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GP14s Return to Howth Yacht Club For Autumn Open Event

17th September 2014
GP14s Return to Howth Yacht Club For Autumn Open Event

The Irish GP14 Class experienced Howth's two days of glorious weather, hospitality and sharp race management at Howth Yacht Club for their Autumn Open and Youth Championship.

Under the watchful eye of PRO Harry Gallagher, the fleet completed the full schedule of eight races, delayed for an hour or two on Saturday due to light winds, but completed in a steady Easterly force 3 on Sunday. There was something to test both the light crews and the heavyweights in super-flat seas and then fantastic surfing conditions.

The 2014 GP14 Autumn Open Champions are Niall Henry and Ossian Geraghty from Sligo. The wild men of the West just pipped Shane McCarthy and Damian Bracken by a point, followed two points adrift by the Under 23 Champion.

Sutton Dinghy Club dominated the Youth Championships with Daniel Gill taking the Under 19 Champion award and Eanna Moloney the Under 23 award.

Additional report below by Dan Gill

The 2014 GP14 Youth Championships kicked off to a slow start at Howth Yacht Club as racing was delayed due to lack of wind in the morning. The schedule provided two races for the seniors in the morning followed by another two in the afternoon for the Youth Championship.

The youth sailors, kindly ferried out to the racing area by Neville & Jean Maguire, waited eagerly as the seniors finished off their second race in gentle winds. With the changeovers complete, PRO Harry Gallagher quickly fired the five minute gun. The youthful enthusiasm of the sailors proved too much with two general recalls but finally got going, third time lucky. Two Sutton sailors, Callum Maher & Shane Mcloughlin miscalculating the race officer's signals and starting on the one minute gun provided the fleet with some humour as they continued towards the windward mark laughing amongst themselves.

With Eanna Maloney Lawless & Stephen Boyle rounding the windward mark first, the positions seemed set for the race with little place changing occurring around the racecourse. However the fleet battled it out on the upwind legs and the race finished up with Eanna & Stephen taking the bullet, Dan & Hugh Gill in second place and Gareth Gallagher & Donal McGuinness from Lough Foyle YC biting at their heels in third. By the time everyone had finished, the wind had dropped off and it seemed pointless to try and fit in another with stronger winds scheduled for Sunday.

Sunday began with sunshine and smiles all around as the forecast for stronger winds was correct. Racing kicked off with the first gun at 10:30. Strong winds and big swell provide the sailors with a difficult task navigating the race course with an extremely tight reach to the gybe mark and nice surf to the leeward mark with Dan & Hugh chasing the leaders Eanna & Stephen around the course but couldn't find the extra speed to catch them. Further back in the fleet they continued to fight it out until Edward Coyle & Colman Grimes of Skerries SC broke clear to take third. The last two races were fought hard by all in a strong breeze, no letting up with fierce competition on the points leader board. Gareth & Donal won race 3 from Edward & Colman with Callum Maher & Shane McLoughlin from Sutton pitching up in third place.

It all came down to the final race with Eanna, Dan, Gareth and Edward all possible winners. After a clean start Dan & Hugh rounded the weather mark followed closely by Eanna & Stephen. A tight top 3-sail reach saw Eanna pulling out over Dan and opening up yards as they powered into the gybe. Therein the battle for the Championship lay with Dan doing his best to catch the very quick Eanna providing the spectators on the committee boat and the waiting senior sailors with great excitement. At the last leeward mark Dan & Hugh secured inside position and held on to take the race win. Eanna however with 2 firsts and a second won the coveted GP14 Youth Championship of Ireland for the second year in a row. David Johnston & Alan Blay, also from Sutton, led the rest of the fleet home in third place. Many thanks to everyone who willingly gave their boats to the young sailors who happily returned them all without needing the wizardry of Alistair Duffin to put things right.

Pl Sail Helm Name Crew Name Club
1st 14116 Eanna Maloney Lawless Stephen Boyle SDC 1.00 1.00 (6.00) 2.00 10.00 4.00
2nd 13915 Daniel Gill Hugh Gill SDC 2.00 2.00 (7.00) 1.00 12.00 5.00
3rd 14080 Gareth Gallagher Donal McGuinnes LFYC 3.00 6.00 1.00 (8.00) 18.00 10.00
4th 14144 Edward Coyle Colman Grimes SSC (6.00) 3.00 2.00 6.00 17.00 11.00
5th 13977 David Johnston Alan Blay SDC (5.00) 4.00 5.00 3.00 17.00 12.00
6th 14055 James Hockley Alan Thompson LFYC 4.00 (5.00) 4.00 5.00 18.00 13.00
7th 14138 Calum Maher Shane McLoughlin SDC (11.00) 8.00 3.00 4.00 26.00 15.00
8th 13951 Sinead Dickson Katie Dwyer SDC 7.00 7.00 (10.00) 9.00 33.00 23.00
9th 13917 Michael Cox Josh Porter NSC (10.00) 9.00 8.00 7.00 34.00 24.00
10th 13207 Adrian Lee David Lappin YSC 9.00 10.00 9.00 (11.00) 39.00 28.00
11th 13902 Daniel Hopkins Nigel Sloan NSC 8.00 (11.00) 11.00 10.00 40.00 29.00
12th 14074 Cathal Sheridan David Cooke SSC (12.00) 12.00 12.00 12.00 48.00 36.00
13th 13882 Richard Gallagher Mark Ireland NSC (14.00 UFD) 13.00 13.00 14.00 DNF 54.00 40.00

Published in GP14
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The GP14 is a popular sailing dinghy, with well over 14,000 boats built.

The class is active in the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and parts of north-eastern USA, and the GP14 can be used for both racing and cruising. 

Designed by Jack Holt in 1949, with the assistance of the Dovey Yacht Club in Aberdyfi. The idea behind the design was to build a General Purpose (GP) 14-foot dinghy which could be sailed or rowed, capable of also being powered effectively by a small outboard motor, able to be towed behind a small family car and able to be launched and recovered reasonably easily, and stable enough to be able to lie to moorings or anchor when required. Racing soon followed, initially with some degree of opposition from Yachting World, who had commissioned the design, and the boat soon turned out to be an outstanding racing design also.

The boat was initially designed with a main and small jib as a comfortable family dinghy. In a design philosophy that is both practical and highly redolent of social attitudes of the day the intention was that she should accommodate a family comprising parents plus two children, and specifically that the jib should be modest enough for "Mum" or older children to handle, while she should perform well enough to give "Dad" some excitement when not taking the family out. While this rig is still available, and can be useful when using the boat to teach sailing, or for family sailing, and has some popularity for cruising, the boat is more commonly seen with the full modern rig of a mainsail, genoa and spinnaker. Australian boats also routinely use trapezes.

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At A Glance – GP14 Dinghy Specifications

Crew 2
Draft 1,200 mm (47 in)
Hull weight 132.9 kg
LOA 4.27 m (14 ft)
Beam 1.54 m
Spinnaker area 8.4 m2
Upwind sail area 12.85 m2

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