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Skipper Andy Oddie, and his crew of Gareth Edwards and Rob Greenhalgh, are the 2015 SB20 National Champions, after winning three of the six-race series at the Royal Southern YC in Hamble on ‘Underground Toys'.

The Stormforce Coaching UK National Championships were held from Saturday September 5th to Sunday 6th, 2015 in a mix of conditions that included overcast and shifty winds on the first day, and a building sea breeze with sunshine on Day 2. Unfortunately the Indian summer temperatures and sunshine on Monday 7th also brought zephyr-light conditions which led to racing being cancelled for the day, but six good races had been completed for the 25-boat nationals fleet.

Andy Oddie and team laid down an impressive challenge from the outset, winning the first three races in a row. Second place honours were shared by Class President Ed Russo on ‘Black Magic’, who was runner-up in the first and third races, and Pieter Heyn on ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’ in the second.

In Race 4 ‘Black Magic’ took the win from ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’, while ‘Underground Toys’ slipped to eighth in the variable winds and highly tidal conditions. ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’ then finished strongly to take the next two race wins, but ‘Underground Toys’ posted two more solid results with a third and second to hold on to take the overall win by two points from ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’. Third overall went to ‘Black Magic’, while Adrian Peach, the UK Class Chairman on ‘Uber’, followed up his Cowes Grand Slam win with a strong fourth place.

For Andy Oddie and Gareth Edwards the National Championships were a chance to revisit unfinished business – the pair nearly won the UK Nationals back in 2010, only losing the title on the final race.

Tactician and trimmer Rob Greenhalgh is no stranger to the SB20 class either. Rob won the first ever National Championships back in 2002, crewing for Mike Budd, and has scored podium finishes at many UK Nationals and World Championships. This latest title adds to another successful season for the pro sailor, which included winning the European Championship in the foiling Moth class just a week previously, having spent much of the previous year circumnavigating the globe in the Volvo Ocean Race, as Watch Captain on ‘Mapfre’.

Preceding the Nationals, the Sportsboat World/Spinlock Sprint Series was held on Friday, September 4th, with six back-to-back quick-fire races held over a windward-leeward course. Joe Llewellyn with ‘Forelle Estates’ won two races and counted all top three places to win, two points ahead of Tom Clay’s ‘Whyaduck’ who also won two races. Pieter Heyn's ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’ won the remaining two races to finish third overall.

There was a special prize, sponsored by Harken, awarded to the top Youth team at the Nationals, which went to ‘Striptease’, skippered by Rebecca Anthony. The Masters prize, sponsored by Hyde Sails, was awarded to Tich Summers and the ‘Chill Pill’ team. The fleet also welcomed some new faces, including two boats from Poole Harbour where a new fleet is gaining momentum.

For many teams the 2015 Nationals gave a taste of what to expect for the 2017 SB20 World Championships, which will be hosted by the prestigious Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes with racing on the Solent.

Ed Russo, President of the UK World Council, commented: “The Nationals saw tough competition with leading competitors including the top British boat at this year’s Worlds (‘Forelle Estates’), and Rob Greenhalgh calling the shots on 'Underground Toys’.

“The well known tidal flow puzzle of the Solent, coupled with particularly shifty northerly breezes, confirmed that sailing here requires crews to keep their heads! The 2017 Worlds, run by the RYS, will mark the SB20 class's 15th anniversary and it is a perfect time to come back to the founding waters of the class for some enjoyable and challenging racing."

Results:

Stormforce Coaching 2015 SB20 UK National Championships

1st ‘Underground Toys’ Andy Oddie GBR 3366 Itchenor S.C. 8.0

2nd ‘F5 Synthesis Team Gul’ Pieter Heyn 3047 Warsash 10.0

3rd ‘Black Magic’ Ed Russo FRA 3706 Club Nautique Valeriquais 13.0

4th ‘Uber’ Adrian Peach GBR 3720 Royal Torbay YC 21.0

5th Forelle Estates Joe Llewellyn GBR 3732 Wessex Exiles 27.0

Youth Category, sponsored by Harken

1st 'Striptease' Rebecca Anthony 3075 RSrnYC 104.0

Masters Category, sponsored by Hyde Sails

1st 'Chill Pill+' Tich Summers GBR 3710 Royal Tay Yacht Club 29.0

Published in SB20
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After three days of typically tricky Dublin Bay conditions, the Dun Laoghaire crew aboard Sin Bin (IRL 3544) – Michael O’Connor, Owen Laverty and Kevin Johnson - were deservedly crowned the 2015 Irish SB20 National Champions writes Ted Laverty.

Hosted by the Royal Irish Yacht Club and under the experienced race management of Jack Roy, racing commenced at lunchtime on Friday in 15+ knots of breeze. 20 boats made it to the start line in what was a highly competitive fleet with multiple Olympians (past and present) and former all-Ireland helmsmen winners in attendance.

sb20 champions

The 2015 SB20 Irish National Champions – Kevin Johnson, James Horan, Commodore of the RIYC, children Peter and Olivia O’Connor, Michael O'Connor, Owen Laverty and outgoing SB20 class president Justin Burke

Race 1 was won by the returning SB20 veterans in Martin Reilly Motors (Colin Galavan / Chris Arrowsmith / Rory Byrne), beating the top ranked SB of the 2014 season Corona Extra (Graham Grant / Ronan Dowling / Katy Kelly) into second place, with the crew of Sharkbait (Darren Martin / Simon Murray / Roger Parnell) coming in third. After the first race it was apparent that it was a ’streaky’ Dublin bay day, with localised pockets of breeze enabling the most alert crews to climb up the leaderboard.

Race 2 was won by former Olympian Peter Kennedy with Stevie Kane and Emmet Ryan aboard Ridgefence. The eventual champions on Sin Bin came in 2nd, with Espey 3 – a boat containing no fewer than 2 Olympians on board (Rob Espey / James Espey /Steve Milne) crossing the line into 3rd.

Race 3 concluded the day with Espey 3 climbing up to 1st place, local boat Animal Origami (Marty O’ Leary / Chris Chapman / Neil O’Hagan) scoring 2nd in their first event together and Ridgefence following up in 3rd. Some very tired crews sailed back in for light refreshments and craic in the RIYC. Things were tight at the top with Espey 3 and Sin Bin both on 12 points, so there was plenty to discuss!

Weather conditions on day 2 were lighter than the previous day but there was still just enough wind to get boats planing downwind and make the racing exciting. However, the flooding tide was to make starting conditions challenging for the fleet and the ever patient race management team in the Northerly breeze, with the latter tasked with running 4 back-to-back races on the day.

The crew of Espey 3 put the pressure on early, winning Race 4 from the reigning 2014 national champions on board Bad/Kilcullen (Stephan Hyde / Jerry Dowling /Jimmy Dowling) in 2nd and with Lia (Dave Barry / John Malone / Bob Allen) coming in 3rd. Race 5 was a local affair at the very top, won by RIYC boat Venuesworld.com (Ger Dempsey/Chris Nolan/Blair Stanway/Graham Barker) who lead from the start over 2nd place Bango (James Gorman / Ted Laverty / Keith Staunton) with Ridgefence coming in 3rd. Race 6 was then won by the crew of Sharkbait, with Sin Bin re-establishing their credentials with a fine 2nd place and the crew of Espey 3 maintaining their claim for the championship with a hard fought 3rd place. The final race of the day was won once again by Sharkbait – who were now worrying some the event favourites – with Venuesworld.com nailing 2nd and Ruby Blue (Aidan O’Connell / Kieran Dorgan / Ben O’Donoghue ) following closely in 3rd.

A long day and a deserved evening of relaxation (after the formality of the class AGM, but more on that at a later date) with a sit down dinner in the RIYC. The dinner was extremely well attended, with a few bottles of wine consumed along with some great craic. The class is fast gaining a reputation for its competitiveness on the water and the warmth of its apres-sailing to one and all.

The final day. 2 races and places up for grabs. With just a couple of points separating the 2 leaders – Sin Bin and Espey 3 – nothing could be taken for granted. The forecast was for extremely light conditions and it didn’t disappoint with Jack Roy working hard to get the full quota of races in.

Race 8 saw the fleet split evenly on the downwind leg, with the wind filling in from the left side of the course leaving anyone on the right hand side floundering. Sin Bin, who had proven to be highly consistent all event, came out trumps on this leg with Espey 3 having chosen the wrong side. Sin Bin never lost the lead and won the race handsomely with Espey 3 coming in 4th. Bad/Kilcullen crossed in 2nd, with Animal Origami in 3rd.

The final race, and Sin Bins’ to lose. You already know they didn’t! Sharkbait topped off a strong second half to their event with another race win, with Ridgefence claiming 2nd and the new class presidents boat Seriously Bonkers x 3 ( Martin Cuppage/ Peter Lee (President)/Rory Groves) coming in 3rd.

The crew of Sin Bin won from Espey 3 by 4 points in the end, with the crew of Ruby Blue climbing up to 3rd place on the back of highly consistent scoring after an OCS in race 1.

All in all a fantastic event, expertly run by Jack Roy and team, in a superb venue in the RIYC. The new SB20 Association Committee have a lot to live up to. A word also to our event sponsors – Dubarry, Venuesworld.com and Dinghy Supplies whose continued support was greatly appreciated. 

Published in SB20

#sb20 – Three physically demanding races were held for the SB20 Gold fleet today at Torbole, Lake Garda yesterday. Racing began in 20-knot breezes, which built throughout the course of the afternoon to 30 knots. Jerry Hill, sailing "SportsboatWorld' in 13th overall described it as: "Classic Ora conditions. We had three cracking races – hard racing with some epic downwind legs. Ireland's top performer is Shane Murphy's Dinghy Supplies in 20th place.

With the increasing winds, the race committee from Circolo Vela Torbole opted to cancel the third race for the silver fleet, however both fleets have now completed enough races for the second discard to come into play.

John Polland's 'Excellent' took the first win of the day in Gold fleet, but went on to score a 24th and DNF – one of seven Gold fleet boats who failed to complete the last race. He was followed home by Robert Jeffreys and Glenn Bourke who took second, and Robin Follin, with the FFV Youth team 'Give me 5', who finished third.

Follin's youth team went on to score another second and a fifth. With two discards coming into play they now count no result worse than a fifth, and have recovered their position at the top of the leaderboard after four day's of racing on 27 points, with a 9 point advantage over their nearest pursuers.

Robin Follin and his team began sailing the SB20 just 18 months ago. They are supported by the French Sailing Federation (FFV) and include very successful match racers and 470 sailors. Follin is just 19 years old, while his oldest member of crew is 26. The team have put a great deal of time into sailing the SB20 this year and are performing impressively well. However, having already used a high scoring discard, they may be put under pressure in tomorrow's final races.

Roger Hudson and the 'Race Ahead – Spirit of Cape Town' team took the day's final win, following on from a consistent day with a sixth and ffith. They now have an all top-10 scoreline and are lying second overall on 36 points.

Rodion Luka and his 'SkyLine' team from Kiev took the second race win, his fifth race victory of the series. He has now climbed up to third place ovearall, after finishing 10th and seventh in the remainder of today's races. Luka and team are on 41 points, with Glenn Bourke and Robert Jeffreys in fourth on 49 points.

First British boat is now Joe Llewellyn and the Wessex Exiles sailors on 'Forelle Estaes', lying in sixth on 65 points. The leading Italian flagged entry is Ian Ainslie and Paulin Gian Matteo's team, in seventh on 71 points. In eighth is Michael Cooper, who has travelled all the way from Tasmania to compete in the event. He has one boat back home in Australia, and another he will keep in Europe for the next two World Championships (Cascais, Portugal in 2016 and Cowes, UK in 2017).

Cooper said after racing: "I just love this boat, I love the people in the class, and I'm having an absolutely great time." As one of two Australian boats in the top 10, however, he really wants to beat the Poms in the SportsboatWorld-sponsored 'Nations Cup' prize (for the best aggregate score for the top three teams from each nation overall).

In the Silver fleet the Italian team 'Enjoy' of Carlo Tomelleri enjoyed the first race win of the day, with Ireland's Ronan Downing taking the second victory. Vladislaav Ivanovskiy retains the overall lead after discard with 118 points, from second placed 'Venuesworld.com (IRL), skippered by Ger Dempsey, on 121 points. Ronan Downing is in third on 132 points overall.

Racing concludes tomorrow, Friday, July 10 with two races scheduled from 1100am..

Results Day 4
No Numero Nome Punti 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
1 FRA 3653 ROBIN FOLLIN, Maschio, MARINE BOUDOT, EMERIC MICHEL, CN SAINTE-MAXIME
GIVE ME 5 BY FFV YOUTH 27,0 (13) 3 2 1 4 2 4 1 (27) 3 2 5
2 RSA 3469 ROGER HUDSON, Maschio, ASENATHI JIM, TAARIQ JACOBS, RCYC
RACEAHEAD – SPIRIT OF CAPE TOW 36,0 3 (4) 1 4 2 2 (10) 9 3 6 5 1
3 UKR 3726 RODION LUKA, Maschio, SVETLANA SOROKINA, IGOR SEVERIANOV, KIEV RACING YACHT CLUB
SKY LINE 41,0 1 12 9 (18) 1 1 6 2 1 (10) 1 7
4 AUS 3737 ROBERT JEFFREYS, Maschio, GLEN BOURKE, SAE LILLEY, SANDRINGHAM YACHT CLUB 49,0 4 9 (12) 3 9 4 5 (21) 7 2 4 2
5 RUS 3708 KIRILL FROLOV, Maschio, MURASHKIN ALEXEY, IGNATENKO EGOR, SPBYC
MELSTONTEAM 59,0 7 8 4 2 2 (9) 2 14 4 5 (15) 11
6 GBR 3732 JOE LLEWELLYN, Maschio, NIGEL WAKEFIELD, JERRY VIGUS, WESSEX EXILES SAILING CLUB
FORELLE ESTATES 65,0 8 2 6 (20) 9 1 (24) 3 5 9 12 10
7 ITA 3616 IAN AISLIE, Maschio, PAULIN GIAN MATTEO, ADAM MARTIN, CUS BOLOGNA 71,0 4 1 1 (8) 6 5 (20) 10 12 12 11 9
8 AUS 3731 MICHAEL COOPER, Maschio, DAVID CHAPMAN, MATTHEW JOHNSTON, ROYAL YACHT CLUB OF TASMANIA 77,0 5 15 3 (18) 12 3 1 6 15 14 (32) 3
9 RUS 3709 VLADIMIR PROSIKHIN, Maschio, BASALKIN ARTEM, MARTEMIANOV ALEX, SPB YC
NIKA 81,0 1 5 7 (10) 5 8 14 12 9 7 13 (23)
10 FRA 3706 RUSSO EDWARD, Maschio, CHATEAU CE'DRIC, FAVENNER GILLIES, CLUB NAUTIQUE VALéRIQUAIS
BLACK MAGIC 81,0 6 4 (7) 7 6 3 22 11 (23) 4 6 12
11 GBR 3724 JOHN POLLAND, Maschio, ROB SMITH, CHAZ HOOK, RTYC
EXCELLENT 86,0 5 13 6 6 1 (14) 13 15 2 1 24 (dnf)
12 GBR 3728 RICHARD POWELL, Maschio, BEN VINES, TIM BURNELL, RORC
MARVEL 86,0 9 11 (28) 5 8 4 (16) 16 6 16 7 4
13 GBR 3722 JERRY HILL, Maschio, ALAN HILLMAN, CRAIG WATSON, ROYAL SOUTHERN YC
SPORTSBOATWORLD.COM 99,0 3 8 5 9 (15) 12 19 13 14 8 (22) 8
14 GBR 3047 PIETER HEYN, Maschio, ROB GULLAN, ROSIE SIBTHORPE, WARSASH SC
F5 SYNTHESIS TEAM GUL 108,0 2 1 15 (ocs) ocs 8 3 5 11 (19) 10 6
15 GBR 3720 ADRIAN PEACH, Maschio, GARY PHARE, JIM SHORT, ROYAL TORBAY YACHT CLUB
UBER 116,0 13 2 (14) 11 7 10 (34) 7 8 11 25 22
16 ITA 3543 VINCENZO GRACIOTTI, Maschio, GIOVANNI MELONE, SERGIO LAMBERTENGHI, YACHT CLUB RIVIERA DEL CONERO
DKC 130,0 (15) 9 3 13 10 11 15 (42) 20 18 18 13
17 AUS 3735 CHRIS DARE, Maschio, SEARCE KEIRAN, TWEEDELL OLIVER, SORRENTO SAILING COUTA BOAT CL 141,0 2 6 2 (27) 26 5 12 (ufd) 17 21 3 dnf
18 ITA 3073 MASSIMO FULLONE, Maschio, AIRO' ANDREA, ALESSIA DE VITA, C. VELICO ONDABUENA
SBERLA 151,0 10 (26) 22 3 20 26 7 20 19 (27) 8 16
19 RUS 3707 VADIM PUSHEV, Maschio, TIMUR SABIRZIANOV, ALEXANDER MIKHAILOV, SAINT-PETERSBURG YACHT CLUB
VIS SAILING TEAM 151,0 9 17 8 12 (30) 28 (23) 8 13 20 21 15
20 UKR 3703 VALERIY POLOVOY, Maschio, BOGOMOLKIN VOLODYMYR, STASYUK VOLODYMYR, BLACK SEA Y/C
PEARL 2 157,0 10 13 5 4 7 (24) 26 24 18 33 17 (dnf)
21 IRL 3490 SHANE MURPHY, Maschio, DARAGH SHERIDAN, JOHN PHELAR, HOWTH YACHT CLUB 159,0 16 21 8 5 5 (bfd) 9 17 (42) 15 33 30
22 GBR 3710 SCOTT GRAHAM, Maschio, NICK ELDER, TICH SUMMERS, ROYAL TAY YACHT CLUB
CHILL PILL 159,0 12 7 9 (29) 8 15 8 (36) 28 34 14 24
23 ITA 3333 DANIELE POLI, Maschio, OSCAR FARACE, DEBERNARDI FRANCESCO, CIRCOLO VELA ORTA
MINNIE 171,0 (26) 15 4 17 13 19 18 23 (35) 22 23 17
24 NED 3714 MARCO VAN DRIEL, Maschio, JOOST ASSMANN, MARTIJN WORSELING, WSV BRAASSEMERMEER
MXTC 181,0 14 12 31 8 (36) 23 28 4 (ufd) 28 19 14
25 ITA 3553 ROBERTO BENAMATI, Maschio, CATTANEO ALESSANDRO, BARBIERI VALENTINO, FRAGLIA VELA MALCESINE
BEST WIND 181,0 11 20 13 (30) 4 11 31 19 (dnf) 17 36 19
26 FRA 3302 JADE FESTINO, Maschio, ALEXANDRE FESTINO, BENJAMIN COHEN, CLUB NAUTIQUE DES SALETTES
CN SABLETTE 186,0 7 7 17 11 (24) 6 30 32 16 13 (dnf) dnf
27 POR 3581 GEORGY SOKOLOVSKIY, Maschio, BORIS KUCHERENKO, VASILY YAKOVLEV, NA
ALADDIN 188,0 14 16 16 (28) 17 15 33 18 24 26 9 (dnf)
28 POR 3105 JOSE' PAULO RAMADA, Maschio, ANTONIO PEREIRA, MIGUEL L L.FARIA, CNCASCAIS
DOM PEDRO HOTELS/GENERALI 198,0 6 6 (21) 14 24 7 17 43 22 23 (dnf) 36
29 IRL 3433 DAVY TAYLOR, Maschio, LISA NEARY, MARTY O'LEARY, ISA
WWW.YACHTSMAN.IE 205,0 (26) 25 24 9 3 18 25 27 26 (40) 28 20
30 AUS 3734 STEHPEN FRIES, Maschio, MARK MUIRHEAD, ANDREW ROBERTS, SANDRINGHAM YACHT CLUB 213,0 8 19 10 10 19 (20) 38 (41) 33 29 26 21
31 POR 3525 ROQUETTE TIAGO, Maschio, BARRETO PEDRO, TELES FERNANDO, CWDS
BOOM BAP WEAR 215,0 18 14 (42) 36 18 6 (39) 30 10 37 20 26
32 NED 3441 PAUL GAST, Maschio, NANNO AUKUS, WONTER VAN DER ENDER, WSV HELLEVOETSLUIS
RIVIUM 216,0 17 10 26 17 14 (35) (36) 26 29 32 27 18
33 UKR 3042 VALERII BUNDIUK, Maschio, YULIY KHUDOMAKA, OLEG YZYUMTSEV, NIKOPOL SAILING CENTER 227,0 11 (24) 24 22 12 16 11 33 38 25 35 (39)
34 IRL 3544 MICHAEL O'CONNOR, Maschio, OWEN LAVERTY, KEVIN JOHNSON, ROYAL ST GEORGE YACHT CLUB
SIN BIN 235,0 18 20 20 15 (30) 9 32 (ufd) 21 43 30 27
35 GBR 3149 MARK GILLETT, Maschio, NIKI BIRRELL, LAURA WOOSEY, FRENSHAM POND SC
POOR BUOY 236,0 20 22 11 22 (29) 20 21 25 (ufd) 36 31 28
36 IRL 3060 KIREAN DORGAN, Maschio, JASON LOSTY, EWAN O KEEFFE, COVE SAILING CLUB
THE BEAR 239,0 12 17 12 (40) 22 10 43 (ufd) 40 35 16 32
37 FRA 3423 HELENE URRUTTI, Femmina, ANNA PIROGOVA, JOHAN RAVIER, YACHT CLUB DE CANNES
OCEANTEAM SOLUTIONS 247,0 16 23 17 16 (26) 7 (45) 29 25 42 37 35
38 GBR 3027 ALEC RUSSELL, Maschio, CLAIRE RUSSELL, EDWARD HANDASYDE DICK, ROYAL SOUTHERN YACHT CLUB
eDIGITAL RESEARCH 249,0 21 10 11 (31) 29 21 35 35 (36) 24 34 29
39 ITA 3098 LINA FAGGI, Femmina, CHIARA ABBRUZZESE, SERENA SICHER, PORTO SAN ROCCO
PETITE BETE 257,0 19 (24) 10 19 14 13 42 39 34 (44) 29 38
40 GBR 3082 CHARLES SHEPPARD, Maschio, FRANCOIS HILARY, GASPAR VANHOLLEBEKE, RORC
SHARC 260,0 (43) 18 34 21 11 12 40 22 30 39 (dnf) 33
41 ITA 3187 ROBERTO RIVIECCIO, Maschio, RIVECCIO MATTEO, MATTEO RAMIAN, YC PORTO TORRES
SBALLATA 267,0 21 18 16 (26) 10 24 (44) 28 41 31 41 37
42 RUS 3725 BORIS LATKIN, Maschio, CHUGUNOV OLEG, YCSPB
MY MARUSIA 270,0 (27) 14 26 12 23 18 29 31 (dnf) 30 40 dnf
43 GBR 3106 THOMAS CLAY, Maschio, JAMES CLAY, RICHARD CLAY, ROYAL SOUTHERN YC
WHYADUCK 270,0 20 (dnf) 15 14 15 23 (46) 40 32 38 42 31
44 GER 3402 DANIEL SPAENLE, Maschio, TOBIAS SPAENLE, KONSTANTIN KRAUSS, MUENCHENER RUDER- UND SEGELVER
PROPERTY BASE 274,0 22 (43) 33 19 17 14 37 38 31 (45) 38 25
45 AUS 3390 PHILIP REID, Maschio, ANDRE' DECLERCK, SAM IBBOTT, ROYAL YACHT CLUB OF TASMANIA
MIND GAMES 287,0 (30) 23 29 2 20 28 27 34 39 46 39 (dnf)
46 BEL 3345 BART TYTGAT, Maschio, TOBIAS TYTGAT, KRISTOF WOUTTERS, RNSYC
GO WITH THE FLOW 289,0 30 21 (37) 6 25 17 41 37 37 41 (dnf) 34

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It was all change at the top on Day 3 of the Trentino SB20 World Championships. Of the 11 Irish boats competing Shane Murphy's Dinghy Supplies from Howth Yacht Club leads the three that made it into the 46-boat gold fleet and is currently in 20th place. In 28th place is Davy Taylor and Kieran Dorgan is 43rd. The full results for both gold and silver fleets are downloadable below. 

A change in conditions followed by a demanding afternoon of three rapid-fire races for Day 3 of the Championships has seen a shake-up on the leaderboard.

The 92-boat fleet awoke to a humid and windless Lake Garda this morning (July 8). Overnight storms delayed the formation of the – usually reliable – early afternoon breeze, and the race committee from the Circolo Vela Torbole flew the AP flag, with many in the fleet anticipating that racing would be cancelled for the day.

However, a later Ora breeze filled in mid-afternoon, and at 1500pm the AP was lowered and the competitors in both Gold and Silver fleets were sent out to complete three rapid races in 16-24 knots. It was a tough day on the water for many, with the atypical Lake Garda conditions proving harder to read and strategise for, and some big gusts downwind also putting pressure on boat-handling skills.

Ukrainian Olympian Rodion Luka, initially one of the early favourites for the regatta, stormed from fifth overall to the top of the leaderboard by taking a sixth, second and first place today. Adding to the three race wins he carries from the qualifying series, Luka and his 'Skyline' team now lead on 33 points.

Rodion Luka said after racing, "We had an amazing day. It is great to be back in the game!"

One point adrift, Roger Hudson's 'Race Ahead – Spirit of Cape Town' team has yet to finish outside the top 10, and with a 10th, ninth and third place today are now second on 34 points.

In third lies the Russian 'Melstrom Team' of Alexey Murashkin, who had a mixed day with a second and a 14th place, and are now on 43 points overall. They are just one point ahead of early leaders, the FFV Youth team of 'Give me 5', who scored another race win before picking up an unwanted 27th, which cannot currently be discarded. Robin Follin and his young French team will surely be feeling the pressure.

Just five points separate the fifth to 10th placed boats. First Briton Joe Llewellyn lies in fifth place, after also scoring a mixed day. Ian Ainslie and team have slipped to sixth with a 20, 10, 12 scoreline from the day. Michael Cooper's Tasmanian team in seventh took the first race win of the day.

In the Silver fleet Valdislaav Ivanovskiy and his RUS 373 opened the day as leader of the silver fleet, flying the Sportsboat World pink gennaker – and to great effect. They were easy to spot at the front of the fleet, and nailed three consistent results to open out their lead to a 26-point advantage over Chris Darling (GBR). The RUS 373 team scored two seconds and a fourth while today's race winning honours were shared by Pierre-Yves Lambert (FRA 3339), local skipper Claudio Dutto (ITA 3633) and Fabrizio Boromei (ITA 3567).

Simon Hume, racing in the silver fleet, was celebrating his birthday at yesterday evening's gala dinner for the fleet on the shores of Lake Garda, hosted by Circolo Vela Torbole. He commented: "Fantastic sailing – this is what we came for!"

After last night's prosecco celebrations and a demanding day on the water, there were some very tired crews in the SB20 fleet tonight, with many heading back to base for an early night after an exhausting day on the water. Racing continues until Friday, July 10.

Published in SB20
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#sb20worlds – Shane Murphy, Daragh Sheridan and John Phelan of Howth Yacht Club lead Irish hopes at the SB20 Worlds in Italy. The Dublin trio are 20th in a fleet of 98 after six races sailed and might well have been higher only for a black flag scored in the last race this afternoon. Full results HERE.

Three races completed on Day 2 with the 98-boat fleet now divided into 'gold' and 'silver' fleets, determining who can challenge for the title. But there's nothing to split the leaders, with two teams tied on points after six races.

Torbole provided more classic conditions at Lake Garda for the second day of the 2015 SB20 World Championships, with the famous south to south-westerly afternoon 'Ora' breeze allowing six more races to be held, three each for the two qualifying fleets. The qualifying series is now over and one discard comes into play. Eight more races are scheduled – with just one discard allowed from the final races: there is no room for error over the next three days.

The large international entry is now split into Gold and Silver fleets, with the Gold fleet leaders vying for the title of 2015 World Champion. Competition couldn't be tighter, with the lead two boats each tied on 12 points apiece. Roger Hudson's South African 'Race Ahead – Spirit of Cape Town' had a super-consistent day, scoring a fourth and two seconds, while the French youth team 'Give me 5' from the FFV opened their day with a win, and went on to score another second and fourth.

Robin Follin of 'Give me 5' commented after racing: "So far in the regatta we've wanted to sail 'safe' so as to make it into the Gold fleet. Now we know our boat is fast, so tomorrow we should take more risks!"

Early leaders Ian Ainslie and Italian crew have dropped to third on 17 points after counting a sixth and fifth from today's races. There is little to split the fourth placed Russian team of Alexey Murashkin, who took two seconds today to end on 23 points, and the highly-fancied Ukrainian entry skippered by Rodion Luka, who is lying in fifth on 24 points. Luka scored two race wins today, but also finished in 19th place in the day's opener, which forces his 'Sky Line' team to count an earlier 12th place on their scoreline.

The first British boat is Joe Llewellyn in sixth place with 'Forelle Estates', who picked up his first race win of the championships today. He is tied on points with seventh-placed Russian entry Vladimir Prosikhin on 'Nika'. The first of a strong Australian entry is Glenn Bourke and Robert Jeffreys, currently in ninth place.

SB20 World Council Class President Ed Russo, who is racing on 'Black Magic' in eighth place, said: "It is extremely tough out there. The competition is incredibly tight and it's great to see the youth teams coming to the fore. We are looking forward to the final series – where it's going to get even tougher for sure!"

For some teams the no-hold-barred nature of the championship led to disappointment ashore, with Pieter Heyn and Rob Gullan's 'F5 Synthesis Team Gul' (GBR) picking up two OCS scores on today's competitive startlines. The Black Flag also caught a couple of boats out in the final race of the day. There was more disappointment still for Richard McAdam and team on 'Here Comes Bod' (GBR) scoring three DNFs today, after failing to sail with the correct fleet.

Those teams now in the Silver fleet aren't out of contention for a prize haul, as class builder and supplier Sportsboat World will be sponsoring the Silver fleet with separate bounty up for grabs, and from tomorrow the leaders in that division will be flying the famous bright pink spinnaker (Tour de France yellow jersey-style).

SportsboatWorld are also sponsoring a 'Nations Cup' prize for the best aggregate score for the top three teams from each nation overall. The main contenders expected to compete for this include France, Italy, Russia, Ukraine, UK, Australia and Ireland. Inevitably, with UK and Australia as the two leading teams currently some 'Ashes style' rivalry is developing...

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#sb20 – An international SB20 World Championships kicked off in Torbole, Lake Garda, Italy today with three races completed in demanding conditions. None of the 11 Irish boats competing figure in the top ten overall to date with the best Kieran Dorgan's Cove Sailing Club entry from Cork Harbour lying in 24th. Full results are HERE.

Ninety-two boats took to the water on Day 1 of the World Championship, Monday July 6, 2015, after all boats were launched and measured. 

Lake Garda turned on the sunshine with temperatures of 35 degrees C, and a shifty 15-18 knots of wind with patches of variable pressure, which made for a challenging start. Rising to the top of the leaderboard on a difficult first day was Ian Ainslie, sailing the Italian 'Protect Tapes' team, with Paulin Gian Matteo and Adam Martin. They took a fourth in the first race before going on to win the next two, leaving them with just 6 points overnight.

In second is the South African 'Race Ahead Spirit of Cape Town' team, skippered by Roger Hudson, who put in a consistent third and fourth, before also taking a third race win in their fleet. Chris Dare's Australian team is in third overall with two second places, while fourth is held by the Russian entry of Vladimir Prosikhin, who scored an opening race win before a fifth and seventh.

Two British boats are tied on 16 points in fifth and sixth, with Joe Llewellyn's 'Forelle Estates' and Jerry Hill with 'SportsboatWorld.com' just one point ahead of the first French boat, SB20 World Council Class President Ed Russo's 'Black Magic' in seventh.

Consistency is likely to be key if the shifty conditions continue, with some of the pre-regatta favourites already getting some high scores. British team 'F5 Synthesis Team Gul' had a flying start with a second and first place, before scoring a 17th. Ukranian Olympian Rodion Luka took a first race win before scoring a 12th, while three-times Laser World Champion Glenn Bourke (AUS) is lying in 14th place.

The event is hosted by the Circolo Vela Torbole. There was universal praise for the Race Committee, who did a great job of ensuring all six races were completed on the first day, with the huge turnout split into blue and yellow fleets, each completing three races. Racing was help on an inner and outer loop configuration, which met with the full approval of the SB20 fleet. After racing all the crews enjoyed some complimentary post-race pasta and a cooling beer in the sunshine at the club, with many opting for a refreshing dip in the lake.

Racing continues for the seventh SB20 World Championships until July 10, with up to 14 races scheduled.

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#sb20 – Over 100 SB20s will gather in Torbole, Lake Garda, Italy for the seventh SB20 World Championships, sponsored by the Italian province of Trentino this Saturday (July 4). As well as 11 Irish boats, entries are anticipated from up to 15 nations and the competition is sure to be fierce, with up to 14 races scheduled between July 4-10. In Torbole for the pre worlds event were Kinsale's Ronan Downing, Cobh's Kieran Dorgan and Dun Laoghaire's Jerry Dowling and Justin Burke from the Royal Irish and National Yacht Club's respectively. Results from the pre–worlds are HERE

Another seven Irish boats are joining for the world championships: Sin Bin Michael O Connor RstGYC;  Lia Dave Barry RCYC; Venuesworld.com Ger Dempsey RIYC; Mephisto Colin Galavan RIYC; Yachtsman.ie Davy Taylor, Seriously Bonkers; Peter Lee, RstGYC and Dinghy Supplies Shane Murphy, Howth YC.

The one-design keelboat class recently enjoyed a highly competitive pre-Worlds event, the Italian National Championships (June 19-21), at the same venue of Circolo Vela Torbole on Lake Garda. Lake Garda is renowned for reliable breezes which, combined with stunning Italian sunshine and a spectacular mountain backdrop, make it a favourite destination among racing sailors.

Runners and riders

The 2015 World Championships has attracted a highly competitive fleet from around the world. The UK dominated the early years of the SB20 class (the first five world championships had UK winners) but it would be something of a surprise if the 2015 champions were on a British boat. John Pollard and Joe Llewellyn have strong credentials, Rob Gullan has shown flashes of brilliant form, and Sportsboat World's own Jerry Hill, who was the 2010 World Champion at Torbole, was also top Brit at last weekend's Italian Nationals. It will be interesting to see if any of the current top British teams have the necessary consistency to win this time around.

The big growth region over the last three years has been Russia. Russia is fielding three strong teams, including Vadim Pushev, RC44 owner Vladimir Proshikin and Italian Nationals runners-up Alexey Murashkin – all have shown strong form and could mount a serious challenge.

From France, SB20 World Council Class President Ed Russo is consistent, and was right in the hunt to win the last Worlds in St Petersburg. The young team skippered by Robin Follin has also been making fast improvements and could well be in the mix. There are also European entries from Portugal, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland and the Netherlands.

Olympian Ian Ainslie leads an Italian/South African/Australian team – he was second at the 2010 Worlds and has been looking strong at times this year, while his compatriot Roger Hudson is back with his 'Race Ahead' team. The Race Ahead team have plenty of World Championship podium positions to their names over the years and, while they have been concentrating on the 470 recently, will certainly not have forgotten how to put their SB20 in the right place.

There is a strong contingent coming from Australia. Multiple Laser World Champion and long-term SB20 sailor Glenn Bourke has a new boat, and has been practising at Torbole. Meanwhile Michael Cooper's team from the very strong Tasmanian fleet are recent additions to the class, but there is a lot of experience and talent in their boat, and they finished a strong fifth at the recent Italian nationals.

Probably the favourite, however, is Rodion Luka from Ukraine. Rodion is a 49er Olympic silver medallist, and his crew includes former 470 world champion Igor Matviyenko. Rodion has been in the SB20 class for five years and has won virtually everything on offer, apart from the world championships. He struggled at points during the recent Italian Nationals, but may well be the boat to beat.

Category prizes

With 14 races and two discards consistency will be the key, and the ability to convert an indifferent start or poor first beat into a decent result may make all the difference to which team's name goes on the spectacular glass trophy.

With over 100 boats taking part, the entries will be divided into Gold and Silver fleets, with the Silver fleet sponsored by SB20 builder and distributor Sportsboat World. The event will also see the winners of several categories awarded prizes from sponsors including Hyde Sails, who will be giving a prize for the best Masters team, and the Clarins award for the top Ladies' boat.

 

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#sb20 – The SB20 fleet were treated to conditions more befitting the Mediterranean on Sunday afternoon as they battled it out on Dublin Bay in 10-15knts of breeze and blistering sunshine. Although some of the fleet regulars were

absent due to the fact that they have already departed for the Italian Nationals on Lake Garda in preparation for the upcoming World Championships, the fleet were delighted to see the welcome return of "Lupi d'Irlanda" (Marco Sorgassi et al) helmed on the day by veteran SB'er Tim Burke and "Mephisto" (John Lyons et al) helmed on the day by team racing legend Sam Hunt. In fact, there were three guest helmsmen in the fleet with regular SB crew Gavin Murphy ably getting to grips with the tiller once more on Seriously Bonkers (Peter Lee et al) as Peter familiarises himself with the role of "middle man" in preparation for the Worlds.

OOD Barry O'Neill and his team set up the windward/leeward course in the vicinity of Merrion mark between the west pier and Dublin Port, the area used to such good effect in the recent Leinster Championships.

With a strong ebbing tide favouring the left hand side of the course and a wind forecast to clock around to the right all day long, this was going to pose a tricky test for the competitors.

After a brief postponement to gather the fleet, Race 1 got off at the first time of asking. By the weather mark , it was clear that the left hand side of the course had paid as the expected right hand shift had yet to materialise. First around the mark was the SB prodigal son Tim Burke and team in Lupi d'Irlanda followed closely by Sam Hunt and team on Mephisto. Clearly nobody had told the newbies that it was just plain rude to give the regulars a spanking in their first race back! The two leaders were hotly pursued by Sin Bin (Michael O'Connor, Owen Laverty and Kevin Johnson) with a small gap to a bunch consisting of Venuesworld.com (Ger Dempsey, Chris Nolan and Rory Groves), Rubadubdub (Nick Doherty, Conor and Rob) and Bango (James Gorman, Ted Laverty and Keith Staunton).

Lupi were the first to gybe off approximately one third of the way down the first run with the remainder of the fleet holding on longer on starboard gybe. At the leeward mark, Lupi's decision to gybe off early was vindicated as they led Mephisto around the leeward mark by a length with Sin Bin rounding on Mephisto's transom. The wind started to oscillate as the boats progressed up the second beat and it was Mephisto that picked out the best path to the weather mark, overtaking Lupi and leading the
fleet at the second weather mark, a lead they were to hold onto to the finish. Bango also made good gains on the second upwind leg picking their way through the fleet and improving up to fourth place. Misfortune struck
Lupi while hoisting their kite at the second weather mark as they tore a sizeable gash in their spinnaker but commendably, they held on to second place to the finish despite the best efforts of Sin Bin and Bango chasing
hard. At the end it was Mephisto followed by Lupi, Sin Bin, Bango, Rubadubdub and Venuesworld.com.

Race 2 saw a return to form of the "regulars" (phew!). Once again, the left hand side of the first beat paid handsomely with Sin Bin and Lupi coming in from the left hand corner while the remainder of the fleet seemed to play the percentages and the shifts closer to the middle of the course. At the weather mark, Sin Bin led by a few lengths from Mephisto, again putting in a solid showing, with Venuesworld.com a few boatlengths further back in third. Unfortunately for Lupi, they had marginally overstood the weather mark and lost ground ducking boats and trying to find a gap to tack onto the starboard layline and get around the mark.

After a lot of shouting, Lupi rounded in fourth overlapped with Rubadubdub in fifth and Seriously Bonkers also overlapped in a very close sixth.

Down the first run, Venuesworld spotted a new line of breeze coming down the left hand side and were first to gybe off, followed by Sin Bin some moments later. The remainder of the fleet continued on starboard towards
the right hand side of the run. The new breeze also came with a significant right hand shift favouring Venuesworld and Sin Bin, allowing these two boats pull out a lead on the chasing pack who by now were struggling to get up to the leeward gate. The significant right hander meant that passing the leaders was going to be difficult for the chasing pack so at the finish it was Sin Bin in first followed by Venuesworld.com in second. Lupi followed them over in a creditable third place and Bango managed to get the upper hand on Mephisto after the pair had rounded the
leeward mark with Mephisto overlapped to weather. In sixth was Probably (Ian Simmington, Billy Riordan and Mark Nolan) after a "Lazarus-style" comeback to get back into the fray.

After a brief delay to allow the Race Officer and his team of rescue crew reset the course, Race 3 also got off at the first time of asking. This time, it was clear that the tide was going to be less of a factor and playing the shifting breeze and finding more pressure was where the
largest gains lay. It seemed that the pressure was better on the right hand side of the course and shortly after the start, Seriously Bonkers and Mephisto were the quickest to peel off onto port tack, ducking transoms in
search of the fresher breeze and expected shift. The move paid off handsomely as by the time the remainder of the fleet had peeled off onto port (only a minute or two later), the pair of early tackers were already in a new breeze and were able to cross the fleet as they came back towards the fleet on starboard.

However, the fleet did manage to reel in the early leaders and by the weather mark, Mephisto lead by the narrowest of margins from Sin Bin with Seriously Bonkers and the chasing pack near astern. A savage hoist by
Kevin and Owen on Sin Bin allowed them to roll over Mephisto at the spreader mark, forcing Mephisto to gybe onto port immediately.

Sin Bin followed suit a few boatlengths later heading off towards the left hand side of the run with Mephisto. The remainder of the fleet spread out evenly down the run. As the fleet converged in the middle of the run, it was clear that those boats that kept on longer on starboard gybe had fared better and gained ground with both Lupi and Bango coming into contention half way down the run. By now, the wind was quite light and the boats were in low mode, soaking down to the leeward marks at only 5 knots.

By the first leeward, Sin Bin had managed to hold on and led around the mark by five boatlengths from Mephisto and Lupi in a battle for second. Up the second beat, the wind was oscillating by up to 20 degrees so large gains and losses were still to be made and positions changed regularly. By the second weather mark, the wind was in a left hand phase making starboard the favoured gybe initially down the final run of the day. Those
boats that gybed off at the second weather mark were punished severely as the boats that held on made significant gains. At the finish, it was Sin Bin in first followed by Lupi in second with Bango charging through the fleet on the second run into third place. Venuesworld.com came home in fourth followed by Mephisto in fifth and Rubadubdub in sixth.

Congratulations to Barry O'Neill and his team on the committee vessel managing to get off three great races in a tricky shifting breeze.

In other news, the next Sunday races (for those not lucky enough to be in Lake Garda already!) are next Sunday, 21st June followed by the final three races of series two on Sunday 28th June. Mid-July and early August
will see the SB20 class joining the Dragon fleet for some Saturday racing - something to look forward to. Finally, best of luck to the nine-strong Irish contingent preparing to compete in the World Championships in
Torbole, Lake Garda from 4th - 10th July. The Irish sailors will be joined by, amongst others, former Olympians Glenn Bourke and (silver medallist) Rodion Luka. At the time of going to print, there were 86 registered entrants so exciting and tight racing is assured.

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#sb20 – After an exhilarating day of SB20 sportsboat racing sailed on Cork harbour's Eastern Bank at Royal Cork Yacht Club, only one point separated Darren Martin's Sharkbait and Aidan O'Connell's Ruby Blue going into today's final rounds writes Claire Bateman. Yesterday had seen some scary episodes including Justin Burke's deck lifting from the hull of his boat 'Alert Packaging'.

_81Y4005.jpg

A relaxed Sharbait crew returning to shore without having had to sail the final race. Photo: Bob Bateman

Todays forecast was for very light wind and this indeed turned out to be the case. However, the 11-boat fleet headed outside the harbour to try to get the best of any wind going and indeed the first race of the day was started but abandoned just before the weather mark as the wind had died completely. However, a new breeze of some 8 to 10 knots arrived to save the day and resulted in a win for Sharkbait and thus negated the need for them to sail the final race.

Results downloadable below.

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#sb20 – Strong and gusty north westerlies on Dublin Bay have led to the cancellation of the SB20 DBSC racing today. The Dublin Bay buoy located next to the SB20 race track showed an average wind speed of 
23–kts and gusts of 30kts from 311 °(NW) leading race officer Barry O'Neill to cancel this afternoon's racing. SB20 Class captain James Gorman plans to reschedule the planned three races for later in the season.

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Page 12 of 23

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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