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Displaying items by tag: Team Racing

A Royal St George YC team will be the sole Irish representatives at the Royal Thames YC Cumberland Cup, the oldest perpetual trophy in yacht racing, with racing kicking off today at Queen Mary SC. The event is a two-boat team racing event sailed in J80s with the home team, Royal Thames, the current holders. The RSGYC team, headed up by John Sheehy and Nick Smyth, will face off against teams from Australia, Monaco, Germany, Australia, New Zealand and the USA. The Cumberland Cup dates back to 1775 and was established some 76 years before the America’s Cup

Two-boat team racing is best known in Ireland through the 'random pairs' format, where the team with a boat in last place loses the race. The result is highly tactical and combative, aggressive sailing, with the final beat to the finish line becoming particularly frantic.

Sheehy and Smyth come off a weekend that saw the pair finish in the last eight at the presitigous Wilson Team Racing Trophy in West Kirby SC, and Sheehy is also Ireland's top-ranked match racer at present.

Racing kicks off this morning, and you can catch some glimps of the action on the reservoir on their website's live webcam.

ROYAL THAMES CUMBERLAND CUP

 

 

Published in Racing

Two teams from the Royal St., George YC in Dun Laoghaire made it to the last eight of the 339-race Wilson trophy after 20 rounds of competition at West Kirby Sailing Club this weekend. It is the 16th appearance for the club at the UK event. Both the George Knights, (John Sheehy/Noeline Morgan, Nick Smyth/Rach Macmanus and Ger Owens/Melanie Morris) and another Royal St George team (Marty O'Leary/Brian Fenlon, Sam/Rachel O'Brien and Jonny O'Dowd/Rachel Guy) reached the quarter-final stage and pushed their quarters to the third race of the best-of-three, but failed to progress.

 

The final day of the 2010 Wilson Trophy dawned beautifully bright and clear and following a brief delay to allow the wind to build strength and stabilise direction, racing for the final part of the round robin element got underway. At this stage in the competition, every point counted for those teams hoping to make into the final eight and with a gaggle of teams mathematically capable of progressing to the next round, many of the matches understandably developed into full pitched battles.

American visitors Team Extreme continued where they had left off from the previous two days and immediately began adding to their string of winning performances to further extended their advantage at the top of the leaderboard. By midday the both local West Kirby Hawks and the American Woonsocket Rockets had also guaranteed their places in the quarterfinals. Despite showing much promise in the previous two days, the team from Royal Thames suffered a disastrous sequence of defeats in the early morning races, which plummeted them down the pecking order and effectively snuffed out their chances of qualifying for the knockout rounds. Meanwhile both Bath and the local Hibre Highlanders team were staging last-ditch bids to make the final eight with stellar performances in their races. When these two teams eventually met, it was the Hilbre Highlanders who managed the last beat to perfection to cross the line in a convincing 1,2,4 configuration and keep their hopes of a quarter-final berth alive.

The final round of races threw up a series of do or die confrontations. In the match between the Royal St George and New York Red the American team saw off a frenzied attack by the Irish on the final beat to take the win with a 2,3,4 pattern at the finish. Wessex Exempt needed to win their race against Hilbre Highlanders to qualify for the knockout stage. With almost nothing between the two teams for the first two legs, the final run developed into a six-way dogfight, which also continued down the penultimate leg, and if anything the action intensified even further on the final beat. With advantage flick-flacking between the two teams as the boats approached the line, the Highlanders looked to have done enough, but a penalty against them in the last few seconds saw Wessex Exempt snatch the win and squeak their way through to the final rounds. The New York Red versus West Kirby Sailing Club match was an important affair for both teams. After a truly classic battle, the local team grabbed the advantage on the final mark rounding to take a winning 2,3,4 combination which they held comfortably to the finish.

The quarterfinals turned out to be a real showcase for top-flight team racing, with all the matches requiring three races to separate the teams. Wessex Exempt took the round robin winners Team Extreme to the wire but finally succumbed to a commanding performance from the Americans in the final race. The match between the reigning champions West Kirby Hawks and the Royal St George was a real nail biter and only decided in the final boat lengths to the finish of the third race. West Kirby Hawks made a remarkable comeback on the final beat to eke out a 2,3,5 victory in a photo finish on the line. A last beat penalty against the St George Knights whilst approaching the finish of their third race against New York Red put paid to the Knights challenge and left the New York Red team to join their countrymen in the semi final. After losing their first race against the Woonsocket Rockets the West Kirby Sailing Club team looked to be facing elimination when they trailed the American team at the final mark of their second race. However a masterful piece of team racing at on the final beat saw them claw their way back to a winning 1,3,5 overturn at the finish.

The semi-final pairings threw up both all American and all West Kirby matches. Team Extreme won the first race of the American semi-final and took early control of the second race with a great team start. Their advantage was increased when a penalty was awarded against the race leading New York Red boat for an illegal mark trap attempt at the first buoy. New York Red never really recovered from this and Team Extreme were able to close out the match two wins to nil.

West Kirby Hawks also won their tense local derby match against West Kirby Sailing Club two races to zero. West Kirby Sailing Club didn’t go down without a fight however and turned the second race into the team racing equivalent of a western bar room brawl. With all six boats locked in a melee of team racing manoeuvres for the entire race, advantage swung backwards and forwards on each leg, but the West Kirby Hawks eventually prevailed on the final beat to take their second win of the semi-final and secure their place in the Grand Final.

Team Extreme looked to have handed the first race to the West Kirby Hawks when two of their boats were caught OCS on the start. However by the first mark the Americans were right back in it and pushing for a winning combination on the first reach. A double mark trap by the West Kirby Hawks appeared to have put the local team back in control but in the scrap on the penultimate leg the Hawks were awarded two penalties which gave Team Extreme a 1,2,3 winning score at the finish.

Race two of the Grand Final got off to an even start with Team Extreme eking out a narrow 2,3,4 advantage by the top mark. The visitors held both their nerve and their winning positions on the following three legs and despite some slick race-slowing attempts by the leading West Kirby Hawks boat, the Americans were still in control at the start of the final beat. Team Extreme very effectively locked down the race on the last leg, narrowing the local team’s options and eventually taking their second win to go two nil up in the Grand Final.

Race three got away with a closely fought start which saw a single West Kirby Hawks boat called OCS. The action remained too close to call for the entire first beat but when Team Extreme were awarded a penalty on the approach to the top mark, the West Kirby Hawks were able to get around in a useful 2,3,5 combination. However, a West Kirby Hawks penalty at the end of the first reach quickly threw the advantage back to Team Extreme. The Americans immediately capitalised on this with a neat mark trap at the bottom of the run, catapulting them into a powerful 1,2,5 combination. The West Kirby Hawks woes were then further compounded by yet another penalty at the final mark and this left them powerless to prevent Team Extreme easing into a game, set and match winning 1,2,3 formation at the finish.

So Team Extreme from the USA, - Zach Brown & Emmet Smith, Adam & Melanie Roberts and Stuart McNay & Abby Coplin - who had dominated the qualification rounds so comprehensively, had gone on to pull off an equally dominant whitewash victory in the Grand Final and become deserved winners of the 2010 Wilson Trophy British Open Team Racing Championship.

Full results at the end of day one can be found at the official website:  http://www.wksc.net/wilsontrophy/results.asp

Photos by Phil Shepherd

IMG_8564IMG_8467IMG_8579

 

Published in Racing
Page 14 of 14

Irish Olympic Sailing Team

Ireland has a proud representation in sailing at the Olympics dating back to 1948. Today there is a modern governing structure surrounding the selection of sailors the Olympic Regatta

Irish Olympic Sailing FAQs

Ireland’s representation in sailing at the Olympics dates back to 1948, when a team consisting of Jimmy Mooney (Firefly), Alf Delany and Hugh Allen (Swallow) competed in that year’s Summer Games in London (sailing off Torquay). Except for the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, Ireland has sent at least one sailor to every Summer Games since then.

  • 1948 – London (Torquay) — Firefly: Jimmy Mooney; Swallow: Alf Delany, Hugh Allen
  • 1952 – Helsinki — Finn: Alf Delany * 1956 – Melbourne — Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1960 – Rome — Flying Dutchman: Johnny Hooper, Peter Gray; Dragon: Jimmy Mooney, David Ryder, Robin Benson; Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1964 – Tokyo — Dragon: Eddie Kelliher, Harry Maguire, Rob Dalton; Finn: Johnny Hooper 
  • 1972 – Munich (Kiel) — Tempest: David Wilkins, Sean Whitaker; Dragon: Robin Hennessy, Harry Byrne, Owen Delany; Finn: Kevin McLaverty; Flying Dutchman: Harold Cudmore, Richard O’Shea
  • 1976 – Montreal (Kingston) — 470: Robert Dix, Peter Dix; Flying Dutchman: Barry O’Neill, Jamie Wilkinson; Tempest: David Wilkins, Derek Jago
  • 1980 – Moscow (Tallinn) — Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson (Silver medalists) * 1984 – Los Angeles — Finn: Bill O’Hara
  • 1988 – Seoul (Pusan) — Finn: Bill O’Hara; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; 470 (Women): Cathy MacAleavy, Aisling Byrne
  • 1992 – Barcelona — Europe: Denise Lyttle; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; Star: Mark Mansfield, Tom McWilliam
  • 1996 – Atlanta (Savannah) — Laser: Mark Lyttle; Europe: Aisling Bowman (Byrne); Finn: John Driscoll; Star: Mark Mansfield, David Burrows; 470 (Women): Denise Lyttle, Louise Cole; Soling: Marshall King, Dan O’Grady, Garrett Connolly
  • 2000 – Sydney — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, David O'Brien
  • 2004 – Athens — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, Killian Collins; 49er: Tom Fitzpatrick, Fraser Brown; 470: Gerald Owens, Ross Killian; Laser: Rory Fitzpatrick
  • 2008 – Beijing (Qingdao) — Star: Peter O’Leary, Stephen Milne; Finn: Tim Goodbody; Laser Radial: Ciara Peelo; 470: Gerald Owens, Phil Lawton
  • 2012 – London (Weymouth) — Star: Peter O’Leary, David Burrows; 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; Laser Radial: Annalise Murphy; Laser: James Espey; 470: Gerald Owens, Scott Flanigan
  • 2016 – Rio — Laser Radial (Women): Annalise Murphy (Silver medalist); 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; 49erFX: Andrea Brewster, Saskia Tidey; Laser: Finn Lynch; Paralympic Sonar: John Twomey, Ian Costello & Austin O’Carroll

Ireland has won two Olympics medals in sailing events, both silver: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson in the Flying Dutchman at Moscow 1980, and Annalise Murphy in the Laser Radial at Rio 2016.

The current team, as of December 2020, consists of Laser sailors Finn Lynch, Liam Glynn and Ewan McMahon, 49er pairs Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle, and Sean Waddilove and Robert Dickson, as well as Laser Radial sailors Annalise Murphy and Aoife Hopkins.

Irish Sailing is the National Governing Body for sailing in Ireland.

Irish Sailing’s Performance division is responsible for selecting and nurturing Olympic contenders as part of its Performance Pathway.

The Performance Pathway is Irish Sailing’s Olympic talent pipeline. The Performance Pathway counts over 70 sailors from 11 years up in its programme.The Performance Pathway is made up of Junior, Youth, Academy, Development and Olympic squads. It provides young, talented and ambitious Irish sailors with opportunities to move up through the ranks from an early age. With up to 100 young athletes training with the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway, every aspect of their performance is planned and closely monitored while strong relationships are simultaneously built with the sailors and their families

Rory Fitzpatrick is the head coach of Irish Sailing Performance. He is a graduate of University College Dublin and was an Athens 2004 Olympian in the Laser class.

The Performance Director of Irish Sailing is James O’Callaghan. Since 2006 James has been responsible for the development and delivery of athlete-focused, coach-led, performance-measured programmes across the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway. A Business & Economics graduate of Trinity College Dublin, he is a Level 3 Qualified Coach and Level 2 Coach Tutor. He has coached at five Olympic Games and numerous European and World Championship events across multiple Olympic classes. He is also a member of the Irish Sailing Foundation board.

Annalise Murphy is by far and away the biggest Irish sailing star. Her fourth in London 2012 when she came so agonisingly close to a bronze medal followed by her superb silver medal performance four years later at Rio won the hearts of Ireland. Murphy is aiming to go one better in Tokyo 2021. 

Under head coach Rory Fitzpatrick, the coaching staff consists of Laser Radial Academy coach Sean Evans, Olympic Laser coach Vasilij Zbogar and 49er team coach Matt McGovern.

The Irish Government provides funding to Irish Sailing. These funds are exclusively for the benefit of the Performance Pathway. However, this falls short of the amount required to fund the Performance Pathway in order to allow Ireland compete at the highest level. As a result the Performance Pathway programme currently receives around €850,000 per annum from Sport Ireland and €150,000 from sponsorship. A further €2 million per annum is needed to have a major impact at the highest level. The Irish Sailing Foundation was established to bridge the financial gap through securing philanthropic donations, corporate giving and sponsorship.

The vision of the Irish Sailing Foundation is to generate the required financial resources for Ireland to scale-up and execute its world-class sailing programme. Irish Sailing works tirelessly to promote sailing in Ireland and abroad and has been successful in securing funding of 1 million euro from Sport Ireland. However, to compete on a par with other nations, a further €2 million is required annually to realise the ambitions of our talented sailors. For this reason, the Irish Sailing Foundation was formed to seek philanthropic donations. Led by a Board of Directors and Head of Development Kathryn Grace, the foundation lads a campaign to bridge the financial gap to provide the Performance Pathway with the funds necessary to increase coaching hours, upgrade equipment and provide world class sport science support to a greater number of high-potential Irish sailors.

The Senior and Academy teams of the Performance Pathway are supported with the provision of a coach, vehicle, coach boat and boats. Even with this level of subsidy there is still a large financial burden on individual families due to travel costs, entry fees and accommodation. There are often compromises made on the amount of days a coach can be hired for and on many occasions it is necessary to opt out of major competitions outside Europe due to cost. Money raised by the Irish Sailing Foundation will go towards increased quality coaching time, world-class equipment, and subsiding entry fees and travel-related costs. It also goes towards broadening the base of talented sailors that can consider campaigning by removing financial hurdles, and the Performance HQ in Dublin to increase efficiency and reduce logistical issues.

The ethos of the Performance Pathway is progression. At each stage international performance benchmarks are utilised to ensure the sailors are meeting expectations set. The size of a sailor will generally dictate which boat they sail. The classes selected on the pathway have been identified as the best feeder classes for progression. Currently the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway consists of the following groups: * Pathway (U15) Optimist and Topper * Youth Academy (U19) Laser 4.7, Laser Radial and 420 * Development Academy (U23) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX * Team IRL (direct-funded athletes) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX

The Irish Sailing performance director produces a detailed annual budget for the programme which is presented to Sport Ireland, Irish Sailing and the Foundation for detailed discussion and analysis of the programme, where each item of expenditure is reviewed and approved. Each year, the performance director drafts a Performance Plan and Budget designed to meet the objectives of Irish Performance Sailing based on an annual review of the Pathway Programmes from Junior to Olympic level. The plan is then presented to the Olympic Steering Group (OSG) where it is independently assessed and the budget is agreed. The OSG closely monitors the delivery of the plan ensuring it meets the agreed strategy, is within budget and in line with operational plans. The performance director communicates on an ongoing basis with the OSG throughout the year, reporting formally on a quarterly basis.

Due to the specialised nature of Performance Sport, Irish Sailing established an expert sub-committee which is referred to as the Olympic Steering Group (OSG). The OSG is chaired by Patrick Coveney and its objective is centred around winning Olympic medals so it oversees the delivery of the Irish Sailing’s Performance plan.

At Junior level (U15) sailors learn not only to be a sailor but also an athlete. They develop the discipline required to keep a training log while undertaking fitness programmes, attending coaching sessions and travelling to competitions. During the winter Regional Squads take place and then in spring the National Squads are selected for Summer Competitions. As sailors move into Youth level (U19) there is an exhaustive selection matrix used when considering a sailor for entry into the Performance Academy. Completion of club training programmes, attendance at the performance seminars, physical suitability and also progress at Junior and Youth competitions are assessed and reviewed. Once invited in to the Performance Academy, sailors are given a six-month trial before a final decision is made on their selection. Sailors in the Academy are very closely monitored and engage in a very well planned out sailing, training and competition programme. There are also defined international benchmarks which these sailors are required to meet by a certain age. Biannual reviews are conducted transparently with the sailors so they know exactly where they are performing well and they are made aware of where they may need to improve before the next review.

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