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This morning (Tuesday) sees the start of the Commodores' Cup Offshore Race that counts for 2.5 times the points of a normal inshore race. The course is intended to last between 24 and 36 hours in duration and by the conclusion, just over half the points for series will have been won. It's a tricky one for Ireland because its where we have lost the regatta in the past. More importantly event stats show that our nearest rivals this year, the French and British teams, have proved strongest offshore in the past. We asked Team manager Barry Rose for the latest this morning. Click below to listen to the podcast:

 

 

Published in Commodores Cup

After two further inshore races off Cowes today, the Irish Cruiser Racing Association's (ICRA) three-boat team continues to hold the overall lead of the Rolex Commodores' Cup at Cowes. The team has a 20.5-point advantage.

Team Captain Anthony O'Leary's Antix scored a first-place tied with Codiam of the France Blue team in the morning race and followed this with a second in the afternoon. Class 2 entry Marinerscove.ie fourth and second for the day while Rob Davies Roxy 6 in Class 3 had a seventh and a well-earned race win.

"It was a great days racing with tough conditions this morning in 18 knots of breeze," commented Barry Rose, ICRA Commodore. "We had a bit of a fight in some of the classes and we dug out three results with a very strong performance in the afternoon. All in all, it was a great day's work in sometimes tricky conditions."

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The fleet go downwind. Photo: Kurt Arriga/Rolex

The GBR Red team holds second overall with France Blue in third, just 5.5 points behind having improved from seventh overall in Day 1.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) sees the start of the Offshore Race that counts for 2.5 times the points of a normal inshore race. The course is intended to last between 24 and 36 hours in duration and by the conclusion, just over half the points for series will have been won.

"We'll put our minds to our minds to having a very positive approach to the offshore and be consistent for the duration," said Rose. "The aim is to sail strongly for the full duration – it won't be containment and we intend to keep up the intensity."

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Roxy 6 douses her kite. Photo: Kurt Arriga/Rolex

Conditions were perfect for today's two races with brilliant sunshine and more breeze – 14-17 knots from the northwest for the first, dropping off to 10-15 for the second. First up was an inshore race around the length and breadth of the eastern Solent, followed by a shorter windward-leeward course set off Hill Head on the mainland shore.

In the big boat class race one saw a rare corrected time tie between Anthony O'Leary's Ker 39 Antix (IRL), maintaining her perfect scoreline for the Irish team, and Nicolas Loday and Jean Claude Nicoleau's Grand Soleil 43 Codiam in France Blue. While Antix remains the boat to beat among the big boats, it was Codiam that scored two bullets today.

"I think the conditions were ideal for our boat, which is a bit heavy and ideally needs about 15 knots," commented Nicolas Loday, racing his fourth Rolex Commodores' Cup, but his first in the Grand Soleil 43. "It is a boat that goes very well with flat water. It is not at all a boat that goes fast in the big waves or the choppy seas you get in the Channel. So today the conditions were perfect for this boat – like yesterday, but yesterday we made wrong tactical decisions. Today we kept close to the other boats and this paid off very well."

Perhaps it was coincidence, but in Class 2 another Grand Soleil 43 shone today with former RORC Commodore Peter Rutter's Quokka 8 (GBR Red) scoring two bullets ahead of UNCL Commodore Marc de Saint Denis and Géry Trentesaux's Coup de Coeur (FRA Blue) and Ireland's marinerscove.ie, belonging to David Dwyer. Quokka 8 rates at 1.103 under IRC compared to Codiam's 1.110 as the French boat has a larger sail plan.

"We didn't feel on fire yesterday losing one race by 6 seconds and another one by less than a minute," explained Peter Rutter. "We needed to sit down and think - we did that last night and it's come out fantastic. We have a different way of trimming the main and we are also making sure that people only stop hiking out when given permission to. So, a bit more dictatorial, but it worked really well and the crew felt really happy."

Rutter felt their performance today was to down the change in crew work rather than having the ideal boat for the conditions. "It wasn't that different from yesterday, a little more wind. We stopped being stupid really."

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Antix jostles for position downwind. Photo: Kurt Arriga/Rolex

In the flat water and moderate conditions, the smaller higher-rated boats did seem to suffer today. Marinerscove.ie the Class 2 boat from the all-powerful Irish team struggled to post a 4-2. "We are in a 39-foot boat racing against 43-foot boats which rate significantly lower than us - it is very hard for us especially in the medium to upper wind ranges," commented her tactician, former America's Cup helmsman Andy Beadsworth. "After the first race we said 'we sailed well, for sure we could have done some things cleaner and smarter, but we were never going to beat those guys'. That was the reality."

In the second race Beadsworth was particularly pleased when his call to go left up the first beat came good, despite dissenters on board. They ended up reaching the weather mark a minute ahead of the competition.

The South African team is still trying to get out of its own way, lying seventh equal with GBR White after day two. Their mid-sized boat, Mike Bartholomew's King 40 Tokoloshe has been based in the Solent for two years, but Bartholomew says they have been struggling to get off the line cleanly. "It is essential in this type of racing. The races are being won and lost in the first 30 seconds. We have had four races where we haven't done that and we are paying the price. It has been very tight racing. We are disappointed we haven't done better than we have. We know what we are doing wrong and it is a case of trying to correct it."

In Class 3 Marc Alperovtich and Jerome Huillard's A-35 Prime Time won today's first race for France Yellow, while Robert Davies' Roxy 6 took the second for the Irish. But once again it was France Blue that came to form with Samuel Prietz' X-40 Goa claiming second in both today's races.

"Yesterday we had some minor difficulties with boat handling," admitted Prietz, a past Codiam crewman, for whom this is also his fourth Rolex Commodores' Cup. "We haven't sailed together since June, so yesterday we didn't do so well. We missed a couple of opportunities in tactics, also we were not able to point high enough comparing to some other boats - so not really promising. Today we sailed much more relaxed, with a much better mood inside the team."

Tomorrow, the complexion of the Rolex Commodores' Cup changes with the start at 10.30 BST of the 24-36-hour offshore race. The weather is also expected to take a turn for the worse with the passage of a front tomorrow afternoon. According to meteorologist Mike Broughton, working with the Irish team, this will bring with it 20-plus knot winds, before conditions lighten on Wednesday night, and then fill in again on Thursday. "It means it won't be a complete lottery. There will be no thermal switch off," he advises.

Offshore in waves with a mix of wind conditions, along with the rigours of racing at night, maintaining focus with little or no sleep, perpetually on the rail, after up to 36 hours of racing – will a new group of boats come to the fore? Past experience indicates that the French and British teams have proved strongest in the Rolex Commodores' Cup two-and-a-half points scoring offshore race. And, if there are stronger gradient winds - will the Irish continue to be the class act? We will not have the final answers to these questions until Wednesday, but by tomorrow night we may some pointers. All yachts will be carrying tracking units with the positions presented at: http://commodorescup.rorc.org

Top Five Teams - Provisional Positions 16/8/10

Team / Points / Place
Ireland / 24.5 / 1
GBR Red / 45 / 2
France Blue / 51.5 / 3
Hong Kong / 54 / 4
France Yellow /59 / 5

Published in Commodores Cup

After two more windward leeward races in bright sunshine and 15-18 knot winds Ireland's Antix scored a joint first and a second in the Rolex Commodores' Cup today. Marinerscove scored a fourth and a second. Roxy was seventh and first. After four races now sailed on the Solent, Ireland leads by 20.5 points from UK Red. France Blue is third on 51.50 points. More reports and photos later.

Published in Commodores Cup

Follow all the boats racing in the Rolex Commodores' Cup 2010 on the Inshore Race Tracking System HERE!

 

 

Published in Commodores Cup

In spite of Ireland's domination of the first races of the Commodore's Cup, Irish Cruiser Racer Association (ICRA) Commodore Barry Rose says it is far too early for celebration in the Irish camp. After all they have been here before a number of times. Hear the latest from Rose this morning as the teams go afloat for a breezy two races today, exactly the sort of conditions that favour the Irish trio.

 

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Ireland's Antix in action. Her crew inlcudes last week's Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta winner Peter O'Leary. Photo: Kurt Arriga

Published in Commodores Cup

Ireland is in firat place in the Rolex Commodores' Cup after a strong performance by the three-boat Irish Cruiser Racing Association team in Cowes this afternoon. Two inshore races were sailed with five race wins and a second place scored by the team.

Class 1 entry Antix skippered by Team Captain Anthony O'Leary won both races, as did Rob Davies Roxy 6 in Class 3. Dave Dwyer's Marinerscove.ie swapped the lead narrowly in both races, winning the first race by ten seconds and placing second in race two by ten seconds.

The Irish team holds the overnight lead with a 16-point margin while the GBR Red and South Hing Kong teams are tied for second place on 23 points apiece.

"We are very pleased with the consistency of all three Irish boats and its obvious that the hard work and dedication of all involved is starting to pay off," said Barry Rose, Commodore of the Irish Cruiser Racing Association. "There is still a long way to go in the series and Tuesday's overnight race will be critical as the offshore races for one third of the points in the entire event."

Conditions on the Solent for the opening two races improved gradually as winds freshened to a brisk 20-knot breeze. The tides in the area are the biggest of the year, running at up to four knots. Together with very shifty northerly winds, tacticians had to be vigilant to maximise the changes.

Tomorrow's programme (Monday) sees two further inshore races with similar fresh conditions forecast.

Additional Report from Commodores Cup Press Office:

IRISH SET FORMIDABLE PACE

Ireland grabbed the 2010 Rolex Commodores' Cup by the throat on the opening day. With two windward-leeward races held in the eastern and central Solent, the three Irish boats won in each of their classes in the first race. In the second race, the team's otherwise perfect scoreline was only tarnished by their mid-sized boat, David Dwyer's Mills 39 marinerscove.ie, posting a second. With six days of competition left, the Irish, on 7 points, already hold a huge lead over the defending champions, GBR Red and Hong Kong, tied on 23. Previous experience will not allow the Irish to get carried away just yet.

The Solent started out grey and miserable today but the sun broke through mid-morning with a 10 knot northwesterly and a strong eastbound tide. For race two the Race Committee moved the race area to just east of the Brambles Bank to minimise the tide and for this the wind had veered into the northeast and built, at times gusting up to 20 knots.

In this opening day of competition for mainly Corinthian crews, with only one or two professionals allowed on each boat, some cobwebs were being blown out with a number of sail handling errors evident and even a collision during a port-starboard incident in race two between two mid-sized boats - Francois Lognone's Nutmeg IV in France White and Paul Turner's Grand Soleil 43 Artemis in GBR Black. The French subsequently admitted their mistake – explaining that they lacked steerage to avoid the incident. While they came out unscathed, unfortunately Artemis was holed and is having to be repaired overnight. Both yachts retired from race two.

Followers of this event will know that Ireland leading after day one is a regular feature of recent Rolex Commodores' Cups. The Irish have been favourites going into the last three events, but they have never before made such a strong impression on the event so soon.

"We are delighted on a shifty day like today to make a start like that; you can't ask for anything better," commented Anthony O'Leary owner of the Irish team's 'big boat', the Ker 39, Antix. "This is our third time doing it. I said to the guys yesterday – 'we have never been as well prepared'." In the Irish team Antix and Dwyer's marinerscove.ie are both well campaigned while the small boat, Robert Davies' Corby 36, Roxy 6, was launched this year, but already has had much regatta experience. This year Antix for example has won the Irish IRC Nationals in Dublin and their class at the Scottish Series.

O'Leary, a Rear Commodore of the Royal Ocean Racing Club, says that they have been building up to this regatta all year and after so many strong, but ultimately unsuccessful Irish campaigns previously it would mean a lot to win this year. "But don't be thinking that after one day of low points racing," he warns.

Sailing aboard the Hong Kong mid-sized boat, Blondie IV, Jamie McWilliam was pleased with his team's opening-day performance; "I'd say we are in the hunt. It is a tough regatta to win, but everyone knows that and that's what makes it worth coming. It is interesting but it is always the case here, because there is the variation in the courses that you race and in the conditions you get over the week. Trying to get the rig settings correct is impossible by definition so sometimes you are going really well and sometimes you are getting stuffed. Also, the longer boats with lower rating, the more cruiser racer types, they really go in the flat water."

For the mid-sized Class 2 boat it ended up being a long day following three general recalls before race two got away successfully on the fourth attempt under the Z-flag.

France Yellow holds fourth place, largely due to the efforts of their big boat, Bernard Gouy's Ker 39 Inis Mor which posted a 2-2 today. Their mid-boat is Pen Azen, from Saint-Quay-Portrieux in northern Brittany, and for owner Philippe Delaporte this is his third Rolex Commodores' Cup, but the first aboard his J/122, that was RORC Yacht of the Year in 2008. Delaporte bemoaned their tactics today. "We had a 5 and 7 - we were not lucky in our choices of side. We have good speed, so the problem is us."

This was not an issue of tides – they have big tides in Brittany - but the unstable wind direction. "We didn't manage that very correctly."

Some post-race appraisal will be going on in the South African camp tonight, as after day one they are lying seventh out of ten. Their highest place in race one was that of the small boat, Rick Garratt and David Hudson's J/109 Inspara, with a 6, and even in race two the team's results were little better.

"I thought we were going to do really well, but we had a shocking day," admitted Andrew Cape, the much-capped Volvo Ocean Race and America's Cup navigator, who is sailing on the team's big boat, Philipp Gutsche's Landmark 43, Windpower. "The 40 footers seem to be staying up with a 43 footer. I thought we were in for a shot after what we saw in Cowes Week." Cape competed in the first Rolex Commodores' Cup back in 1992 as part of the winning US team and hopes he can maintain his record. He regularly sails with Gutsche in South Africa. While there was a substantial cross-tide today, Cape believes this wasn't the issue. "It was the wind that sorted out the winners and losers today, not the tide."

The Rolex Commodores' Cup continues tomorrow with a further two inshore races. The forecast weather is for Force 3-4 from the north west, with more sunshine than today.

Top Five Teams - Provisional Positions 15/8/10

Team / Points / Place
Ireland / 7 / 1
GBR Red / 23 / 2
Hong Kong / 23 / 2
France Yellow /28 /4
GBR White / 36 / 5

Published in Commodores Cup
Tagged under

The pre-event press release says 'no clear cut favourite but Irish eyes are smiling'. It's the kind of pressure Ireland's three boat team can do without after so many near misses in this event. But as they go afloat this morning for the first race there is no dismissing the fact that Ireland's single boat is seen as a major threat, especially if as forecasted, the winds on the Solent are moderate to strong.  (You can send team Ireland good wishes HERE.)

International entries from as far afield as Hong Kong and South Africa have descended on Cowes ready for the start of the biennial Rolex Commodores' Cup.

As usual the event is for teams comprising three boats in different IRC rating bands, the boats ranging from 35-45ft in size. Teams are national with at least 50% of the crew coming from the country they are representing. The Rolex Commodores' Cup is also strongly Corinthian: only two professional sailors are allowed on the Class 1 boats and just one aboard Class 2 and 3 entries.

This year, the tenth edition of the competition, 10 teams are competing, the largest contingent coming from France, who are fielding four teams; GBR has three teams and Hong Kong, Ireland and, for the first time, South Africa each with one. Whilst the team numbers are down from two years ago, "the top four or five teams are as good as they were last time," says Eddie Warden Owen, CEO of the event's organisers, the Royal Ocean Racing Club.

In terms of the form, Warden Owen thinks the Irish will be ones to watch, as they have certainly been in the past, although they have never won; "they are very competitive, they seem highly focused and they have some very good amateur sailors on board as well as professionals." The Irish team is led by experienced Rolex Commodores' Cup skipper Anthony O'Leary and his Ker 39 Antix.

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Dockside in Cowes for the Rolex Commodores' Cup. Photo: Kurt Arrigo

South Africa and Hong Kong also have strong entries, the latter having learned from competing here two years ago, again with the driving force of Jamie McWilliam behind them.

Warden Owen reckons that the dark horses at this event are the British and French teams. "The unknowns for me are the French teams because there are some good individual boats, but how they play out overall, I don't know."

Defending champions from 2008 are GBR Red, where the only return entry is former RORC Commodore Peter Rutter, this year skippering Quokka 8, the mid-sized yacht. Rutter's new vessel is a Grand Soleil 43, a sistership to the most successful yacht at the 2008 event.

Rutter was instrumental in picking his GBR Red team mates in Michael Williamson's Summit 40 White Heat, as the Class 1 boat and Jim Macgregor's Elan 410 Premier Flair in Class 3. "We are very much a tight team – we learned that from GBR Red last time. It is going to be an interesting regatta because it looks like there are going to be some very light days and some very heavy days."
The equivalent to GBR Red among the large French entry is France Yellow, which includes repeat entrants to this event, Philippe Delaporte and his J/122 Pen Azen and Marc Alperovitch and Jerome Huillard's A-35 Prime Time. They are joined by Bernard Gouy's Inis Mor - a British designed Ker 39 with an Irish name, points out skipper and owner's son, Laurent Gouy. While this is Inis Mor's first Rolex Commodores' Cup, the Gouys have for the last years been alternating Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet Race with Cork Week and the Round Ireland – this year moving on to this event.

Like GBR Red, France Yellow also organised themselves as a team and presented themselves to the RORC's French equivalent, the Union Course Au Large (UNCL), before Christmas. Inis Mor is one of the most successful IRC boats on the French circuit and usually podiums at the event in which she competes. As to how he thinks they will get on this week Laurent Gouy will not be drawn: "I would not dare to say! It is very complex."

The other French team that stands out is France Blue featuring Nicolas Loday and Jean Claude Nicoleau's familiar Codiam, a Grand Soleil 43, but also Marc de Saint Denis and Géry Trentesaux's First 40 Coup de Coeur, although we understand the wily Trentesaux, a Rolex Commodores' Cup veteran and winner in 2006 will not be in Cowes until Friday. The weak link in France Blue could be Samuel Prietz' X-40 Goa, but only because the boat is still new, having been launched in May.

Making one of the greatest efforts to compete in this year's event is Philipp Gutsche and his Mark Mills-designed Landmark 43, Windpower, which was shipped up from the southern hemisphere to be the South African team big boat.

"It's on my bucket list! Why not at my age?!" says Gutsche of why he is here. "We have done very well this year in South Africa in IRC and we won the South African Championship, in May. We have a good crew and a good boat - why not test our mettle against everyone else for the fun of it?"

"As a team I hope we will do very well. We'll be starting off as the weakest of the three boats. Cowes and the Solent are not easy, especially for foreigners." Gutsche had never sailed here before he competed at this year's Cowes Week. "It has been great fun. We are looking forward to it."

The racing format over the next week remains the same as it was in 2008, with a mixture of inshore races in the Solent plus a 24-36 hour long offshore race starting on Tuesday and a race around the Isle of Wight on Friday. The event culminates in a double points scoring inshore race on Saturday.

Conditions this week are expected to be particularly difficult, with light winds on some days, combined with some of the most powerful tides of the year. For example, today (Saturday) the famous Brambles Bank cricket match took place; the one-day each year the tide is so low as to expose the sand bank in the middle of the Solent. As Simon Shaw, skipper of the GBR Red big boat White Heat points out "I have never seen so much tide – we've seen 4 knots!" Conditions for the first few days of the regatta look set to have the wind from north, typically an awkward wind direction in the Solent, and around 7-14 knots. "There is discrepancy about how windy. Some people think on Tuesday there is going to be a load more breeze. I'm not so sure. Expect it to be from the north, fickle and swingy," predicts Shaw.

Whatever the conditions, the spirit and camaraderie exhibited on shore over the past couple of days of measurement and registration bodes well for a hard, but fair fought week of competition.

e months to go to the 10th edition of the biennial Rolex Commodores' Cup, the international fleet has every prospect of being one of the more exotic in recent events. A noteworthy success in these straightened times. The headline foreign contingent is perhaps South Africa, participating at the regatta for the first time. Hong Kong has confirmed it will be back following its happy venture in 2008. Thereafter, the northern European teams – Ireland, France and the United Kingdom - that are the traditional backbone of the event - will be present in numbers. Organisers, the Royal Ocean Racing Club, anticipate a total of 12 teams. Racing is from 15 to 21 August, with close of entry on 12 July.

The Rolex Commodores' Cup is a weeklong series mixing inshore racing on the waters in and around The Solent, the body of water separating the Isle of Wight from the mainland United Kingdom, with an offshore course that takes the fleet out into The English Channel and a course round the Isle of Wight. All of the racing is typified by one thing. Comprehensive knowledge of the tides and currents affecting these areas is essential. Furthermore, it has been proved time and again that is not just the team with the best boats or the best sailors that wins. It the team that is the best prepared in all aspects.

Take the Hong Kong team, led by Jamie McWilliam. Having finished fifth overall in 2008, surprising many of the more seasoned campaigners in the process, McWilliam and his teammates were resolute in their determination to return. Not just to participate, mind you, but to have a crack at winning. "In 2008 we arrived with a crew that had trained hard but which had never seen the boats before the regatta, as they were either charters or brand new. This meant that we spent quite a bit of important time just before the event working on the boats instead of working on our speed, and as a result we were still learning about the boats during the series. Our team this time was determined to avoid that mistake," comments McWilliam, explaining that this time, "all the boats are owned by Hong Kong owners and we therefore have much more time [to prepare]. Our full team will be at the UK IRC Nationals in late June and we are scheduling other weekends over the summer for the boats to have new sail trials."

It is a tall order to travel almost halfway around the world to participate in a three-boat team event. The three yachts needed to compete range in size, roughly, between 35 and 45 feet. There are crews to be identified, accommodation and travel to be arranged. McWilliam is clear that it is worth the effort, "it's always exciting going to an event where you think you have a chance to win but where you know you're going to have to really perform to achieve that. It provides a great combination of expectation, anticipation, and nerves. Combined with the knowledge that we are representing the small sailing community in Hong Kong, it's a really exciting deal."

The Hong Kong team is made up of Rockall III, a Corby 36 owned by Chris Opielok, in the small boat slot. 'Opie', as he is known, is a Hong Kong sailing legend, having won two Admiral's Cups for his native Germany. Rockall III is the former Rosie, which has a dominant history in UK & Irish IRC racing. The middle boat is Blondie IV, a Mills (King) 40 chartered by Anthony Day from Helmuth Hennig, both very well known Hong Kong racers. Blondie was 2nd in class in Rolex Commodores' Cup 2008 and has an exceptional track record under her former owner. The big boat is Mandrake, Nick Burns' Mills 40.5, formerly Ngoni and Tiamat. As Tiamat, she had an outstanding Rolex Commodores' Cup in 2006.

McWilliam acknowledges the difficulties involved for foreign teams, particularly getting the right boats in the right condition to the venue when they are located more than a delivery trip away. He clearly believes more countries should look more seriously at the possibilities, "I would definitely encourage other teams to participate. The Solent puts unique and intense pressure on crews and seemingly trivial moments turn out to be really critical, like a down tide bottom mark rounding where you've got to be perfect in order to hold your lane to get out of the current. I also believe that the best team here has always won the event, and that's the best recommendation I know for a regatta."

The Hong Kong team is looking forward to renewing rivalries with some of the teams it competed against in 2008. They are not here to make up the numbers, "we really enjoyed the event in 2008 and feel that the event is a good match for the type of sailing we do in Hong Kong, and therefore represents a great opportunity for Hong Kong to compete against peers and find out where we rank. We were happy with our 5th position in 2008 but saw it very much as an initial effort and unfinished business."

The Rolex Commodores' Cup will be held off Cowes, Isle of Wight, from 15 to 21 August. Entries, which must be made by Member National Authorities, close on Monday 12 July.

Irish crew list HERE

Entry List HERE

You can send team Ireland good wishes HERE

Published in Commodores Cup

MANY OF YOU SENT GOOD LUCK WISHES AND NOW YOU CAN SAY WELL DONE TOO! SCROLL DOWN THE PAGE TO LEAVE YOUR CONGRATULATION MESSAGE!

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The ICRA Team Celebrations in Cowes, Photo: David Branigan

 

After a series of near misses in the Commodores Cup, there are many reasons why 2010 was an entirely appropriate timing for an Irish win in Cowes today.

Ireland's single three boat team (below) faced stiff opposition in the final ten team line up. Individual performances this season though, including a win at the British IRC Nationals, is proof, were it needed, that Ireland still was always on course to win the Commodores Cup. 
Ireland's team on the Solent was Royal Cork based; Antix, Anthony O'Leary (Ker 39); Marinerscove.ie David Dwyer (Mills 39) and Roxy 6 Robert Davies (Corby 36). The full crew list for each boat is below, representing the very best of Irish sailing talent.
Third time lucky is how it was scripted in 08, but not how it was acted out. After first being jilted by the French and now, for the second time, by the English, the Irish could be forgiven for giving up on the cup but we never did. This victory represents the final week of eight months preparation for superb assault on the title.

PLEASE SCROLL DOWN TO THE END OF THE PAGE AND LEAVE YOUR CONGRATULATIONS MESSAGE!

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Team Ireland 2010 Commodores Cup

Photos by Robert Bateman

IRL3939 Antix Anthony O'Leary (Ker 39)

GU1C9791

Anthony O'Leary (IRL)

David Lenz (GBR)

Peter O'Leary (IRL)

Ross Deasy (IRL)

Brian Lennon (IRL)

Stephen O'Sullivan (IRL)

Eoin Leahy (IRL)

Frederick Cudmore (IRL)

Simon Johnson (IRL)

Rory O'Sullivan (IRL)

Jimmy Houston (GBR)

Derek Moynan (IRL)

Tom Durcan (IRL)

Robert O'Leary (IRL)

Darragh O'Connor (IRL)


IRL39000 Marinerscove.ie David Dwyer (Mills 39)

_MG_0409

Andy Beadsworth (GBR)

David Bolton (IRL)

Padraig Byrne (IRL)

Alan Curran (IRL)

David Dwyer (IRL)

Bernard Fitzpatrick (IRL)

Brian Heneghan (IRL)

David Love (IRL)

Tom Murphy (IRL)

Nicholas O'Leary (IRL)

Clive O'Shea (IRL)

Sandy Rimmington (IRL)

Chris Schirmer (GBR)

Don Wilson (IRL)


IRL36000 Roxy 6 Robert Davies (Corby 36)

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Rob Davies (GBR)

Andrew Creighton (IRL)

Marty O'Leary (IRL)

Jim Hughes (IRL)

Paul Farries (GBR)

Nelson Moore (IRL)

Tom Whitburn (GBR)

Michael Liddy (IRL)

Aidan O'Connell (IRL)

Maurice O'Connell (IRL)



Team Management:

Barry Rose, Fintan Cairns, Denis Kiely, Mike Broughton and Norbert Reilly

 


 

Published in Commodores Cup

The Royal Ocean Racing Club has released the final entry list for next week's Commodore's Cup on the Solent. 

Rolex Commodores' Cup Teams

Team: France Yellow

1 FRA35439 Inis Mor Ker 39Laurent Gouy

2 FRA122Pen Azen J 122 Philippe Delaporte
3 FRA34634 Prime Time A 35M Alperovitch & J Huillard

Team: France Blue
1 FRA36777 Codiam Grand Soleil 43N Loday & J C Nicoleau
2 FRA36689 Coup de Couer First 40M de Saint Denis & G Trentesaux
3 FRA27700 Goa X40 Samuel Prietz

Team: France White
1 FRA27967 Jivaro J 133 Yves Grosjean
2 FRA35950 Nutmeg J 122 François Lognone
3 FRA37311 Gaia JND 35 Bernard Moureau

Team: France Red
1 FRA34649 Finisterre Capital X 41 Patrick Baune
2 FRA36743 Jean Charl' A40 RC Jean-Marie Lessard
3 FRA21706 RealAx A 35 François Blossier

Team: GBR Red
1 USA52915 White Heat Summit 40 Michael Williamson
2 GBR2215L Quokka 8 Grand Soleil 43 Peter Rutter
3 GBR8410R Premier Flair Elan 410 Jim Macgregor

Team: GBR White
1 GBR2045R Alice II Farr 45 Simon Henning
2GBR42N La Réponse First 40 Andrew McIrvine & Peter Morton
3GBR1352R No Chance First 35 Chris and Hannah Neve

Team: GBR Black
1 GBR851R Cracklin Rosie Corby 40 Brian Wilkinson
2 GBR2643R Artemis Grand Soleil 43Paul Turner
3GBR8407R Encore First 40.7 Steven Anderson

Team: Hong Kong
1 HKG2282EFG Bank Mandrake Mills 40 N Burns & F Kinmonth
2 HKG2097 Blondie IV King 40 Anthony Day
3 GER6333 Rockall III Corby 36 Christopher Opielok

Team: Ireland
1 IRL3939 Antix Anthony O'Leary Ker 39
2 IRL39000 Marinerscove.ie David Dwyer Mills 39
3 IRL36000 Roxy 6 Robert Davies Corby 36

Team: South Africa
1 SA3737Windpower Phil Gutsche Landmark 43
2GBR5940R Tokoloshe Mike Bartholomew King 40
3GBR8809R Inspara Rick Garratt & Dave Hudson J 109

 

Published in RORC
There are only a few weeks to the close of entries at this year’s Rolex Commodores’ Cup. Whilst most teams have finalized their boats and crews, others are still engaged in discussions to determine their line-ups. For all teams, both settled and prospective, certain things are set in stone. Most importantly there must be three boats, one in each of the stipulated rating bands, and, all teams must be on the starting grid for the first race on Sunday, 15 August. At present, organisers’, the Royal Ocean Racing Club are expecting 11 teams representing France, Ireland, Hong Kong, South Africa and the United Kingdom to contest the international trophy.
The shaping field looks to be as competitive as ever. The sea battles that have been fought in recent weeks off the coasts of France and Ireland, and, of course, on the event venue waters of the Solent suggest that a no quarter given epic is in the making.
Neutrals, with an eye for the outsider, are likely to follow the progress of the South African team over the course of the Rolex Commodores’ Cup. 2010 marks the first time a team from the world’s second largest continent has participated. As with Hong Kong’s presence in 2008, for this to happen a number of stars have had to be in alignment.
According to Mike Bartholomew, skipper of the team’s Class 2 yacht, the King 40 Tokoloshe, “it was Eddie Warden Owen from the RORC who actually suggested to Rick Nankin and myself that we should consider putting a South African team together. The whole thing really just grew from there. We approached two others we knew well, Phil Gutschi and Rick Garratt, to see if they could join the party. Both were enthusiastic from the word go.” Gutschi owns the Landmark 43, Windpower, to be skippered by Nankin in Class 1, and Garratt has chartered the J-109, Zelda, to be skippered by Dave Hudson in Class 3.
The second catalyst, in Bartholomew’s opinion, has been having a South African owned yacht (Tokoloshe) eligible for the Rolex Commodores’ Cup sailing in the Solent for the past two years, “previously it would have been too much of an ask to put a team together and, in any event, there were not any really competitive boats in South Africa.” Bartholomew is being modest about Tokoloshe’s sailing. She has not just been competing, but has proved a force to be reckoned with in recent months, going head to head with some success against other Rolex Commodores’ Cup contenders on the Solent circuit.
The vast majority of the crews will be South African, easily meeting the strict eligibility criteria for the event, “most of the individuals are from Cape Town. Even Phil, who is from Port Elizabeth, keeps his boat there. The main exceptions are the navigators, Andrew Cape on Windpower and Rick Oswald on Zelda, and, of course, some of the regulars on Tokoloshe.”
Experience is essential for a good result at the Rolex Commodores’ Cup. Not necessarily just time on the waters of the venue, but in competing over a tight, but demanding series. Bartholomew is unconcerned by this aspect, “there is a fair amount of experience in the crews most of whom have had international exposure. Phil has campaigned a number of boats over the years. His skipper Rick Nankin is probably by far the most experienced South African in the mix. But Rick Garratt still remembers the good times of the 1995 Admirals Cup. He will have aboard Mark Sadler, the skipper of Shosholoza the South African entry in the previous Americas Cup.” All three boats will be in UK waters by Cowes Week and will use that regatta as a final serious warm-up.
One final element in the list of irresistible forces was the involvement of the Race Ahead project. David Hudson and his brother Roger have been part of the sailing scene for almost all their lives, and, both are very successful sailors in their own right. In 2008 they created 'Race Ahead', a project aimed at giving South Africa's young sailing talent a structured route into the international sailing world. The project has allowed young South Africans to compete in the highly competitive Laser SB3 circuit in the UK and Ireland. The effort has not been without reward: a top 10 overall finish at Cowes Week; followed by a class win at Cork Week and a second overall at the inaugural Laser SB3 World Championship in Dublin. For Garrett to have access to this pool of talent was a major motivating factor in his participation.
Just like Hong Kong, the South African team is not just coming along for the ride. Bartholomew is succinct on this point, “we will try to win.”
The 2010 Rolex Commodores' Cup will be held off Cowes, Isle of Wight, from 15 to 21 August.
Nationality
At least 50%... of the crew of each boat on board in any race shall comprise individuals who are Nationals of the country of the relevant team or individuals who have had since 1 August 2009 had their principal residence in that country or individuals who were born in that country.
Further information about the Rolex Commodores' Cup may be found at: www.rorc.org

There are only a few weeks to the close of entries at this year’s Rolex Commodores’ Cup and Ireland's team is building up speed at Cork week this morning, using the home event as a warm up for August. Whilst most teams have finalized their boats and crews, others are still engaged in discussions to determine their line-ups. For all teams, both settled and prospective, certain things are set in stone. Most importantly there must be three boats, one in each of the stipulated rating bands, and, all teams must be on the starting grid for the first race on Sunday, 15 August. At present, organisers’, the Royal Ocean Racing Club are expecting 11 teams representing France, Ireland, Hong Kong, South Africa and the United Kingdom to contest the international trophy. The shaping field looks to be as competitive as ever. The sea battles that have been fought in recent weeks off the coasts of France and Ireland, and, of course, on the event venue waters of the Solent suggest that a no quarter given epic is in the making. Neutrals, with an eye for the outsider, are likely to follow the progress of the South African team over the course of the Rolex Commodores’ Cup. 2010 marks the first time a team from the world’s second largest continent has participated. As with Hong Kong’s presence in 2008, for this to happen a number of stars have had to be in alignment. According to Mike Bartholomew, skipper of the team’s Class 2 yacht, the King 40 Tokoloshe, “it was Eddie Warden Owen from the RORC who actually suggested to Rick Nankin and myself that we should consider putting a South African team together.

The whole thing really just grew from there. We approached two others we knew well, Phil Gutschi and Rick Garratt, to see if they could join the party. Both were enthusiastic from the word go.” Gutschi owns the Landmark 43, Windpower, to be skippered by Nankin in Class 1, and Garratt has chartered the J-109, Zelda, to be skippered by Dave Hudson in Class 3.  

The second catalyst, in Bartholomew’s opinion, has been having a South African owned yacht (Tokoloshe) eligible for the Rolex Commodores’ Cup sailing in the Solent for the past two years, “previously it would have been too much of an ask to put a team together and, in any event, there were not any really competitive boats in South Africa.” Bartholomew is being modest about Tokoloshe’s sailing. She has not just been competing, but has proved a force to be reckoned with in recent months, going head to head with some success against other Rolex Commodores’ Cup contenders on the Solent circuit. The vast majority of the crews will be South African, easily meeting the strict eligibility criteria for the event, “most of the individuals are from Cape Town.

Even Phil, who is from Port Elizabeth, keeps his boat there. The main exceptions are the navigators, Andrew Cape on Windpower and Rick Oswald on Zelda, and, of course, some of the regulars on Tokoloshe.” Experience is essential for a good result at the Rolex Commodores’ Cup. Not necessarily just time on the waters of the venue, but in competing over a tight, but demanding series. Bartholomew is unconcerned by this aspect, “there is a fair amount of experience in the crews most of whom have had international exposure. Phil has campaigned a number of boats over the years. His skipper Rick Nankin is probably by far the most experienced South African in the mix. But Rick Garratt still remembers the good times of the 1995 Admirals Cup. He will have aboard Mark Sadler, the skipper of Shosholoza the South African entry in the previous Americas Cup.” All three boats will be in UK waters by Cowes Week and will use that regatta as a final serious warm-up. One final element in the list of irresistible forces was the involvement of the Race Ahead project. David Hudson and his brother Roger have been part of the sailing scene for almost all their lives, and, both are very successful sailors in their own right. In 2008 they created 'Race Ahead', a project aimed at giving South Africa's young sailing talent a structured route into the international sailing world.

The project has allowed young South Africans to compete in the highly competitive Laser SB3 circuit in the UK and Ireland. The effort has not been without reward: a top 10 overall finish at Cowes Week; followed by a class win at Cork Week and a second overall at the inaugural Laser SB3 World Championship in Dublin. For Garrett to have access to this pool of talent was a major motivating factor in his participation. Just like Hong Kong, the South African team is not just coming along for the ride. Bartholomew is succinct on this point, “we will try to win.” The 2010 Rolex Commodores' Cup will be held off Cowes, Isle of Wight, from 15 to 21 August.  Nationality At least 50%... of the crew of each boat on board in any race shall comprise individuals who are Nationals of the country of the relevant team or individuals who have had since 1 August 2009 had their principal residence in that country or individuals who were born in that country. Further information about the Rolex Commodores' Cup may be found at: www.rorc.org

Published in RORC
Page 33 of 36

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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