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Displaying items by tag: Voye

31 Fireballs contested the last domestic regatta of the season at one of the Class' favourite locations Dunmore East. Included in the entry was Brian O'Neill from Strangford Lough, currently the northern representative of the fleet, Michael Ennis another northern recruit to the class, sailing with Class Treasurer, Marie Barry. One of the newest members of the Class, Luke Malcolm, sailing with Shane Divney, out of Howth, in 14790 also made the trip. Another welcome participant was Ciaran Harken, crewed by Walter Walsh.

All the usual suspects were there, Messrs Butler, Rumball, Laverty, Bracken, McGrottys (x2), Miller, Smyth, Colin and Oram together with some that we haven't seen so much of this season - Rowan, Hickey, Court and Boyle.

Speculation was rife on the Friday evening with both Met Eireann and the locals promising breeze for the weekend. The question was how much breeze?

Three races were sailed on Saturday in wind that started off around the 13/14 knot mark and built progressively as the day progressed. Two Olympic courses were set for Races 1 & 2, with Simon McGrotty & Ruairi Grimes making an early declaration of their intent with a commanding first place in Race 1, carrying on where they left off in Howth at the Leinsters. Local man Michael Murphy, crewed by Alex Voye came second, with Francis Rowan & Conor Clany 3rd. Unusally, Rumball/Moran were back in 8th with Butler/McCarthy inan equally unusual place of 4th.

Race 2 saw a more normalised finishing order with Rumball/Moran, Murphy/Voye, Clancy/Rowan the first three home, followed by Butler/McCarthy, McGrotty/Grimes & Laverty/Butler. McGrotty/Grimes were in the running for most of the race but a capsize undid their quest for a place in the 1-2-3. However, by this stage the wind had come up and the capsize count was increasing. Finishers were down to 22 boats as prolonged capsizes and the growing breeze led some people to call it quits.

A windward/leeward race was set for Race 3 and completed on the water but was subsequently protested out on a procedural error by the race management team. And so the fleet was ashore early as the conditions dictated that a fourth race would be questionable.

The Class AGM took place at 18:30 on the Saturday evening followed by an exceptionally good meal in the clubhouse and the usual post-mortems on the day's proceedings. The Sea Area forecast at midnight on Saturday night did not offer much relief for the fleet and the seascape on the Sunday morning wasn't altogether inviting.

With only two races completed, the race management team decided to run two windward/leeward course closer to shore and of shorter length to try and get a four race series completed so that the fleet would have the benefit of a discard. The wind speed indicator on the committee boat was showing 16-18 knot as the course was being set and the fleet flew down to the start area in steep seas that had been thrown up by an ebbing tide pushing out against the opposing breeze. Still spinnakers were flying as the fleet made their way downwind to the start. Saturday had seen spectacular reaches on the Olympic courses, today would see equally spectacular surfing conditions.

With two races in the bag, Murphy/Voye had four points, McGrotty/Grimes had 6, Butler/McCarthy 8 and Rumball/Moran 9.

A very fast W/L race saw a 1-2-3 of Butler/McCarthy, Murphy/Voye & Rumball/Moran. McGrotty/Grimes had being doing well but another capsize saw them relegated to 5th. Laverty/Butler were as consistent as ever with a fourth.

With all races counting, Murphy/Voye were still leading with 6pts, Butler/McCarthy were 2nd with 9pts, McGrotty/Grimes had 11pts & Rumball/Moran were on 12.

By this stage the wind was starting to creep up a couple of knots and with the tide about to turn the expectation was that the seas would subside a bit. Unfortunately the number of starters was down to 15 at this stage. Again the conditions were exhilarting downwind and the ability to stay upright was a key factor to getting a significant finish. Rumball/Moran upped their performance to take a comfortable win on the line, followed home by Butler/McCarthy, and McGrotty/Grimes. Murphy/Voye sailed their worst race to score a 4th, which effectively cost them the overall title.

This left Rumball/Moran as the 2010 Munsters Champions with Murphy/Voye in 2nd place, followed by Butler/McCarthy.

In the Silver fleet, newcomers Luke Malcolm and Shane Divney won with a 22, 12, 12, 7 series which saw them in 11th place overall. Luke sailed the Leinsters in a borrowed Fireball and has since purchased hos own Fireball and this was his first outing in a competitive regatta - bodes well for the future. Second in the Silver fleet was Ciaran Harken and walet Walsh (13th overall), with Cearbhailldaly & Martina Michels third.

This was a physically challenging regatta and easily had the strongest wind conditions we have had this season. Not since Lough Neagh in 2009 have we had quite so much breeze. However, at the start of the weekend it was great to see so many Fireballs on the water, 31, our highest entry for the year.

The AGM was a constructive affair with a lot of comment on how we manage our domestic season next year with a World Championships down for decision in Sligo in the second half of June. Attempts to get regatta dates pencilled in that bit earlier in the light of the June dates haven't been altogether successful and Saturday night's meeting probably means we are going to have to put our thinking caps on again. There was no real change in the committee structure, Siobhan Hayes has stood down as Silver Fleet Class Captain after a number of years in the post and will be succeeded by Barry MacDevitt. We have also lost the services of Daire McNally & Marguerite O'Rourke who have/will be relocating away from Ireland and we thank all three of them for their services while they were on the committee. The bulk of the committee have indicated their willingness to continue and the Class Captains at Club level will be resolved in the next few weeks as they have their own meetings.

The focus of Fireball sailing now moves onto the Frostbites which will be starting in October.


Published in Fireball
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