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Displaying items by tag: Sligo

The Fireball Worlds are now only two weeks away! The regatta officials have been announced! A title sponsor has been secured! New boats are in the final stages of preparation and new sailing combinations have been honing their skills and teamwork over the winter!

This morning, Friday 27th May, the entry stands at 58 boats, spread across 9 nations and 3 continents. The spread of countries covers Ireland, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Australia, Shetland Islands, France, Czech Republic, Canada and Germany, with the continents being Europe, Australia and North America.

The home contingent boasts 28 boats, followed by GBR with 17 boats, France and Switzerland have three entries each, Canada and the Czech Republic 2, with Australia, the Shetlands and Germany each having one. However, there is a late attempt to get a second Australian entry to the event and in fact with entries being open right up to the eve of the regatta, there is always the prospect that more boats may still declare. I also know of one entry that isn't on the list yet as the crew was only secured last weekend and the boat is still being finished out.

So which names stand out in the entry list thus far?
Tom Gillard and Sam Brearey are the current European Champions having won that title in the Czech Republic in Pavlov last October. They gave a very convincing display in that regatta and have shown good form in the UK regattas they have sailed to date. Tom has also "dabbled" recently in the Scorpion scene in UK with success. Also on the podium in Pavlov was Jaroslav Verner of the Czech Republic who has entered for Sligo with a different crew. From further afield and the sole Aussie thus far, is Ben Schulz, sailing with Phillip Bowley, who finished 5th in the 2010 Worlds in Barbados. Ben is the current Secretary of Fireball Australia.

As the largest Fireball fleet internationally, the UK fleet always brings quality to these events and the entry list for Sligo reflects that continuing trend. Defending champions Chips Howarth and Vyv Townend are not entered, but the British contingent is like a "Who's who" of the class there.

Vince Horey, 11th in Barbados races with Andy Thompson, Matt Burge & Richard Wagstaff, 2nd in Barbados sail together again in Sligo, Simon Potts, 3rd placed crew in Barbados teams up with David Wade, 6th placed helm in Barbados and 6th placed crew in Barbados, Tim Saunders, current UKFA Chairman, teams up with Alan Krailing. For those who follow the Fireball scene in the UK and internationally, these are almost household names!

Messrs Jospe & Egli are perennial competitors at international regattas and they are joined by Messrs Tipton & King. Both combinations contested the Barbados event.

European Commodore Maja Suter is part of a 3-boat Swiss representation which also includes another Fireball stalwart in Ruedi Moser. The French contingent has a similar profile with 3 boats and Jean-Pierre Nouel (Monsieur Cantona) their most travelled competitor.

Of the Irish contingent, the names that will be vying for first home boat will include, on current form, Graeme Grant & Hugh Butler, Noel Butler & Stephen Oram, Barry McCartin & Conor Kinsella and Kenny Rumball & Seamus Moore. Much will depend on the weather, but a 28 boat contingent is great news for the host fleet and bodes well for an interesting session of racing.

Sligo here we come!

Published in Fireball

Next month's Fireball World Championships at Sligo Yacht Club has announced Irish boating shoe manufacturer Dubarry as title sponsor. The event is expected to attract up to 100 boats from 13 countries. Dun Laoghaire's Noel Butler is expected to lead the home fleet but already new boats are on the scene and doing well at the Fireball stronghold on Dublin Bay. The international jury has been named for the two week event as: Krystyna Lastowska  International race officer from Poland, Pam Johnson International Measurer from Great Britain, Tim Went from Australia, Brendan Brogan from Ireland, Keld Stentoft from Denmark, Francois Schluchter from Switzerland, Johan Devocht from Belgium. Click for the latest Fireball news.

More on the Fireball class on the forum here.

Published in Fireball
A turnout of two dozen marked a successful start to the 2011 Dublin Port sponsored Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) dinghy season tonight.

Making its debut for the first time under the club burgee was an International Moth dinghy. The ultra fast hull was airborne at just eight knots of breeze, making even the trapezing Fireballs look slow. But despite the pace the new fangled dinghy did not feature in the overall Portsmouth Yardstick (PY)  results. See below.

A healthy turnout of six 'balls, urged on by the fact that the class World Championships is in Sligo in 46 days time, got some trapezing gusts and some planing waves downwind in a north-easterly breeze of 6-8 knots. S. Oram took the winning gun from Louis Smyth sailing Licence to Thrill.

Single handed Lasers boasted twice the Fireball turnout to be the biggest class racing in Scotsman's bay tonight. It's a show of strength from a class surely worthy of its own start if this kind of turnout can be maintained.

Sean Craig won the Laser race from Peter Craig but the overall PY result went to E. Ryan's RS400.

Two Dublin Bay Mermaids and disappointingly, a single IDRA 14, No.124, Squalls also competed.

DUBLIN PORT Dublin Bay Sailing Club Results for 26 APRIL 2011

FIREBALL - 1. nn (S Oram), 2. Licence to Thrill (Louis Smyth), 3. Incubus (C Power/M Barry)

MERMAID - 1. Lively Lady (G O'Neill & M Hanney), 2. Jill (P.Smith/P.Mangan)

PY CLASS - 1. E Ryan (RS400), 2. Sean Craig (Laser), 3. Peter Craig (Laser)

BENETEAU 31.7 - 1. Extreme Reality (P.McSwiney/E.O'Rafferty), 2. Magic (D.O'Sullivan/D.Espey)

BENETEAU 31.7 - 1. Magic (D.O'Sullivan/D.Espey), 2. Extreme Reality (P.McSwiney/E.O'Rafferty)

CRUISERS 2 - 1. Cor Baby (Keith Kiernan et al), 2. Red Rhum (J Nicholson), 3. Free Spirit (John O'Reilly)

CRUISERS 3 - 1. Grasshopper 2 (K & J Glynn), 2. Pamafe (Michael Costello), 3. Papytoo (M.Walsh/F.Guilfoyle)

CRUISERS 4 - 1. Maranda (Myles Kelly), 2. Ghrazel (Charles Pearson), 3. Artemis (J.Giles)

RUFFIAN 23 - 1. Diane ll (Bruce Carswell), 2. Icicle (C & J Murray), 3. Alias (D.Meeke/M.McCarthy)

SIGMA 33 - 1. Rupert (R.Lovegrove/P.Varian), 2. Pippa lV (G.Kinsman/K.Blake/M.O'Brien)

SQUIB - 1. Tais (Michael O'Connell), 2. Periguin (N.Coakley/J.Redahan)

More DBSC News here.

Published in DBSC

At the end of every season there is always speculation about who will be buying new boats and what new combinations will be sailing together the following season. The advent of a World Championships heightens that speculation and with the Fireball Worlds scheduled for June 2011 in Sligo, the Irish fleet were the beneficiaries of this fevered activity writes Cormac Bradley.

At the close of the 2010 season the word was that there would be at least one new boat coming into Ireland for 2011. Ironically, the speculation about these individuals' plans has not been resolved because they are not partcipants in the Dun Laoghaire Frostbite Series, coming as they do from the northern side of the Liffey.

Then the word was out of first one and then two new boats, both coming to Dun Laoghaire. Both have now arrived to Stephen Oram and Kenny Rumball respectively. Kenny's boat is still in dry storage (as advised as recently as last Sunday, 1oth April), but Stephen's boat has already taken to the water. Both boats will have numbers around the 15060 mark, as I have seen a photo of 15057 at the Dinghy Exhibition in London in March.

Both boats will be sailed by new combinations. Stephen Oram teamed up with Noel Butler for the Frostbite Series which they won, despite significant on the water competition from Rumball and others. However, it seems the partnership will extend into the 2011 summer season and the Worlds in June. Seamus Moore announced his (premature) retirement from Fireballs after the Barbados Worlds to go running on a serious basis and among his achievements was completing the New York marathon. However, by the time of the 2010 Fireball Nationals, in Baltimore, he was teamed up with Kenny Rumball to finish 2nd overall and they saw out the season in Dunmore East and the Munsters Championships, which they won.

In addition to being very competitive in the Frostbites, the pair were going afloat early on Sunday mornings to get more time on the water. Thus it would appear that they are an "item" for the Sligo Worlds.

Therefore, as the eve of the 2011 regatta season approaches, these two are at the leading edge of the domestic fleet. There are other more established partnerships that will also contest Sligo, Owen Laverty & Ed Butler (Snr), Frank Miller & Grattan Donnelly, Andy Boyle & Brian Flahive among others but none of these have been able to consistently knock Butler/Oram or Rumball/Moore off the winning path.

Over the winter, the most successful Irish Fireballer internationally, outside the aforementioned, in recent times, Francis Rowan, has been conspicuous by his absence. Francis, sailing with red-hot talent from the UK, Tom Gillard (2010 European Champion), was placed third at the 2009 Fireball Europeans in La Rochelle, winning one race, and was placed inside the top ten at the Worlds the following week, again winning a race. To date there isn't a whisper of Francis' 2011 plans.

The domestic season kicked off last weekend, 9/10th April, with Silver Fleet training in Killaloe, organised by Neil Colin. This weekend coming (15/16th April) we have another training weekend with Adam Bowers at the Royal St. George Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire. Adam is the perennial coach to the British Cadet Class and has coached Olympic aspirants in the 470 Class. He is based in Weymouth, the venue for the 2012 Olympic Regatta which gives his proteges a distinct advantage in the 2012 qualification process. This will be Adam's fourth visit to these shores for training Irish Fireballers and last year's format of coaching at an active regatta, the Leinsters in Howth, was enormously successful. The first regatta of the season will follow shortly therefater, the Leinsters, hosted by Carlingford Sailing Club on the southern shores of Carlingford Lough on 7/8 May. Ex-Fireball Chairman, Ian O'Gorman is the organiser of the event in one of the country's most picturesque locations within very easy driving distance of the greater Dubln area.

Thera are no regattas planned in advance of the Worlds but there will be a reconnaisance in Sligo over the weekend of 21/22 May where we will be joined by Tim Rush of North Sails. This is a revised plan that brings together what was going to be a training weekend by Tim in Dun Laoghaire and a separate visit to Sligo. The absence of regattas is to afford people time for their own individual plans for getting up to speed for Sligo. In a separate assessment of Irish chances at the Sligo Worlds, Noel Butler speculated that two Irish combinations could get into the top 20 in Sligo. At this stage, Butler/Oram and Rumball/Moore would appear to be the leading candidates for those two slots, but the other Irish combinations will be doing their best to upset that particular "applecart" but in a friendly way!

Published in Fireball

Forty entries are already in for Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta, a fixture widely expected to be the biggest in Ireland this season when it sets sail on Dublin Bay in July.

Organisers are expecting up to 500 boats to keep it on a par with the 2009 event. The early entries, 11 weeks ahead of the entry deadline, is being taken as a thumbs up by competitors for the fun and vlaue theme of this year's VDLR.

So far 22 different clubs have entered from six countries. The bulk of the fleet is Irish but there are early entries from France, Isle of Man, UK, Wales and Northern Ireland. Another good turnout is exepcted from Liverpool and Holyhead for boats competing in the IRC Lyver Cup Race across the Irish Sea. Ten boats from the Clyde will also compete on the Bay.

Cork's Conor Phelan the skipper of Jump Juice is one of the first Royal Cork boats confirmed.

Two handed IRC racing makes its debut in July's Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta organisers have also confirmed. Click HERE.

On the dinghy front, the Fireball class has confirmed it will be running an'Open Championship' within the regatta, an event that follows the class world championships in Sligo in June.

Published in Volvo Regatta

Stena Line have confirmed their commitment to the discounted ferry fare scheme for entrants to the 2011 Fireball Worlds in Sligo Yacht Club from across the Irish Sea. Stena generously put in place a similar scheme for 2010 that allowed Irish Fireballers to get to the UK to collect the boats from Barbados and to contest the Fireball Europeans in the Czech Republic.

The scheme will only apply to the crossing of the Irish Sea, with the exception of the Fleetwood – Larne route, and regrettably will not apply to the routes from mainland Europe as Stena operates these in conjunction with other parties.

Access to the preferential fares will be via a dedicated website, using an event code and specific booking information all of which will be provided by the Irish Fireball Association once Stena Line have confirmed their fare structure for the 2011 season.

The website is www.stenaline.ie/event and the booking information will consist of specific words and a dedicated event number.

The only condition attached to this offer is that participants must be able to confirm their entry to the Worlds in documentary form at their ports of departure and arrival, otherwise additional charges will be levied.

 

Published in Fireball
The location of record breaking waves that appear only every few years will remain a secret known only to a handful of brave surfers. An international team - including Irish surfers - rode the giant prowler waves off the west coast of Ireland on Monday.

According to a Press Association report one of the six-man team, Briton Andrew Cotton, first spotted it several years ago while on board an Irish Coast Guard helicopter after being rescued from a surf accident off Mullaghmore, Co Sligo.

Last night some west coast surfers told Afloat.ie the location is most likely off the Sligo coast, up to two kilometres offshore and close to an underwater reef.

The terrifying-looking wave, dubbed 'Prowlers', was reportedly up to 50ft high on Tuesday when the Irish, British, Australian and South African surfers ventured out. Photos of it appeared on the front page of the Irish Times yesterday.

The surf team included Bundoran's Richie Fitzgerald who says he had waited for five years for the type of conditions required to surf it and on Monday the waves were in the 40-50ft range. Conditions were perfect due to the massive swell generated by Hurricane Tomas.

Published in Surfing
The Fireball World Championships come to Sligo Yacht Club next June and the West Coast club has been gearing up for what looks certain to be the biggest dinghy event here in 2011. Have a look at this short web commercial (SCROLL DOWN FOR VID) which tells you all you need to know about what to expect in one of Ireland's most scenic and - from the sailor's point of view - challenging locations.
Published in Fireball

John Britton of the famous Rossnowlagh surfing dynasty was among the winners at the Billabong Easkey Open in Co Sligo last weekend. (SCROLL DOWN FOR GREAT YOUTUBE VID)

The national school teacher from Ballyshannon took the senior title home to Donegal, site of next year's European Surfing Championships.

But Britton wasn't the only Donegal resident to enjoy success at Easkey, the final stop of the Irish Championships Tour.

Nicole Morgan from Tullaghan came tops in the women's event, retaining her Irish championship title. And although missing out on the national title, Emmet O’Doherty from Bundoran won out in the stand up paddle.

Junior talent Iarom Madden Travers from Bundoran also showed skill in the open finals, coming third behind Aaron Reid from Sligo and first place Fergal Smith from Mayo.

Published in Surfing

Sligo Yacht Club hosted the GP 14 Summer Open and Irish Youth Championships at Rosses Point on the 24th and 25th July.

26 boats lined up at the start. Gus Henry, himself a GP 14 sailor can always be relied upon to provide exceptional race management. He called back race 1 after a significant wind change. The race started proper a short while after that. Keith Louden and Dessie Hughes from Lough Foyle Yacht Club got to the weather mark first in 12 knots of wind, followed by local sailors Niall Henry and James Conlon. In third, Shane McCarthy and Al Fry followed close behind in their new boat. Niall Henry took line honours in the race after sailing a flawless race and taking the lead on the second beat. Paddy O'Connor and Tania McHale climbed from fourth to take second. McCarthy and Fry took third.

Race 2 followed shortly after. This time, there was a definite interest by Paul Maguire and Niamh McCormick from Sutton SC in the right hand side as the tide was picking up in pace. Alastair Duffin and Paul Whitcombe from Newtownards SC went that way too but not quite as far out. Shane and Fry chose the middle route, while the Mc Guinness Brothers from Moville Boat Club initially went left and then back into the middle right. At the weather mark, Maguire and McCormick had a clear lead with McCarthy and Fry in second with the McGuinness brothers a short distance away. The McGuinness brothers passed McCarthy and Fry on the second reach. Maguire and McCormick maintained their lead to the finish with half a boat length to spare at the end with the Donegal team a close second.

Race three got under way in similar wind to the first day but this time the tide was going out. The boats that went left looked good initially, but their hopes were soon dashed as the right side of the fleet piled in to the weather mark. Henry and Conlon though, who had sailed a middle course got to the weather mark first with about 7 boat lengths to spare. They let nothing slip and finished with a convincing first. With 1-5-1 in a four race series, they couldn't be beaten and didn't start race 4. The McGuinness brothers won race four taking the lead in the first reach, leaving them second overall. Conor Byrne and Pamela Lee, first time GP sailor were second and O'Connor and McHale finished third giving them third in the event.

The silver fleet was won by Nigel Sloane and Laura McFarland with Gerry Gilligan and Lucia Nicholson in second and Johnny Park and Bob Stinson in third.

The bronze fleet was won by Conor Byrne and Pamela Lee, Wai Manu and Don MacCormack in second and Bill Johnson and Stephen Byrne in third.

Published in GP14
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