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Displaying items by tag: L'Austral

#CruiseLiners - Galway welcomed its first cruise liner call of 2016 last weekend in the shape of the 'luxury mega-yacht' L'Austral, as the Connacht Tribune reports.

Though the vessel only stopped for a day, its 400 passengers and crew made the most of their visit, with sightseeing in the city and a tours to the Burren Kylemore Abbey among their options.

L'Austral's subsequent port of call is Cobh this Sunday (15 May), while Galway's next visitor is as soon as tomorrow (Saturday 14 May) when the Azores calls on the City of the Tribes.

That's one of six remaining cruise calls for Galway in the 2016 season, with Bremen on 11 June, Astor on 10 July, the Pacific Princess and Albatross on 2 and 8 August respectively, and the Prinsendam on 2 September all set to follow.

Published in Cruise Liners
The sleek-profile of the 10,700 tonnes mega-yacht cruiseship Le Boréal is set to make her inaugural Irish port of call to Dublin port this Tuesday, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Le Boréal was to make her maiden Irish call to Cobh but the capital which was also scheduled for the 10 May will instead take this honour from the one-year old ship which is operated by France's only cruise operator, Compagnie du Ponant.

The 142m long ship was built by the Italian Fincantieri shipyard won the 'Best New ship of the Year 2010' by the European Cruiser Association. She can take 264 guests in an interior which has a distinctly French flair from the hand of designer Jean-Philippe Nuel. A crew of 139 look after the running of the six-decked vessel which has 132 luxurious appointed cabins.

Late last month Le Boréal was joined by her new sister L'Austral which was inaugurated into service during a fireworks display off the company's headquarters in Marseille. Both ships made a cruise to the Frioul Islands and famous Chateau d'If and later that day their Le Levant also took part in the celebrations when the trio returned off Marseille.

The other two vessels of the five-strong fleet are the Le Ponant, a three-masted 88m sailing ship and Le Diamant (also due Dublin and Cork this season) form a fleet of bijou cruiseships which are small in size and as such can access remote and exclusive ports of call.

Compagnie du Ponant was established in 1988 and is owned by the CMA CGM Group, the world's third largest container shipping group. The company is an integral part of French maritime heritage with origins from the renowned Compagnie Générale Transatlantique French Line.

Published in Cruise Liners

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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