#ISAF YOUTH WORLDS – Irish debutantes are off to an explosive start at the ISAF Youth World Championship on home waters this afternoon, with two Irish crews in the top five overall after the first two races of the week-long Dublin Bay series.
Royal Cork's Patrick Crosbie and Grattan Roberts are third overall after two races in the Boys' 420 class, counting a 15th and second placing in their 30–boat fleet.
“It was pretty good - better than we expected,” said 15-year-old sailor Crosbie.
In today’s second race they had managed to get into second on the first upwind leg. “It is hard to tell,” Crosbie admitted of where he expected them to be at this early stage of the regatta. “We didn’t know a lot of the boats or what the level was. We are very happy today.”
The good news for the Irish youth sailing team continues with Dun Laoghaire's Finn Lynch posting fourth overall from 45 starters in the Laser Radial class, a second top class result for the host nation.
Conditions were ideal for the start of the championships off Dun Laoghaire with moderate north-westerly winds, if a little chilly.
The international event kicked off last night with an opening ceremony that has drawn 61 nations to Ireland for the 42nd staging of the world class event.
The balance of the three boat Irish team also took top ten results, except for the Dun Laoghaire based 29er boys Sean and Tadgh Donnelly who lie 11th from 24.
The buoyant Irish results bode well for the young Irish squad. Both Lynch and the Cork 420 pairing are making their international debut this week.
Previous ISAF Youth Worlds competitor Sophie Murphy, who hails from Strangford Lough, also got off to a strong start and lies tenth overall in a fleet of 42 in the Laser Radial Girls division.
Murphy said she was “happy enough with today. With the Youth Worlds the points are so high - last year if you averaged a tenth you would have won overall.”
But this early into the competition, she won’t speculate on the ultimate outcome.
“I'm literally going to take each race as it comes - there's no point not looking at the end result; I really don't want to jinx anything.”
Meanwile, Dublin Bay's Alexander Rumball and Rory McStay are 10th from 15 in the SL16 catamaran class.
“We did better in the first race," said Rumball of their performance. "The second race was really gusty and shifty, as all these gusts kept coming down. We got on the right side of one on the last beat of that race and it brought us up a load.”
The competition continues tomorrow, when more wind is forecast with 15-16 knots from the west. Full results from today are posted HERE.