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#storm – Ireland is bracing itself for a fast aproaching southwest gale or strong gale at first this evening on coasts from Loop Head to Fair Head to Roches Point and on the Irish Sea according to Met Eireann. The state forecaster who has issued a status orange alert says northwest or cyclonic gale to storm force winds expected for a time tonight in the South Irish Sea. The forecast follows a Coastguard warning to the public to be careful on exposed westerly coasts, cliffs, piers, harbour walls, beaches, and promenades.

West to Northwest gales are expected to develop later tonight and tomorrow morning on all sea areas; with winds increasing to strong gale force at times tomorrow afternoon on coasts from Wicklow Head to Loop Head to Fair Head and on the South Irish Sea.

Published in Marine Warning
Although it is still five days before the start the 3oth anniversary race looks like it is going to get off to a gentle start. Specialist wind forecaster Mike Broughton for the Irish Commodores Cup team says Sunday's noon start maybe a drifter because a large high pressure is setting up for and will be centred about 230 miles to the west of Ireland.
Although light northerlies may prevail there is a chance of light sea breezes both on Sunday and Monday afternoon. Broughton says the fleet my expect more light southerly fleet as they race along the south coast.
Afloat.ie has teamed up with specialist sailing forecaster Mike Broughton of Winning wind.com to bring you a range of Round Ireland race forecasts, click back for regular updates from Mike Broughton in the build up to the race.

Although five days out is still early enough for a forecast, the start of the 30th anniversary Round Ireland Yacht Race looks like it is going to get off to a gentle start. Specialist wind forecaster Mike Broughton says Sunday's noon start maybe yet be a drifter because a large high pressure is setting up for  Ireland and will be centred about 230 miles to the west of the country.

Although light northerlies may prevail there is also a chance of light sea breezes both on Sunday and Monday afternoon. Broughton, who is the Irish Commodores Cup team weather forecaster, says the fleet can expect more light southerly winds as it races along the south coast on Monday.

Afloat.ie has teamed up with specialist sailing forecaster Mike Broughton of Winning Wind.Com to bring you a series of detailed Round Ireland race forecasts. Click back to the home page for regular weather updates from Mike.

More on the Round Ireland Yacht Race:

Round Ireland Yacht Race 2010 Review

Round Ireland Yacht Race, Ireland's top offshore fixture

A Round up of 80 stories on the 2010 Round Ireland Yacht Race
Published in Round Ireland

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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