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Almost Dead Heat in Royal Irish Yacht Club 22–Boat Water Wag Race

26th May 2014
water wags
Tight racing in the RIYC 'Water Wags' Regatta
Almost Dead Heat in Royal Irish Yacht Club 22–Boat Water Wag Race

#waterwags – The Royal Irish Yacht Club Regatta on Wednesday 21st May was earlier than usual. 22 Water Wags turned up to compete in the regatta race of 5 laps of a windward leeward course. Tom Hudson, race officer, decided to split the large fleet with Division 2 starting 3 minutes before the rest of the fleet. It was a wonderful evening with sunshine, a high tide and 8-10 knots of wind.

Polly, Penelope, Sprite, Chloe, and Nandor headed up the first beat towards a mark laid off the bandstand. Soon Nandor had to retire with broken gear but it was Fergus Cullen and Alice Walsh in Penelope who led the fleet around the first mark, by a large margin.
Three minutes later Division 1A and 1B stated together. There was a minor pile up on the start line when somebody caught a boom end on another boats shroud. On the first beat there was good steady wind both on the north side of the harbour near the harbour mouth and also inshore where there was some tidal flow benefit running east out of the marina. David and Sally MacFarlane in Moosmie led the second group around the windward mark. At the leeward gate almost all the fleet except Penelope took the southern mark of the leeward gate. On the second beat conditions were similar to the first but Penelope continued to hold her lead. By the third round the tidal advantage inshore was increasing, but the wind there was becoming more fickle and the best course was to tack immediately after rounding the Southern gate mark, and stay in the stronger wind. Again on the fourth beat followed the pattern of declining wind near the marina wall. By the last beat Moosmie had taken over the lead and won the race with Mollie second and Swift third. It was almost a dead heat between Barbara, Tortoise and Pansy on the finish line after five laps of the harbour.
Division 1B was won by Bairbre Stewart and David Corcoran in Freddie.
Division 2 was won by Polly who featured a wonderful Norwegian Blue Parrot on her spinnaker. A sailing Supper and prize giving was held in the Royal Irish Yacht Club.

Published in Racing
Vincent Delany

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Vincent Delany

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Sailing historian Vincent Delany is a member of the Association of Yachting Historians, and an active sailor in Water Wag, SOD and Squib classes. He has written a thesis on 'Yachting and yachtsmen on the River Shannon 1830-1930.' He has lectured on the history of The Water Wag Club, Royal St.George Yacht Club, and the Killinure Yacht Club, He has written two sailing books 'The Water Wags 1887-2012' and 'The International 12 foot class in Ireland' both of which are available from blurb.com

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