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Displaying items by tag: Flying fifteen

The annual October Freshwater Keelboat Regatta at Dromineer, (hosted by Lough Derg Yacht Club and staged last weekend) has been no stranger to hyper-strong winds in times past. But in 2021's unusually gentle Autumn, it provided two to three days of very usable sailing breezes, mostly from the southwest. And if the sun tended not to put in an appearance until late afternoon despite the high-pressure area moving over the country, a least it provided welcome brightness when it did show up for the healthy outdoor prize-giving ceremonies.

LDYC Commodore Joe Gilmartin and his team, led by Honorary Sailing Secretary Fergal Keating, welcomed a strong fleet across four keelboat classes, with John Leech serving as Race Officer for the Dragon and SB20 area, while Liam Moloney looked after the Squibs and Flying Fifteens. All classes had sufficient numbers for good racing among boats which had come from many parts of Ireland. But it was the Squibs, currently on a roll and further buoyed by the prospect of the big championship – effectively the Squib Worlds – in Kinsale next June, which were in a league of their own, with a pandemic-defying turnout of 29 boats representing most Irish centres, and including a couple of cross-channel challengers.

Regatta time at Lough Derg Yacht ClubRegatta time at Lough Derg Yacht Club

Morning promise of a good day's racing as the breeze comes whispering in – Dragons, Squibs and SB20s in Dromineer HarbourMorning promise of a good day's racing as the breeze comes whispering in – Dragons, Squibs and SB20s in Dromineer Harbour

The Squibs had the biggest fleet, and here Slipstream (102, Robert Marshall & Neil Logan, Killyleagh YC) leads from Fuggles (Sean & Paul Murphy, Kinsale YC).The Squibs had the biggest fleet, and here Slipstream (102, Robert Marshall & Neil Logan, Killyleagh YC) leads from Fuggles (Sean & Paul Murphy, Kinsale YC).

Part of the Squibs' attraction is that they're not afraid to move away from standard white hulls, and LDYC Honorary Sailing Secretary Fergal Keating's Bodacious (crewed by David Maher) has had a particularly attractive paint job.Part of the Squibs' attraction is that they're not afraid to move away from standard white hulls, and LDYC Honorary Sailing Secretary Fergal Keating's Bodacious (crewed by David Maher) has had a particularly attractive paint job.

Part of the Squib's growing success lies in their entertaining and informative Irish Squib Forum, and its recently-posted enthusiastic response to the Lough Derg event by Fiona Sugrue-Ward of the Kinsale fleet joyfully captures the flavour of the class and the place and the pace very well indeed:

Lough Derg Yacht Club was the venue for the final Regional Squib Event of 2021. A bumper turnout of 29 Squibs raced in the Freshwater event, and it is great to see such numbers on the start line. The Fleet love going to Lough Derg, and as always the Club ran a super event, both on and off the water.

With six races held over the two days, conditions on the lake were almost perfect with southwesterlies averaging 10-12 knots making racing fair across the racecourse. There were 5 different individual race winners leading to a final race where any one of eight Squib combinations could have won outright.

Racing had been really close and placings up and down the fleet were impossible totally on the spot. When the numbers were finally crunched in the Race Office, it was Quickstep from Cultra with a consistent top and finishes and one race win which danced to overall victory with the Royal North of Ireland's Gordon Patterson and Ross Nolan.

Sunshine finally breaking through – Fantome (730 Fergus O'Kelly & Ronan MacDonnell, Howth YC) chasing Granat (David Stewart & Brian Hare, Royal Irish & Royal Dee YCs)Sunshine finally breaking through – Fantome (730 Fergus O'Kelly & Ronan MacDonnell, Howth YC) chasing Granat (David Stewart & Brian Hare, Royal Irish & Royal Dee YCs)

Bookending the weekend with wins in Race 1 and 6, Kinsale's Outlaw 785 secured 2nd overall for Ian Travers and Keith O'Riordan. Local Squib Femme Fatale 24, with Lough Derg's Joe O Byrne and Vincent Delany helming, went for 3rd overall.

Other notable mentions must go to race winners Toy for the Boys, Fantome and Firecracker. The fleet were delighted to have overseas visitors in Squib 11 with Pam and Dick Batt, and a Welsh Dragon was welcomed flying over Lil Quickie with Tudor Roberts and Ieuan Williams.

A fleet of 29 is a fabulous end to the 2021 Squib season, the close racing amongst the fleet makes for great events. The Class are already planning and looking forward to next year with Regional events and of course the combined UK & Irish National Squib Championships in Kinsale.

Squib Results Here

Volante is another boat from Killyleagh on Strangford Lough – sailed by Simon Watson & "Jordy", she place eighth overall. Volante is another boat from Killyleagh on Strangford Lough – sailed by Simon Watson & "Jordy", she place eighth overall. 

The overall format for the Freshwater Keelboat Regatta is the Dragons do three days starting on the Friday while the SB20s, Flying Fifteens and Squibs do two. But whatever your programme, the social highlight is the dinner on the Saturday night, an epic event even by the legendary hospitality standards of Lough Derg Yacht Club, which has been honing its hosting skills since 1835.


While there was convivial inter-class mingling, after the past 18 months of pandemic limitations, inevitably there were close-knit celebrations within classes that had seen little enough of each other since March 2020. The festive levels were notably high in the SB20s, where John Malone of Lough Ree Yacht Club was Presiding over his last on-water event, having served as top honcho with success despite lockdown limits, with the SB20s making a special effort to take their class message wherever and whenever it was permissible and welcome.

LDYC Commodore Joe Gilmartin (right) with Andrew Deakin's winning SB20 crew which included Aoife (11) and Claire (9).LDYC Commodore Joe Gilmartin (right) with Andrew Deakin's winning SB20 crew which included Aoife (11) and Claire (9).

This has been partially in anticipation of the Worlds being in Dun Laoghaire with the Royal Irish Yacht Club in 2022. But equally, there was a determination to make the best of the here and now with commendable attention to detail, which is one race saw the President taking time out to check the mooring lines on one of the race marks, unselfishly sacrificing what would have been a good result in Race 3 in order to do so.

SB20 President John Malone taking his Presidential duties very seriously with the time-honoured inspection of race mark moorings…..SB20 President John Malone taking his Presidential duties very seriously with the time-honoured inspection of race mark moorings…..

……which is a ritual process, and done very thoroughly……which is a ritual process, and done very thoroughly

Even with that, he and his crew of Emmet Sheridan and Alex Leech got to the 7th and final race well in contention for the win against the host club's Andrew Deakin crewed by Brian & Colm McElligott after notching victory in Race 6. But as the President candidly admits, they were having such lovely sailing that they failed to do the strategic calculations on how to conduct a cunning final race, and the Deakin boat Sonic Boom – whose crew betimes included Oppie sailors Aoife (11) and Claire (9) - took the bullet and the series one point ahead of El Presidente.

SB20 Result here

Things are looking rather better for the outgoing SB20 President, nicely placed in 3040, but in the end he was second by one point. Things are looking rather better for the outgoing SB20 President, nicely placed in 3040, but in the end he was second by one point. 


The Flying Fifteens in Ireland have a fascinating development with a seriously-raced class taking hold in the heart of Connemara in the strongholds of the ancient Galway Bay traditional boats. It all started quite far back with older boats brought down by families for holiday sailing, but as our report on the Cong-Galway Race down Lough Corrib this year revealed, the far sailing waters of Connacht now include some hot newer craft of all types. The Fifteens are reflecting this, with Niall & Ronan O'Brien of FF Chonamara turning up at Dromineer with Buckfast and competing to such good effect that they took second in a fleet of ten.

Flying Fifteens on the run, Squibs on the beatFlying Fifteens on the run, Squibs on the beat

Their scoreline included a couple of firsts, but it was Belfast Lough sailors Trevor D'Arcy and Alan McClernon of Carrickfergus who were on top of their game with three first and a second and fourth to win by one point, while Alan Green and David Mulvin of the NYC in Dun Laoghaire were third after notching best results of a first and two seconds.

Flying Fifteen results here


It doesn't do to rush the final few miles down the winding road to Dromineer from Nenagh with an International Dragon in tow, for it's a boreen which might have been set up with Advanced Towing Driving Tests in mind. But at least the boats which came from Dun Laoghaire had motorway most of the way until Nenagh, whereas the hotshots from Kinsale had to contend with some of those nationally-notorious bottlenecks on the Cork-Limerick road before getting anywhere near their destination

This may have sharpened their determination to succeed once they got the fresh air of Lough Derg in their lungs, and with their elite three-day programme providing eight races, it came right down to the wire between two Kinsale boats, with Brian Goggin's Serafina and Cameron Good's Little Fella both on 17 points.

Dragons finding some sunshine on the run, with eventual overall winner Little Fella (211, Cameron Good KYC, left) making a successful break for it.Dragons finding some sunshine on the run, with eventual overall winner Little Fella (211, Cameron Good KYC, left) making a successful break for it.

However, 2021 is Little Fella's year, and she added another title by winning the tie-break, with third place going to Peter Bowring of Royal St George YC in Dun Laoghaire with Phantom.

International Dragon Results here

The season is by no means completely over on Lough Derg, but there's no doubting that this year's successful Freshwater Keelboat marks a significant changing of the pace, with a distinct change in the weather now upon us to emphasise this. It's really anybody's guess what the country has to go through during the coming winter, but down Dromineer way they're already thinking of the bright weather of next summer. For in addition to its busy home programme and of course the Freshwater Keelboat Regatta in October (date is October 15th-16th, put it in the diary now), Lough Derg Yacht Club is hosting the Fireball Worlds 2022 from August 20th to 26th.

Autumn is well upon us – evening sunlight at DromineerAutumn is well upon us – evening sunlight at Dromineer

Published in Inland Waterways

The National Yacht Club and the Irish dinghy and one design scene are mourning the loss of sailing stalwart Gerry Donleavy of Dun Laoghaire Harbour, who died at the weekend.

Donleavy, a long-standing member of the NYC, won the 1988 British Flying Fifteen title and was a multi-class champion.

He was at home in dinghy and keelboat classes and travelled extensively across Ireland and Europe in a sailing career spanning almost 50 years. 

He claimed national titles in 420s, Fireballs and 505s, to name a few, before moving into the Irish keelboat scene in the mid-1980s, competing successfully in the J/24 before finally settling on the Flying Fifteen as his boat of choice.

He competed at international level in a series of World Championship campaigns in Australia and New Zealand.

Although he didn't compete when the 2019 Subaru Flying Fifteen Worlds were held in Dun Laoghaire Harbour, he was nevertheless central to the event's successful staging, an occasion he truly enjoyed as it gave him the chance to renew friendships with many of his antipodean rivals. 

Donleavy's lifelong love for the sport of sailing saw him in many roles, including that of instructor and coach and mentor right up to Irish Olympic team level. 

Donleavy, who ran specialist marine firm International Boats, was instrumental both afloat and ashore in promoting the Flying Fifteen as Ireland's most significant one-design keelboat class. Its most extensive base was, quite fittingly, at his home club.

Leading the tributes, in a message to members issued on Monday October 4, the NYC's Alan Daly said: "He was a great friend to all in the fleet, and he will be sorely missed".

Funeral arrangements are here

Published in National YC

Lough Derg Yacht Club in County Tipperary will welcome one design visitors back to Dromineer for the Keelboat regatta on the weekend of 15th to 17th of October.

Four fleets are expected to the lake, with the biggest likely to be the Squibs, according to Derg's Joe O'Byrne.

The distinctive mace-colour sailed fleet expects a 30 boat entry to include Northern Ireland, England, Kinsale and Howth boats to compete against a growing local fleet.

The SB20s who recently competed on Lough Ree are moving to Derg for their final event of the year, and a fleet of 18 is expected in the last event of 2021 before staging the world championships in Ireland on Dublin Bay in 2022.

LDYC PRO John Leech - two race areas for the keelboat regattaLDYC PRO John Leech - two race areas for the keelboat regatta

Lough Derg Yacht Club says it expects the Flying Fifteens will also be travelling, and estimates from the Dun Laoghaire fleet say up to a dozen will attend.

Up to a dozen Flying Fifteens are expected on Lough DergUp to a dozen Flying Fifteens are expected on Lough Derg

The Dragons will have competitors from Kinsale and Dublin.

The club has arranged a lift in/lift-out on-site, and, O'Byrne says, this will significantly assist the logistics for competitors.

LDYC PRO John Leech and his team have split the four fleets over two separate race areas.

Published in Inland Waterways

Despite an overnight cushion of six points, Nigel Biggs and Peter Evans of Howth Yacht Club were chased all the way in today's final races of the Flying Fifteen Irish East Coast Championships off Dun Laoghaire Harbour

Five races were sailed with one discard applied in a buoyant turnout of 23 boats.

Racing on a similar course area to where Biggs claimed a Class Two ICRA national title a fortnight ago, the HYC duo sailing Checkmate XIX scored two fifths in the final races.

It put Biggs and Evans a point ahead of National Champions John Lavery and Alan Green who moved up from fifth overnight to take second overall but only after a tie break with Shane MacCarthy and Chris Doorly of the National Yacht Club who finished third. 

Second overall - John Lavery and Alan GreenSecond overall - John Lavery and Alan Green

Third overall - Shane MacCarthy and Chris DoorlyThird overall - Shane MacCarthy and Chris Doorly

Flying Fifteen East Coast Championships 2021 Top Ten Overall

  1. IRL 4092 Checkmate XIX Gold HYC Nigel Biggs Peter Evans 1.0 2.0 3.0 (5.0) 5.0 16.0 11.0
  2. IRL 4083 Phoenix Gold NYC John Lavery Alan Green 2.0 7.0 (12.0) 2.0 1.0 24.0 12.0
  3. IRL 4085 Boat Gold GSC/NYC Shane MacCarthy Chris Doorly (22.0) 6.0 2.0 1.0 3.0 34.0 12.0
  4. IRL 3892 Stiffers Mom Gold Portaferry Sailing Club Stuart Harrison Conor Brennan 6.0 (18.0) 1.0 11.0 2.0 38.0 20.0
  5. IRL 3883 Fleet Fox Gold WHSC Charlie Boland Rob McConnell (12.0) 3.0 10.0 3.0 4.0 32.0 20.0
  6. IRL 3896 Triggers Brush Gold WHSC Lee Statham Andy Paul 3.0 8.0 7.0 4.0 (24.0 DSQ) 46.0 22.0
  7. IRL 4018 Final fling Gold Portaferry Sailing Club Shane Mc Carthy Brian Fitzmaurice 9.0 1.0 4.0 9.0 (24.0 DNF) 47.0 23.0
  8. IRL 4037 Ffast Antic Gold Killyleagh Yacht Club Andrew McCleery Colin Dougan 7.0 5.0 5.0 8.0 (24.0 DNF) 49.0 25.0
  9. IRL 4074 Simply Gold Gold County Antrim Yacht Club Willis Bryan John McPeake 4.0 12.0 9.0 6.0 (24.0 DNF) 55.0 31.0
  10. IRL 4093 Mike Wazowski Silver NYC Ian Matthews Keith Poole (14.0) 4.0 13.0 10.0 6.0 47.0 33.0

Full results are here

Published in Flying Fifteen
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With three results in the top five, Nigel Biggs and Peter Evans from Howth Yacht Club lead a buoyant 23-boat Flying Fifteen East Coast Championships after three races sailed in light winds and strong tides on Dublin Bay.

Racing on a similar course area to where Biggs claimed a Class Two ICRA national title a fortnight ago, the HYC duo sailing Checkmate XIX scored a 1,2 and 3 to be on eight points and comfortably ahead of Portaferry Sailing Club's Shane McCarthy and Brian Fitzmaurice on 14.

Lying third in the National Yacht Club hosted event is another Strangford visitor to the Bay, Ffast Antic sailed by Andrew McCleery and Colin Dougan of Killyleagh Yacht Club on 17 points.

Racing in Scotsman's Bay was at times held in sub five-knot winds and subject to a strong tide.

Racing continues on Sunday. Results here.

Published in Flying Fifteen
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Having experienced a shortened season in 2020 because of the immediate impact of Covid, the 2020 Flying Fifteen Class Captain in Dun Laoghaire offered to serve a second term and on Saturday past, Neil Colin, Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club and Ffuzzy, 4028, held his Captain's Prize for the 2021 season.

In an early declaration, Neil advised that both races on Saturday would count and in the event of a tie-break the result from the second race would determine the tie.

This correspondent was not on the water, but attended the prize-giving afterwards, held on the balcony of the National Yacht Club. The general consensus was that conditions on Saturday afternoon had been tricky, but a clear result was determined without the need to resort to a tie-break.

Ian Matthews and Keith Poole didn't allow the trickiness to put them off the challenge as they took the overall win with two first places in their new boat, "Mike Wazowski", 4093. They were followed home by Shane McCarthy & Chris Doorly, sailing "Shane McCarthy", 4085, counting two second places while third place went to David Mulvin and Ronan Beirne, sailing Ignus Caput Duo, counting an 8th and a 3rd.

In the Silver Fleet, the "gong" was taken by Joe Coughlan and Andrew, sailing "Ash" 3913, while in the Bronze Fleet the honours went to Adrian Cooper in Gulfstream, 3198.

Prizes were in the form of gift vouchers from Viking Marine.

In terms of the overall Saturday Series, David Mulvin and Ronan Beirne (4068) continue to lead in overall terms with an 83points score, followed by Ken Dumpleton and Joe Hickey (3955) on 96pts, Ben Mulligan and Cormac Bradley on 97.5pts, with Niall and Susan Coleman a further 0.5pts behind them.

FF East Coasts

Next weekend, 18th & 19th, sees the East Coast Championships being hosted by the National Yacht Club. All the regatta documentation is on the NYC website I understand. With such a strong presence in Dun Laoghaire, the objective must surely be to have a big fleet in attendance. Potential competitors are encouraged to get their entries in early so that the numbers are known to the organisers.

Published in Flying Fifteen
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With the spotlight on the ICRA Championship in Dublin Bay this weekend, normal Bay racing saw a fleet of 17 Flying Fifteens turn out for DBSC club racing in a stiff southeast breeze of c15 knots.

As this was the first outing after the Championship of Ireland last weekend at Strangford Lough Sailing Club, some boats were observed pre-launch attending to rig and setting modifications for the day's racing. With the cruiser fleet out in the bay and an Optimist championship in the West of the bay, the PRO Barry O'Neill set his windward-leeward course near Merrion mark in line with the twin Poolbeg chimneys. Easy to find in a Bay full of boats and conveniently advised on VHF by the DBSC flagship.

A square line saw the boats start a three-round race with some quickly opting for the right side to go towards the shore. At the weather mark, 4068 (Mulvin & Beirne) was around first followed by 4093 a brand new boat on its first Dublin Bay outing (Mathews & Poole), 4081 (Mulligan & Casey) and 3955 (Dumpleton & Hickey). On the downwind leg, some opted to gybe set with the boats going to the rights side and gybing later on the leg holding their own. With some changes in the positions of the leaders the finishers were 1st 4068 Mulvin & Beirne, 2nd Mathews & Poole & 3rd 4081 Mulligan & Casey.

For race two the PRO set a four-lap course with the committee boat moving to the end of the final beat and located in a position to shorten the tack home. The tide was now slack and about to flood so decisions on the upwind course. Again the leaders opted for the inshore course with 4057 (T Murphy & La Roux) leading 4008 (Coleman & Coleman) with 4081, 3955, 4093 & 4068 in the mix. On the downwind leg, those that opted for a gybe set on the downwind leg didn't seem to make any distance that those who opted for the late gybe. A gruelling last beat saw 4057 (T Murphy & Le Roux) get the gun followed by 3955 (Dumpleton & Hickey) & 4008 (The Coleman's). With a 1st & 4th, 4068 (Mulvin & Beirne) won the day by a point from 3955 (Dumpleton & Hickey).

The Dublin Bay Sailing Club PRO Barry O'Neill and his crew on "Freebird" and mark layers provided excellent racing on a day with much activity in the bay, and this was greatly enjoyed by Ireland's biggest one-design keelboat class.

Published in Flying Fifteen
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With top-five results in all seven races sailed – and three race wins to boot – John Lavery and Alan Green successfully defended their Irish Flying Fifteen title in a light air contest at the weekend.

The pair, sailing Phoenix from the National Yacht Club at Dun Laoghaire, retained their 2020 title by a huge margin of some 16 points overall in the 22-boat fleet at Strangford Lough.

There was a three-way point tie for second place overall, with Greystones duo Shane McCarthy and Andy Thompson finishing as runners up. Locals Peter Chamberlain and Hammy Baker were third. 

Sunday 29th August produced grey skies and a wind that had undergone an almost 180°degree shift to come from a northerly quarter. Contestants were encouraged to launch as promptly as possible due to a falling tide and the Race Officer's declared intention to start racing promptly with the prospect of three races for the day.

The fleet obliged and after some deliberation as to where the weather mark should go due to the wind shifting left and right the fleet got underway under another "Black Flag" starting procedure.
Regatta leaders John Lavery & Alan Green (4085) stamped their authority on the fleet again by taking the race win, followed home by Shane McCarthy & Andy Thompson (40485) and Niall Meagher & Nikki Matthews (3938) who continued from where they had left off the previous day, counting a second in race four. Lavery & Green led this one from the start and were never really challenged.

Race 6 saw another win for Bryan Willis & John McPeake (4074) giving them a second bullet which one would have thought would help them up the overall ladder. However, the previous 2 x 9th and an 11th put a brake of sorts on their upward trajectory. They did win this race with a margin on the rest of the fleet. Second and third went to Hammy Baker & Peter Chamberlain (3756) and Lavery & Green, who benefitted yet again from finding an extra gear to get through the fleet after an average, by their standards start and first beat. Fourth went to Roger Chamberlain & Paddy Spratt (3962), while 5th went to Ian Matthews & Keith Poole (4093). Newcomers to the Irish fleet, Nigel Biggs and Simon Pritchard Jones (4092) were finding the going a bit tougher on the Sunday compared to their exploits on Days 1 and 2. They weren't the only ones!! McCarthy & Thompson "hung in" with a sixth place.

In what was the best breeze of the weekend in terms of strength, though we are talking very fine margins here, the fleet got a seventh race in, under another black flag regime.

Yet again, an average start and first beat saw Lavery & Green mixing it with the "mere mortals" only for them to benefit from some judicious calls by Green, according to Lavery, and grind their way to another first place. It is uncanny watching how they repeatedly got themselves out of difficult situations in terms of place in the fleet to elevate themselves to podium places. As John alluded to in his prize-giving thank you speech, Tuesday night practice sessions, in company, went a long way to winning this title. Behind them the finishing order was McCarthy, Trevor Darcy (3782), Biggs & Pritchard Jones and Meagher & Matthews.

In overall terms, Lavery & Green dominated the regatta with three race wins. However, there were some races where, by their own admission, they had to draw on accumulated experience and practice sessions to extract themselves from middle of the fleet positions to get into the smaller single figure places that lend themselves to winning major regattas. After discard, they won by a whopping 16pts, with their worst result a 5th place in Races 1 and 4.

McCarthy & Thompson led three boats home on a post-discard score of 29pts, the final order here being McCarthy, Hammy Baker & Peter Chamberlain (3756), Peter Kennedy & Stephen Kane (3920). Two boats were tied on 40pts after discard with Chamberlain & Spratt getting the nod over Biggs & Pritchard Jones. On 41pts we find Trevor Darcy & Crew, followed by two boats on 43pts, Willis & McPeake and Meagher & Matthews. The top ten was closed out by Ian Matthews & Keith Poole (4093) with 51pts.

Andy Thompson (2nd placed crew), Peter Chamberlain and Shane McCarthy, 2nd Helm.Andy Thompson (2nd placed crew), Peter Chamberlain and Shane McCarthy, 2nd Helm.

The Race Officer Team are to be commended on getting a seven-race series completed. As the three reports for this regatta testify to, winds were light, resulting in one race being abandoned, with only one race completed on the Saturday. Three races were sailed on each of the two "short-working days" Friday and Sunday. In addition to being light, the wind fluctuated continuously giving the mark-layers lots to do over the three days.

Peter Chamberlain (3rd placed crew), Roger Chamberlain (5th placed helm) and Andrew (Hammy) Baker (3rd placed helm).Peter Chamberlain (3rd placed crew), Roger Chamberlain (5th placed helm) and Andrew (Hammy) Baker (3rd placed helm).

SLYC's hospitality was to the fore again with teas and coffee and bacon butties available on all three mornings and despite the ongoing Covid regulations we were able to enjoy a sponsor hosted championship meal on the Saturday night in the clubhouse.

A special word of thanks to the regatta sponsor Ridgeway Engineering who were represented in the fleet by Stephen Kane, crewing for Peter Kennedy (3920). As was advised in the prize-giving, the sponsorship was provided in a very measured and generous fashion without a great deal of song and dance but in their prize-giving remarks both Peter Chamberlain, as Regatta Organiser, and John Lavery, as winning helm, thanked Stephen for his company's contribution to what was a very enjoyable and successful weekend.

Peter Kennedy (4th placed helm), Peter Chamberlain and Stephen Kane (4th placed crew).Peter Kennedy (4th placed helm), Peter Chamberlain and Stephen Kane (4th placed crew).

The Race Team and the host of volunteers, in the kitchen and bar, on the water and in the water, in terms of the launching and recovery teams, were thanked by Peter and John as well.

In his closing remarks, John paid tribute to his crew, the "evergreen" Alan Green who has won this Championship of Ireland, with five different helms. He acknowledged the judicious decisions by Alan on the water that allowed them to convert "difficult" first beats to low single digit scores. In a wider context he suggested that the Flying Fifteen can accommodate a wide spectrum of crew weights as was evidenced by the teams here this weekend and suggested that his crew would be a very good point of reference to anyone who needs to attune their boats in accordance with their crew size.

John also acknowledged the contestants who had travelled to the event from Dunmore East, Howth, Dun Laoghaire, Belfast/Larne and within Strangford Lough itself.

For the Irish Fifteen fleet. The next event is the Easterns which are scheduled for Dun Laoghaire on the weekend of 18th & 19th of September. Just enough time for a recalibration for those who need it!!

Results are downloadable below.

Published in Flying Fifteen
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As was feared at the close of business yesterday, the weather on arrival at Strangford Lough Yacht Club was reminiscent of the Flying Fifteen British Championships sailed at the same venue a couple of years ago when we sat ashore for three days under an AP flag. This morning, a combination of inshore mirror-like conditions and a mist that hid the race area from view meant that flying an AP flag was inevitable even though there was insufficient wind to make it flutter. Instead of a scheduled 10:55 Warning Signal, the suggestion was that it might be closer to 14:00 before we would get underway………and so it proved.

Under very light conditions, a la Portaferry of a few weeks back the fleet got away. The majority of the fleet started along the outer half of the start line, but a few pioneered the right-hand side including this correspondent sailing with Ben Mulligan (4081) and Roger Chamberlain, sailing with Paddy Spratt (3962). Chamberlain made his way to the middle of the course first before coming back right again. Mulligan persisted in his right-hand side quest and was rewarded when he crossed the entire fleet to lead into the first weather mark. Chamberlain closed on him in the final approach to the mark but at the mark, there were a few boat-lengths between them.

Initially, both boats led the fleet down the right-hand side of the beat before Mulligan broke away to head left. Regrettably and hopefully understandably, I can't tell you who was following Chamberlain. Ass the fleet made their way downwind, there were increasing indications from the committee boat, conversing with the rib at the weather mark, that they had growing doubts that the race was fair, and ultimately those doubts prompted an abandonment of the race. From a jaundiced perspective (again understandably) I have to question why the race was abandoned where it was when the fleet was sailing back down towards the start area. As we approached the committee boat, the RO admitted there would probably be six boats that would not be happy with the decision. I suggested she might need both hands for that count!

The wind then faded away before a slightly stiffer breeze came in from the south, prompting a move of the weather mark westwards. Under a black flag start, the fleet got away apart from three transgressors of the revised starting protocol – Messrs McCarthy (4085), Chamberlain (3962) and Biggs (4092). This time it was the left side that paid from which exited Bryan Willis and John McPeake (4074), Niall Meagher & Nicki Matthews (3938) 3782. Regatta leaders overnight, Lavery & Green (4083) were at the committee boat end of the start and may have worked middle and left to work their way up the fleet.

This correspondent with his helm had a biblical race – those who had been first were last, etc, etc, well not quite, but you know what I mean.

A shortened race saw Willis & McPeake win with Meagher & Matthews second, 3782 third, Peter Kennedy & Stephen Kane (3920) 4th and Lavery & Green 5th. The previous day's other winners, Mulvin & Beirne had a 13th.

With four races completed, a discard kicks in to leave the regatta as follows;

Racing continues on Sunday

Published in Flying Fifteen
Tagged under

Twenty-two entries to the Flying Fifteen Nationals translated to twenty boats on the water with 12 boats arriving from South of the border. Of these, all bar three were from Dun Laoghaire. Dunmore East had a 100% turnout with Lee Statham/ Andy Paul and Charlie Boland/Rob McConnell here, both sporting green spinnakers. Howth had a solitary entry in the form of Nigel Biggs of Checkmate fame sailing with Simon Pritchard Jones. The rest of the nine travellers were all DL based.

At the briefing, the Race Officer indicated that given Saturday's forecast she would try for a third race today. She further encouraged an early launch to facilitate a punctual start, which she delivered on.

The first boat to get a positive start to the regatta was Dave Mulvin & Ronan Beirne (4068) who took the first gun of the day in a race where their worst position was third.

Race 2 was taken by John Lavery & Alan Green (4083) who, after a mediocre start and first beat, moved up a gear to lead the majority of the remaining race and lead the fleet over the line.

Race 3 went to Roger Chamberlain & Paddy Spratt (3962) who came in from the left on the first beat to lead the race from start to finish.

The aforementioned Biggs & Pritchard Jones (4092) showed the best consistency to score a 7, 3, 3 to secure 2nd overall, followed by Peter Kennedy & Stephen Kane (3920) scoring 4, 6, 4 for third overall.

However, Lavery & Green bested them all to score 5, 1, 2 and sit in first overall overnight. In fourth overall sits Hammy Baker & Peter Chamberlain (3756) with a 3, 4, 8 while Shane McCarthy & Andy Thompson round out the top five with a 2, 11, 6.

Conditions were light, though not as light as Portaferry a few weeks back. Races were started promptly despite a wind that fluctuated, back and forth through 30 degrees during the day's racing.

Saturday's apparent promise is for very little wind. We shall see!!

1. John Lavery & Alan Green 4083 8pts
2, Nigel Biggs & Simon Pritchard Jones 4092 13pts
3. Peter Kennedy & Stephen Kane 3920 14pts
4. Hammy Baker & Peter Chamberlain 3756 15pts
5. Shane McCarthy & Andy Thompson 4085 19pts.

Download the full results after day one as a pdf below

Published in Flying Fifteen
Tagged under
Page 1 of 31

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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