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Finn Lynch Lying 15th as Three Irish Make Gold Fleet Cut at ILCA/Laser Euros in Hyeres

18th November 2022
Royal St. George's Tom Higgins competing at the ILCA/Laser European Championships in Hyeres, France
Royal St. George's Tom Higgins competing at the ILCA/Laser European Championships in Hyeres, France Credit: Yepa/EurILCA

Three Irish sailors are through to Gold fleet at the ILCA/Laser European Championships in France

After a delay ashore to allow near gale conditions off the Côte d'Azur abate, organisers could only get a single race sailed in the quickly fading breeze earlier today.

The single race was enough for three Irish sailors at the competition to make the Gold fleet cut in their respective competitions.

With the breeze continuing to blow off the land, nearby mountains made for tricky shifting wind direction that could easily help or hinder crews.

Gold Fleet for Eve McMahon

Eve McMahon (Howth Yacht Club) had one such encounter in her race today when she found herself on the right-hand side of the course when a wind shift favoured the left.

However, the race was abandoned due to the conditions, and she went on to deliver a seventh place, her best of the series so far which moved her up to 35th place, well inside the top 55 boats that now form the Gold fleet in her ILCA6 event.

"We were racing under a mountain (shadow), so it was very, very tricky and absolute carnage to be honest," she said. "I was very happy, I got a good start, and I was happy with my overall speed; that's how I should be racing all the time."

British sailor Hannah Snellgrove GBR (21-1-2-6-1) was the winner of the single race today and climbed from the 3rd to the 1st position with 10 points. She’s closely followed just one point behind by last year’s champion Agata Barwisnka POL (4-1-2-4-BFD56) with 11.

Canadian sailor Sarah Douglas CAN (14-2-1-3-5) has also 11 points, being second overall in the Open European Trophy.

Overnight leader Maud Jayet SUI (2-9-3-1-UFD56) is third European now, tied on 15 points with the two-times world champion Emma Plasschaert BEL (5-8-6-2-2).

Pernelle Michon FRA (5-5-8-4-5), winner of the recent French championships also here in Hyeres, completes the European Top 5 with 19 units.

Lynch Lying 15th in ILCA 7 Fleet

It was a similar story for Finn Lynch (National YC) in the ILCA7 event. After dropping back to 20th, he was able to play a huge wind shift in his favour and recovered to ninth for the day.

"The first two days were very shifty and hard but today was another level with 30-40 degree shifts," he said after racing. "It was very hard to get a counter result, so ninth is okay.

After passing the halfway stage of the regatta, the event switches into the final round with two races daily scheduled until Monday afternoon - subject to weather which has proven quite unstable all week.

"It's still race by race - but after the first day of the Gold fleet, we'll have a better idea of who the guys fighting for the medals are," said Lynch.

Gold fleet for Ewan McMahonGold fleet for Ewan McMahon Photo: Yepa Photography/Eurilca

Joining Lynch in the ILCA7 Gold fleet will be Ewan McMahon, who found form enough in the last qualification round to finish just inside the cut-off thanks to a seventh place in the single race of the day.

"I just wanted to go out and give it my all and not come in with any regrets," he said. "The first day, I wasn't performing anywhere close to my potential, and I just wanted to go out and prove that I'm well able to race with these guys."

Unfortunately, the third McMahon sibling at the event had a slip in form as Jamie McMahon had a 42nd place and dropped back to 70th overall from well inside the Gold fleet range.

Overnight leader Michael Beckett GBR (3-2-1-1-1) won his third race today and consolidated his leadership in the ILCA 7 fleet with 5 points. Only 3 points behind comes Elliot Hanson GBR (8-3-2-2-1) with 8, winning his first race in this championship.

The third place overall is now for Pavlos Kontides CYP (2-3-7-10-1), who has also won a race for the first time in this competition. He’s tied in 13 points with fourth Hermann Tomasgaard NOR (17-1-3-6-3).

Lorenzo Chiavarini ITA (5-6-6-1-2) wrap the European Top 5 with 14 points.

Provisional European Top 10 heading the Final series:

  1. Michael Beckett GBR 5
  2. Elliot Hanson GBR 8
  3. Pavlos Kontides CYP 13
  4. Hermann Tomasgaard NOR 13
  5. Lorenzo Chiavarini ITA 14
  6. Kaarle Tapper FIN 15
  7. Jonatan Vadnai HUN 15
  8. Filip Jurisic CRO 16
  9. William Nik Aaron GER 20
  10. Duko Bos NED 21

15. Finn Lynch IRL 37

Penalty Topples Rocco From ILCA 6 Mens Lead

Rocco Wright (Howth YCILCA 6 sailor Rocco Wright of Howth YC Photo: Yepa/EurILCA

A penalty applied to Rocco Wright (Howth YC) on Thursday evening saw him slip from the overall lead to second place in the ILCA6 Men's event after he had an eighth place. Nevertheless, only four points separate him from the lead with six races remaining.

Results here

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At A Glance – Laser Dinghy Specifications

Designer Bruce Kirby & Ian Bruce

Year 1969

Crew 1
Draft 0.787 m (2 ft 7.0 in)
Hull weight 58.97 kg (130.0 lb)
LOA 4.2 m (13 ft 9 in)
LWL 3.81 m (12 ft 6 in)
Beam 1.39 m (4 ft 7 in)
Mainsail area 7.06 m2 (76.0 sq ft)

Racing D-PN 91.1 RYA PN 1088 PHRF 217

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