Displaying items by tag: Dragon
#NorthSails - As previously reported, North Sails celebrated a record-smashing year for offshore yachting titans competing with its 3Di performance sails.
But clients of the sailmaker — with a longstanding base in Myrtleville, Co Cork — also had a big year across the One Design classes around the globe.
In the Etchells class, Stella Blue helmed by Steve Benjamin won the 2017 Worlds in San Francisco at an event where fellow North Sails clients Senet Bischoff and KGB took the Corinthian title and finished third overall.
Elsewhere, in Toronto, Rossi Milev’s Clear Air sailed into first place at the J/24 Worlds, the same event where Lizzy McDowell’s U25 Howth Yacht Club team Scandal finished a respectable 42nd amid the mammoth international field.
Fellow Howth sailor Laura Dillon on Cloud finished 33rd in the Dragon World Championships in Cascais last June, which saw North Sails powering clients into first (Provezza Dragon, Andy Beadsworth), third (Alfie, Lawrie Smith), fourth (Desert Eagle, Hendrik Witzmann), fifth (Rocknrolla, Dmitry Samokhin), ninth (Louise, Grant Gordon) and 10th (Jeanie, Jens Rathsack) places overall.
And Spanish sailor María Perelló, using North Sails’ Radial R2, won the girls division at the Optimist Worlds in Thailand last July, where Ireland enjoyed had a strong showing in team racing.
North Sails is the world’s leading sailmaker for One Design classes with more national, world and Olympic class victories than all other sailmakers combined.
The RStGYC team retained the Cannonball Trophy for another year but only because there was no final result this weekend on the Solent.
Racing was blown out on Saturday because of 25+knot winds all day. This was followed by literally no wind on Sunday when only two very flukey races were completed.
It was a very unfortunate set of circumstances for The Royal London Yacht Club, the organiser of the event.
Next year the Royal St George host the event when they will use their newly acquired fleet of J80’s as the race boats.
A team from the Royal St George YC return to Cowes in defence of the Dragon Cannonball Team Racing Trophy.
Their competitors included the Royal London YC, the Royal Netherlands YC and the Royal Channel Islands YC.
As a new addition to the mix this year the hosts in Cowes, The Royal London Yacht Club introduced a brand new fleet of J70’s as the race boats.
The Royal St George YC team include former winning helms, Martin Byrne and Tim Pearson who were joined this year by another Dublin Bay Dragon sailor Clare Hogan.
This year the RSGYC invited Conor Byrne, who crewed on his fathers “Jaguar Sailing Team” this season to join the crew. These two return to Cowes together where they enjoyed some success at the British Dragon South Coasts & the Edinburgh Cup last July.
The British Team included recent Dragon Edinburgh Cup Champions, Graham & Julia Bailey who will be racing on their home waters on the Solent. Also the Dutch Team include former Gold Cup & Olympic Medalists in their team.
Race Officer Alan Crosbie went out in a RIB to inspect the course area. Fog and mist early on gave way to only a zephyr of breeze leaving no option but to scrub the two scheduled races.
The cancellation means Kinsale's Cameron Good takes the championship title as per Afloat.ie's report here.
After four races at the 2017 Dragon South Coast Championship, locals Cameron Good, Henry Kingston and Simon Furney have the overall lead from Royal St. George's David Williams and Peter Bowring writes Bob Bateman.
See results and photo gallery below.
The Dublin Bay boat has the same eight points as the Kinsale Yacht Club leader but double wins today gives Good the advantage in the nine–boat fleet.
Kinsale boat Shawn Kingston's Grey Hare is third and another Kinsale entry, Adrian Bendon's Mar J is fourth.
This morning's racing schedule was put forward to 11am due to a wet windy forecast but it turned out to be light winds on the way out to the first start at the Old Head of Kinsale. Winds were not long in filling in, however, and 15 /18 knots from west–south–west and a lumpy sea produced classic Kinsale conditions.
Williams' Phantom led at the first windward mark but a gybe set from Good proved to be winning move as got into the lead and held on til the finish.
Racing continues tomorrow. The Race Officer is Kinsale's own Alan Crosbie.
Dragon South Coast Championship after four races
|1||IRL211||Little Fella||Cameron Good||Henry Kingston||Simon Furney||KYC||8||4||2||1||1|
|2||IRL176||Phantom||David Williams||Peter Bowring/Hilary Murray||Arthur Mehigan/Conor Grimley||RStGYC||8||3||1||2||2|
|3||IRL188||Grey Hare||Shawn Kingston||Tony Kingston||Harry Lewis||KYC||15||2||5||4||4|
|4||IRL156||Mar J||Adrian Bendon||Choryna Kiely||Matthew Beecher||KYC||18||1||3||7||7|
|5||IRL201||Jaguar||Martin Byrne||Conor Byrne||Adam Winkelman||RStGYC||20||5||9||3||3|
|6||IRL695||Magic||Warren Brown/Kevin Hayes||Killian Murphy||Clare Hayes/Eamonn Timoney||GHYC||22||6||6||5||5|
|7||IRL180||Serafina||Maeve Cotter||Daniel Murphy||Brian Goggin||KYC||24||8||4||6||6|
|8||IRL110||Aphrodite||Peter Hayes||Tiernan Brown||Killian Forde/Ruairi Brown||GHYC||31||7||8||8||8|
|9||IRL157||Tenacious||Anthony O'Neill||Dave Horgan||Eoghan O'Neill||KYC||36||9||7||10||10|
Martin Byrne's Jaguar Sailing Team were fifth in the final race of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup in Cowes today. Together with a first place scored yesterday this lifted the sole Irish entry to fifth place overall.
'Given that our target was a podium finish we are somewhat disappointed with this overall result', Byrne told Afloat.ie
However, Byrne, sailing wih son Conor and pro sailor Pedro Andrades recognise this year's Edinburgh Cup was the toughest of the four he has competed in to date and, he says, the strength of the international opposition was easily the toughest challenge he has faced.
By his own admission, Byrne says the 'vagaries of sailing in the Solent was our undoing on day two when we had two poor results. Also a technical problem with a brand new mainsail on day one, didn't help our cause either.'
Nevertheless, Byrne finished strongly with a first & fifth in the final races. And together with this, his win in the pre-event British South Coast Championships, made for what he is calling a 'reasonably successful week'.
Byrne paid tribute to his crew. Conor and Pedro's fitness and strength, together with their team work and tactical awareness, brought us back up towards the front of the fleet at the finish. He also paid tribute to his wife Triona who made logistics and life ashore much easier for the team.
The penultimate day of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017, produced one truly extraordinary race which shook the leader board up and leaves four boats in close contention going into the final race. Ireland's Martin Byrne from the Royal St. George Yacht Club of Dun Laoghaire has moved back up the leaderboard in the 38–boat fleet to seventh overall after a well–earned victory in race five. Download overall results below.
As they set off for the race area, the competitors found that the forecast north-westerly was instead an extremely shifty south-easterly of around 10-12 knots. Even seasoned locals famed for their ability to read the Solent's vagaries with ease have found themselves struggling to make sense of the apparently random shifts this week and today was no different. Recently crowned Dragon World Champion and Solent local Andy Beadsworth summed the situation up with a wry smile saying, "It's a little bit harder to win here that it was [at the Worlds] in Cascais! It's home waters and I thought I knew what was going on in the Solent, so I thought I knew how to go the right way, but we're getting it wrong with monotonous regularity."
Beadsworth, sailing TUR1212 Provezza Dragon with Simon Fry and Ali Tezdiker, had had a disastrous race four and went into the day in fourth place on 31 points. Ahead of him were Igor Goikhberg in RUS98 Murka with Dmitry Berezkin and Roman Sadchikov in third on 26 points, Poul Richard Hoj-Jenson in GBR813 Danish Blue with Paul Blowers and Hamish McKay on 21 points and Martin Payne in GBR585 Full Speed with Gillian Hamilton and Chris Britten leading on 16 points.
With seconds to go, Beadsworth shot clear of the pack, which was holding back for fear of being pushed over the line by the tide, midline and was able to tack onto port and port tack most of the right side of the fleet. It was almost impossible to keep up with who was leading, as the big shifts pushed boats down snakes and up ladders constantly. At one point Payne looked good on the left, but he ended up virtually last around the weather mark. Meanwhile, Martin Byrne and his team of Pedro Andrade and Conor Byrne in IRL216 Jaguar had done the best job of picking their way through the minefield to lead Graham Bailey, sailing GBR782 Aimee with Julia Bailey, Will Heritage and Will Bedford, off down the first run, with Goikhberg a very close third. Beadsworth and Hoj-Jensen both rounded just inside the top ten.
From here on in Byrne kept clear air and extended his lead, but Bailey had his work cut out to keep the pack at bay as Beadsworth and Hoj-Jensen dug deep to fight their way to the front. As the boats closed the line at the end of the third and final beat, Byrne took a comfortable victory from Bailey with Tom Vernon in GBR810 Badger crewed by Oliver Spensley-Corfield and Adam Bowers third. Beadsworth had made his way up to fourth, Dmitry Bondarenko in Hauschreckeand with Vadim Statsenko and Alexander Shalagin was fifth, Hoj-Jensen sixth and Goikhberg seventh, but Payne unable to do better than 20th, which he immediately discarded.
So the showdown in tomorrow's remaining race is going to be a humdinger. Bailey tops the leader board with 12 points, Hoj-Jensen is on 14, Beadsworth 15 and Payne 16. The forecast for that final race is 12 gusting 20 knots from the north-west, but we're beginning to learn that what is forecast and what we get are not necessarily related this week so stand by and watch this space.
After sailing the crews once again repaired to the Island Sailing Club's terrace where the daily prize giving included the presentation of the Crews Race Trophy, which went to Nigel Cole sailing Avalanche, and the Youngest Sailor Trophy which went to Will Heritage of Aimee. The prize giving was followed by the final special raffle draw of the event. Over £30,000 of prizes have been given away in the draw, for which all boats are eligible, and the top prize of a Petticrows Dragon radio model yacht was drawn tonight. One of the rules of the draw is that if the winning person is not present to collect their prize then they miss their turn and another ticket is drawn. Tim Tavinor of Petticrows assisted Regatta Chairman Gavia Wilkinson-Cox by drawing the winning ticket, but the name read out elicited no response and so Tim went in for a second ticket. As he read out the name Furious a huge cheer went up and owner Owen Pay was for once completely lost for words and clearly absolutely delighted with his new toy.
Today's final race is programmed to get underway at 11.00 and the regatta will conclude with the Edinburgh Cup 2017 Prize Giving Dinner Dance at the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club.
What a difference a day makes! After the opening day's torrential rain and strong winds, day two of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017, hosted by the Island Sailing Club, Cowes, produced light airs, brightening skies and a complete reversal of fortune for a number of the competitors. Ireland's only entry at the Cup sits in tenth place in the 38–boat fleet after Royal St. George's Martin Byrne, Conor Byrne and Pedro Andrade scored a 9 and 15 yesterday. Download full results after four races below.
By the time Race Officer Gill Smith had the fleet under starters order for the third race of the series, the wind was predominantly circa 10–knots but with gusts up to around 17, lulls down to 6 and big shifts around a mean of nor-nor-east. The wind continued to fluctuate throughout the day and there was the added bonus of an exceptionally big spring tide turning between races, so the committee did particularly well to achieve two excellent courses.
Dmitry Bondarenko's regatta had got off to a lousy start when he hit is head so badly on the boom that he had to withdraw from both of yesterday's races and return ashore for treatment. With a neat line of stitches in his forehead and a smart new Slam crash helmet, Dmitry and his crew of Vadim Statsenko and Alexander Shalagin, perhaps better known as the European World Championship winning crew of Anatoly Loginov, sailing GBR422 Hauschrecke, proved that you don't need local knowledge to sail well in the Solent by winning both races. Sadly, their double DNS from day one means that they only make 20th in the overall standings.
Going into the day Andy Beadsworth, Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen and Martin Payne were in a three way tie for the lead on six points apiece. All three are world class sailors, but on paper Beadsworth, as recently crowned Dragon World Champion, should have had the upper hand. But even the best in the world can have an off day and that was certainly the case for Beadsworth today.
In race three, Solent racing legend Eric Williams, aboard GBR683 Ecstatic with Katie Cole and Rory Patton, led the fleet at the weather mark, with Bondarenko, Graham Bailey sailing GBR782 Aimee with Julia Bailey, Will Heritage and Will Bedford, and Igor Goikhberg sailing RUS98 Murka with Dmitry Berezkin and Roman Sadchikov, hard on his heels. This group fought it out for the remainder of the race with Bondarenko eventually gaining the upper hand from Bailey, Goikhberg and then Williams who all crossed the line within thirty seconds. Beadsworth, and his worlds winning crew of Simon Fry and Ali Tezdiker in TUR1212 Provezza Dragon, followed the leaders in on the front of edge the chasing pack for fifth.
As the boats hardened up to cross the start line for race four, Beadsworth looked terrific at the committee boat end, almost a boat length ahead of his nearest rival. Sadly, a big right-hander, which only seemed to affect the left side of the line in the closing minute of the sequence, meant that those who'd started at the pin made huge gains immediately and there was absolutely nothing those on the right could do about it.
Gaining most at the pin end was Gavia Wilkinson-Cox, sailing GBR761 Jerboa with Mark Hart and Andrew Nordon, closely followed by Rob Gray, Kay Tavinor and John Greenwood in GBR448 Tarka II and Williams. All three flipped rapidly onto port, crossed the fleet and rounded the weather mark first, second and third respectively. Behind them Beadsworth turned onto the first run around 12th and gybed off in an attempt to get back in the game. Sadly, that attempt did not work and by the leeward mark he was well down the fleet and struggling to gain any traction. Bondarenko won the race with Hoj-Jensen second, Wilkinson-Cox third, Martin Payne, sailing GBR585 Full Speed with Gillian Hamilton and Chris Britton, fourth and Jono Brown in GBR770 Storm crewed by David and Lynette Brown and Frances Wood fifth. Back down the pack Beadsworth was trying it all, but evrything just seemed to end in disaster and he finished the race in 20th place.
In the overall standings, the single discard will not come into play until after tomorrow's fifth race has been completed. As a result, Payne now leads the fleet by five points from Hoj-Jensen with Goikhberg third and Beadsworth fifth. But Payne is realistic and knows that had the discard come into play today Hoj-Jensen would actually be leading the regatta with Beadworth second and himself third. Payne summed up the complexity of today's sailing perfectly saying, "It's like a chess game, you have to think three or four moves ahead, and even then it could still be wrong. It's going to be a tough regatta."
Mike Budd was runner up at the 2016 Edinburgh Cup and with his crew of Mark Greaves and Irish Olympian Mark Mansfield from Royal Cork came into the regatta with high hopes. With four of the six scheduled races now complete he lies in a somewhat disappointing ninth place. Asked what he feels is different about this year's event he commented, "We're not doing as well as we'd hoped, to be honest, because the standard is so good. It's a really hot fleet, we're really enjoying the racing."
Apres sail, the teams repaired to the Island Sailing Club terrace to enjoy the Edinburgh Cup Drink of the Day, a delicious Hendricks Gin & Fever Tree Tonic served with a slice of cucumber, and the company of good friends in the sunshine. Once again the daily prize giving was followed by a special draw with yet more happy Dragon sailors going home with fabulous goodies.
Tomorrow's forecast is for a west-nor-westerly breeze that will clock round to the north-west during the morning at 14 gusting 22 knots. Championship race five is due to start at 11.00 and will be followed by the traditional Edinburgh Cup crews race. A total of six championship races are scheduled and the regatta continues until Friday 15 July.
Top ten after four races:
- Full Speed, Martin Payne Gillian Hamilton, Chris Bittain, GBR
2. Danish Blue, Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen, Hamish McKay, Paul Blowers, GBR
3. Murka, Igor Goikhberg, Dmitry Berezkin, Roman Sadchikov, RUS
4. Provezza Dragon, Andy Beadsworth, Simon Fry, Ali Tezdiker, TUR
5. Badger, Tom Vernon, Oliver Spensley-Corfield, Adam Bowers, GBR
6. Ecstatic, James Eric Williams, Rory Paton, Katie Cole, GBR
7. C Aimee, Graham Bailey, Julia Bailey, Will Heritage, Will Bedford, GBR
8. Harry, Mike Budd, Mark Greaves, Mark Mansfield, GBR
9. Jerboa, Gavia Wilkinson-Cox, Mark Hart, Andrew Norden, GBR
10. Jaguar Martin Byrne Connor, Byrne, Pedro Andrade, IRL
Royal St. George's Martin Byrne, fresh from British South Coast victory last week, is in the hunt for the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017 after two well sailed opening races for the sole Dublin Bay boat yesterday. Byrne is in ninth place in the 38–boat fleet. Cork interest in the regatta is focussed on Mark Mansfield's middle man role on Mike Budd's fifth placed entry. Download results below.
The International Dragon fleet is famed for the exceptionally close nature of its racing, but even in the Dragons a three-way tie for the overall lead of a regatta is truly extraordinary. But that is exactly the situation the top three boats have found themselves in.
Following two wet and windy races in the Central Solent, reigning Dragon World Champions Andy Beadsworth, Simon Fry and Ali Tezdicker sailing TUR1212 Provezza Dragon, five time Edinburgh Cup Champion Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen sailing GBR813 Danish Blue with Hamish McKay and Paul Blowers, and Martin Payne sailing GBR585 Full Speed with Chris Britten and Gillian Hamilton, are all tied for the overall lead on six points.
Hosted by the Island Sailing Club, this 69th edition of the prestigious Edinburgh Cup has attracted 38 entries from Russia, Turkey, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland and across the UK, for four days of windward leeward competition. The opening day of racing brought grey skies, a brisk south westerly wind ranging from 12 to 25 knots and a lot of rain. But, whilst conditions might not have been pretty, the racing was absolutely outstanding.
Race one produced a tight four boat tussle between Danish Blue, Full Speed, Graham Bailey's GBR782 Aimee, crewed by Julia Bailey, Will Heritage and Will Bedford, and Oliver Morgan's GBR791 Christianna, crewed by Francesca Morgan and Jamie Lea. On the line the four boats were separated by just 30 seconds with Aimee first, Christianna second, Full Speed third and Danish Blue fourth. A minute behind the leaders and just in front of the pack came Provezza Dragon in fifth, who'd correctly gone right early on the first beat, but then found themselves caught in heavy traffic from another fleet, which cost them dearly.
After their problems in race one, the crew of Provezza Dragon dug deep for race two, sailing a perfect first beat to lead by a comfortable margin at the weather mark. With the advantage of clear air, they were able to extend their lead throughout the race, winning by two seconds shy of a minute. In second was Danish Blue with Full Speed third and Ireland's Martyn Byrne sailing IRL216 Jaguar with son Conor and Pedro Andrade fourth.
In the overall standings the leading trio of Provezza Dragon, Danish Blue and Full Speed, who are all on six points, are followed by fourth place Aimee on eight points, Mike Budd sailing GBR793 Harry with Mark Mansfield and Mark Greaves is in fifth on fourteen points and Christianna sixth on 15 points.
Aimee also now leads the Corinthian competition for all amateur crews, with Owen Pay, Mark Daly and Jon Mortimer sailing GBR777 Furious third and Richard Leask, Willie Adams and Nevin Jaimeson, sailing GBR731 Kestra third.
Once back ashore and dried out, the competitors gathered for the daily prize giving, where not only did they were also invited to enjoy a relaxing head and back massage courtesy of Cowes based BeCalmed Wellbeing and Medi Spa. Caroline Hurley, owner of BeCalmed, present the daily prizes which included special gift baskets and bags from the company. Regatta Chairman Gavia Wilkinson-Cox then invited Race Officer Jill Smith to assist her with the daily draw into which all competitors are entered. Each evening three lucky winners receive one of more than £30,000 worth of prizes generously donated by local and marine companies. Later in the evening the visiting teams all attended "At Home" dinners hosted by members of the Cowes Dragon fleet.
The forecast for day two of the regatta promises to be much drier with lighter winds from the north. Two further races are planned with the first start scheduled for 11.00.
Martin Byrne's Jaguar Sailing Team won the British South Coast Championship as the warm up event ahead of the Edinburgh Cup where racing starts today on the Solent just off Cowes, Isle of Wight.
Only three races were completed in varying conditions over the two day event. Byrne's Jaguar Sailing Team were most consistent with results of 6,2,5 to win the Championship ahead of an international fleet of 38 Dragons which included the World Champions, Andy Beadsworth's, Provezza Dragon.
Byrne told Afloat.ie - "We were using this event as a warm up before the Edinburgh Cup and to familiarise ourselves with the tricky and very tidal race course on the Solent. Also it was important to re-acquaint ourselves again as a crew which includes my son Conor and Portuguese professional Pedro Andrade. However, we are under no illusions, that many of the other top teams were in the same mode and the competition will be much hotter for the main event".
The International Dragon fleet has gathered at the Island Sailing Club in Cowes for the 2017 Dragon UK South Coast Championship and Edinburgh Cup sponsored by Oliver Morgan Architects and Stoneham Construction Ltd. Thirty-eight teams from as far afield as Turkey, Russia and Switzerland and across the UK and Ireland are taking part in six days of top flight competition from 9 to 14 July.
For added Irish interest in the Cup, Mark Mansfield from Royal Cork is sailing as middle man with UK helmsman Mike Budd.
The programme opened with two days of racing for the South Coast Championship. Sunday 9 July brought extremely light winds and despite the best efforts of Race Officer Gill Smith only one race was possible. The light and variable conditions gave the tacticians a few headaches, with a number of people being caught out by a right hander near the top of the first beat, which caused them to over-stand the windward mark. Igor Goikhberg, sailing RUS98 Murka with Dmitry Berezkin and Roman Sadchikov, avoided the pitfall and led the fleet off down the run. But Goikhberg wasn't to have it all his own way with Graham Bailey, crewed by Julia Bailey, Will Heritage and Will Bedford aboard GBR782 Aimee, soon putting him under pressure. It turned into a game of cat and mouse with the two boats eventually coming to the line neck and neck, where only the Race Officer was able to confirm that Bailey had claimed the race by just a single second. Owen Pay, Jon Mortimer and Mark Daly sailing GBR777 Furious followed them home for third.
Day two could not have been more different with a moderate south westerly already well established when the boats arrived in the starting area. The wind faltered slightly towards the end of the day's first race, race two of the series, and there was a short delay to allow it to settle before race three got underway. Once settled the wind built rapidly to over 20 knots, which combined with a building ebb to give some big waves at the top end of the course and plenty of thrills and spills for the watching spectators. Sadly, one of the casualties of the stronger wind was Igor Goikhberg whose rig came down on the final run.
Reigning Dragon World Champion Andy Beadsworth, sailing TUR1212 Provezza Dragon with Simon Fry and Ali Tezdiker, had been the wrong side of the race one shift and finished down in 19th place, but he wasn't about to make the same mistake twice. He led race two from start to finish and in race three was only briefly challenged by Martin Payne sailing GB585 Full Speed with Gillian Hamilton and Chris Britten. Whilst the two race wins were impressive the lack of a discard forced him to count his 19th which dragged him down the overall rankings into fourth.
Graham Bailey was unable to repeat his winning form of race one and having added a ninth and a sixth to his score card he took third place overall. Martin Payne and his team were on an upward trajectory and after an eighth in race one went on to finish fifth and then second, putting him one point ahead of Bailey and in second overall.
But ultimately it was consistency that paid and 2011 Edinburgh Cup Champion Martin Byrne, sailing this week, as Afloat.ie reported earlier, with his son and past Irish Laser National Champion Conor Byrne and top professional Dragon crew Pedro Andrade, took the South Coast Championship title with a 6, 2, 5 score line and a narrow two-point overall margin.
Following the South Coast Championship Prize Giving the crews came together on the terrace of the Island Sailing Club for the 2017 Edinburgh Cup Welcome Champagne Reception sponsored by Chris Bull, owner of GBR772 Jazz, being raced this week by his brother Adrian.
Event Organiser Gavia Wilkinson-Cox welcomed the teams and in particular thanked those who had travelled from overseas to join the British fleet for its prestigious National Championship regatta. Moored on the dock immediately below the club was Andy Beadsworth's World Championship winning Petticrow Dragon, and she thanked Andy and his team for making the effort to attend this event so soon after their Worlds victory in Cascais. Gavia also paid tribute to the dozens of volunteers who have made the regatta possible, to the race management team, to the generosity of the event sponsors and to regatta hosts the Island Sailing Club, who hosted the very first Edinburgh Cup some 69 years ago.
Gavia then handed the microphone to the Rev. Andrew Poppe, vicar of Holy Trinity Church Cowes to bless the event. Clearly a man who knows his sailing audience well, Rev. Poppe concluded his address by saying, "We pray for fine weather, fine winds and fine sailing, and for fine wines and a most excellent gathering at the end of the week to salute both the winning boats and all who come, to race, to sail and to rekindle the community and competition that is Dragon Class sailing. Tonight we pray for fine burgers, fine beer and fine banter. We ask, Lord, your blessing on this occasion in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen." And with the formalities complete the champagne corks popped, the BBQs were fired up, the band struck up and a fabulous time was had by all.
Racing for the Edinburgh Cup is scheduled to commence at 11.00 tomorrow with a south westerly breeze of 13 to 21 knots forecast. Sadly, the wind is to be accompanied by heavy rain so everyone's foul weather gear will no doubt get a good workout.
Martin Byrne's Jaguar Sailing Team from the Royal St. George Yacht Club will be the only Dragon entry from Ireland in the 2017 Edinburgh Cup when racing starts off Cowes, Isle of Wight, on the 11th July.
Byrne, a former Edinburgh Cup winner and runner up, in 2011 & 2012 respectively, returns this year with a strong team including his son Conor and Portuguese professional Pedro Andrade.
"We expect a very difficult event given the quality of the international fleet which includes the 2017 World Champion Andy Beadsworth and his Proveeza Team from Turkey together with multiple former Edinburgh Cup winning teams. Add to that the vagaries of the tidal conditions on the Solent race course this makes for one of the most challenging competitions we will face this season", Byrne told Afloat.ie