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Howth Yacht Club's Dickson & Waddilove Fare Best in 49er Euros Warm-Up

8th May 2019
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Rob Dickson and Sean Waddilove - Tokyo 2020 ambition is to win a medal in the 49er class Rob Dickson and Sean Waddilove - Tokyo 2020 ambition is to win a medal in the 49er class Photo: Sailing Energy

Excitement is building in Weymouth for next week's 49er European Championships (May 13 to 19) where Ireland hopes to make a breakthrough in both the male and female divisions in the quest for Tokyo 2020 qualification.

After the third round of the World Sailing Cup in Genoa last month where all three Irish 49ers ended up in the Silver fleet, as did Annalise Murphy and Katie Tingle in the 49erFX, attention is now focussed on an improvement on the British south coast.

All four crews were "training briefly" at the new Irish Sailing Performance HQ in Dun Laoghaire before "intensive preparations" at the London 2012 venue.

Those preparations have included competition at a Warm-up Regatta at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.

As Afloat readers will recall, Weymouth and Portland is the scene of some past Irish successes for current members of Team Ireland especially Annalise Murphy and Ryan Seaton. Of course, there was Murphy's memorable fourth overall at London 2012 itself and prior to that Seaton's own gold medal at 2013 Going for Gold Regatta in the build-up to Rio 2016.

This month, however, the best result so far from Team Ireland in Weymouth has come from the young Howth duo Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove who scored 15th from 52 at an RYA warm-up regatta, days before the main event and significantly on the same race track.

It's hard to work out just how seriously the regatta has been taken by the fleet as there were a number of international absentees and plenty of DNC's (did not compete) on Irish scoresheets. Nevertheless, team officials will, no doubt, be hoping for improvements from Murphy and Tingle who sailed only four from eight races (best result 13th) and Seaton and Guilfoyle who, although entered, did not compete in the two-day competition. Results are here.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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