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Displaying items by tag: Laser

The National Yacht Club's Finn Lynch scored a 16th-39th-32nd dropping him to 32nd place overall in a light wind three race penultimate day of the ILCA/Laser European Championships in Hyeres, France.

Three more races were held today by all the fleets, with shifty and patchy 8-12 knots of breeze. There were many ups and downs that made the sailing conditions very tricky for all the 350 competitors, with significant changes in the standings.

"We just didn't find the right mode to get in front of the fleet at the beginning," commented Vasilij Zbogar, Lynch's Laser coach. "The truth is... I don't know; we were going so well before the event, but now we have different conditions.

"Finn mentally was prepared well and is feeling well. We're struggling a little bit for speed in these conditions for the set-up we have could be a little bit better."

Zbogar, a triple Olympic medallist, pointed to Lynch's improved performance in the upper wind range earlier in the week, calling it a "huge step forward." Normally, the Rio veteran would be expected to perform well in the conditions of the past two days.

"I'm not feeling great - I need to be doing better," Finn Lynch said after racing ended. "There is a lot of luck involved in these conditions, but I need to be better so that I can afford to have bad luck."

For the remaining two races, Lynch will be aiming to finish on a high with individual best results though both the podium and, most likely, the top ten are beyond his reach.

It was not a good day for the overnight leader and reigning 2021 Senior European champion Michael Beckett GBR (22-25-2), losing the top spot for the first time in the event. He’s now in second place but only 2 points behind the new leader Pavlos Kontides CYP (4-3-1), who’s counting 32.

Finland’s Kaarle Tapper FIN (5-23-3) is now third with 50. 7 points after him is Jonatan Vadnai HUN (8-18-17) on fourth.

Lorenzo Chiavarini ITA (6-17-13) and Sam Whaley GBR (24-6-10) are tied in 66 points on places fifth and sixth.

Provisional ILCA 7 European Top 10 after 10 races:

  1. Pavlos Kontides CYP 32
  2. Michael Beckett GBR 34
  3. Kaarle Tapper FIN 50
  4. Jonatan Vadnai HUN 57
  5. Lorenzo Chiavarini ITA 66
  6. Sam Whaley GBR 66
  7. Niels Broekhuizen NED 72
  8. Tonci Stipanovic CRO 74
  9. Hermann Tomasgaard NOR 75
  10. Jean Baptiste Bernaz FRA 85

Download results below

Published in Laser

The HYC Dinghy Frostbites kicked off its 2022/2023 season in perfect conditions on Sunday, with 40 boats entered, blue skies, and a warm southerly breeze putting on a special show of benevolence for the first of the planned 18 weekends of dinghy racing writes Conor Murphy.

The regulars welcomed newcomers from all over Dublin and further afield.

Also joining the fleet were some long-time HYC members - lately more used to keels and crew delegation - who have swapped their usual chariots to experience hiking pads, toe-straps, and the challenges of verticality - welcome to Colin and Ronan. The 22/23 series is a first for the long-running event in that a PY class is competing alongside the traditional Laser/ILCA competitors.

Racing kicked off after a slight delay, due to the shifting southerly breeze coming over the Head. A highly qualified team of Neil Murphy, Richard Kissane, and Liam Dineen started all the Classes together. The strong ebb tide, and an excess of enthusiasm by some to bag a front-row spot, saw the fleet immediately earn the first General Recall of the winter. A successful restart under the U flag sent the fleet on their triangular course.

Due to some challenges in finding the gybe mark (or at least the correct one from the selection available) in the rougher water of the Sound, a windward-leeward course was set for the second race, which got away cleanly on the first attempt.

Competition is tight across all ILCA fleets, with 4 of the top 5 Irish-ranked sailors competing in the ILCA 7 fleet. The 7s saw very close racing with multiple lead changes throughout both races, as each sailor sought the best breeze and least tide on a challenging race track.

Series regulars Ronan Wallace of Wexford (1, 2) and Daragh Kelleher of Skerries (3, 1) lead the fleet, followed by event newcomer Rory Lynch (2, 3). A special shout-out goes to Conor Costello for finishing the first race before accepting defeat and acknowledging that the bung is definitely a critical piece of equipment and best fixed in the transom
before going afloat - he thankfully made it back to the Club before going into full submarine mode.

The ILCA 6 fleet saw extra competition this year, with two Dun Laoghaire Masters joining the fray. RStGYC’s Marco Sorgassi showed the fleet a clean pair of heels with two wins, showing good pace to keep up with a lot of the ILCA 7s. HYC’s Una Connell follows, leaving Hugh Delap and Fiachra Farrelly tied in 3rd.

A strong turnout in the ILCA 4s sees Howth’s Cillian Twomey leading the pack, with Ciara McMahon, Des Turvey, and Aisling Kelly trailing, only a point separating them.

The new PY fleet had a mix of participants and is being led by ex-ILCA 4 sailor Abby Kinsella in her RS Aero 6, winning convincingly over Aoibhinn Farrelly’s RS Feva and Hugo Micka’s Fireball. Competition is sure to ramp up over the coming weeks, with more RS Aeros already entered, as well as an RS800.

The series continues next week, and all dinghies from all clubs are welcome to take part in some of the best winter racing in the country.

Published in Howth YC
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Howth Yacht Club celebrated the Halloween bank holiday weekend with the annual Dinghy Regatta on Sunday, 30th October. Despite the later-than-usual timing, entry numbers were high, with 54 boats from as far as Lough Ree Yacht Club, Wexford Harbour Boat and Tennis Club and Cushendall Sailing and Boating Club, along with the more local clubs of Sutton DC, Clontarf Y & BC, Skerries SC, Malahide YC, Rush SC, and Dun Laoghaire’s National YC and Royal St. George Yacht Club.

Unfortunately, the days of strong winds preceding the event did not abate sufficiently to allow the full spectrum of dinghies assembled to ultimately sail, with the Race Officer David Lovegrove making the hard decision to keep the Topper, ILCA 4, Feva and Optimist Regatta fleets on the hard. But those confined to shore were consoled with the popular fare available in HYC’s lively Light House hospitality facility.

This left the IDRA 14s, ILCAs 7 & 6, and the Optimist Main Fleet to set out and test their mettle on the high seas. After a short postponement, the first race was off with steady winds that decreased but kept the fleet on its toes with some sporting gusts. Throughout the second race, the wind quickly gained strength, causing the Race Officer to abandon the last race, by which time winds of 36 knots were being recorded on the Committee Boat.

In the IDRA fleet, first place and the Wilkinson Cup was taken by Ryan Cairns and Orla Doogue (CYBC), with second going to Alan Carr and Sarah Robertson (SDC), with Christian Lorenz and Pat O’Kelly (CBYC) in third.

The Optimists saw Harry Dunne of HYC – still buoyed up by finishing ahead of Rocco Wright in the Junior National Championships at Schull - securing first place and the Drisheen Cup, Hannah Scott (HYC) taking second, with Nicole Quinn (HYC) in third.

If the Optimist podium was all Howth, the ILCA 6s were very different - first place went to long-distance Glens of Antrim visitor Barry McCartin (Cushendall SBC), second to Daniel O’Hare (Rush SC) and third to Dave Kirwin (Malahide YC). Finally, in the ILCA 7 fleet, first place and the Heron Trophy was won by Darragh Kelleher (Skerries SC), with Conor Murphy (HYC) taking second place, and Stephen Quinn (HYC) in third.

Published in Howth YC
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Entry for Royal Cork Yacht Club's ILCA/Laser and Topper dinghy Frostbites Series is building, with over 50 boats entered before the early bird expires at midnight on Wednesday, the 2nd of November.

The series (incorporating the Bill Jones Trophy for the winning RCYC topper) will take place across November, Sunday 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th.

Racing will take place for ILCA4, ILCA6, ILCA7 and Topper 5.3 & 4.2 fleets, with separate starts available if numbers allow.

A one-day entry is also facilitated for those that cannot attend the full series.

The series race officer is Tom Crosbie and his crew.

The First warning signal will be 1125 each racing day.

Entry is open to all, with visiting sailors welcome to leave their boats in the RCYC dinghy yard for the duration of the series.

Racing for ILCA7 is included for the first time in a number of years.

Visit Royal Cork ILCA and Topper Frostbite series 2022 to enter here

Published in Royal Cork YC

Dun Laoghaire Harbour's Sean Craig was on the podium in L'Escala, Spain, this evening, having clinched bronze at the EurILCA 6 Master European Championship in the final race of the Grand Master Fleet.

Craig had progressed upwards from tenth in the opening races of the 48-boat fleet on Monday to be in fifth place on Wednesday and nine points off the podium.

In a strand-out finish, the Royal St. George Irish champion took two and a four in races nine and ten today to end the Costa Brava Regatta on 48 points and claim bronze by a single point ahead of France's Luigi Santocanale.

The Grand Master title was won by France's Gilles Coadou on 10 points, with Belgium's Pieter Van Laer in second place on 42 points.

France's Gilles Coadou (centre), with Belgium's Pieter Van Laer (left) and Ireland's Sean Craig at the EurILCA 6 Master European Championship L'Escala prizegivingFrance's Gilles Coadou (centre), with Belgium's Pieter Van Laer (left) and Ireland's Sean Craig at the EurILCA 6 Master European Championship L'Escala prizegiving

Published in Laser
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Dun Laoghaire Harbour's Sean Craig has moved up to fifth overall in the EurILCA/Laser Master European Championships in L’Escala on the Costa Brava, Spain.

After eight races sailed, the Royal St. George sailor is nine points off the podium with 42 points. 

Winds have been light, largely eight to 10 knots from 60 degrees, and several starts procedures were aborted in both regatta fields because there were boats out of line. 

France's Gilles Coadou is the first ILCA 6 Grand Master (55 – 64 years old); the second, also French, Luigi Santocanale; and third, the Belgian Pieter Van Laer.

Among the women, the French Isabelle and Helene Viazzo continue to occupy the first two places now, with the Dutch Martien Zeegers-Nouwen in the third.

With eight scored races, the 2022 EurILCA Master European Championships passes its halfway point with the Spanish Xavi Tous and Alfredo Gómez as leaders of the ILCA 6 Apprentice Master category (30 – 40 years old) followed by the Italian Gianmario Broccia.

In the women's category, the provisional podium goes to the Spanish Míriam Carles-Tolra, the Italian Elisa Boschin and the Greek Georgia Cheimona.

Among the ILCA 6 Masters (45 - 54 years old), the Frenchman Sebastien Baudier rules, ahead of the British Ian Gregory and the Spanish Mònica Azón, the first female in the category, followed by Spain's Marina Sánchez Ferrer and the German Alexandra Behrens.

Among the ILCA 6 Great Grand Master (55-64 years old), the Australian Jeff Loosemore ranks first, with the British Max Hunt in second place and the Spanish Miguel Noguer in third.

In this category, two French women lead the women's division. They are Isabelle Arnoux and Evelyne Ferrat.

Australian Peter Heywood, French Jacques Kerrest and Dutch Henk Wittenberg occupy the provisional ILCA 6 Legend podium.

The Slovenian Matej Vali, the Italian Lorenzo Cerretelli and the Canadian Ian Elliot are the first three ILCA 7 Apprentice Masters;. At the same time, the American Peter Hurley, the Greek Dimitrios Theodorakis and the Greek Aristotelis Chatzistamatiou are the leaders among the ILCA 7 Masters.

The Spanish José María Van der Ploeg, the French Bertrand Blanchet and the Swedish Tomas Nordqvist occupy the ILCA 7 Grand Master head.

The SpaniardJosé Luis Doreste, the British Tim Law and the American Peter Vessella are leaders of the ILCA 7 Great Grand Master division.

Published in Laser
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Two sailed races were sailed on the first day of the 2022 EurILCA/Laser Master European Championships in L'Escala, Spain. 

The 2022 EurILCA Master European Championships has opened the scoreboards with two races held in the two regatta areas located in the Sea of Empúries.

The wind arrived late, so the fleet of 263 sailors had to wait in the marina. Finally, they hit the water at 1:45 p.m. with 4-5 knots of wind. An hour later, the wind shifted to 70º and intensified up to 8- 13 knots, offering excellent sailing.

Spanish Xavi Tous and Alfredo Gómez is leading the ILCA 6 Apprentice fleet) for men. The Italian Gianmario Broccia follows them.

Among the girls, another Spanish, Miriam Carlos is the leader followed by the Italian Elisa Boschin and the Greek Georgia Cheimona.

The head of the ILCA 6 Master ranking (between 45 and 54 years old) is for the French Xavier Leclair, the Dutchman Freek de Miranda and the French Jean Christophe Leydet; while among the women, it is divided between the Spanish Mónica Azón and Marina Sánchez with the German Alexandra
Behrens in third place.

The provisional men's ILCA 6 Grand Master podium is made of two French, Gilles Coadou and Luigi Santocanale and the Belgian Pieter Van Laer in third place. The French Isabelle Viazzo, Claudine Tatibouet and Helene Viazzo are the first three women in this category.  Ireland's Sean Craig is lying tenth.

The first ILCA 6 Great Grand Masters are the Spanish Miguel Noguer, the British Max Hunt and the French Jean Philippe Galle. The French Isabelle Arnoux and Evelyne Ferrat are first and second in the women's division.

As for the ILCA 6 Great Grand Masters (over 75 years), the first three classified sailors are the Australian Peter Heywood, the Dutch Henk Wittenberg and the Spanish Miguel Álvarez. Matej Vali from Slovenia, Ian Elliot from Canada and Lorenzo Cerretelli from
Italy are the provisional ILCA 7 Apprentice Master leaders.

The Greek Dimitrios Theodorakis, the American Peter Hurley and the Spanish Javier Echávarri are the first three ILCA 7 Masters.

Among the ILCA 7 Grand Masters, the Spanish José María Van der Ploeg is the first followed by the Swedish Tomas Nordqvist and the Canadian Allan Clark. The Spanish José Luis Doreste, the American Peter Vessella and the German Wolfgang Gerz are the leaders of the ILCA 7 Great Grand Master
fleet.

Published in Laser
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The Olympic authorities see the Laser as the floating equivalent of the pole-vaulter’s vaulting pole, thereby making Laser sailors into proper individual athletes, and very worthy of Olympic inclusion.
But meanwhile, some in the upper echelons of Olympic decision-making see two-person boats as being group-operated machines, thereby precluding double sailors from serious consideration as true Olympic athletes unless it’s with a boat that is a gymnastic challenge in itself. Step forward the 49er.

As for three-person boats….forget it. This would be all well and good were the Olympics in a self-contained bubble. But the reality is that it is the Olympic imprimatur which brings sailing more effectively to public attention than any other branch of the sport – and we don’t exclude the America’s Cup from that grouping.

Thus the glorification of solo dinghy sailing as the ultimate ideal of sailing sport has trickled through to become the accepted group-think in much of sailing, and there are indications that this tough-minded attitude – one thinks of the Spartans leaving newborn babies on the hillside overnight as a quick and convenient selection process to weed out the weak – is really off-putting for shy and mildly introverted kids.

"the glorification of solo dinghy sailing as the ultimate ideal of sailing sport has trickled through to become the accepted group-think"

They like the idea of going sailing, but are put off by the general gung-ho attitude of the more competitive helms, and the possible sense of loneliness in being sent forth solo alone in an Optimist. For this provides all the challenges of being alone, while at the same time having your efforts conspicuously on display in front of one of the toughest-minded bunch of kids in the country.

Spartans afloat - the sharpest sharp end of the Optimist fleet is not for the faint-hearted or shrinking violets, as seen here at Balyholme.Spartans afloat - the sharpest sharp end of the Optimist fleet is not for the faint-hearted or shrinking violets, as seen here at Balyholme

The huge national Optimist fleet in Ireland is a force of nature, while - as several clubs have discovered – the International Optimist Dinghy Association of Ireland is so powerful and effective it can function successfully more or less as a law unto itself. And the fact of the matter is that when the demanding Optimist system of encouraging rising talent works, it works very well indeed. But we’d be kidding ourselves if we tried to pretend that it isn’t ultimately elitist, and inevitably causes the elevation of individual talent at the expense of a team approach.

That said, when the situation arises that a top Optimist sailor has to sail in a crewed boat, it’s rarely that they don’t quickly learn the ropes in every sense. And the recent National Junior Championship at Schull was dominated by present or past Optimist sailors who not only adapted to two-person sailing – in some cases almost overnight – but showed clever strategic thinking in selecting crews who were of a size to match their own weight in order to provide the optimum all-up weight to race a TSR 3.6.

That’s the way it is in the fast track. But by its very nature, most potential recreational sailors are never going to be in the fast track, yet they can find their pleasure in sailing by choosing the right boat in an environment in which they feel comfortable when they go afloat.

Yet as soon as you move up from a one-person junior boat to something requiring two or even three to sail, the logistical and expense problems expand exponentially. Nevertheless, at the more competitive level, there are shrewd observers who bewail the thin spread of the International 420 in Ireland, despite Doug Elmes of Kilkenny and Colin O’Sullivan of Malahide winning the Bronze in the Worlds in Malaysia back in 2016.

Doug Elmes and Colin O’Sullivan after winning Bronze in the 420 Worlds in 2016Doug Elmes and Colin O’Sullivan after winning Bronze in the 420 Worlds in 2016

It certainly seemed inspirational at the time, yet apart from a few notably enthusiastic clubs with keen 420 fleets, you could hardly say the 420 is a nationwide success. But even with the demands implicit in sailing a 420 locally and occasionally campaigning it nationally, there are those throughout Ireland who think that any family that finds itself becoming involved in 420 racing through junior participation deserves every encouragement.

One such is Pierce Purcell, former Commodore of Galway Bay SC, where the small but keen 420 feet has found itself raised to new heights of enthusiasm by the success of their top 420 duo of Adam McGrady and Alistair O’Sullivan, who won the 420 Nationals at Rush at the end of August.

The 2022 420 Nationals at Rush SC at the end of August. Photo: M GossonThe 2022 420 Nationals at Rush SC at the end of August. Photo: M Gosson

Much and all as Galway is the centre of the universe, the McGrady/O’Sullivan team know they have to travel for top competition, and it really is team travel with their fathers Paul and Gerry totally committed to providing logistics support.

National Champions. Galway Bay SC’s 420 stars Alistair O’Sullivan & Adam McGrady (centre) with their fathers Gerry O’Sullivan (left) and Paul McGrady (right). Photo: Pierce PurcellNational Champions. Galway Bay SC’s 420 stars Alistair O’Sullivan & Adam McGrady (centre) with their fathers Gerry O’Sullivan (left) and Paul McGrady (right). Photo: Pierce Purcell

But even with Galway now the pinnacle of 420 sailing, there are still those there – and elsewhere in Ireland - who reckon that the ultimate contribution to the development of two-handed, sociable and accessible sailing here was provided by the advent of the Mirror dinghy. I yield to no-one in my admiration for the Mirror, it’s one of the cleverest boat designs ever conceived, and it’s a matter of wonder why someone doesn’t put a computer to work to analyse why the Mirror provided so much for so many people in such a little boat.

It should be possible to then provide a computer-aided design which may look like a contemporary boat of 2023, yet ticks all the boxes on the factors that made the Mirror so very special and useful.

One of the most effective boat designs of all time – sport for all ages in the Mirror dinghy.One of the most effective boat designs of all time – sport for all ages in the Mirror dinghy

You’d be surprised how many people are thinking along these lines, and meanwhile look around to see what readily available production boat most nearly fits the bill. And that shrewd observer of the sailing scene, Bob Bateman of Cork, who is the patriarch of an active three generation sailing dynasty while somehow also finding the time to take great photos of just about everything that floats along the south coast, reckons he has found that boat, hidden away in plain sight.

It’s the RS Feva. But though this 12-footer has been around for some time, the performance potential has been so emphasised that casual observers overlook the fact that the Feva is also a low maintenance – almost zero maintenance, in fact – knockabout boat, one that can happily take a bunch of kids for a fun sail.

Yet like the Mirror, she’s an all-generation boat in which a sympathetic adult with the ability to provide kindly teaching – it’s a very special ability, and not given its proper respect – can bring shy young children into sailing and build their confidence in every way, both afloat and ashore.

In the weekend in which some of those who have reached the highest peaks of Irish sailing are contesting the Champions’ Cup in its 75th year reiteration of the Helmsman’s Championship, it is very timely to reflect on the other end of the sailing continuum, and on what – in an ideal world – would be a boat deserving more encouragement in playing its key role in making sailing seem more genuinely accessible.

And apart from that, like the Mirror – which served our family very well indeed for multiple purposes – the RS Feva is simply great fun to sail.

Hidden away in plan sight behind the apparently performance-oriented RS Feva is an excellent little all-round knockabout boat for fun sailing. Photo: Robert BatemanHidden away in plan sight behind the apparently performance-oriented RS Feva is an excellent little all-round knockabout boat for fun sailing. Photo: Robert Bateman

Published in W M Nixon
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A record number of ILCA Master class sailors are in L'Escala on the Costa Brava, Spain, to contest the 2022 EurILCA/Laser Master European Championships and two Irish sailors are among the 263 sailors aged over 30 years who will be competing for European titles.

The fleet will have representatives from 26 European countries but also from other parts of the world, such as Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Morocco, the United States and Canada.

Among them are up to 11 participants over 75 years old and 21 women.

Royal St. George's Sean Craig from Dun Laoghaire Harbour is competing in the ILCA 6 division, which has 138 ILCA 6 entries, 48 of whom will race separately in Craig's GrandMaster (GM) division. Entry list here 

The flag is raised at the 2022 EURILCA European ChampionshipsThe flag is raised at the 2022 EURILCA European Championships Photo: Thom Touw

As regular Afloat readers know, when Craig took fourth in the Worlds last year, all three ahead of him were Europeans, but significantly the silver medal; on the occasion was Miguel Noguer-Castellvi from Spain, who has now moved on to a higher age division, so there is the prospect of a podium finish for Ireland, but nothing is guaranteed on the Costa Brava even though conditions are expected to be good next week, with 10-20 knots in warm water and air temperatures.

Craig did not compete in yesterday's practice race. 

Very eagle-eyed Irish sailors looking at the entry list may recognise Noguer-Castellvi as the Olympic Gold medalist in the Flying Dutchman class in 1980 in Tallinn when Wilkins and Wilkinson took silver for Ireland!

Current GrandMaster World Champion Gilles Coadou will compete for France, as will Belgium’s Pieter Van Laer, third at last year’s Barcelona Worlds and Father to Belgium’s Full rig representative at the Tokyo Olympics.

The GM fleet is boosted by non-European entries from Argentina, and other age divisions feature Australians, Americans, and Brazilians.

Ireland has one other entry, London-based ex-pat John Curran, a member of Wembley SC who travelled over to the Irish Masters in May, featuring quite strongly though his best place of a second was lost to a Black Flag infringement. Curran races in the Masters' division.

Most of the top ten from the World Championships are competing, including Ulf Myrin from Sweden, who beat Craig into second at the Malta Masters in March this year, and Dutchman Wilmar Groenendijk, who pipped him by one point for first GM at the Spanish masters in April.

Published in Laser
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The Royal St George Yacht Club hosted the last of this season's ILCA/Laser championship events, the aptly named ‘2022 End of Season’, this past weekend.

This event had previously been hosted in Kinsale Yacht Club for the last two years. However, ILCA Ireland agreed that it should be held in Dun Laoghaire as a fundraiser for local ILCA sailor Kevin Doyle who was recently involved in an accident and requires ongoing care.

Between the event entry fee, raffle and gofundme donations, over €23,000 was raised, a remarkable sum and a wonderful testament as to how the ILCA class and the Irish sailing community come together when one of their own needs it most.

The event itself attracted seventy-four sailors from all four provinces, multiple counties and sailing clubs, once again, a super indication of just how popular the class and its events remain, even into the colder and breezier Autumn winter days. The event also attracted the current third ranked ILCA 7 sailor in the world, our very own Finn Lynch, who along with Annalise Murphy and Eve McMahon, very kindly offered their time to conduct one on one coaching as part of a raffle prize draw.

An ILCA 6 start at the Royal St. George hosted End of Season championships on Dublin Bay. Photo Mark LittleAn ILCA 6 start at the Royal St. George hosted End of Season championships on Dublin Bay. Photo Mark Little

Race officer Harry Gallagher and his team delivered a near flawless six race event in winds ranging from 15-20kts across Saturday and Sunday. The event was spread across three fleets with forty-one entrants in the ILCA 6 fleet, fifteen in the ILCA 4 fleet and eighteen in the ILCA 7 fleet. Howth’s Gallagher delivered three back-to-back international-level racing on both days with no delays and competitors back ashore in record time.

The ladies dominated the ILCA 4 fleet over the weekend, securing slots one through four in the final shakedown. Sienna Wright from Howth took straight bullets. Lucy Ives of Carlingford took silver in all six races. Ava Ennis of the Royal St. George had only two slip ups on her path to straight thirds and in both instances, lost out to fellow clubmate Jessica Riordan, who finished in fourth overall. Cillian Twomey of Howth was the nearest challenger to the girls, taking fifth overall and first male.

In the forty one strong ILCA 6 fleet, East Antrim's Tom Coulter looked like the dead cert at the end of day one, with three straight bullets. Fellow Academy teammate, Sam Ledoux of the National Yacht Club was hot on his heels and Coulter dropped a couple of second place finishes on day two. In the end Coulter took gold with some points to spare with Ledoux in second place. Again, in this fleet the more interesting battle was for third. Irish Sailing Academy’s Sophie Kilmartin of Malahide and Royal St. George, was neck and neck with RSGYC master Sean Craig heading into the last race. Kilmartin pulled it out of the bag achieving her best result of the weekend with a third place finish, seeing off Craig for third place. Tom Fox (RSC) was third-placed male under 30 after Coulter and Ledoux. Charlotte Eadie (BYC) and Zoe Whitford (EABC) were second and third placed U30 girls in nineteenth and twenty first place overall respectively. Marco Sorgassi (RSGYC) was second master in sixth overall and Hugh Delap (RSGYC), third master in twelfth overall. In the ladies ILCA 6 master category, Ali Robinson was first overall, followed by Rachel Crowley and Mary Chambers, all of RSGYC.

In the eighteen-strong ILCA 7 fleet, Finn Lynch (NYC) unsurprisingly showed why he’s third-ranked sailor in the world, with a string of six first place results. His older brother, Rory Lynch (BSC) showed his younger sibling a trick or two of his own and finished second overall and on-form national champion, Dan O’Connell had yet another super event finishing third overall and first master. Recent ILCA 7 convert Oisin Hughes (RSGYC) showed his credentials finishing third placed U30, after the Lynch brothers, and fourth overall. Hughes was actually in third place coming into the last race, but a left shift at the start of the final race caught Hughes on the wrong side of the course, with O’Connell taking full advantage. Second-placed master in sixth overall was Gavan Murphy (RSGYC) with Gary O’Hare (RSGYC) third-placed master and eighth overall.

A very special thanks for pulling this event together, the 2021 Masters Nationals, the Leinster’s earlier this season as well as countless Sprint Series and ‘Race & Relax’ events must go to Brendan Hughes. After just starting ILCA sailing in 2018, over the last two years in his capacity as Dun Laoghaire class captain, Hughes has been the inspiration and driving force behind the continued success of the class both locally and arguably nationally. He gave countless hours of his time not only to the benefit of the Dun Laoghaire ILCA fleet, but to the fleet nationally.

All eyes are on now on 2023, with the fleet expecting to meet up again in Baltimore at Easter for the Munster Championships, which is the traditional first event of the season. It will be an exciting year for the fleet, with Olympic qualifier events taking place later in the year for the male and female national senior teams. If this weekend was anything to go by, the future of the Irish fleet beyond the current senior team is in very good shape with strong competitive sailing across all ages.

Full results are below

Published in Laser
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Page 1 of 67

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.

©Afloat 2020

Tokyo 2021 Olympic Sailing

Olympic Sailing features a variety of craft, from dinghies and keelboats to windsurfing boards. The programme at Tokyo 2020 will include two events for both men and women, three for men only, two for women only and one for mixed crews:

Event Programme

RS:X - Windsurfer (Men/Women)
Laser - One Person Dinghy (Men)
Laser Radial - One Person Dinghy (Women)
Finn - One Person Dinghy (Heavyweight) (Men)
470 - Two Person Dinghy (Men/Women)
49er - Skiff (Men)
49er FX - Skiff (Women)
Nacra 17 Foiling - Mixed Multihull

The mixed Nacra 17 Foiling - Mixed Multihull and women-only 49er FX - Skiff, events were first staged at Rio 2016.

Each event consists of a series of races. Points in each race are awarded according to position: the winner gets one point, the second-placed finisher scores two, and so on. The final race is called the medal race, for which points are doubled. Following the medal race, the individual or crew with the fewest total points is declared the winner.

During races, boats navigate a course shaped like an enormous triangle, heading for the finish line after they contend with the wind from all three directions. They must pass marker buoys a certain number of times and in a predetermined order.

Sailing competitions at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo are scheduled to take place from 27 July to 6 August at the Enoshima Yacht Harbour. 

Venues: Enoshima Yacht Harbor

No. of events: 10

Dates: 27 July – 6 August

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Dates

Following a one year postponement, sailing competitions at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo are scheduled to take place from 23 July 2021 and run until the 8 August at the Enoshima Yacht Harbour. 

Venue: Enoshima Yacht Harbour

No. of events: 10

Dates: 23 July – 8 August 2021

Tokyo 2020 Irish Olympic Sailing Team

ANNALISE MURPHY, Laser Radial

Age 31. From Rathfarnham, Dublin.

Club: National Yacht Club

Full-time sailor

Silver medallist at the 2016 Olympic Games, Rio (Laser Radial class). Competed in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017/2018. Represented Ireland at the London 2012 Olympics. Laser Radial European Champion in 2013.

ROBERT DICKSON, 49er (sails with Seán Waddilove)

Winner, U23 49er World Championships, September 2018, and 2018 Volvo/Afloat Irish Sailor of the Year

DOB: 6 March 1998, from Sutton, Co. Dublin. Age 23

Club: Howth Yacht Club

Currently studying: Sports Science and Health in DCU with a Sports Scholarship.

SEÁN WADDILOVE, 49er (sails with Robert Dickson)

Winner, U23 49er World Championships, September 2018, and recently awarded 2018 Volvo Afloat/Irish Sailor of the Year

DOB: 19 June 1997. From Skerries, Dublin

Age 24

Club: Skerries Sailing Club and Howth Yacht Club

Currently studying International Business and Languages and awarded sports scholarship at TU (Technology University)

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