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Crosshaven & Kinsale Take the Top of the Milk in National YC’s Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race

11th June 2021
Conor Doyle's Freya crew from Kinsale Yacht Club celebrate their line honours victory in the 2021 Dun Laoghaire To Dingle race after crossing the Dingle, County Kerry finish early this morning in an elapsed time of 1d 15h 16m 50s
Conor Doyle's Freya crew celebrate their line honours victory in the 2021 Dun Laoghaire To Dingle race after crossing the Dingle, County Kerry finish early this morning in an elapsed time of 1d 15h 16m 50s

Day #3 0930 - The Murphy family’s consistently successful Grand Soleil 40 Nieulargo (Royal Cork YC) reached Dingle this morning at 09:27 hrs and immediately corrected into an overall lead in the D2D which she is unlikely to lose. Having passed the Fastnet at midnight, the Murphy crew then found themselves in a tense but performance-enhancing battle in a good southwest breeze through the remainder of the short night along the coasts of West Cork and Kerry.

Conor Doyle's Freya crosses the Dingle finish at 0531 this morningConor Doyle's Freya crosses the Dingle finish at 0531 this morning

It was performance-enhancing as they were racing in close company with defending champion Rockabill VI, Paul O’Higgins’ JPK 10.80 from the Royal Irish YC, and the new Sun Fast 3600 Searcher (Pete Smyth, NYC). Both are slightly higher rated than Nieulargo, but when you’re in the very open Atlantic off the coast of Kerry, the local vagaries of wind and water can see an apparently good lead evaporate like some will o’ the wisp.

Nick and Pete Smyth round Galley Head last night at 730pm on Searcher Photo: Prof O'ConnellNick and Pete Smyth round Galley Head last night at 730pm on Searcher Photo: Prof O'Connell

Well ahead, Conor Doyle’s leading Xp50 Freya from Kinsale had swept past the last major turn at Skellig Michael at 02:15, still making 8.8 knots but there was more than a feeling that the bite was already going from the breeze. Nevertheless, they were still across the finish line to take line honours in convincing style at 05:31 this morning (Friday), while their CT position will be improved in due course after redress has been given for a pause to rescue a drifting kite-surfer off the Wexford coast on Tuesday evening.

The Nieulargo crew in Dun Laoghaire on Wednesday: (Front row left to right) Molly Murphy, James Fagan, Clive O'Shea, Ian Heffernan, (back row right to left) Denis Murphy, Mia Murphy, Annamarie Fegan, Brian Mathews, Nin O Leary, and Harry Durcan The Nieulargo crew in Dun Laoghaire on Wednesday: (Front row left to right) Molly Murphy, James Fagan, Clive O'Shea, Ian Heffernan, (back row right to left) Denis Murphy, Mia Murphy, Annamarie Fegan, Brian Mathews, Nin O Leary, and Harry Durcan

Taken at 0530 this morning, the Nieulargo crew close in on the County Kerry finish lineTaken at 0530 this morning, the Nieulargo crew were closing in on the County Kerry finish line

Three hours elapsed after Freya’s finish before another three-way duel came over the line in the form of Robert Rendell’s Grand Soleil 44 Samatom at 08:36, Chris & Patanne Power Smith’s J/122 Aurelia at 08:39, and George Sisk’s Xp44 WOW at 08:47, with Aurelia ahead on CT to correct into a provisional 5th overall as the next group battling for the overall CT victory closed in on the mouth of Dingle Harbour, with Rockabill VI first across at 09:12.

It was edge-of-seat stuff, but although Rockabill may have nipped in just ahead, Nieulargo seemed to find some final reserves of speed to give her 7.2 knots as she crossed at 09:27 with Searcher following a couple of minute later.

This brought “victory-for-the-moment” for Nieulargo, and it’s likely to stand, for although the Committee will be generous in their redress for Freya’s good deed on Tuesday, it’s unlikely to be the 2 hours and 26 minutes required to correct her ahead of Nieulargo.

Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race Live Tracker 2021

Track the progress of the 2021 Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Yacht Race fleet on the live tracker above 

The 14th edition of the 280-mile race organised by the National Yacht Club starts at 2 pm on Wednesday, June 9th on Dublin Bay.

  • Read the full 2021 race preview by WM Nixon here
  • Read all the D2D Race News in one handy link here

WM Nixon will be posting regular race updates and analysis throughout the 2021 race

WM Nixon

About The Author

WM Nixon

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William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland for many years in print and online, and his work has appeared internationally in magazines and books. His own experience ranges from club sailing to international offshore events, and he has cruised extensively under sail, often in his own boats which have ranged in size from an 11ft dinghy to a 35ft cruiser-racer. He has also been involved in the administration of several sailing organisations.

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Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Yacht Race Information

The biennial Dun Laoghaire to Dingle race is a 320-miles race down to the east coast of Ireland, across the south coast and into Dingle harbour in County Kerry.

The race is organised by the National Yacht Club.

It never fails to offer a full range of weather, wind and tide to the intrepid entrants, ranging from a 32ft cruiser to a 79ft all-out racer.

Three divisions are available to enter: cruiser (boats equipped with furlers), racing (the bulk of the fleet) and also two-handed.

D2D Course change overruled

In 2019, the organisers considered changing the course to allow boats to select routes close to shore by removing the requirement to go outside Islands and Lighthouses en route, but following input from regular participants, the National Yacht Club decided to stick with the tried and tested course route in order to be fair to large and smaller boats and to keep race records intact.

RORC Points Calendar

The 2019 race was the first edition to form part of the Royal Ocean Racing Club “RORC” calendar for the season. This is in addition to the race continuing as part of the ISORA programme. 

D2D Course record time

Mick Cotter’s 78ft Whisper established the 1 day and 48 minutes course record for the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race in 2009 and that time stood until 2019 when Cotter returned to beat his own record but only just, the Dun Laoghaire helmsman crossing the line in Kerry to shave just 20 seconds off his 2009 time.

Dun Laoghaire Dingle Race 2021

The 2021 Race will start from the National Yacht Club on Wednesday 9th, June 2021.

This will be a limited entry event.

Previous entrants will be offered early entry options and then the entry will be opened to others to allow up to a maximum of 50 yachts.

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