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#VOLVO OCEAN RACE – Plans for the future of Ireland's Round the World racer Green Dragon are still up in the air since the €2million high tech sloop failed to sell after the last race two years ago.

Support is needed, say Galway organisers to put the 70-footer into a youth development role. Her real value is in doing this, says Galway's Enda O'Coineen and such use is of 'much greater than her market value'.

The boat, under British skipper Ian Walker, failed to meet expectations in the 2008-9 race when it was discovered that the boat's keel bulb was too light. It did however get a rapturous welcome into Galway for the port stopover in May 2009.

In the longer term Galway owners are still trying to figure out what to do with the vessel but some youth development role is touted as a favourable option.

Just how this might come about or how inexperienced hands could master such a high tech vessel has yet to be revealed, however.

The Chinese built boat came out of storage this summer and VOR organisers have been putting it to good promotional purposes on the Continent.

Green Dragon is now in Spain and will represent Galway in this month's VOR 'Legends Regatta' in Alicante. It is sailing with a young Irish crew.

The regatta is another marketing opportunity for the boat that might yet throw up a buyer.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

Ireland's Green Dragon and Telefónica Black, two Volvo Open 70s from the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race will join the Volvo Ocean Race Legends Regatta fleet over 1-5 November, lining up with boats that took part in the first 10 round the world races.

Ireland's Volvo 70 will race its first race in almost two years after she had finished fifth out of seven entries in the 2009 Race.

Attempts to sell it for two million euros in 2009 did not materialise. Since then, the round the world yacht has been in dry dock in Galway, rendered obsolete because her hull was heavier and keel lighter than her rivals. She recently sailed to Rotterdam to be part of an exhibition.

The two state of the art racers will showcase 38 years of development in round the world racing since the first Whitbread Round the World Race in 1973-74, when they take their place next to the Legends fleet which spans ten races.

Both boats will compete in the regatta run over two days, creating a challenge for race director Jack Lloyd and his race management team, who will be setting inshore courses that work for maxi ketches such as the race-winning Steinlager 2 and her opponent from 1989-90 Fisher & Paykel, as well as for yachts such as the Italian Tauranga which took part in 1973, and, more recently the Whitbread/Volvo Open 60 Assa Abloy/2001-02.

"The real challenge for us is to try to make all the yachts competitive with each other," Lloyd explains. "The step-up in design and technology since 1973 has been massive and we would like all the boats to be sailing together.

"We are looking at a 'pursuit ' style of racing where the boats start the race in a staggered fashion according to their size, which we feel has the best chance of creating a dramatic and competitive finish for the fleet on each of the two days of race," he adds.

Green Dragon has been entered in the Legends Regatta by Enda O'Coineen and John Killeen. O'Coineen has had a long association with the race, having been the driving force behind the NCB Ireland entry in 1989-90 and most recently Green Dragon in 2008-09, together with the very successful Galway stopover in the previous race.

The Green Dragon crew will include Killian Bushe who sailed on and built NCB Ireland and was builder of the winning entries in the last three races. The team plans to include a broad cross-section of Irish sailors who have participated in the Whitbread/Volvo Ocean Race and will also include Angela Farrell who sailed on Maiden and Deidre O'Callaghan on With Integrity during 1989-90.

Entering in the spirit of the regatta, the team will also travel with its own Irish band, the Green Dragon 'Upstarts'.

Both Green Dragon and Telefónica Black were constructed especially for the last Volvo Ocean Race. Green Dragon, from the board of Reichel Pugh, finished in fifth position, one place above the Spanish boat, from Farr Yacht Design, which was part of a two-boat campaign for Team Telefónica 2008-09. Sistership Telefónica Blue, with a new rig, a new paint job and a new name, Sanya, will race in this year's Volvo under the leadership of race-winning skipper Mike Sanderson.

Telefonica Black's best moment was when she won the final leg of the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-09 from Stockholm to St Petersburg. Her navigator, Roger Nilson, was competing in his seventh Whitbread/Volvo Ocean Race and will be reunited with the boat during the Legends regatta.

GREEN DRAGON 2008-09
Rig: sloop
Designer: Reichel Pugh
LOA 64' (19.5m)
Crew: 11
Finished: 5
Elapsed time: 135.05
Skipper: Ian Walker/GBR

TELEFONICA BLACK 2008-09
Rig: sloop
Designer: Farr Yacht Design
LOA 64' (19.5m)
Crew: 11
Finished: 6
Elapsed time: 87.1 (DNF leg 4, DNS leg 5)
Skipper: Fernando Echávarri/ESP

Entries in the Volvo Ocean Race Legends Regatta and Reunion

- Tauranga (1973-74)
- Adventure (1973-74 1977-78)
- Great Britain II (first five races)
- King's Legend (1977-78)
- Berge Viking (1981-82
- Gauloises III (1981-82)
- L'Esprit d'Equipe (1985-86)
- Rothmans (1989-90)
- Charles Jourdan (1989-90)
- Steinlager 2 (1989-90)
- Fisher & Paykel (1989-90)
- Assa Abloy (2001-02)
- Telefónica Black (2008-09)
- Green Dragon (2008-09)

Regatta Ambassadors

- Lady Pippa Blake
- Tracy Edwards MBE
- Sir Chay Blyth CBE, BEM
- Magnus Olsson
- Skip Novak
- Pierre Fehlmann
- Alain Gabbay

Published in Volvo Ocean Race
Tagged under
The wind was not on the Dragon crews' side this Friday for the last and decisive rendez-vous. A light and flimsly air, not enough to have the boats moving, forced the Committee to calli it a day and send the 58 strong fleet back ashore. The final ranking has then been decided taking into consideration the six races sailed since Tuesday. Italian Giuseppe Duca on Cloud wins his first title at the Régates Royales leaving Dublin's Martin Byrne fourth overall.

Good breeze on the first two days, light air on the third and not enough wind on the fourth: the 58 Dragons participating to the Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai profited from excellent conditions for the event opening, and namely the Irish crew skippered Martin Byrne on Jaguar-Bear who scored two wins whils race favourite and 2010 champion Anatoly Loginov from Russia on Annapurna, did not show the same consistency and strength he's known for.

Still, it's on the second day that the ranking becomes more definite as the Danish class master Poul-Richard Hoj-Jensen on Danish Blue bounced back as did Italian Giuseppe Duca on Cloud, despite a a black flag disqualification on race 3.  And, Thursday, when just one race could be sailed due to the extremely light wind, the skipper from Venice together with French sailors Jean-Sébastien Ponce and Guillaume Bérenger scored a win that proved to be crucial to obtain is first ever title at the Régates Royales. Danish Blue's skipper and multiple Olympic medallist Poul-Richard Hoj-Jensen with Theis Palm and Mick Jensen  jumps on the second step of the podium, whilst Russians Anatoly Loginov, Andrey Kirilyuk and Alexander Shalagin on Annapurna are distanced by a single point and finish third.

Dubliner Martin Byrne, with Brian Mathews and Pedro Andrade on Jaguar-Bear who started the series brilliantly, had a bad second day and slipped back in fourth. Interestingly enough on a total of six races, victory went to five different crews:  Martin Byrne, British Ivan Bradbury on Blue Haze, French Joseph Varoqui on Rusalka, Danish Peter Warrer on Lil and Giuseppe Duca. And in the top ten spots of the overall ranking no less than eight countries are represented: Italy, the UK, Russia, Ireland, Denmark, Germany, France and Finland.

Published in Dragon

The penultimate days racing at Regates Royales yesterday saw Irish Dargon Jaguar skppered by Martin Byrne battle it out with their nearest competitors at the top of the 59 boat Dragon fleet. A 6th for Jaguar, the one time regatta leader, in race 6 leaves them in fourth overall with just two points separating the top four boats with one race to sail.

A superb win by the Italian team in very light conditions in the Bay of Cannes jumps them into the top spot tied on points with Poul Rickard Ho Jenson.

A tenth for the Russian team drops them to third just one point ahead of Jaguar. The second race of the day was abandoned at the half way point due to a disappearing breeze. Jaguar were lying in sixth position at this time well ahead of all three of their rivals and a finish under these circumstances would have left them comfortably in the lead overall.

It is all to play for in today's final race where the four leading contenders will be keeping a very close eye on each other with a winner takes all scenario.

Published in Dragon

The Russians have bounced back at the Regatta Royales in Cannes today, knocking Dublin Skipper Martin Byrne off the top spot in the 58-boat Dragon fleet.  The Royal St. George Commodore sailing Jaguar had a disappointing second day but still lies third overall with it all to play for tomorrow.

A postponement kept the fleet ashore until 1pm waiting for the light to moderate breeze to fill in from the south. The Irish champions suffered the rath of an on the water Jury decision when they were deemed to have committed a foul after what seemed like a perfect start at the committe boat end of the line. The subsequent penalty turns were very costly and a 29th finish was disappointing.

Another good start in the second race of the day saw Jaguar lead the fleet for much of the first beat only to be undone by a 30 degree wind shift as they approached the the top mark. A 16th on that Race 5 sees them slip to third overall on 22 points narrowly behind the last years winner Russian Anotoly Loginov and Olympic and Dragon legend Poul Ricard Ho Jenson.

Day 2 marked the comeback of Longinov on Annapurna. With a twelfth and a second, the Russian skipper managed to keep his competitors at bay and jump on top of the provisional ranking with 36 points.

Ever consistent Hoj Jensen on Danish Blue, scoring a third and a 15th is now second on the overall scoreboard distanced by only one point.

Italian Giuseppe Duca on Cloud, with a second and a sixth, and having discarded a black flag disqualification he got yesterday, is now fourth and still close to the top trio. HRH Prince Heinrik of Denmark on White Lady is now fifth in the overall standing at 26 points and British Ivan Bradbury on Blue Haze sixth a 33 points.

The points are tight with three races remaining.

Published in Dragon
Tagged under

Dragon Edinburgh Cup winner Martin Byrne's impressive international form continues this week at the helm of Jaguar. The Dublin sailor leads HRH Prince Henrik of Denmark for overall honours at the Régates Royales in Cannes, on the south of France. Byrne, the Commodore of Dun Laoghaire's Royal St. George Yacht Club is counting a 1, 1 and 3 in the 58-boat fleet. 'We're off to a good start' Byrne, the Irish Dragon national champion, told Afloat.ie this morning. July's Edinburgh Cup winner is sailing with Brian Mathews and Portuguese sail maker Andrade Pedro.

dragonjaguar

Martin Byrne leads the 58-boat fleet

After the fleet could not go out on the water on Monday because of the strong, gusty typical Mistral breeze, the 58 boat strong Dragon fleet had three windward/leeward races on Tuesday starting in a 12 knots south-westerly, that progressively increased during the afternoon hours, topping 20 knots. Competition was strong as usual for the top positions and the class' champions imposed their supremacy. The first two races went both to Dublin's Byrne on Jaguar Bear who managed to get the better of reigning champion and class master Anatoly Longinov on Annapurna and on multiple class winner Danish Poul Richard on Antigua's flagged Danish Blue on the first one. A nearly clean score for the Irish skipper who was third in the last race of the day won by Ian Bradbury on Blue Haze. HRH Prince Heinrik of Denmark's had a very positive first day with a sixth, a second and a fourth. With five points, the Irish team is then securely on top of the provisional podium, in front of HRH Prince Henrik of Denmark (13 points) and the Russian crew skippered by Anatoly Loginov (16 points).

Published in Dragon
21st September 2011

Weiser Wins Dragon Gold Cup

After three days of severe winds and mighty waves, the Derbigum Dragon Gold Cup Fleet went out early yesterday morning to sail two races. No Irish boats were racing in the 62-boat fleet.

After the first start, the fleet cut in two. The left side went towards the beach, the right side steered deeper into sea. But soon some drizzle limited the visibility, which meant that one more aspect was added to this race: sheer navigation. The right side looked better, where the current was weakening.

Markus Wieser (Bunker Queen - UKR 7) picks up the right wind, steers his dragon the right way between de cross waves and finishes first.

In the second race of this day, the wind veers even more and although the race officers keep adapting the course to the shifts and the weakening wind, the battle in the forefront of the fleet is severe.

The Nations Cup went to Russia.

Top ten final overall results:

1. Bunker Queen, Wieser, UKR, 31 points
2. African Queen, J. Schonherr, DEN, 33
3. Annapurna, A. Loginov, RUS, 34
4. Aimee, G. Bailey, GBR, 43
5. Bunker Prince, Y. Braslavetz, URK, 44
6. Bendira, M. Palsson, SWE, 50
7. Murka 12, M. Muratov, RUS, 50
8. Sunflower, V. Fogelson, RUS, 52
9. TIgger, T. Tavinor, GBR, 54
10. Clairvoyant, E. Sawyer, USA, 55

Published in Dragon
Tagged under

Galway's round the world yacht, the Volvo 70 Green Dragon, sailed from Galway Port this morning. Her first port of call is Kinsale and on Thursday she will sail for Rotterdam.

From there she will go on a low-loader for Frankfurt to become a static exhibit rather than a sailing craft. She is to appear at the world famous Frankfurt Motor Show where Galway owners say 'she will be put on display in a premier position' - fully rigged - promoting the Volvo Ocean Race 2011 - 2012 and the Race finish in Galway as part of a global village exhibtion showcasing Irish innovation, food and the marine.

Green_Dragon_Galway_Docks21

The Green Dragon crew who are enroute for Rotterdam via Kinsale

"At this major global exhibition in Germany this will be a fantastic opportunity to showcase Irish Sailing and our plans for 2012 - and also to show our support for Team Sanya our Chinese Irish Volvo Ocean Race Team. A formal send off is planned from Dublin for Team Sanya on Monday 5th Sept", says Enda O'Coineen of Let's Do It Global, who is sailing on the first leg of the voyage to Frankfurt.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race
Sign up for this mornung's e-bulletin (see past editions here) for all the weekend's Irish sailing news, pics and results straight to your inbox.

This morning's edition includes photos and pics from Sunday's Figaro departure from Dun Laoghaire and the Rick Tomlinson's pics of the start of the Fastnet race from Cowes. Derry-Londonderry is on her way to Rio in the Clipper race. Regrettably there was no Gold, Silver or Bronze from Weymouth but we're in a strong position. See our video with Annalise here. Plus: The Topper Worlds at the National YC, John Lavery's win at the Flying fifteen South coast champs in Dunmore East, the J24 Nationals from Lough Erne, A local pair whitewashed the RS Feva Nationals in Cork Harbour, some great shots from Bob Bateman. The Oppy Nationals start in Howth and Afloat's Sailor of the Month for July Martin Byrne retained the Dragon Nationals in Kinsale. There's also the full weekend results from Dublin Bay SC.

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Published in Racing

Martin Byrne retained his title as National Dragon Champion in Kinsale last weekend, adding to his Edinburgh Cup victory last month in Abersoch writes Tim Pearson.

Byrne, with crew Adam Winkelmann and Pedro Andrades, was pushed hard by Jay Bourke and Cameron Good throughout the four day event which saw a variety of testing conditions in a predominantly moderate to fresh southwesterly airflow.

On the Friday racing was conducted in a sea mist which reduced visibility at times to 200 metres and required the competitors to bring their navigational skills into play.

However, Race Officer Alan Crosbie, using the event as a dry run for the Gold Cup in September 2012, when around 80 Dragons are expected to compete in the waters off the Old Head, was master of the conditions and got the 7 race series off on time.

2012 will be a special year for Dragons in Ireland, and there is already much international interest in  a veritable grand prix circuit which will start with the Edinburgh Cup In early July, move to Dublin for the Nationals and culminate in Kinsale with the Gold Cup.

Martin_Byrne_Adam_Winkelmann__Pedro_Andrade-1

Irish Champions Martin Byrne, Adam Winklemann and Pedro Andrades

2011 Dragon Irish National Championships:

1. Martin Byrne
2. Jay Bourke
3. Cameron Good

Published in Dragon
Page 18 of 21

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

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At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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