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RS400 Northerns Report from Cushendall Sailing Club

23rd May 2016
The Irish RS400 fleet at Red Bay in Cushendall County Antrim The Irish RS400 fleet at Red Bay in Cushendall County Antrim

23 RS400 dinghies made it to Cushendall Sailing Club in County Antrim with many travelling the full length from Cork writes David Rose. The fleet took advantage of the new lazy boy start time of 2pm that the class has chosen, to facilitate those from further afield and avoid an extra night away from domestic bliss. Seems to have been popular, with the drifting cyclonic various wind conditions for the Saturday which could have led to 6 hours of torment, being superseded by a shorter 4 hour session of torment, leaving two hours of extra mental energy to be invested in the goings on of the Cushendall Sailing Club’s shiny new bar. We like to think they rebuilt the bar for our event, so it would have been rude not to give it a suitable work out, and all retired to bed/ the Wedding Party in the local hotel, either fearful, or ignorant, of the appalling forecast for the Sunday….
Actually, star performer with two victories on Saturday, was Robin Gray, our adopted IRO, who succeeded in getting two races in before the gas officially ran out, and the great tow back in was able to commence. A stonking BBQ and quality bar staff attitude allowed for a quick turn around and racing began again about an hour later in the new bar and the rest is a distant memory.
Alex Barry, rather as one might have expected, defied the weather gods and flew around the course at twice the speed of anyone else to score two wins himself, and sealed the deal in Sunday’s tide slide with another podium to close the deal in slow style. I think we were all glad to get back ashore before scurvy set in and we all went mad, as there really was no chance to get any meaningful competition in aside from what was achieved. Only other noteworthy performance was Brian Holmes of Portcoleraine, who nailed his first top three spot in Sunday’s race. We will be expecting great things from this young man in years to come. Also great to see the local boats out again, and hopefully we will see them back on circuit again soon.
As always when we go to visit one of our less well known destinations, the stops were all pulled out, and Cushendall’s fab team left us feeling very heavily loved and pampered, and certainly well fed. Heartfelt thanks to Marc and his merry band of volunteers, you did yourselves proud.
Next up is a trip for the first time to Sligo YC in the slightly North West, for the Westerns, in late June, where hopefully sailing will be a bit livelier. Also on the go we have some local circuitry in the North and East, with a sanctioned series of one day events, mostly regattas, to keep the local activity going strong.

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