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Royal St. George Commodore Martin Byrne lifted the Dragon Edinburgh Cup in Abersoch, North Wales tonight after a three way last battle for victory went the Dun Laoghaire crew's way in emphatic style.

The current Irish champions won the pivotal final race by over three minutes in breezes touching 25-knots to become the latest holder of the Edinburgh Cup; the British National Championship.

Dragonjaguar

Martin Byrne steers to victory with crew Adam Winkelmann on spinnaker and Pedro Andrade. Photo: Fiona Brown

Celebrations will continue back in Dun Laoghaire tomorrow as the Dragon helmsman and his crew Adam Winkelmann and Portuguese sailmaker Pedro Andrade mark the significant victory that is a major shot in the arm for Irish Dragon sailing.

The 62-year old trophy is one of the most prestigious in the class along with the Gold Cup of this former Olympic keelboat. The 2012 Gold Cup is slated for Kinsale Yacht Club next year so the weekend win is a another fillip for the class here.

It all went down to the wire for the 43-strong fleet from Japan, Australia, Russia, Ireland and the UK on the final day of the 2011 Dragon Edinburgh Cup, supported by Aberdeen Asset Management, at the South Caernarvonshire Yacht Club in Abersoch. Going into the day Mikhail Muratov and Klaus Diederichs sailing with Irish Star keelboat pair Peter O'Leary and David Burrows were tied for the lead on 16 points, Martin Byrne was on 17 points, Julia Bailey counted 23 and Olga White 28. In the Corinthian fleet Richard Goodbody led Simon Brien by a single point with Patrick Gifford and Nigel Biggs both five points behind them.

There were four attempts at getting the final race, the sixth in the series, started including three under black flag. A total of six teams were disqualified including Olga White, whose hopes of making the podium were immediately dashed. Eventually at the fourth time of asking the fleet got away cleanly for what proved to be the best race of the series with the wind up at around 20 knots from the southwest and some nice big waves which made the runs pretty exciting.

Off the line Byrne got the best start at the committee boat end and was the first to tack off to the right with Diederichs and Muratov following. By the mid point Byrne had already established a lead with Diederichs and Muratov jostling for position on the front edge of the pack. Muratov went further right than Diederichs gaining a significant advantage at the top end of the course and as they rounded the first mark Byrne led with Muratov in fourth and Diederichs seventh.

As Diederichs and Muratove fought their way out of the pack, Byrne established control of the race and clearly had no intention of relinquishing it, gradually stretching away from the fleet. Behind him at the leeward mark Muratov rounded third with Diederichs on his tail in fourth.

On the second beat Byrne extended his lead to some 200 yards, Muratov moved into second and Diederichs third. They held their positions on the second run and up the final beat Byrne was able to maintain a loose cover on the fleet and cruise to a very well deserved victory. As Byrne was enjoying himself out front Muratov and Diederichs were still fighting it out. Meanwhile Simon Brien had been showing bursts of incredible speed to pull up through the fleet and as the fleet came on to the final beat he was challenging Muratov and Diederichs. Brien chose to work the middle whilst the other two went hard right and his move paid off. On the line Byrne and his team looked back to see Muratov finish second, Brien third and Diederichs fourth. Brien's nearest Corinthian challengers Nigel Biggs and Patrick Gifford crossed the line in fifth and thirteenth places.

Published in Dragon

After today's fifth race Mikhail Muratov and Klaus Diederichs (with Peter O'Leary and David Burrows crewing) are tied on 16 points for the lead at the 2011 Edinburgh Cup supported by Aberdeen Asset Management. Dun Laoghaire Combination of Martin Byrne and Adam Winkelmann had another good day with a third place moving up into third overall and one point behind the leaders. 

Overnight second placed Julia Bailey had a disastrous start and first beat rounding the first mark in around 30th place. She managed to pull back up into 17th by the end of the race by drops down into fourth overall. Olga White, who had been lying just behind Bailey in third also had a difficult race and had to recover from a mid 20s rounding at the first mark, eventually climbing back up to 16th by the end of the race. As a result she is now lying in fifth place.

A single race tomorrow will be the decider in the 2011 Edinburgh Cup

Published in Dragon

Royal St. George Commodore Martin Byrne's day got off to a tricky start on the second day of the 2011 Dragon Edinburgh Cup yesterday when he and his crew Pedro Andrade and Adam Winkelmann found themselves close to colliding with the committee boat having been hit by another Dragon in the final moments before the start gun. Fortunately they missed the committee boat, but by the time they had extracted themselves from the situation they had been forced left and lost a lot of ground so finished the race in eighteenth place. They recovered somewhat in the final race with a seventh but go from second to fourth in the overall rankings.

After a day of mixed fortunes with a convincing win in race three followed by a 29th in race four Klaus Diederich's sailing Fever with Peter O'Leary and David Burrows has dropped down from third into fifth but remains in the running for the Edinburgh Cup.

The day's two top performing teams were led by Cowes based Julia Bailey, sailing Aimee with Graham Bailey and David Heritage, and Russia's Olga White, sailing Murka 7 with Martin Leifelt and Vadim Statsenko. Bailey took a third in race three and then went on to win race four in impressive style, taking her from fourth to second overall. White scored a ninth followed by a third and moves into third place, four points behind Bailey.

For overnight leader Mikhail Muratov, sailing Murka 8 with Valentin Uvarkin and Vladimir Krutskikh, it was a day of consolidation and a fifth followed by a ninth allowed him to retain his lead by a seven point margin.

Other top performers today were Olaf Sorenson from Kinsale racing Christianna with Shawn Kingston and Mark Pettitt, and Tim Tavinor from
Burnham racing Tigger with Thomas Wilton and Ollie Moser. Sorenson sailed an impressive third race, pushing race winner Klaus Diederichs
all the way down the final run to finish a close second, while 2011 Dragon World Champion crew Tim Tavinor finally found his form again
coming second to Julia Bailey in race four.

"About as difficult as it gets. I'm not sure when I've seen a trickier race course than that and the last race was particularly difficult." was how Graham Bailey described the second day of racing at the 2011 Dragon Edinburgh Cup supported by Aberdeen Asset Management in Abersoch. Despite the exceptionally difficult conditions the race committee was able to run two further races today bringing the total races sailed to four out of a possible six.

The day's two top performing teams were led by Cowes based Julia Bailey, sailing Aimee with Graham Bailey and David Heritage, and Russia's Olga White, sailing Murka 7 with Martin Leifelt and Vadim Statsenko. Bailey took a third in race three and then went on to win race four in impressive style, taking her from fourth to second overall. White scored a ninth followed by a third and moves into third place, four points behind Bailey.

For overnight leader Mikhail Muratov, sailing Murka 8 with Valentin Uvarkin and Vladimir Krutskikh, it was a day of consolidation and a fifth followed by a ninth allowed him to retain his lead by a seven point margin. Martin Byrne's day got off to a tricky start when he and his crew of Pedro Andrade and Adam Winklemann found themselves close to colliding with the committee boat having been hit by another Dragon in the final moments before the start gun. Fortunately they missed the committee boat, but by the time they had extracted themselves from the situation they had been forced left and lost a lot of ground so finished the race in eighteenth place. They recovered somewhat in the final race with a seventh but go from second to fourth in the overall ranking. After a day of mixed fortunes with a convincing win in race three followed by a 29th in race four Klaus Diederich's sailing Fever with Peter O'Leary and David Burrows has dropped down from third into fifth but remains in the running for the Edinburgh Cup.

Other top performers today were Olaf Sorenson from Kinsale racing Christianna with Shawn Kingston and Mark Pettitt, and Tim Tavinor from Burnham racing Tigger with Thomas Wilton and Ollie Moser. Sorenson sailed an impressive third race, pushing race winner Klaus Diederichs all the way down the final run to finish a close second, while 2011 Dragon World Champion crew Tim Tavinor finally found his form again coming second to Julia Bailey in race four.

Published in Dragon

Irish crews are to the fore - inlcuding a new crew combination at the Dragon Edinburgh cup – the British national championships – in Abersoch this week. Irish National champion (and Royal St.George YC Commodore) Martin Byrne lies second overall sailing with last week's VDLR regatta chief Adam Winkelmann. One point behind Byrne is the defending Edinburgh Cup Champion Klaus Diederichs, who this week is sailing with a brand new crew of Olympic Star keelboat pairing, Peter O'Leary and David Burrows.

Unexpectedly good sailing weather and two hotly contested races opened the 2011 Cup, supported by Aberdeen Asset Management, in Abersoch yesterday. The forecast had been for beautiful sunshine but very light airs and the 43 crews from Australia, Japan, Russia, Ireland and the UK went afloat in a fickle 2-3 knot breeze with little expectation of good racing. It took several hours to happen, but fortunately the weather gods eventually smiled on the fleet and at around 2pm the wind began to fill in from the north, quickly building to 16-18 knots and more.

Two cut and thrust races were completed in the sparkling conditions and by the end of the day Russia's Mikhail Muratov, sailing Murka 8 with Valentin Uvarkin and Vladimir Krutskikh had taken the overall lead with a second place in the opening race and a win in race two. Muratov's nearest rival tonight is current Irish National Champion Martin Byrne, racing Jaguar with Adam Winkleman and Pedro Andrade, who won the opening race and went on to finish sixth in race two. Just one point behind Byrne in third overall is defending Edinburgh Cup Champion Klaus Diederichs, who this week is sailing with a brand new crew of Peter O'Leary and Dave Burrows, better known as one of the top Olympic Star teams having finished second at this year's Baccardi Cup. Fourth place overall is currently a tie between Russia's Olga White sailing Murka 7 with Martin Leifelt and Vadim Statsenko, and Gavia Wilkinson-Cox of Cowes sailing Jerboa with Martin Payne and Lars Wegener.

In the Corinthian Division, for which only non-professional crews compete, Burnham's Mark and Mandy Wade racing Avalanche with Andrew Norden lead the fleet and also hold sixth place in the overall standings. Three points behind the Wades is Simon Brien aboard Kin from Cultra, Northern Ireland, sailing with his brother Mark and David Gomes, who also make the overall top ten at eighth place. Just three points separate places three to five in the Corinthian division, which are held by Ireland's Richard Goodbody sailing Diva, Rob Campbell from Burnham sailing Ganador and Owen Pay from Cowes sailing Nijord.

It was a good day all round for the Corinthian teams who certainly gave the pros plenty to think about. The prize for best performance in a single race by a Corinthian boat undoubtedly goes to Owen Pay and his crew of Jon Mortimer and Steve Richardson for their impressive third place in race two. They got a cracking start and put together a controlled first beat to round the weather mark in third place hot on the heels of Julia Bailey and Mikhail Muratov. Despite being under constant attack from both Klaus Diederichs and Martin Byrne, Pay and his team kept their heads and not only successfully defended their position all the way to the finish but at times also put significant pressure on the leading pair.

The Dragon is very much an equal opportunities class and not only are female helms no longer a novelty, but they are now regularly beating the boys at their own game at international level. In race two Julia Bailey of Cowes sailing Aimee with husband Graham Bailey and David Heritage came off the line like a scalded cat and sailed a near perfect beat to round the weather mark in first place neck and neck with Mikhail Muratov. From here on in a dogfight of epic proportions developed with neither boat giving an inch. The two boats rounded every mark neck and neck and were almost constantly overlapped. Bailey threw everything but the kitchen sink at Muratov on the final beat, but she also had to work extremely hard to keep the chasing Owen Pay at bay. The boats traded tacks all the way into the finish but whilst she held off Pay it enabled Muratov to take victory on the line. A slightly disappointing eighteenth place in race one means that Bailey now lies in seventh place overall and she is joined in the top ten by two more top female helms, Olga White and Gavia Wilkinson-Cox, who share equal points after the opening day and find themselves battling it out for fourth place overall.

Abersoch and the South Caernarvonshire Yacht Club are proving to be most enthusiastic and generous hosts for this event and many of the competitors have remarked that whilst the racing is as cut and thrust as any on offer, the atmosphere surrounding the regatta is wonderfully relaxed and harks back to a bygone era. Perhaps it's because the boats are on swinging moorings and the crews are ferried out and back by club launches, perhaps it's the impressive way in which the club members and the local Abersoch Dragon Fleet have clearly pulled together to run the event on an entirely voluntary basis, perhaps it's the incredible hospitality and helpfulness being shown to all competitors, or perhaps it's just that there is something a little bit magical about Abersoch with its majestic mountain backdrop, sandy beaches and unique micro-climate, but what ever it is the Dragon fleet like it and want more please!

And more they can have as racing continues until Saturday 16 July with up to five more races scheduled. The forecast for the coming three days is for moderate to strong winds. Two races are scheduled for Thursday and Friday and a single race is scheduled for Saturday.

Additonal reporting from the Int. Dragon Class

Published in Dragon
Tagged under

With only four months to the start of the race, China revealed its first sole entry into the Volvo Ocean Race this morning and also announced an Irish sponsor as part of its first challenge for world sailing honours. Discover Ireland, promoting Irish tourism, is backing the boat as a secondary sponsor. Mike Sanderson, one of the world's leading sailors and past winner of the race, will lead Team Sanya. 

vor_sanya

China was previously represented in the 2008-2009 edition by Green Dragon, a jointly backed venture with Ireland, an entry that promised a podium finish but finished fifth out of the seven boats competing.

Irish crew will also be on the boat for this episode of the race but those details are under wraps until an Irish launch of the project on July 1, it is understood.

The Chinese entry is the seventh entry in to the race.

The race finishes in Galway in June 2012.

Despite its huge technical and financial resources, the most populous nation on the planet has never won a round-the-globe sailing competition but intends to make the breakthrough, with the recruitment of New Zealander Mike Sanderson as skipper.

Sanderson, 40, is a two-time winner of the Volvo Ocean Race and will chase a hat trick of triumphs with a crew that mixes experienced sailors with relatively raw Chinese members.

Team Sanya is the seventh world-class contender to join this year's race, with Sanderson going head-to-head with some of the sailing's biggest names.

"This is a fantastic opportunity to race under the flag of such a great country and culture," said Sanderson today at the Team Sanya launch in central Beijing.

vor_discoverire

"We are building up a strong team and are ready to take on this exciting challenge. Our approach will be one of compelling intent, working fast and smart, representing this great country and team with ambition, dynamism and colourful energy."

China, as is the case in many sports, has incredible potential within sailing and a win in the Volvo Ocean Race would be a huge boost to its ambitions.

Li Quanhai, Vice Chairman of the China Yacht Association said: "China is a sports power and has abundant marine resources. Our involvement in top sailing events, such as the Olympic Regatta and the Volvo Ocean Race, greatly improves the development of China's water sports.

Knut Frostad, CEO of Volvo Ocean Race said: "We are very excited about the news of Team Sanya and the return of Mike Sanderson, a veteran and true ambassador of the Volvo Ocean Race.

"This will be the seventh entry for the next edition and will not only bring a competitive yacht to our first class field but also will allow China to build on its already large sailing following.

"Team Sanya will allow the Chinese sailing fans to connect with the Volvo Ocean Race again and will be an amazing platform to engage with new audiences and attract potential tourists to Sanya and China itself."

For the Deputy Mayor of Sanya, Wu Yanjun, the city known as the "Hawaii of the Orient" would directly benefit from this opportunity. "Hosting world class events like the Volvo Ocean Race will directly improve our sailing and yachting related facilities."

The stopover will be in Luhuitou Bay, Sanya, where construction is expected to finish in August 2011. When completed, the facility will be a world-class marina.

China was previously represented in the 2008-2009 edition by Green Dragon, a jointly backed venture with Ireland and there will again be an Irish flavour to the Team Sanya challenger with Discover Ireland, promoting Irish tourism, renewing its commitment as a secondary sponsor.

Helly Hansen will be the Official Clothing Partner to the team and the Sanya-based Blue Ocean Protection Association will conduct onboard environmental-protection initiatives while spreading the philosophy of protecting the oceans everywhere throughout the race.

sanderson

Mr. Jiang Sixian, Vice-governor of Hainan Province and Party Secretary of Sanya City, Mike Sanderson, Skipper of Team Sanya, George Blake, General Manager, Global Promotion for Team Sanya. China launched its first ever sole entry in the Volvo Ocean Race today and announced that one of the world's leading sailors, twice Volvo Ocean Race winner Mike Sanderson from New Zealand, would helm its Team Sanya for the gruelling nine-month, 39,270 mile challenge beginning in October. The Announcement took place at the Park Hyatt, Beijing, China Friday June. 17, 2011.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race
A strong, unstable and blustery airflow produced exciting, and at times marginal racing conditions at the week end for the East Coast Dragon Championship hosted by the Royal Irish Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire.

Despite Race Officer Jack Roy's skill and patience only four of the six race series was completed as a full gale swept through the bay on today.

In winds gusting up to 30 knots on the Friday and Saturday the tricky conditions produced four different winners, but Cameron Good and his team from Kinsale showed the most consistency to take the championship. Richard Goodbody from the host club was a close second, with Royal North of Ireland's Simon Brien third.

The Dragon focus now turns to Kinsale for the Nationals in August, and the last chance for visitors to check out the venue for the the Dragon Gold Cup in 2012'

Dragon East Coast Championship 2011 Results

1st Cameron Good, Simon Furney, Henry Kingston KYC
2nd Richard Goodbody, Rick Johnson, Rob Johnson RIYC
3rd Simon Brien, Mark Brien, David Good RNIYC
4th Andrew Craig RSGYC
5th Martin Byrne RSGYC

Published in Dragon

Low pressure systems played havoc with the Royal Alfred YC Baily Bowl on Dublin Bay this weekend with visitors from Belfast Lough adding much needed colour writes our Dublin Bay Correspondent. The one design fixture struggled to attract big numbers in any of the four fleets sailing and the local Flying fifteen class opted out altogether.

The one design weekend is part of the 2011 Royal Alfred Season.

Race officers Brian Reddy and Barry MacNeany succeeded in completing three races on Saturday on both race courses but 50 knot gusts on a white Dublin Bay put paid to Sunday racing entirely.

Simon Brien from Cultra sailing Kin won the six boat Dragon fleet with two firsts and a second from Richard Goodbody and the Johnson Brothers Diva. Next week the class East coast championships will be held on the bay.

Peter Wallace's Toy for the Boys took the Squib class from local Frank Whelan in Lola.

Vincent Delany, a favourite for the Squib event, didn't show his usual form in third returning twice at starts and struggling up through the fleet.

Requests for redress from the race committee after recall signal misfire were denied according to the RAYC.

Peter and Marie Dee in Kookaburra after winning race two, lost third place overall to Delany after retiring from the final race.

In the six boat RS Elite fleet which decamped from the shores of Belfast Lough, Tiffany Brien crewed by Jay Bourke tied with John Patterson in Momentary Lapse on 7 points but lost on tie break. The Laser radial sailor still beat her uncle Mark in Full Marks!

Trevor Darcy and Simon Hutchinson from Carrrickfergus in Bullet won the SB3 fleet by a point from Colin Galavan's Defiant after the fleet retired from the final race as the wind touched force six.

Published in Royal Alfred YC

Spot the mark was the order of the day on Dublin Bay for this afternoon's Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) race as boats, ships and racing marks appeared - and disappeared - in a sea mist that persisted all afternoon.  The south easterly breeze that had prevailed this week means Forty foot mark, located just off Sandycove point, has got more than its fair share of use. Last Thursday's courses came in to play again this afternoon in Scotsmans bay.

David Williams of the Royal St. George Yacht Club sailing Phantom produced the same form as Thursday night to win from Michael Doorly in Aphrodite in a seven boat Dragon fleet. In the Flying fifteen's Frank Burgess  of the National Yacht Club won both races. The SB3 results have not been recorded and nor have Cruisers Zero. John Maybury's Cruiser one entry, the J109 Joker, was a winner on IRC and Chris Moore's J109 Powder Monkey was the ECHO handicap winner. The rest of the DBSC results from this afternoon's race are below:

As the DBSC fleet sailed back to their moorings more boats appeared out of the mist around 4.30pm. It was the leading pack of the ISORA fleet returning from their second race to Rockabill and back. And bringing them home was Bay regular Derek Martin's Lively Lady. Click for our ISORA story here.

DUBLIN PORT Dublin Bay Sailing Club Results for 7 MAY 2011

BENETEAU 31.7 - 1. Flying Machine (Conor O'Gallagher), 2. Prospect (Chris Johnston), 3. Bluefin Two (M & B Bryson)

BENETEAU 31.7 Echo- 1. Prospect (Chris Johnston), 2. Fiddly Bits (Kevin Byrne et al), 3. Flying Machine (Conor O'Gallagher)

CRUISERS 1 - 1. Joker 11 (John Maybury), 2. Something Else (J.Hall et al), 3. Aztec 3 (Peter Beamish)

CRUISERS 1 Echo - 1. Powder Monkey (C.Moore/M.Byrne), 2. Joker 11 (John Maybury), 3. Aztec 3 (Peter Beamish)

CRUISERS 2 Echo - 1. Dick Dastardly (B.Cusack et al), 2. Jawesome 11 (V.Kennedy/M.Dyke), 3. Smile (O'Connell/Healy/O'Sullivan)

CRUISERS 2 - 1. Jawesome 11 (V.Kennedy/M.Dyke), 2. Bendemeer (Lindsay Casey Power), 3. Smile (O'Connell/Healy/O'Sullivan)

CRUISERS 3 Echo - 1. Gung Ho (G & S O'Shea), 2. Hyflyer (John Barnard), 3. Cacciatore (Anne O'Callaghan et al)

CRUISERS 3 - 1. Gung Ho (G & S O'Shea), 2. Hyflyer (John Barnard), 3. Papytoo (M.Walsh/F.Guilfoyle)

CRUISERS 4 - 1. Maranda (Myles Kelly), 2. Ghrazel (Charles Pearson)

DRAGON - 1. Phantom (D.Williams/P.Bowring), 2. Aphrodite (Michael Doorly et al), 3. Susele (Michael Halpenny)

FLYING FIFTEEN - 1. Snow White (Frank Burgess), 2. The Big Bow Wow (N.Meagher/N.Matthews), 3. Fflogger (Alan Dooley)

FLYING FIFTEEN Race 2- 1. Snow White (Frank Burgess), 2. Hi Fibre (Michael McCambridge), 3. The Gruffalo (Keith Poole)

GLEN - 1. Glenluce (D & R O'Connor), 2. Glenshesk (L.Faulkner et al), 3. Glendun (B.Denham et al)

IDRA 14 FOOT - 1. Dunmoanin (Frank Hamilton), 2. Doody (J.Fitzgerald/J.Byrne), 3. Squalls (Stephen Harrison)

IDRA 14 FOOT Race 2- 1. Dunmoanin (Frank Hamilton), 2. Squalls (Stephen Harrison), 3. Doody (J.Fitzgerald/J.Byrne)

MERMAID - 1. Jill (P.Smith/P.Mangan), 2. Lively Lady (G O'Neill & M Hanney), 3. Kim (D Cassidy)

MERMAID Race 2- 1. Lively Lady (G O'Neill & M Hanney), 2. Jill (P.Smith/P.Mangan), 3. Kim (D Cassidy)

PY CLASS - 1. E Ryan (RS400), 2. F.Heath (Laser 1), 3. Desmond McCarthy (Laser 1)

PY CLASS Race 2- 1. F.Heath (Laser 1), 2. Desmond McCarthy (Laser 1), 3. E Ryan (RS400)

RUFFIAN 23 - 1. Ruffles (Michael Cutliffe), 2. Ripples (Frank Bradley), 3. Diane ll (Bruce Carswell)

SHIPMAN - 1. Gusto (C Heath), 2. Jo Slim (J.Clarke et al), 3. Whiterock (Henry Robinson)

SIGMA 33 - 1. White Mischief (Timothy Goodbody), 2. Gwili Two (D.Clarke/P.Maguire), 3. Popje (Ted McCourt)

SQUIB - 1. Femme Fatale (Joe O'Byrne), 2. Kookaburra (P & M Dee), 3. Nimble (Brian O'Hare)

SQUIB Race 2- 1. Femme Fatale (Joe O'Byrne), 2. Nimble (Brian O'Hare), 3. Kookaburra (P & M Dee)

WHITE SAIL CRUISERS Echo- 1. Sea Safari (Jacquelin Smith), 2. Calypso (Howard Knott), 3. Nirvana (Bernard Neeson)

WHITE SAIL CRUISERS - 1. Calypso (Howard Knott), 2. Act Two (Michael O'Leary et al), 3. Arwen (Philip O'Dwyer)

Published in DBSC
The Galway Ocean Sports Centre will be formally launched by Éamon Ó Cuív Minister for Social Protection and Defence on Friday 18th February at 5:30pm.

The centre will provide facilities for all the watersports organisations in the city and region and is located in the new Galway Harbour Enterprise Park adjacent to the new harbour slipway that was built specifically for the Volvo Ocean Race in 2009. The 25,000 sq ft premises is being provided by Cold Chon (Galway) Ltd for a nominal rent and the land is being provided free by Galway Harbour Company.

Some of the clubs that have already committed to this new facility include the Galway Sea Scouts, Galway Sea Sports Association, Galway Sub Aqua Club, Bádoiri an Cladaigh, OYTI, Galway Coastal Rowing, Kayak Mor and Galway Bay Sailing Club.

'The Harbour Company is pleased to assist in pulling together the various water sport bodies under one roof and in the heart of the harbour. The new facility and the recently constructed slipway will be the focal point for Galway's marine leisure, getting Galwegians afloat and established in the city, commented Harbour Master', Captain Brian Sheridan.

The Centre is also hosting Let's Do It Global which ran the very successful Green Dragon campaign and the Galway Volvo Ocean Race Festival. The team is now working towards hosting a spectacular finish to the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 in July 2012.

The centre will provide operational facilities such as offices, changing rooms and storage facilities. There will be no social amenities or bars at the centre however it is anticipated that the establishment of the centre will provide impetus for attracting further watersport events to Galway.

The launch will take place at The Galway Ocean Sports Centre, Galway Harbour Enterprise Park, Galway City.

Published in Galway Harbour

July's Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta has taken in 22 entries six months ahead of the first race. It's an encouraging figure that's on a par with the 2009 VDLR, the biggest regatta in Irish sailing that year.

The positive early response is an indication, says organiser Adam Winkelmann, that the 2011 fleet, should be a bumper one too when it sets sail on July 7th for the four day event.

The emphasis is again on providing quality racing over different courses each day but organisers are also aiming to live up up to the regatta's pre-event billing as a 'Mega Party'.

The event has opened a new website, a new Facebook page (with afloat.ie, so if you're a Facebook user please show your support and 'like it'). The regatta site is also featuring the youtube clip below of events on the bay two years ago.


So far entries received are spread across nine separate classes but it's a visiting Wayfarer fleet with eight boats named already that is setting the pace. The organisers are expecting up to 50 of the two man classic design for the class National Championships that's being staged as part of the regatta.

The notice of race (NOR) was published online in October and highlighted a reduced entry fee for 'earlybird entries'. Click HERE. or scroll down to download it as a PDF. If you participated in 2009 and entered online, this year you only need to enter your email address.

Three boats are entered in the non spinnaker class and another three in the Squib keelboat. Two entries have been received in both IRC 2 and 3.  

It's still too early for a table of bands to be decided but the organisers intend to give some indication of handicap break-ups as the entries build. The IRC bands will be in line with those laid down by the Irish Cruiser Racing Association.

Despite the fact the regatta's strength since 2007 is that it draws on the capital's own fleet of 400 boats it is in fact visitors from elsewhere on the east coast that are first in. East Down Yacht Club, for example, has four entries.

But locals are signing up too. Single entries have been received in the Mermaid, Beneteau 31.7, Dragon and IRC Zero classes.

Course areas are likely to stay the same according to principal Race officer con Muphy of the National YC. Th race team is Alan Crosbie - KYC, Peter Crowley - RCYC,
David Lovegrove - HYC, Harry Gallagher - HYC, Henry Leonard - RIYC, Jack Roy - RIYC and Con Murphy  - NYC. Mike Butterfield will head up the jury.

The organisers are on the look out for volunteers to assist in the run up to and during the country's biggest sailing event. In 2009 over 300 helped to make it the biggest participant sport event in the country after the city marathon, with over 3,500 sailors afloat. More details from Ciara in the event office HERE.

Published in Volvo Regatta
Page 17 of 19

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