Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Grimes and Chambers Prevail to Win GP14 Munsters at Shifty Cullaun Sailing Club

9th November 2022
GP14 Munster Champions 2022 Colman Grimes (centre) and John Chambers (left) with GP14 class President Andy Johnston
GP14 Munster Champions 2022 Colman Grimes (centre) and John Chambers (left) with GP14 class President Andy Johnston

19 GP14 from all over Ireland gathered at Cullaun Co. Clare over the weekend of 5-6th November for the last busy year event of 2022 with the Munster Championship at stake.

There was a super turnout of crews from all generations and family combinations from Cullaun, Skerries, Sutton, Tralee, Newtownards, Sligo, Greystones, and Blessington. 

The first race start involved a general recall which put manners on everyone and was won by Skerries Coleman Grimes/John Chambers (back to GP14 sailing after a long sabbatical), closely followed by Greystones Norman Lee and Alan Leddy with Steven and Daniel Nelson from Newtownards grabbing third.

While line honours went to Grimes and Chambers for the second race, there was a reported OCS, the second race went to the Lee-Alan pairing with Conor Galligan (new to GP14 fleet) and Adam Leddy youths snatching 2nd from Rob Lee and Steven Lynch in their new boats.

In very shifty conditions, by sometimes over 40 degrees in gusts, and with an infinite number of tacks needed per windward leg, the third race went to the Grimes and Chambers team by a country mile, with second place going to a resurgent Rob Lee and Steven Lynch followed by Steven and Daniel Nelson just pipping the Galligan and Leddy youth boat.

In mild conditions on Saturday before a forecasted blowout for Sunday, the race officers ran an extra 4th race which again went to the Colman and John team with the second bell going to Steven and Daniel Nelson beating Rob Lee/Steven Lynch into third.

Overnight the Grimes/Chambers boat was ahead of Norman Lee/Alan Leddy on joint 2nd with the Nelson father & son pairing and Rob Lee/Steven Lynch squads. 

Fortunately, the impending bad weather held off just long enough for the race officer to run two snappy races on Sunday morning with a nice long square line.

There was some carnage at the first windward mark, with port tacking approaches by the Grimes/Chambers and Norman Lee/Alan Leddy boats being shut out by the long line of conservative starboard tackers. After a quiet first day, Katie Dwyer/Laura Fitzpatrick then led for the first time before a rounding incident meant turns and the pair dropping back out of contention.

This allowed the Rob Lee/Steven Lynch crew to take the first race by a massive lead ahead of Grimes/Chambers in 2nd, with Steven and Daniel Nelson grabbing 3rd just ahead of the emerging talents of the Sam Street and Josh Lloyd youth combination from Blessington

GP14 Munster Silver Fleet & Youth Winners Conor Galligan & Adam Leddy at Cullaun Sailing ClubGP14 Munster Silver Fleet & Youth Winners Conor Galligan & Adam Leddy at Cullaun Sailing Club

The last race of the event in light conditions before a downpour was a tight shoot-out between the Grimes/Chambers boat versus the Norman Lee/Alan Leddy combination all the way to the finish line with the Greystones seniors just holdoff to snatch the win. A very strong 3rd place was snatched by the leading female boat of Katie Dwyer/Laura Fitzpatrick from Sutton.

All Female crew Katie Dwyer & Laura Fitzpatrick at the GP14 Munster Championships at Cullaun Sailing ClubAll Female crew Katie Dwyer & Laura Fitzpatrick at the GP14 Munster Championships at Cullaun Sailing Club

There were some great family rivalries throughout the event, with family members competing across all fleets. Rob Lee showed his old man how to do it in the gold fleet with Sam Street in the silver and Denis Cully and Daithi and Aaron Murphy in the bronze, doing the same.

GP14 Munster Championships Bronze Fleet winners Denis Cully and Ossian Geraghty at Cullaun Sailing ClubGP14 Munster Championships Bronze Fleet winners Denis Cully and Ossian Geraghty at Cullaun Sailing Club

Denis Cully set the Bronze fleet pace with Ossian Geraghty crewing for him by running away with the first place. Max Cully/Tadgh Wardell started the event tied with Des and Pat (Cullaun) and Jennifer and Lara (Newtownards) for second overall for the season Bronze League but there was no stopping them and they held on to second in the bronze fleet with relative ease and much singing (although their rendition of never going to give you up may have been a tactical manoeuvre to scare others away from them). This secured them a second place for the season also.

GP14 Munsters Championships at Cullaun Sailing Club

1. Colman Grimes & John Chambers (Skerries)
2. Robert Lee & Stephen Lynch (Greystones)
3. Norman Lee & Alan Leddy (Greystones)
1. Conor Galligan & Adam Leddy (Greystones)
2. Sam Street & Josh Lloyd (Blessington)
3. Simon Cully & Libby Tierney (Blessington)
1. Denis Cully & Oisin Geraghty (Blessington)
2. Max Cully & Tadgh Wardell (Blessington)
3. Des McMahon & Pat Biesty (Cullaun)
Leading Youth
1. Conor Galligan & Adam Leddy (Greystones)

Race Results

You may need to scroll vertically and horizontally within the box to view the full results

Published in GP14 Team

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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.

GP14 Ireland Event Dates 2023

  • O'Tiarnaigh (Apr 22-23) Blessington Sailing Club
  • Ulsters (May 20-21) East Antrim Boat Club
  • Munsters (Jun 17-18) Tralee Bay Sailing Club
  • Leinsters (Jul 7-9) Dun Laoghaire Regatta
  • SOYC (Aug 19-20) Rush Sailing Club
  • Nationals (Sep 1-3) Sutton Dinghy Club
  • Hot Toddy (Sep 30-Oct 1) Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club


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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