend, the fleet returned home to nurse their (happily) exhausted broken bodies back to health.

Next up is the DBSC season opener this Thursday (28th April) evening followed by the first DBSC Saturday (30th April). The SB20 Easterns are being held in Howth as part of the Sportsboat Cup (27th – 29th May – the Easterns are on Saturday and Sunday but there will be a separate series for those interested in racing on the Friday too) which is shaping up to be the event of the summer so get your entry in now and avail of the early bird rates before 1st May.

Published in SB20

Last weekend, September 12th-13th the Carlingford Sailing Club hosted the Irish Open Multihull Championships 2015. Sailors arrived on Friday night to 40 knot winds and driving rain not deterred at all they set up tents! After a few hours the tents had been trashed, so several competitors had to take to the race office shed…. a very cosy welcome to Ireland. Simon Flack was over to defend his title won last year at Lough Neagh, sailing this year with multi-Irish champion crew Barry Swanston. A wrap up by Richard Swanston.

Download results below as a jpeg file.

The open fleet format with all types of catamarans from a catapult to an F18 rated under SCHRS and racing an equal number of windward – leeward and triangular courses (to balance performance strengths) was used with all boats starting off the same start line. Classes were also subdivided into C1 and C2 fleets for individual fleet prizes. Saturdays forecast was gloomy to say the least. Rain and 25 knot baseline gusting to 40 knots from the S.W. To this, add the infamous Carlingford Kettles roaring off the top of the hills at all angles ripping up mini tornadoes of water that march and meander across the Lough ….not to be missed!! After much head scratching and nervous looks to the broken water in the lough and vicious squalls rolling down off the hills, it was decided (after a postponement) to ‘ give it a rattle sure’! We were treated to an unexpected two races in variable but safe conditions.

Saturday – Race 1 & 2
pre startSwannie and Jenni executed a perfect port tack start only to fall into the pack mid first beat. The fleet then had several place changes throughout the race with Simon Flack & Barry Swanston quickly getting used to the Cirrus and had a great race with Wyatt Orsmond & Patrick Billlington in their new Goodall C2. With an increase to the breeze, the Hurricane 5.9 sx with it’s Irish Aussie pair were flying. Wyatt pipped them at the post to secure his first bullet. Swannie and Jenni Brittain were 3rd. Again in Race 2, the pattern was set with the Orsmond/Billlington and Flack/Swanston leading the way with very competitive sailing throughout the race. Simon Flack settled to the Cirrus and pulled off a great first place.

Sunday – Race 3, 4, 5 & 6
Sunday sore heads woke to a much more benign weather picture with Carlingford looking its glorious best: a gentle southerly 4knots to 8knots the forecast. We all sailed out in sparkling 10-12 knots kites up in bright sunshine!

With the wind freshening racing was tight in both the C1 and C2 fleets. Flack/Swanston again came out on top with Orsmond/Billlington in 2nd place and Shane & Matthew Hatton coming in 3rd again. Race 4 (triangle course again) the wind was now a steadyish 15- 18 knots, with the tidal influences beginning to take effect. The judging of lay line was proving critical both upwind and downwind. Swanston was boxed out whilst leading at the start finish gate and the leaders then misjudging the downwind gybing angles to allow the fleet to group together for a frantic last high speed lap! David Biddulf sailing with newbie to cats Stephen Magee had an incredibly close race with Si and Baz to win by 1 second with Wyatt in the C2 snapping at their heels 19 secs behind. Race 5 (windward–leeward) the Flack/Swanston and Orsmond/Billlington flew away in this race with only seconds separating them, throughout Flack/Swanston winning by only 11 seconds! The Aussi Hurricane 5.9SX showing some blistering pace up wind and down unfortunately having some gear failure lead to a clearing of the heads! The Shockwave in third place again. Race 6 belonged to Wyatt and Paddy in their C2 leading from start to finish. Swannie and Jenni showed some great pace in the breeze to have a dingdong battle with Si and Baz the battling Jenni (girlfriend) beating the master of the hoist baz (boyfriend) to the fill the kite and powered over the Cirrus at the spreader mark. The battle continued to the last beat when just as the Shocker rolled the Cirrus Swannie’s mainsheet broke!

The white sail boats had close racing between Dermott Mangan (dad) in his amazing Catapult and Neil Mangan (son) with Simon Griffin as crew on their Dart16. Both gaining excellent overall placing under S.C.H.R.S. They may have done even better with a longer second leg to the gybe mark improving the angle between the marks. So overall went to Simon Flack and Barry Swanston by one point. Great racing! C2 fleet was won by Neil Mangan from the evergreen Dermot Mangan. Travellers Trophy was won by Wyatt.

Published in Racing
2009_oyster_pearl_339.jpg

Above: Action from the 2009 Oyster Pearl event at D&CSC

2006 was a year of great importance for Carlingford Sailing Club, as the new Club House opened in May that year. The development indicates the great confidence of the Club Members and Officers in the future of sailing and shore-based related activities on the Lough.

The Club is now actively seeking new members to become part of a new chapter and new challenges. Commodore John Mc Kevitt is quick to point out that the future is being built on the solid foundations of the great traditions of the past. Now, the new Club House development marks the beginning of the next chapter in the life of Carlingford Sailing Club. That chapter will see the Members as customers, sailors and their friends who are deserving of the very best of quality service. 

(The above information and image courtesy of Dundalk & Carlingford Sailing Club)

 
Dundalk & Carlingford Sailing Club, Carlingford. Tel: 042 937 3238, email: [email protected]

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