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Spiddal Optimist Dinghies Resume Regatta Racing with Keen Contest

28th September 2020
Oppie fleet winner Sarah Donald receives first prize at the resumed annual CSS regatta Oppie class contest from commodore Dave Cahill Oppie fleet winner Sarah Donald receives first prize at the resumed annual CSS regatta Oppie class contest from commodore Dave Cahill Photo: Bartley Fannin

In spite of fresh westerly conditions, the Optimist fleet in Spiddal, Co Galway completed its series of races yesterday for last weekend’s club’s annual regatta.

The Optimist class had been unable to begin their first race at the Cumann Seoltóireachta an Spidéil (CSS) regatta on September 19th, due to north-easterly winds which pushed the fleet below the start line.

However, six boats from the Spiddal club turned out on September 27th, with commodore Dave Cahill acting as race officer.

First place went to Sarah Donald, with Rory McHale taking second place and Micheál Breathnach came third.

the CSS resumed regatta Oppie competitors - from left, Katie Gaynor, Ciara Ní Chonghaíle, Michael Breathnach (3rd), Rory McHale (2nd), Realtiín Boinnard and Sarah Donald (1st) before the results were announced Photo: Bartley Fannin)The CSS resumed regatta Oppie competitors - from left, Katie Gaynor, Ciara Ní Chonghaíle, Michael Breathnach (3rd), Rory McHale (2nd), Realtiín Boinnard and Sarah Donald (1st) before the results were announced Photo: Bartley Fannin)

Oppie class second prize winner Rory McHale with CSS commodore Dave Cahill Photo: Bartley FanninOppie class second prize winner Rory McHale with CSS commodore Dave Cahill Photo: Bartley Fannin

Also competing in the close run series of three races were Katie Gaynor, Ciara Ní Chonghaíle and Realtín Boinnard - with Realtín receiving a special award for unl\uckiest competitor, \Katie winning the hardest trier category, and Ciara being awarded for best recovery.

Sarah Donald was also awarded the perpetual trophy for the Optimist fleet, which was presented to the club several years ago by former club commodore Dr Tiernan O’Brien.

As Afloat previously reported, the annual CSS regatta on September 19th marked the presentation of the inaugural John and Stephanie Hannan Award, in tribute to the late circuit court judge, sea kayaker and CSS member John Hannan who died earlier this year.

His wife Stephanie Adams has been junior organiser at CSS for a number of years, and their son Marcus is an active sailor and won third prize in the mixed fleet class at the regatta.

The new award – a dinghy on bog oak made by Spiddal-based glass artist Sue Donnellan was presented by Stephanie Hannan to Mark and Denise De Faoite, who were fastest adult sailors in the 420 fleet.

Winners of the 420 class at the CSS regatta were Ciaran Reaney and Cathal Conneely, with Mac O’Brien and Eoin Cahill taking second place.

Sadhbh Laila Riggott and Catherine Harvey took first in the mixed fleet, sailing a Laser Pico, with Alanna Ní Thuairisg and Kate Ní Chonghaíle taking second place in a Topaz Uno.

Published in Optimist
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