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Fireballs Get Sunshine & Sea Breeze in Greystones

26th June 2018
Skerries Sailing Club Niall McGrotty (right) & Neil Cramer were the Fireball Open winners Skerries Sailing Club Niall McGrotty (right) & Neil Cramer were the Fireball Open winners

The Irish Fireball fleet raced their Open Championships by joining Greystones Sailing Club for their 50th Dinghy Regatta with a schedule of four races for the Saturday. The Irish East Coast has been enjoying glorious sunshine over the past couple of weeks but that hasn’t always translated into great sailing/racing weather. Dun Laoghaire was like the Mediterranean on Friday – gloriously hot, but with very little wind!

Greystones on Saturday morning offered the same sunshine conditions but along with it was what looked like a decent sea-breeze. The breeze lasted all day but wasn’t as strong as it looked from the shore, offering only some off-wind trapezing in the early stages of the day, before it came on a little stronger for the 4th race, allowing some limited upwind trapezing.

Race wins were shared on a ratio of 3:1 between Niall McGrotty & Neil Cramer (14938) from Skerries Sailing Club and Frank Miller & Cormac Bradley (14713) from Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club, with Bradley making his summer racing debut in the Fireball. In terms of 2nd places, Miller & Bradley took the “win” by three races to McGrotty & Cramer’s one. Neil Colin & Margaret Casey (14775), also from Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club and also making their summer debut in Fireballs took third place by having three 3rd places in the first three races.

Greystones were their normal hospitable selves and gave the Fireballs a start with the Fast PY Fleet, consisting of the RSs – 400s and 200s, but set the two classes separate courses – the Fireballs sailing triangle-sausage-triangle while the RSs sailed two laps of a windward-leeward course. This dispensation still managed to generate some interaction between the Fireballs and the leading RSs at both the windward mark and the leeward mark and on more than one occasion, the Fireballs tried to put an RS between themselves and their class opposition.

The Slow PY Fleet was a combination of GP14s, Wayfarers, Lasers, Fevas and Hartley 12s, with one prominent Wayfarer personality sailing single-handed.

Despite the small turnout, Greystones gave prizes to the 1-2-3 in the Fireball class – engraved crystal prizes with the Greystones club logo incorporating a “50th”.

Irish Fireball Open Championships; Greystones Sailing Club

R1

R2

R3

R4

Tot

1

Niall McGrotty & Neil Cramer

14938

Skerries Sailing Club

1

1

1

2

3

2

Frank Miller & Cormac Bradley

14713

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club

2

2

2

1

5

3

Neil Colin & Margaret Casey

14775

Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club

3

3

3

5

9

Published in Fireball
Cormac Bradley

About The Author

Cormac Bradley

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Dublin Bay Fireballer Cormac Bradley was appointed Rear Commodore of the International Fireball Class in 2017. He is a regular dinghy and one design correspondent on Afloat.ie

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At A Glance – Fireball Dinghy Specs

Crew 2 (single trapeze)
LOA 16 ft 2 in (4.93 m)
Beam 4 ft 6 in (1.37 m)
Hull weight 175 lb (79 kg)
Mast height 22.3 ft (6.8 m)
Mainsail area 108 sq ft (10.0 m2).
Jib / Genoa area 35 sq ft (3.3 m2).
Spinnaker area 140 sq ft (13 m2).

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