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'Rockabill VI' is First Royal Irish Winner of ISORA's 'Wolf's Head' Trophy

10th September 2019
After a 60-mile race across the Irish Sea from Wales, Paul O'Higgins's JPK10.80 Rockabill VI is pictured on her way to overall victory in the closing stages of the 2019 ISORA season last Saturday on Dublin Bay After a 60-mile race across the Irish Sea from Wales, Paul O'Higgins's JPK10.80 Rockabill VI is pictured on her way to overall victory in the closing stages of the 2019 ISORA season last Saturday on Dublin Bay Photo: Afloat

Paul O'Higgins is the first Royal Irish Yacht Club skipper in the 42-year-history of ISORA to win its overall Wolf's Head Trophy with previous winners (see list below) reading like a who's who of the Irish Sea offshore racing scene.

O'Higgins became 'top dog' of the Irish Sea following his overall win of the 2019 ISORA Championships beating the overall leader in the last race on Saturday.

Sailing the JPK10.80 Rockabill VI, O'Higgins is also the first Irish champion in three years after beating defending champions Peter Dunlop & Vicky Cox's Mojito from Pwllheli Sailing Club in North Wales.

As Afloat reported earlier, O'Higgins overtook Welsh overall leader Andrew Hall 's J125 Jackknife in a thrilling three-boat climax to the series in the final race of 16 last Saturday afternoon.

The Wolf’s Head Trophy, initially presented as a Royal Dee Yacht Club race prize to commemorate Queen Elizabeth's 25th Jubilee Race in 1977, was subsequently repurposed and since awarded annually to the 'top dog' in Irish Sea racing and has been presented every year thereafter by ISORA.

The last Irish winner was Liam Shanahan's Ruth from the National Yacht Club in 2015.

Wolfs Head trophyISORA's Wolfs Head Trophy - Photo: ISORA

The ISORA victory marks a stand-out season for the RIYC sailor who also counts wins in the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race, the ICRA Championships and Calves Week.

O'Higgins also currently leads the table in ICRA's Boat of the Year Award that will not be decided until after next month's Autumn Leagues conclude.

A list of Wolf's Head winners from 1977 - 2018 is below:

2018 - Mojito - Peter Dunlop & Vicky Cox
2017 - Mojito - Peter Dunlop & Vicky Cox
2016 - Sgrech - Stephen Tudor
2015 - Ruth - Liam Shanahan
2014 - Ruth - Liam Shanahan
2013 – Sgrech – Stephen Tudor
2012 – Sgrech – Stephen Tudor
2011 - Raging Bull – Matt Davis
2010 - Raging Bull – Matt Davis
2009 – Tsunami – Vincent Farrell
2008 – Galileo – Tennyson, Lemass & Kelliher
2007 - Gums 'n' Roses - John & Guy Rose
2006 - Gums 'n' Roses - John & Guy Rose
2005 - Galileo - NYC
2004 - Trinculo - HYC
2003 - Gums 'n' Roses - John & Guy Rose
2002 - Jackhammer - A Hall
2001 - Sigmagic - R Dobson
2000 - Sigmagic - R Dobson
1999 - Keep on Smiling - J T Little
1998 - Keep on Smiling - J T Little
1997 - Corwynt Cymru III - GF Evans
1996 - Jackhammer - A Hall
1995 - Jackhammer - A Hall
1994 - Megalopolis - U Taylor
1993 - Megalopolis - U Taylor
1992 - Grenade - HS & CS Morris
1991 - Megalopolis UC Taylor & N Biggs
1990 - Scenario Encore - A Fitton
1989 - Decibel - J Marrow, J Reynolds & P Watson
1988 - Checkmate - JM Biggs
1987 - Canterbury - AJ Vernon
1986 - Banga Wanga - CM Hill
1985 - Glider - L Kertesz
1984 - Demelza - N Maguire
1983 - Rapparee II - B Kelly
1982 - Rapparee II - B Kelly
1981 - Rapparee II - B Kelly
1980 - Swuzzlebubble -WB Lyster
1979 - Sundancer - GR Haggas
1978 - Dai Mouse III - DWT Hague
1977 - Jublilee Race - 'Andromeda' AL Stead

Source: ISORA

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