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Australian Torvar Mirsky Skippers O'Leary's Irish Star at World Championships

18th June 2019
The Star Worlds are being held in Porto Cervo The Star Worlds are being held in Porto Cervo Credit: Borlenghi

Australian World Match Racing Tour skipper Torvar Mirsky who has teamed up with Cork Harbour's Robert O'Leary to race the sole Irish Star keelboat at this week's Italian-based World Championships is lying tenth overall after two races in Porto Cervo.

Uncertain conditions at the beginning of the second day at the Star Class World Championship gave way to typical Sardinian breezes later on and the day's racing got underway about an hour late. There are still four races to go, but after today's race the provisional scoreboard has changed: the Polish team skippered by Mateusz Kusznierewicz is in the lead followed by the teams with Augie Diaz and Tom Lofstedt in second and third places. The Championship is organized by the YCCS in collaboration with the International Star Class Yacht Racing Association (ISCRYA) and the support of Main Partner Audi and Technical Partners Quantum Sails and Garmin Marine.

This morning the Race Committee hoisted the AP flag at noon and there was a wait of an hour before the breeze filled in. After a first start ended in a general recall, the fleet of 63 Stars from 20 nations set out on the second race of this event in breeze from the north/ northwest at 7-9 knots.

Augie Diaz, Star Class World Champion in 2016 and Henry Boening, the current European Champion after his win in Riva del Garda, lead the race and were concentrated and determined. After rounding the second upwind mark still in the lead they headed straight for the finish in first place. With this win the American Diaz is currently in second place behind the Pole Mateusz Kusznierewicz who was in the top ten all throughout the day. With his second place in today's race along with his crew, the several time Olympic medalist Bruno Prada, is currently in the lead. Third place in today's race for Haico de Boer and Pedro Trouche who rolled the YCCS member Ante Razmilovic and his crew Brian Hammersley, who were in the lead today for a good part of the race. Currently in third place overall are the Swedes Tom Lofstedt with Anders Ekstrom, who finished seventh yesterday and sixth today.

Mateusz Kusznierewicz, the skipper who is in the lead of the provisional results, had these words: "It's too soon to talk about winning, there are still four races to go and the conditions could be shifty, but we're happy to be at the top for now. Our lead is narrow so anything could happen, Star World Championships are always special events. I like sailing with Bruno and even though this is our first event sailing together we're doing well. It doesn't hurt that we're in such a beautiful spot with such great conditions and with such a hospitable Club as hosts."

Today's winner Augie Diaz, commented on his day's win: "I'm happy to have won this race for two reasons: the first is 'Maguila' (crew Henry Boening) this is his first win in a Star World Championship, and the second is for Bruno Prada finishing second after a great race, who is usually my crew and whom I consider like a son. Here he's sailing with Mateusz Kusznierewicz and for now they're leading the Championship."

Tomorrow, June 19th will see the third race with the first Warning Signal scheduled for 12 noon. The forecast calls for light westerly breeze at 5-7 knots.

Overall results are downloadable below

Downloads

Published in Star, Cork Harbour
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The Star keelboat is a 6.9 metres (23 ft) one-design racing keelboat for two people designed by Francis Sweisguth in 1910.

The Star was an Olympic keelboat class from 1932 through to 2012, the last year keelboats appeared at the Summer Olympics at which Ireland's representatives were Peter O'Leary and David Burrows.

Ireland has performed well in the class internationally thanks to some Olympic campaigns including a bronze medal at the Star World Championships in 2000, won by Mark Mansfield and David O'Brien.

The boat is sloop-rigged, with a mainsail larger in proportional size than any other boat of its length. Unlike most modern racing boats, it does not use a spinnaker when sailing downwind. Instead, when running downwind a whisker pole is used to hold the jib out to windward for correct wind flow.

Early Stars were built from wood, but modern boats are of fibreglass and carbon construction.

The boat must weigh at least 671 kg (1,479 lb) with a maximum total sail area of 26.5 m2 (285 sq ft).

The Star class pioneered an unusual circular boom vang track, which allows the vang to effectively hold the boom down even when the boom is turned far outboard on a downwind run.

Another notable aspect of Star sailing is the extreme hiking position adopted by the crew and at times the helmsman, who normally use a harness to help hang low off the windward side of the boat with only their lower legs inside.

At A Glance – Star Specifications

Designer Francis Sweisguth
Year 1910
Crew 2 (Skipper + Crew)
S + 1.5 C ≤ 250 kg (550 lb)[1]
Draft 1.016 m (3 ft 4 in)
Hull Type keelboat
Hull weight ≥ 671 kg (1,479 lb)
(including keel)
LOA 6.922 m (22 ft 9 in)
LWL 4.724 m (15 ft 6 in)
Beam 1.734 m (5 ft 8 in) at deck
1.372 m (4 ft 6 in) at chine
Hull appendages
Keel/board type bulb keel
401.5 ± 7 kg (885 ± 15 lb)
Rig
Rig type sloop
Mast length 9.652 m (31 ft 8 in)
Sails
Mainsail area 20.5 m2 (221 sq ft)
Jib/genoa area  6.0 m2 (65 sq ft)
Upwind sail area ≤ 26.5 m2 (285 sq ft)

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