Looking ahead to next month's Round Ireland Yacht Race, last weekend's French Drheam Cup that proved so successful for Tom Dolan in the Figaro Duo class also provided offshore pundits with plenty of results to pore over.
The Cherbourg fixture, the first major French sailing event of this COVID hit season, was a winning one for Ian Lipinski, a host nation competitor who also has ties to Ireland as a 2018 Round Ireland Race competitor in the Class 40, Corum.
The Drheam Cup's two-handed IRC class has dished up some results that may provide some insights for next month's Irish 700-miler.
For example, the top five boats in the 400-mile Drheam two-hander class all crossed the finish line within seven minutes of each other in the 26-boat fleet.
Three of the Top five were JPK designed boats and two were the New Sunfast 3300 designs, the same as Cian McCarthy's Cinnamon Girl from Kinsale, that will be racing fully crewed in Round Ireland and was captured at full speed below and here three weeks ago.
The Doublehanded IRC class overall winner was Xpresso a JPK 10.30, which was just 17 seconds ahead on corrected from the Sunfast 3300 Gentoo. This will be a feather in the cap of Jeanneau's designers, who came to the Royal Irish Yacht Club for the unveiling of the Cinnamon Girl, as Afloat's WM Nixon's described here.
Another Sunfast 3300, Leyton was third, a JPK 10.30 was fourth, and in Fifth was a JPK 10.80, Raging Bee, (similar to Irish yacht of the year, Rockabill VI).