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MacCarthy & Porter Take The Lead on Day Two of GP14 Nationals at Lough Erne

15th August 2021
GP14s wait for wind ashore at Lough Erne Yacht Club on day two of the Irish Championships at Lough Erne Yacht Club
GP14s wait for wind ashore at Lough Erne Yacht Club on day two of the Irish Championships at Lough Erne Yacht Club

The second day of the 2021 GP14 Championship of Ireland got underway more than two hours later than scheduled. Little or no breeze saw the AP up outside Lough Erne Yacht Club all morning and well into the afternoon.

Patience was rewarded, with the wind eventually filling in and PRO Derek Bothwell managing to get the fleet on the water and ultimately complete another three great races. Earlier, this looked far from a certainty.

Unlike Friday, race conditions were between four and eight knots. At the end of the day, the three early leaders were still in the top three but had been shuffled a little, and they certainly didn't have it all their own way.

Race one saw Hugh & Dan Gill in Yin Tang take first place (and the International Shipping Services Cup) from Blessingtons Richard Street, with Ger Owens maintaining his consistent showing in 3rd. Shane MacCarthy was 7th and Ross Kearney 9th.

Race two again saw YinTang to the fore until some gear failure late on allowed Ger and Shane through, with Hugh & Dan settling for 3rd. Great to see Richard Street back on the stick as he followed up his 2nd with a 4th in the day's second race.

Robert & Chris Gingles took fifth to rattle a few cages. Our overnight leaders Ross & Jane Kearney, were certainly not having it their own way and had to settle with 12th.

If anyone thought it was now just between Ger & Shane, Ross & Jane had other ideas. A second in Race three puts them well in touch, but they could do nothing to stop Shane & Josh's taking their third bullet of the event. Norman Lee with Adam Leddy revelled in the conditions to take third ahead of the McGuinness brothers and jumped into 5th overall behind Hugh and Dan Gill in fourth.

So with two races on Sunday, Shane & Josh lead Ger & Brendan by three points, with Ross & Jane four points further back.

The Masters' Championship is also on offer here this weekend and sees Norman Lee chasing Hugh Gill, but any slip-up from the top three you feel will allow Hugh in for a podium finish in the main event and a medal.

Steven Nelson and son Daniel did enough to sneak past East Downs Patrick Hamilton to lead the Silver fleet. A top ten beckons for both these Silver fleet entries. Good going in a fleet of 40.

Today, the top five finishes of Blessingtons Richard Street & Conor Flynn saw them move ahead of Sutton Dinghy Club Matthew Cotter & Tom Mulligan at the head of the bronze fleet.

Two races on Sunday in what should be slightly breezier conditions will finally sort the top five positions. 

Overall results after day two are downloadable below


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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.

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

GP14 2022 Irish Fixtures 

Spring Open (Apr 30 May 1)
Sligo YC

Ulsters (May 21-22)
Lough Foyle YC

Nationals (Jul 2-3)

O'Tiarnaigh Pre-Worlds (Jul 30-31)
Skerries SC

GP14 Worlds (Aug 14-19)
Skerries SC

Leinsters (Sep 17-18)
Mullingar SC

Hot Toddy/Youth Championship
(Oct 15-16) - Newtownards SC

Munster Championship
(Nov 5-6) - Cullaun Sailing Club

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