Irish Olympic sailing hopes are well represented in the Trofeo Princesa Sofia Regatta in Palma tomorrow, a warm-up before the all important World Sailing Championships in August where Tokyo Olympic berths are up for grabs.
Four Irish 49ers
Four Irish 49er teams are in Palma with top boat Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle expecting to reap the benefits of some winter training at the Spanish venue and ready to put some painful injuries behind them. Also in Palma are duos Sean and Tadgh Donnelly; Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove; Mark Hassett and Oisin O'Driscoll.
Finn Lynch looks for Upwind Speed
Liam Glynn and Finn Lynch take part in the mens Laser class with Lynch looking for a speed improvement upwind under new Irish Laser coach, three-time Olympic medallist Vasilij Žbogar
Aisling Keller will be the sole Irish Radial sailor with Annalise Murphy still on Volvo Ocean Race duty and Aoife Hopkins recovering from a bout of tonsillitis.
Oisin McClelland competes in the Finn class, after a strong performance earlier this month in the Europeans in Cadiz where the Northern Ireland helmsman finished just outside the top third of his 90–boat fleet.
Fionn Lyden Sits Out Palma Due to Exams
Ireland's U23 Finn Champion Fionn Lyden is not competing. Palma wasn't part of his original plan, as its too close to his finals infourth year in Civil Engineering in UCC. Lyden has, however, regained most of the weight he lost at the camp in Valencia through illness earlier this year, so he should be back in good condition when he goes full time Finn sailing, just after the exams in May.
James O'Callaghan, Irish Sailing Performance Director reckons there will be 'some rustiness' but the team will get some good insights as to what's required for the World Championships in Aarhaus. O'Callaghan recently gave an overview of team status in a podcast on Afloat.ie here.