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This coming weekend the Mitsubishi Flying Fifteen East Coast Championships are being hosted by the National Yacht Club and local fleet captain Joe Coughlan is hoping to have up to thirty entries. With great numbers out in Dublin Bay all season additional boats will be coming from Dunmore East and Stangford Lough as well as from clubs along the Antrim coast and possibly Lough Neagh where there is a growth in the class.

As usual in this fleet it is difficult to call the winner as racing is always close and exciting and any of a number of boats could win. Frequent UK visitor and current holder of the trophy Charles Apthorp is expected to team up with Alan Green and they should be favourites to retain the trophy. Unfortunately National champions Dave Gorman & Chris Doorly will not be competing together as the ISA All Ireland Helmsman’s Championships are on the same weekend in Cork. But there is plenty of talent who will give Apthorp & Green a run for their money including Mathews & Poole (NYC) McCleery & Dougan (KSC), Willis & McPeake (CAYC) and also the in–form Niall & Nicki Meagher (NYC).

As well as FF event at the NYC, the Fireballs Leinster Championships and SB20’s re–arranged Southern Championships will also sail with Brian Mathews as the PRO.

Published in Flying Fifteen

The Flying Fifteen East Coast Championships, the Irish Fireball Leinster Championships and the SB20 Southern Championships will all be raced under the burgeee of the National Yacht Club at Dun Laoghaire, Dublin in a fortnight on the 1st and 2nd October 2016. 

This is a change of plan for the SB20 class who have moved both the date and club for their Southern Championshipd fixture. The event was originally scheduled for the 24th & 25th September at Cobh SC in Cork Harbour.

It's not the last event of the 2016 calendar for the SB20s or Flying Fifteens either, both fleets are slated for a Midland Championship at Lough Derg YC on 22nd & 23rd October. 

Download the notice of race below. 

Published in National YC

On a warm Septembers day an impressive 20 Flying Fifteens turned out for racing on the Bay. It was a difficult day for the PRO Eddie Totterdell and his team as the weather was to shift at some stage to the SW but when it would change nobody knew, but change it did on the first beat of the first race.

In Race 1 the wind was still NW and there was a strong outgoing tide, so strong that boats had difficulty getting over the start line. An individual recall was called, a few who had dipped down were too close to call, this included McCambridge and Gorman who played safe and went back.

Tom Murphy along with O,Neill and the Meaghers headed towards the shore while Mathews and most of the fleet went right as the SB20 had done. Meanwhile those who went back including Gorman and Coughlan were having their own little battle to see who would be off the start line last!

A short time later the winds were changing as forecast and those on the left looked like they would get it first, they did but they had overstood the mark. Gorman after a late start tacked early and somehow managed to get in a good position as they approached the weather mark, at this stage the wind was behind and the spinakers were up!

O'Neill & MJ Mulligan led but Gorman managed to slip inside at the wing mark to take the lead down the run which was now a beat down to the gate which was the new weather mark! It stayed this way for the next lap with the Meaghers third, Murphy fourth and Alan Balfe fifth.

After resetting the course Race 2 got going but with the tide pushing the boats over the line and with the boats going up to soon and to fast there was a general recall. No messing with Eddie and the black flag went up for the restart. Three were still over the line, others including Gorman got stuck adjacent the committee boat as most of the fleet headed out to sea. The Meagher;s and O’Neill were nip and tuck but judging the tide and wind perfectly the Meagher’s lead at the weather mark and there was no catching them. They were closely followed by O’Neill and Mathews but it was all very close behind. On the last lap the Meagher’s increased their lead but behind there were changes happening, Mathews moved into second, Frazer & Gabrial were third and Gorman with the yellow Mitsibishi spinnaker had moved to fourth. The Meagher’s third and first was enough for them to deservedly win the day.

Thanks to the PRO Eddie and his team who did a great job in difficult conditions. To have 20 boats out in a club race was fantastic, all being well there will be a good number entered for the East Coast Championships that take place in two weeks time in Dun Laoghaire.

Published in Flying Fifteen

As the Olympic medal celebrations swing through West Cork this week, with today’s party taking over Skibbereen and its mighty Silver Medal winning oarsmen (and now World Champion) Gary and Paul O’Donovan writes W M Nixon, we’re still receiving souvenirs and feedback from last Thursday’s extraordinary seven hour programme of celebrations in Dun Laoghaire for Annalise Murphy’s Silver Medal from Rio de Janeiro.

There, the festivities took in the Harbour and went on to the People’s Park before reaching their peak at her sailing home, the National Yacht Club. In theory, the NYC clubhouse and its forecourt could not take a crowd of no more than 2,000 people. But this photo from the National Yacht Club of a section of the starstruck assembly at the height of the stage presentation suggests there were well over 2,000 there, still scarcely able to grasp the full significance of what they were seeing on a great night for Irish sailing.

Published in National YC

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council and the Irish Sailing Association are planning a major celebration of Annalise Murphy's Olympic Silver medal in the Laser Radial class. A civic reception for the Irish Olympic Sailing team will take place in Dun Laoghaire, Annalise's home port this Thursday, (25th August 2016).

Plans are underway to give the Dun Laoghaire sailing star a major homecoming celebration that will start with a flotilla arrival at Dun Laoghaire harbour before proceeding to a public event at Dun Laoghaire's nearby People's Park, close to the East Pier. The reception will be staged from 6.30pm – 8.00pm.

Annalise will be officially welcomed home by An Cathaoirleach of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council Cormac Devlin.

The Homecoming in the People’s Park will host a big stage & screen and will feature a Brazilian Samba band, a dancing troupe, DJ, facepainting, flags, balloons, boat display and possibility of an icecream or two, say DLRCoCo.

In what will be an important acknowledgment of Murphy's crowning achievement, the country's largest racing club, Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) has rescheduled Thursday's end of season race for up to 300 boats and over 1,000 sailors on Dublin Bay to allow sailors participate in the homecoming event.

After the civic reception, National Yacht Club Commodore Larry Power will bestow Honorary Life Membership of the National Yacht Club to 26–year–old Annalise for her Rio achievement, Ireland's first Olympic sailing medal in 36 years.

Ireland’s young sailors to welcome Annalise Murphy

The Irish Sailing Association is making a special appeal for junior and youth sailors from across the county–and country– to attend on Thursday evening to help form the welcome party for Annalise and her team. Sailing club colours and flags are especially welcome. 

The Silver medal won by Annalise marks not only her efforts for London 2012 when fourth overall was both a disappointment for her as well as being the best Irish result in decades, but also the reconstruction of her campaign for Rio 2016 that saw her become an all-round performer in what is now regarded as one of the most challenging Olympic regatta venues ever. From the opening race of her series, she held a top-three result through the ten-race qualification series.

Annalise Murphy won Ireland’s first Olympic Sailing medal for 36 years at Rio 2016 and the result marks her reward for eleven years of dedication and intensive campaigning.

“I am incredibly happy with my medal. It has been a long road to achieve this, especially since London 2012 but it has been hugely worthwhile,” said Annalise Murphy. “My hope is that this medal represents an opportunity for Irish sailing to attract new people to our sport which is ideal for this island nation".

Team members

Finn Lynch (20) from Carlow and also a National YC sailor was the youngest ever Olympic helm to represent Ireland as well as being the youngest in his 46-strong class. He achieved several notable performances during his ten-race series at Rio including several top 20 results. In an event where the average age of the top ten finishers is 30, he has proven his ability with an Olympic experience under his belt and is certain to be a prospect for Tokyo 2020.

Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey from the Royal Irish YC started their campaign together exactly three years ago and sailed the 49erFX class for the new Women’s Skiff event at Rio 2016. After overcoming a three-month injury hiatus to their campaign, they qualified Ireland for the event earlier this year and their form improved steadily in the build-up to the Olympics. Over their 12 race series, they achieved five top ten results and ended their debut Olympic Games in 12th place overall.

Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern, from Carrickfergus Sailing Club, Ballyholme YC & Royal Ulster YC were the last of the six Irish sailors into action on Guanabara Bay on Thursday afternoon in the Men’s Skiff event Medal Race final. The London 2012 veterans improved on their performance from four years ago by qualifying for the final to place tenth overall. Their results included two race wins in which they beat the four times world champions and eventual Gold medal winners. This ensured they were within reach of the podium going in to the last day of fleet racing.

“This result proves that our strategy in high performance is working and is providing the success that all involved in sailing and sport crave,” commented David Lovegrove, President of the Irish Sailing Association. “I want to acknowledge the tremendous professionalism of our coaching staff who have demonstrated such passion and commitment to our sailors. In particular I want to commend James O’Callaghan’s leadership and guidance of high performance sailing, ably supported by Rory Fitzpatrick.”

“Annalise’s medal confirms the intent of our programme that both delivers the highest standard of performance but also makes a return to our domestic sport,” said James O’Callaghan, ISA Performance Director.

Published in Olympic

In the final race of the Laser Radial qualification series, prior to Monday's medal race, Annalise Murphy finished seventh to complete the preliminaries in the bronze medal position. It is an excellent performance in difficult conditions by the National Yacht Club sailor with a string of very consistent results of 1, 13, 4, 7, 5, 2, (17), 12, 6, 7 in the 37–boat fleet. 

But even with such a scoresheet a medal is not yet guaranteed. All Murphy's main rivals finished ahead of her in race ten and regatta leader Marit Bouwmeester (NED), who finished the race in second place, now has an 8 point gap over second placed Annemarie Rindom (DEN) going into the medal race.

Rindom's third place in this race, allowed her to leapfrog Murphy by two points, while another big gain was made by Belgium's Evi Van Acker who narrowed the gap to Murphy to 9 points.

Starting at the pin end of race ten, Murphy was third around the first weather mark and, like Bouwmeester favoured the right hand side of the run to round the bottom mark in fourth place. However, her chosen left side was not the place to be on the next upwind leg and, despite the full hiking conditions, she fell back in to the pack, rounding the 2nd weather mark in eighth place. Up ahead the Dutch girl maintained second behind Alison Young (GBR) thus widening the gap between herself and Murphy in overall points. The downwind saw the Irish girl lose a further four places, but a hike out to the right on the last upwind prompted a small recovery to 10th, consolidated on the final run, with a further three places gained by the finish line.

Read also: Annalise's Medal Race Possibilities

Bouwmeester has moved back to the top of the leaderboard and holds a useful eight-point buffer on second placed Rindom for the Medal Race. The London 2012 silver medallist is assured of another medal and is strongly positioned to win the gold that was so nearly hers four years ago.

The Laser Radials contested one race on the Pão de Açucar (Sugarloaf Mountain) course and one on Niterói, and Bouwmeester proved very adaptable to the different conditions, scoring 5,2. Murphy also sailed superbly to score a sixth and seventh which puts her just two points behind Rindom. However best performer of the day was Evi Van Acker (BEL) whose first and fifth has brought her back into medal contention after a shaky start to the regatta, compounded by the effects of an intestinal infection. She and fifth-placed Tuula Tenkanen (FIN) will have to sail a very good Medal Race to have a chance at silver or bronze, but it's possible.

For Bouwmeester the Olympic Medal Race is familiar territory, after taking silver in the tightest of contests four years ago in London. "I think this time the difference is I have a few points on second and I'm certain of a medal, but the similarity is I still have to do a good Medal Race on Monday. We like the Medal Race course, it's challenging, but I'm quite confident there even though you never quite know what's going to happen on that course."

Evi van Acker was looking forward to another period of rest before Monday's showdown. "I still need to rest, after today. I'm pretty tired. I had my best day so far, and I'm so happy with the way I recovered after the bad three days at the beginning. For me the 36 hours of treatment and rest in the middle of the week was very important to have more energy and keep fighting. I made sure I had a lot of rest, a lot of food and a lot of smiling."

The bronze medallist from 2012 will have to fight hard and sail well to be assured of another medal in Rio. "It feels like London all over again, pretty much the same people and same situation except this this time I'm a bit behind. So I'll have to sail well in the Medal Race. But I'll be ready to go."

Meanwhile, China’s Lijia Xu was disqualified from races seven and eight for ‘right of way’ incidents. The pre-event favourite had already discarded a disqualification earlier in the series meaning she had to count two maximum scores for Friday’s races. She ends the series in 18th overall and will not be in the medal race on Monday.

Published in Olympic

Bad-Kilcullen (Stefan Hyde, Jerry Dowling & Jimmy Dowling) crowned SB20 National Champions for 2016 which took place last weekend (5-7 August). Defending champions Sin Bin (Michael O'Connor, Owen Laverty & Kevin Johnson) on coming 2nd overall and to Venuesworld.com (Ger Dempsey, Chris Nolan, Blair Stanaway & Graham Barker) on coming third overall.
It was a super event with some very high speeds downwind on the Saturday. Rubadubdub had an impressive max speed of 18.1 knots!
Hosted by the National Yacht Club and under the excellent race management of Colin McMullen and his team they managed six races over the three days. Sandra Moore welcomed the 19 competitors to the NYC race office and supervised the very accurate weigh in. Fridays racing presented the Colm Mc Mullin the PRO with a difficult task . The light wind was from the East and the forecast was for heavier winds from the west later in the day.
The SB20 is one of the most competitive fleets. This was evident in that they were five different race winners over the six races. It would need nerve and consistency for a winner to emerge.
Stefan Hyde, Jerry & Jimmy Dowling in Bád/Kilcullen were proving that they were determined to wrestle back their title they won in 2014 in RCYC, with two seconds on the first day in moderate conditions.Hot on their heals were the 2015 Champions of Michael O’Connor,Owen Lafferty & Kevin Johnson.
The first race was got off at the first time of asking . The race was won by the class President Peter Lee and hot on his heels was Stefan Hyde, and the Dowling Brothers Gerry and Jimmy in 2nd. The ever present Ger Dempsey / Chris Nolan on Venuesworld.com came in 3rd. And Michael O’Connor the current holder in 4th. The first race results reflected the duel that was going to finish on the podium.
The 2nd. Race the wind was shifting and falling away ,from the East . Colm Mc Mullin the PRO used the U flag after the general recall . Your author and one other were OCS and left the course . After a tiresome light airs beat the PRO abandoned the race ..
Colin move the course further into the bay to avail of the new strengthening westerly breeze.
The 2nd race got off into a 12 knot breeze from the SW.. The race was won by Davy Taylor (his luck deserted him later courtesy of a lobster pot), followed by the consistent Dowling / Hyde combination with Justin Burke, Ed Cook , Henrik Olerud Alertpackaging.com in 3rd.
Race 3 the wind had increased to 14 knots with Colin Galavan showing how to win a race by staying out of trouble. Dave Barry finished 2nd. but was subsequently unluckily DSQ in a multiple boat situation. Second was finally secured by Aiden O’Connell.The Hunt/Lee combination secured third.
Day two tested all competitors, winds close to 30–knots made sure that crews would have to be on top of their game.Venuesworld.com crewed by Ger Dempsey, Chris Nolan, Blair Stanaway & Graham Barker were showing really good form with two seconds and a fifth. That put them into contention with four points separating them from the leading boat Bád/Kilcullen going into the final day. Michael O’Connor’s Sin Bin were just two points behind in second.
Race 4 was run in 18 knots with the right hand side paying . The tide swept the competitors away from the weather mark and made for very tight rounding . The race was all about doing the basic’s well and Michael O’ Connor won this race showing how it should be done. Not to be outdone Venuesworld.com came in 2nd. and the ever threatening Darragh Sheridan, Shane Murphy, John Phelan in third.
Race 5 starter in 22 knots with a massive left hand shift . This was especially frustration for James Gorman won had successfully port tacked the fleet only to find himself at the back of the pack within 5 minutes. The wind dropped to 12 knots and within 3 minutes has re-established mean direction at 22 knots . Michael O’Connor found no problem with this and went on to record his 2nd .win of the day. Alertpackaging rounded the weather mark in 2nd. hoisted and sailed for 1 minute only to watch the rig go over the side. Again the NYC infrastructure swung into place with Mal Nowlan no fuss rescues to hand. Ger Dempsey received his just rewards with a second and the Dowling/ Hyde keeping the pressure up with a 3rd.
The weather was forecasted to be wild for Sunday and the forecaster got it right. The PRO had no choice but to cancel the Sunday racing. The smile on Stefan Hyde's face said it all and the Dowling Bros./Hyde had won the 2016 SB20 Nationals with last years winner Michael O’Connor, Owen Laverty and Kevin Johnson in 2nd. and the Venuesworld.com team of Ger Dempsey, Chris Nolan, Blair Stanaway,Graham Baker in 3rd. The silver fleet prize went to Colin Galavan, Chris Arrowsmith.
The class show their appreciation of the winners at the prize giving and recorded the appreciation for the sponsors Venuesworld.com and Dubarry , and the Committee, PRO and NYC for job well done. The Commodore Larry Power presented the prizes.
This left Bád/Kilcullen as well deserved Champions, they proved the most consistent boat over the series.Stefan Hyde and his team can look forward to competing in the ISA Helmsmans Championships later on in the year.

The SB20 World Championships are in Cascais, Portugal later this month.

Published in SB20
Tagged under

#SB20 - Sailing was cancelled in high winds on the last day of the SB20 National Championships yesterday (Sunday 7 August), meaning that Saturday's leaders – Jerry Dowling's Bád – sail away with this year's title.

The Royal Irish Yacht Club boat topped the table after six races sailed, four points clear of defending champion Michael O'Connor on Sin Bin from the Royal St George YC.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, it was a Dun Laoghaire-dominated weekend at the National Yacht Club, with Dowling's club mate Ger Dempsey on Venuesworld.com in third place.

Published in SB20

Jerry Dowling's Bad from the Royal Irish Yacht Club leads the SB20 National Championships at the National Yacht Club going into the final day of the 18–boat championships this morning. It looks likely there'll be the same big breeze same conditions for the final two races that produced a top speed of 18–knots on the water yesterday too. It's a Dun Laoghaire dominated nationals so far after six races sailed with second place overall  currently held by the defending champion Michael O'Connor from the Royal St. George YC on 18 points and Dowling's club mate Ger Dempsey one point behind in third. Full results to date downloadable below.

Published in SB20
Tagged under

As Dublin Bay Mermaid Week starts in Howth Yacht Club tomorrow, a Kestrel that landed in Dan Brennan's Mermaid, Aideen, writes about her experience at the front end of the Dun Laoghaire Fleet's special races around Dalkey Island on Sunday.

Interviewed after the race the Kestrel said “It has always been my ambition to sail in a traditional hand crafted wooden boat. I could land in a modern mass production boat any day of the week, but I wanted the real classic boat experience. I saw the beautiful five boat Mermaid fleet under spinnaker running towards Dalkey Island and couldn’t resist the temptation to try out a Mermaid. I was not disappointed, the Mermaid handled beautifully in the breeze. We were a bit behind when I landed aboard but the fleet came together at the back of the Island where the tide had started to flood and we worked our way into the lead by playing the shifts and getting into the strongest tide as we returned through Dalkey Sound. The breeze was very shifty with lots of holes as we passed through the Sound and beat back to Dun Laoghaire. My skipper did well but was outfoxed by former three times National Champion, Jonathan O’Rourke in Tiller Girl who was the 2016 winner of the Meg Mug.” The Mug is named after Meg of the Muglins and is raced for each year by the Mermaids around Dalkey Island.

She added (because she was a proper lady Kestrel and quite a rare bird) “While I really enjoyed the race I was disappointed that we did not win and I was upset to hear one of the crew, eight year old Charlie Martin say about me ‘this is the scariest thing that ever happened to me’. I have really caught the Mermaid bug and I am looking forward to dropping in on the Mermaid Nationals which are in Howth 4-8 August and maybe doing a few DBSC races. I appreciated the offer to have a few pints with the lads after the race but I had to fly home. ”

The Kestrel circumnavigated Dalkey Island in Aideen and flew away safely when back ashore in the National Yacht Club. Charlie enjoyed his first race and quickly recovered from his Kestrel scare.

A Kestrel is a small bird of prey (raptor) with a distinctive hovering flight which lives on a diet of small mammals. It is not a sea bird. Kestrels are amber listed due to concerns over declining numbers.

If you would like to join the discerning raptor in sailing in a DBSC Mermaid either as a crew or as a Mermaid owner, please contact the Mermaid Sailing Association, any member of the Mermaid fleet or Dan Brennan, Dun Laoghaire Mermaid Class Captain 087 -7985218. You will be most welcome.

Published in Mermaid
Page 9 of 26

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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