Things were looking good for the Irish squad going into the final day of the Topper Worlds at Ballyholme YC, with Jack Fahey of Lough Derg and Royal St George the Thursday overnight front runner. In leading the Irish charge, he was cushioned ahead of Michael Carroll of Kinsale/Crosshaven in second and Sophie Crosbie of RCYC at third. But the points margins through Friday have been very tight, and the breezy pace of racing in the Gold Flight in the day’s sunshine has taken its toll.
Elliott Kuzyk of Parkstone YC on Poole Harbour in the south of England had been among the front runners in the early stages of the week. But he’d to carry a penalty from Race 4, while a third and a fifth in the opening races had seen his points total astray relative to the stellar early showings by the Irish trio and the top English challenger, Sam Cooper of Lancashire.
However, Kuzyk forcefully demonstrated he has what it takes when the chips are down, with an all-conquering showing in Friday’s stronger wind in the clearer fleet provided by the Gold Flight. Three firsts, a second, a fourth and a fifth saw him able to discard his other fifth and the penalty to move into the overall lead, while another south of England helm, Tim Hartnell from Lancing, moved into second overall with his concluding races scoring a first, three seconds and a third.
Early leader Sam Cooper also got back in the hunt, a second, two fourths and a seventh being enough to get him up to third and the Bronze Medal just ahead overall of Michael Carroll, who at fourth was best of the Irish. But Scotland’s Calum Bell managed to get between Carroll and Jack Fahy to slot into fifth, while Fahy was off form in the last four races, with a scoreline of 14th, 24th, 16th and 12th. But he still managed to be sixth overall while Sophie Crosbie of Royal Cork was seventh.
The Silver Flight brought reward for the large Chinese contingent, as it was won by Yubai Zhang, but there was a long lineup of British sailors thereafter, with Andrew Sturt second and Daniel Thompson third atop a continuous line of British success until 9th place, where Jonathan Sargent of Howth was first of the Irish.
The 4.2 division were kept ashore in Friday’s stronger winds, and the overnight lead of Thailand’s Max Yuang-Ngam is now the final result, with China’s Rabbit Su in second and Thailand’s Paton Mervielde third.
But although the final outcome of the main event may have been frustrating for the Irish squad after the high hopes of Thursday night, in the Ladies Division of the 5.3s the news was much better, as Sophie Crosbie’s 7th overall put her first, the National YC’s Ella Hemeryck at 11th overall was a clear second, and Jenna McCarlie of County Antrm YC (Whitehead) was third at 17th overall.
Overall results here