The Quarter ton fleet made its debut at the 2009 event where a total of seventeen boats competed for the 'Keane's Jewellers perpetual Quarter Ton trophy'. Boats travelled from all over Ireland for the event with seven boats making the journey from the UK.
The four-day regatta was sailed on windward leeward courses, with one coastal race along the beautiful West Cork coastline. The coastal race proved memorable as the fleet short tacked their way along the shore to gain tidal relief in twenty knots of breeze and blazing sunshine with the race culminating in a long planning run back towards the mouth of the harbour.
After eight races the Cowes based yachtsman Peter Morton on 'Anchor Challenge' won the event on count back from Rob Gray's beautifully presented 'Aquilla' which was testimony to the close racing experienced within the fleet. The Ron Holland prize for best production boat was awarded to Kinsales' Ian Travers on his Bolero 'Bandit'.
The inclusion of the class in the 2009 regatta developed a lot of interest both during and after the event. Since then the Irish Quarter ton fleet has developed with the addition of some new boats with others currently undergoing refit for next season. With the recent announcement by the Quarter ton class in the UK to yet again include this event on their calendar for next year, it is highly likely that even in these recessionary times, the class numbers will grow for this truly enjoyable event. (See www.quartertonclass.org )