With the air temperature in the afternoon of 4 degrees, it was looking like mid-winter. However, this did not deter twelve Water Wags from braving it on Wednesday evening in Dun Laoghaire Harbour writes Vincent Delany.
The breeze was about 12 knots, from the North east blowing through the harbour mouth. The windward mark of the 4 1/2 lap course was laid to the west of the area designated for the possible liner berth. The match was the first of a series of three matches for the Arthur Newsom Trophy (div 1A), Hilpotsteiner Tankard (div 1B) and Phyllis Trophy (div 2).
On the first beat all looked even-steven until it was realised that the Wags to windward were being lifted and the Wags to leeward were being headed. By the time they reached the windward mark, No. 38, Swift sailed by Guy and Jackie Kilroy had a short lead from No.15, Moosmie sailed by David and Sally MacFarlane and William Prentice in No.42, Tortoise. It was almost a run to the offset mark and a gybe to the leeward gate. The fleet were breaking up into two groups, the leaders and Division 1B. Richard and Henry in Polly struggled with finding some of the marks, so she did an extra lap of the course to ensure that the ‘tightened thread’ went around the correct marks. It is fantastic to realise that this noble action is likely to have an impact the final results in September.
The wind decreased to about 8 knots and there were place changes up and down the fleet. On lap two Moosmie contacted the windward mark and had to do a penalty turn. On lap three Swift engaged the mooring rope to the windward mark, and pulled it in until contact was made. In taking her penalty between the windward and offset marks, she allowed Moosmie past, and thus it remained to the end of the race. This responsible observation of the rules should be noted by some other classes in Dublin Bay.