Displaying items by tag: Royal St George
Preparations continue apace in Dun Laoghaire for this weekend's ICRA Championships at the Royal St. George YC. The 'club of the year' is installing new pontoons in front of its club house in time for the Cruiser event and in anticipation of plenty more regattas this summer. Our exclusive photo by Gareth Craig shows one of four of the 80 metre long pontoons being towed in to position at the harbour this afternoon. The 250 tonne pontoons from SF Marina ssystems in Kilkenny were towed across Dublin Bay from Dublin Port in particularly calm weather after the weekend's nortwesterly winds.
The assessors in the Mitsubishi Motors/Irish Independent "Sailing Club of the Year 2010" adjudication have placed a strong emphasis on national and international sailing success in analysing the overall achievements of the past year.
Little wonder, then, that the Royal St George Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire took the gong this year. Commodore Patrick Blaney has led its large and energetic membership through a cracker of a year since he took over the top post in March 2009. In fact, success in the new year has already been logged with long-time member Adrian Lee winning overall with his Cookson 50 in the new international offshore classic, the RORC Caribbean 600 in February.
Then the club's team racing ace, John Sheehy, began to slice through the developing Irish match-racing scene, winning the first regional event at Dromineer in April, and taking the national title at Kinsale in October. Meanwhile the Irish offshore season was getting under way, and though the popular biennial 266-mile Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race is run by the neighbouring National YC, the Royal St George made hay in the record fleet, with Mick Cotter's 78ft Whisper taking line honours and setting a new course record, while Cathal Drohan and Paul Egan's X41 Legally Blonde won overall on corrected time.
The club has a very active junior section, and it was rewarded by international success in 2009, with Matty O'Dowd taking the Laser Radial Europe Cup in Denmark, and the Irish Nationals on Lough Derg. Back home, the RStGYC was at the heart of the hectic four day Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta in July, and member Flor O'Driscoll took the top title with his superbly crewed J/24.
August saw Mick Cotter's Whisper in action again, placing best of all Irish boats in the Fastnet Race, a fifth overall in the huge fleet, putting her ahead of many racing machines, and first of the cruiser-racers, a placing she repeated at the Maxi Worlds in Sardinia in September. At home during August, the club hosted the Optimist Irish Nationals, the largest one design event in Ireland in 2009 with 243 junior helms racing in demanding conditions, doubly useful as Royal St George will be staging the World Youth Sailing Championships in 2012.
(l to r) Frank A. Keane (Mitsubishi Motors Ireland) & Commodore Patrick Blaney (RStGYC)
(l to r) Frank A. Keane (Mitsubishi Motors Ireland), Commodore Patrick Blaney (RStGYC) & Winkie Nixon (Irish Independent / Afloat Magazine)