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Irish Flying Fifteens Head for European Championship at Riva del Garda, Italy  

29th August 2018
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An image from the 2012 Flying Fifteen Europeans on Lake Garda An image from the 2012 Flying Fifteen Europeans on Lake Garda Photo: Elena Giolai / Fraglia Vela Riva

A strong fleet from Ireland travels to the Flying Fifteen Open European Championship that takes place from Sunday 2nd to Friday 7th of September at one of Europe’s favourite sailing venues, Lake Garda. The Irish fleet, largely from Dublin Bay, will be using the Europeans as vital training for the 22nd World Championship which is due to take place in exactly one years time at the National Yacht Club at Dun Laoghaire.

The Flying Fifteen Open European Championship takes place from Sunday 2nd to Friday 7th of September at one of Europe’s favourite sailing venues, Lake Garda. The crystal clear deep waters and regular ‘Peler’ and ‘Ora’ breezes make the venue one of the more glamorous locations to hold a regatta. The host venue, Riva del Garda is perched at the Northern end of the lake surrounded by mountains which makes the race course a true test for the best of crews.

Registration takes place on Sunday 2nd September, with racing commencing on Monday 3rd through to Friday 7th September. Twelve races are scheduled with no more than three races per day. The overall winner of the FFI European Championship will be awarded the Uffa Fox Memorial Trophy. (Uffa Fox designed the Flying Fifteen)

There are just under 40 entrants to the championship with the vast majority travelling from Great Britain. These include the current World and European Champions, Steve Goacher sailing with regular crew Tim Harper. This pair won the last World Championship held in Napier, New Zealand in February 2017 and previous to that, the last Europeans held at Medemblik in the Netherlands in September 2016.

There is a plethora of ex UK national champions and flying fifteen regulars amongst the fleet, some sailing with different crews. These include Greg Wells, (2nd at the last European Championship), who is sailing this time with crew Andrew Jameson and Charles Apthorp, who came 4th at the last World Championship in Napier.

The Brit pack also includes Flying Fifteen regulars, Simon Kneller sailing with Dave Lucas, David Tabb and Chewey Sherrell, Ian Cadwallader and Steve Graham, Chris Gorringe and Nadia Hosie and Adrian Tattersall and Richard Pepper, to name just a few.

There is also an entry from the globetrotters representing Hong Kong in the shape of Ashley Smith and Kym Thumpkin

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Flying Fifteen - At A Glance

Overall Length 20 ft6.1 m

Waterline Length 15 ft4.6 m

Mast Height 22 ft 6 in6.86 m

Sail Area 150 sq ft14 sqm

Spinnaker Area 140 sq ft13 sqm

Hull Weight 300 lb136 kg

Keel Weight 400 lb169 kg

Minimum Weight 685 lb305 kg

Racing Crew Two

Ideal Crew Range 18 - 28 st145 - 185 kg

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