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Bangor Town Regatta Gets Off to a Quiet Start on Belfast Lough

23rd June 2022
Robin Young's Jings leads Class 2 in the light weather start to Bangor Town Regatta on Belfast Lough
Robin Young's Jings leads Class 2 in the light weather start to Bangor Town Regatta Credit: Robbie Milhench

A ‘Town’ Regatta at Bangor was first held on Belfast Lough over a century ago and saw reincarnation in 2018. Subsequent regattas fell foul of Covid 19 but on 23rd June it was all systems go for the 49 boats entered in this ‘new look’ four-day event.

In the light of the predicted strong gusts forecast for Sunday, the Fairy class from Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club decided not to race.

That saying ‘In like a lion and out like a lamb’ could be reversed in this instance as the first day of the four-day event began with glassy seas in Belfast Lough but according to the forecast will be anything but glassy by Sunday. The Lough was so patchily calm that Principal Race Officer Con Murphy chose to send home classes 3,4 and 5 after only one race.

Pre-regatta crowds at Bangor MarinaPre-regatta crowds at Bangor Marina

So patience was of the essence and that paid off for the local John Minnis in the Archambault 35 Final Call II who laid down a marker with two first places. Class 3 had only one race and here it was the Corby 29 of Brian and Ryan Wilson from Carrickfergus who topped that class. Garth Lindsay’s Quarter Tonner Jonathan Star from the host club won both IRC and NHS unrestricted in Class 4.

John Minnis in the Archambault 35 Final Call II John Minnis in the Archambault 35 Final Call II

The Byers/Russell Sigma 33, Signet was first in the six-strong Class 5 Restricted while in the depleted eight-strong Sigma 33 One Design fleet the Howth-based Insider (Stephen Mullaney) won Race 1 and Race 2 went to James Miller’s Mayrise from Helensburgh.

The coastal race started at the club line and took the fleet across the Lough to Cloghan Jetty, and back on a mile-long beat to the RUYC No1 mark and a fetch to the finish. Murray Findlay of the Clyde Cruising Club took first place.

Racing continues on Friday with the earlier warning gun at 09.55 am

Published in Bangor Town Regatta
Betty Armstrong

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Betty Armstrong

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Betty Armstrong is Afloat and Yachting Life's Northern Ireland Correspondent. Betty grew up racing dinghies but now sails a more sedate Dehler 36 around County Down

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Bangor Town Regatta 2021

It’s expected that the fleet will number upwards of 60 with several hundred crew and supporting visitors for the 2021 Regatta.

Among the classes expected are IRC, Sigma 33, RS Elite, and day boats such as Waverleys and Fairies.

The Regatta Chairman is Gavin Watson and Royal Ulster Yacht Club is the organising club for what is Northern Ireland's biggest inshore yacht racing event.

Feeder races from Dun Laoghaire and Scotland are planned.

The Bangor Town Regatta fleet will race out of the Bangor Marina, on what is Belfast Lough’s enviable area of virtually tide and hazard free waters.

Two round-the-buoys courses within a manageable distance from the marina will provide testing but enjoyable racing and in addition, coastal races every day will give those who prefer
somewhat more leisurely competition, the opportunity to use the whole of the Lough.

Racing will be in the capable hands of International Race Officer and National Judge, local man Robin Gray.

The Race Office will be located at the Marina close to where the après sailing will be well catered for.

At A Glance - Bangor Town Regatta 2022

Belfast Lough's Bangor Town Regatta runs from Thursday 23rd to Sunday 26th June 2022

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