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Displaying items by tag: Vacancy: Harbour Master

Afloat highlights the above busy scene as a trio of ferries and all from the same operator gathered recently in Rosslare Europort, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Most notably among the Stena Line ferries was the arrival of Stena Vinga (on right) which for the first time arrived to the Co. Wexford port. The ropax vessel is serving in the role of Irish Sea winter relief ferry while on 'loan' from Stena's fleet based in Scandinavia.

According to the operator's timetable, the temporary replacement ferry (firstly standing in on the Rosslare-Cherbourg service ) is to remain operating on the Ireland-France connection until the route's routine ropax Stena Horizon returns on 28 October. This is to involve an inbound sailing from Normandy. 

Normally Stena Vinga operates the Gothenburg-Frederikhavn route that links the west Swedish city (homeport headquarters of Stena Line) and the east Danish port. This route is only 15 minutes longer than the Rosslare-Fishguard route served by the veteran vessel Stena Europe which too ran in Scandinavia firstly for Sessan Line. 

On this day last week Stena Vinga began Rosslare-Cherbourg sailings albeit with much reduced passenger and freight capacity though this does note pose an issue given it is a much quieter time of the year coupled with Covid-19 restrictions.

Stena Vinga's transfer to the Ireland-France connection had led to the continental route's Stena Horizon deployed to the Dublin-Holyhead route. This allowed the ropax to take over the roster of Stena Estrid the leadship of the new 'E' -Flexer series.

The newbuild built in China had only entered service in January is currently covering Belfast-Cairnryan crossings. This is to enable Stena Superfast VII dry-dock for annual maintanence at Harland & Wolff.

Stena Vinga replaced a previous relief ferry Stena Nordica which recently carried out such duties including its former routine route of Dublin-Holyhead and beforehand Belfast-Liverpool, a first for this ropax despite until then serving all of Stena's Irish Sea network. 

Published in Rosslare Europort

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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