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Summer Returns to Howth’s Autumn League for Last Day of September

3rd October 2017
Howth with summer unexpectedly returned. The two J/109s Indian (Colm Buckley & Simon Knowles) and Storm (Pat Kelly) chase Stephen O’Faherty’s Spirit 54 Soufriere in Saturday’s Autumn League Double Bill. Overall in class, Storm leads from Liam Burke’s Tribal from Galway Bay SC, with Indian third Howth with summer unexpectedly returned. The two J/109s Indian (Colm Buckley & Simon Knowles) and Storm (Pat Kelly) chase Stephen O’Faherty’s Spirit 54 Soufriere in Saturday’s Autumn League Double Bill. Overall in class, Storm leads from Liam Burke’s Tribal from Galway Bay SC, with Indian third Credit: Conor Lindsay

Against many weather predictions, summer-like conditions at Howth Yacht Club blessed the third weekend of the Autumn League on Saturday afternoon with warm weather, increasingly bright sunshine, and an improving sailing breeze from south to southeast as the programme developed through the day writes W M Nixon.

The two Race Organisation teams – inshore and offshore – took full advantage of this gift from the weather Gods to put in two races back-to-back, thereby amply compensating for the previous weekend’s cancellation. The hundred-plus fleet reflected Howth and Fingal sailing in all is variety, for though there was a large and varied display in both the right-on and white-sail IRC/ECHO Classes, one of Howth’s sailing’s great strengths is the unique One Design Classes which are based only at the peninsula port. Both the classic gaff-rigged jackyard topsail-toting Howth 17s and the Puppeteer 22s were turned out in strength for excellent racing.

As well, another class which has achieved a special local character in Howth is IRC 2, which is the domain of Howth’s continually up-graded classic Half Tonners. Here, Dave Cullen’s Checkmate XV has found form after a second place on opening day. She recorded two straight wins on Saturday to keep her ahead of Johnny Swann’s Harmony with her 1,3,2, while Mike and Richard Evans Big Picture currently lies third with a 3rd, 2nd and 5th in a class of 16 boats.

The Puppeteer 22s are currently experiencing an infusion of even more new blood, and a hot fleet of 18 boats has seen the Murphy/Costello team on Yellow Peril in sparkling form to record a scoreline of 2,1 1 over the series to put them ahead of seasoned campaigners Alan Pearson and Alan Blay in Trick or Treat, with the veteran Clarke/Egan crew on Harlequin lying third.

howth 17 saturday2Howth 17s in strength, jackyard topsails and all. One hundred and ninetten years of sailing history are encapsulated in this photo, the 1988-built Isobel (left) currently narrowly leads the points table. Photo Conor Lindsay

Sixteen boats are racing in the 1898-established Howth 17 Class, but it is one of the “newer” ones, Conor & Brian Turvey’s Isobel (1988) which came out of Saturday ahead on points, but only just. The 1907-built Deilginis (Massey/Twomey syndicate) won Saturday’s cracker of a second race to add to an existing scoreline of a 2nd and 5th, and while Isobel may have gone into that concluding race with a first on opening day and a 2nd in Saturday’s first race, she could do no better than fourth as Saturday evening closed in.

One of the original five, the 1898-built Rita (Marcus Lynch & John Curley) is currently third with a 4th, 1st and 7th, while the very newest, Ian Malcolm/s French-built Orla of July 2017 vintage, is fourth overall. There’s now all to play for in a series which ends on October 21st after six races.

Detailed Results here 

Published in Howth YC
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Howth Yacht Club information

Howth Yacht Club is the largest members sailing club in Ireland, with over 1,700 members. The club welcomes inquiries about membership - see top of this page for contact details.

Howth Yacht Club (HYC) is 125 years old. It operates from its award-winning building overlooking Howth Harbour that houses office, bar, dining, and changing facilities. Apart from the Clubhouse, HYC has a 250-berth marina, two cranes and a boat storage area. In addition. its moorings in the harbour are serviced by launch.

The Club employs up to 31 staff during the summer and is the largest employer in Howth village and has a turnover of €2.2m.

HYC normally provides an annual programme of club racing on a year-round basis as well as hosting a full calendar of International, National and Regional competitive events. It operates a fleet of two large committee boats, 9 RIBs, 5 J80 Sportboats, a J24 and a variety of sailing dinghies that are available for members and training. The Club is also growing its commercial activities afloat using its QUEST sail and power boat training operation while ashore it hosts a wide range of functions each year, including conferences, weddings, parties and the like.

Howth Yacht Club originated as Howth Sailing Club in 1895. In 1968 Howth Sailing Club combined with Howth Motor Yacht Club, which had operated from the West Pier since 1935, to form Howth Yacht Club. The new clubhouse was opened in 1987 with further extensions carried out and more planned for the future including dredging and expanded marina facilities.

HYC caters for sailors of all ages and run sailing courses throughout the year as part of being an Irish Sailing accredited training facility with its own sailing school.

The club has a fully serviced marina with berthing for 250 yachts and HYC is delighted to be able to welcome visitors to this famous and scenic area of Dublin.

New applications for membership are always welcome

Howth Yacht Club FAQs

Howth Yacht Club is one of the most storied in Ireland — celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2020 — and has an active club sailing and racing scene to rival those of the Dun Laoghaire Waterfront Clubs on the other side of Dublin Bay.

Howth Yacht Club is based at the harbour of Howth, a suburban coastal village in north Co Dublin on the northern side of the Howth Head peninsula. The village is around 13km east-north-east of Dublin city centre and has a population of some 8,200.

Howth Yacht Club was founded as Howth Sailing Club in 1895. Howth Sailing Club later combined with Howth Motor Yacht Club, which had operated from the village’s West Pier since 1935, to form Howth Yacht Club.

The club organises and runs sailing events and courses for members and visitors all throughout the year and has very active keelboat and dinghy racing fleets. In addition, Howth Yacht Club prides itself as being a world-class international sailing event venue and hosts many National, European and World Championships as part of its busy annual sailing schedule.

As of November 2020, the Commodore of the Royal St George Yacht Club is Ian Byrne, with Paddy Judge as Vice-Commodore (Clubhouse and Administration). The club has two Rear-Commodores, Neil Murphy for Sailing and Sara Lacy for Junior Sailing, Training & Development.

Howth Yacht Club says it has one of the largest sailing memberships in Ireland and the UK; an exact number could not be confirmed as of November 2020.

Howth Yacht Club’s burgee is a vertical-banded pennant of red, white and red with a red anchor at its centre. The club’s ensign has a blue-grey field with the Irish tricolour in its top left corner and red anchor towards the bottom right corner.

The club organises and runs sailing events and courses for members and visitors all throughout the year and has very active keelboat and dinghy racing fleets. In addition, Howth Yacht Club prides itself as being a world-class international sailing event venue and hosts many National, European and World Championships as part of its busy annual sailing schedule.

Yes, Howth Yacht Club has an active junior section.

Yes, Howth Yacht Club hosts sailing and powerboat training for adults, juniors and corporate sailing under the Quest Howth brand.

Among its active keelboat and dinghy fleets, Howth Yacht Club is famous for being the home of the world’s oldest one-design racing keelboat class, the Howth Seventeen Footer. This still-thriving class of boat was designed by Walter Herbert Boyd in 1897 to be sailed in the local waters off Howth. The original five ‘gaff-rigged topsail’ boats that came to the harbour in the spring of 1898 are still raced hard from April until November every year along with the other 13 historical boats of this class.

Yes, Howth Yacht Club has a fleet of five J80 keelboats for charter by members for training, racing, organised events and day sailing.

The current modern clubhouse was the product of a design competition that was run in conjunction with the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland in 1983. The winning design by architects Vincent Fitzgerald and Reg Chandler was built and completed in March 1987. Further extensions have since been made to the building, grounds and its own secure 250-berth marina.

Yes, the Howth Yacht Club clubhouse offers a full bar and lounge, snug bar and coffee bar as well as a 180-seat dining room. Currently, the bar is closed due to Covid-19 restrictions. Catering remains available on weekends, take-home and delivery menus for Saturday night tapas and Sunday lunch.

The Howth Yacht Club office is open weekdays from 9am to 5pm. Contact the club for current restaurant opening hours at [email protected] or phone 01 832 0606.

Yes — when hosting sailing events, club racing, coaching and sailing courses, entertaining guests and running evening entertainment, tuition and talks, the club caters for all sorts of corporate, family and social occasions with a wide range of meeting, event and function rooms. For enquiries contact [email protected] or phone 01 832 2141.

Howth Yacht Club has various categories of membership, each affording the opportunity to avail of all the facilities at one of Ireland’s finest sailing clubs.

No — members can join active crews taking part in club keelboat and open sailing events, not to mention Pay & Sail J80 racing, charter sailing and more.

Fees range from €190 to €885 for ordinary members.
Memberships are renewed annually.

©Afloat 2020

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