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Displaying items by tag: Green Dragon

The veteran Volvo Racer Green Dragon (back mast-less in her old home port of Galway since Sunday) has been sorted. Her spare mast will be stepped today, with the port’s adopted French supersailor Yannick Lemonnier playing a key role in getting this nautical heroine of many a campaign back in full seagoing trim.

Meanwhile, the exceptionally summery weather has provided a warm and welcoming mood for the assembly of fourteen-plus Galway Hookers of various sizes for the Claddagh Festival (which continues until Sunday). The two Viking longships from Ardglass have arrived and been put into full warship mode, the highlight of their visit being the Salthill Raid on Saturday, when they’ll be accompanied by the hookers and a fleet of local yachts.

galway hookers2The standard of maintenance in the fleet of traditional craft gathered in Galway this weekend is impressively high. Photo: Pierce Purcell

Afloat.ie’s man in Galway reports that huge credit is due to anchorman Peter Conneely and his team, led by Colin Hermon, who have put in a massive amount of behind-the-scenes work to bring this very special and successful show together. With the quayside thronged last night with Galway, Connemara, Claddagh and Ardglass folk, the festival mood was running very well.

ardglass longships3In the summery weather in Galway, the “raiding” Ardglass Viking longships from County Down seem to exude nothing but goodwill Photo: Pierce Purcell

Published in Galway Harbour

The Sino-Irish Volvo Racer Green Dragon has been having a somewhat checkered career since leaving Ireland, and though she took Transatlantic line honours in the ARC in December as the beginning of a Portuguese involvement in future Volvo Races, more recently she had the indignity of being dismasted.

Fortunately there’s a spare mast in her old home port of Galway, and she arrived in there yesterday to have it fitted. Afloat.ie will have more on this story as the week goes on.

green dragon back in galway2“I’m sure we left a spare mast here somewhere.....” Green Dragon returns to her old home port of Galway on a very specific mission. Photo: Pierce Purcell Jnr

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

Volvo Open 70, Green Dragon, the former Irish Volvo Ocean Race entry has been dismasted in the Caribbean. The yacht made the journey across the Atlantic as part of a Portuguese Mirapuri initiative and was to be sailed in the Heineken St Maarten Regatta by a crew from Sopot YC in Poland.

None of the crew, who all hail from Sopot YC in Poland, were hurt. The unfortunate crew were left looking for crewing opportunities for the Regatta that started last week. 

Green Dragon placed fifth overall in the 2008-09 Volvo Ocean Race, coming in 3rd at the Galway, Ireland stopover to the huge delight of the crowds that stayed out until 4am to welcome their boat home.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race
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Paulo Mirpuri got a step closer to realising Portugal's first entry in the Volvo Ocean Race 2020 thanks to Ireland's Green Dragon VOR 70 now a training boat for Mirpuri's campaign. As Afloat.ie reported in January, the Portuguese crew made a successful ocean crossing in the former Galway–backed Green Dragon at the weekend.

Ashore in Bridgetown, skipper Mirpuri said: 'My debut on an ocean crossing taught me a lot, especially the importance of the spirit and union of the crew. Now I know exactly how to select the Portuguese sailors for the future Mirpuri Foundation team in the Volvo Ocean Race 2020'.

Ireland's Volvo 70 finished fifth out of seven entries in the 2009 Volvo Ocean Race.

Attempts to sell Green Dragon for €2 million euros in 2009 after the race did not materialise. She  then spent some time in dry dock in Galway, rendered obsolete because her hull was heavier and keel lighter than her rivals.

In spite of the disappointing performance the boat was welcomed in to Galway after the 2009 Transatlantic leg by a huge crowd and a week long celebration that has subsequently set the bar for all other stop over ports in subsequent races.

 
 
 
Published in Volvo Ocean Race
Tagged under

Ireland's 2009 Green Dragon Volvo Ocean Race boat will sail again in a transatlantic race to promote the work of a non profit organsation.

As our photo above shows the famous Irish vessel has been rebranded as 'Mirpuri Foundation', a research body in aerospace and medical domains. The project for the former VOR yacht is 'just at its begining', according to a spokeswoman, but it already counts the support and sponsorship of  the Foundation which Mr. Paulo Mirpuri is president.

The project is designed spread the Mirpuri message across the world with a Portuguese crew as ambassadors prior to a future Portuguese Volvo Ocean Race 2020 project.

A transatlantic crossing is planned for January 29th next year.

Ireland's Volvo 70 finished fifth out of seven entries in the 2009 Volvo Ocean Race.

Attempts to sell Green Dragon for two million euros in 2009 after the race did not materialise. She  thenspent some time in dry dock in Galway, rendered obsolete because her hull was heavier and keel lighter than her rivals.

In spite of the disappointing performance the boat was welcomed in to Galway after the 2009 Transatlantic leg by a huge crowd and a week long celebration that has subsequently set the bar for all other stop over ports in subsequent races.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

#JamieBoag - Volvo Ocean Race team commercial boss Jamie Boag was honoured for his contributions to sailing at the Atlantic Youth Trust's conference and dinner in Galway last weekend, as the Galway Independent reports.

The commercial director of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing – winners of the most recent Volvo Ocean Race – received the trust's Lifetime Achievement Award for his work with its Irish-flavoured predecessor Green Dragon Racing, as well as his hand in bringing the world's most gruelling ocean yacht race to Galway.

Also on the evening last Saturday (12 March), the Galway Independent contributed €5,000 towards a seed fund to develop a bursary for youth sail trainees in the West of Ireland, along the lines of those already established in Drogheda and West Cork.

The day's conference also saw discussions and workshops on the trust's plans to build a new tall ship for Ireland, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

Regular Afloat readers will recall Green Dragon's departure from Dingle in County Kerry crewed by sea scouts last year but now after debuting in new colours at last October's Middle Sea Race, the 2008/9 Irish Volvo Ocean Race veteran is sailing around the Caribbean and is available to charter.

Miramar Sailing based in Antigua has places available on Green Dragon at the forthcoming 49th edition of Antigua Sailing Week.

From Russia to Australia, yachts and crew from over 20 nations will be competing in the regattta. 

Green Dragon was specifically built as the Irish entry in the 2008-2009 Volvo Ocean Race, in which she finished fifth of seven. In 2012 she took line honours in the Round Ireland Race.

Miramar sailing took delivery of the Irish yacht last September

The Volvo Ocean 70 (also known as the Volvo Open 70) is the former class of racing yachts designed for the Volvo Ocean Race. It was first used in the 2005–06 race (replacing the Volvo Ocean 60 yachts which were first used in 1993) and use a Canting keel which is capable of canting transversely up to an angle of 40 degrees.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race
Tagged under

#VOR - Abu Dhabi will return to the Volvo Ocean Race in 2014-15 both with a sailing team and a stopover in the UAE capital, it was announced earlier this week.

Once again skippered by Ian Walker, the team is the third confirmed entrant in the 12th edition of the round-the-world yacht race, after the all-woman Team SCA and a team representing the Brazilian state of Pernambuco.

The Abu Dhabi team joined the last edition of the race under the auspices of former commercial director David Hassett, who was previously instrumental in bringing the race to Galway for the first time in 2009, and was one of the team behind Ireland's underdog entry the Green Dragon, which surprised the yachting world by clinching three podium finishes.

Meanwhile, the stopover will be the end point of Leg 2 from Recife in Brazil, making for "one of the longest and most challenging in the 40-year history of this race" according to Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad.

"Heading into the Southern Ocean is never easy and this route will test the sailors to the limit," he added. "The finish line in Abu Dhabi will be one of the most eagerly awaited in the race.”

The news comes two weeks after Newport in Rhode Island was announced at the sixth host port of the race - and an understanding that no Irish ports will feature in the final route, according to The Irish Times.

Elsewhere, the VOR website visits the Persico factory in Italy in where the hulls are being completed for the new design VOR 65 in its latest video update - and also takes a look at the construction of the rigs for the new boat at Southern Spars in New Zealand.

In other news, it's emerged that Puma is pulling out of the sailing market, cutting its support for the Oracle team in the America's Cup and permanently dry-docking its Volvo Ocean Race team.

Reuters reports that the decision was made in the face of dwindling profits at the German sportswear brand.

Puma came third in the last edition of the VOR, which has its successful climax in Galway last summer.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

#VOLVO OCEAN RACE - Former Paralympic sailor and Irish National Helmsman’s Champion Feargal Kinsella will realise the dream of a lifetime when he sails on a round-the-world racing yacht in Galway as part of the Volvo Ocean Race festivities tomorrow Saturday 7 July.

The story of Feargal’s triumph over physical disability has touched the hearts of millions in recent radio and television interviews, and tomorrow morning he will finally get to fulfill one of the ten things he most wants to do in life.

"I just want to get my hands on the helm of one of the fastest and most powerful sailing boats in the world and I am absolutely thrilled that I may be able to do that on Saturday when I will join the crew of the Green Dragon on Galway Bay.”

The Green Dragon was the Chinese-Irish entry in the last Volvo Ocean Race and as part of the festival organised around the arrival of the VOR fleet in Galway, Feargal has been invited to sail it on the bay - fresh off its challenge in this year's Round Ireland Race.

A keen sailor who had sailed in many international sailing events including Fastnet and the Round Ireland Races, Feargal broke his neck in 1996. Looking back at that time. Fergal was convinced he would never sail again.

“After my first spinal injury, in 1996, my life and that of my family were thrown into turmoil. After nine months in hospital, I left in a wheelchair, paralysed from the chest down and convinced I would never sail again,” he said.

However, the Portmarnock man did take up sailing again, competing in the National Disabled Sailing Championship, the ISA Champion of Champions and representing Ireland in the 2004 Paralympics in Athens. He also won the Irish National Helmsman’s Championship in 2001 against able-bodied sailors.

A second spinal injury this Christmas saw Fergal break the fourth, fifth and sixth cervical vertebrae in his spine. Following an operation on Christmas Day, Feargal has spent the last few months at the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dun Laoighaire recovering.

One of the many things Feargal learned from recovering from his last injury is the importance of having goals.

“They're not all achievable,” he said, “but a person should have something to strive for. In my case, I now have a short list, to which I'm adding as I go, of things that I should most definitely do now that I have been given something of a second chance.”

High on Feargal’s list is sailing on a fast yacht. As he said himself: “The idea of actually having a sail on one of those magnificent sailing machines is just so exciting."

Feargal’s dream will finally come true tomorrow when he takes to the water with the crew of the Green Dragon.

Published in Volvo Ocean Race

#roundireland – While the official tracker has Inis Mor as the overall leader in the 2012 Round Ireland Race, it's going to be a nail biting few hours for the French boat.

As of 3pm, Inis Mor has 30.6 miles to go. To beat Tonnerre she needs to cover that distance in five hours and 34 minutes.  Simple math says she needs to average 5.49 knots and as she is making 5.7 knots just south of Lambay Island, it should work for her.

But, the 5.7 knots is not quite in the right direction – because the wind has headed her, she can only make 221° instead of the 190° she needs to reach Wicklow on one tack.  So while 5.7 knots looks good, her actual progress towards the finish or VMG, is currently 5.4 knots – just outside the 5.49 knots needed.

To make matters worse,  she is entering an area of stronger tides that will be directly against her for the last few hours into Wicklow.  She can mitigate some of this by hugging the coast, but at what cost windwise?

Fascinating stuff, www.afloat.ie's money's on Tonnerre, at least in this battle.  Keep an eye on Cavatina though – she still has a day left to win!

Published in Round Ireland
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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. 

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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