There is a sentence that is banned in every lifeboat station. That sentence is ‘It sure has been quiet round here.’ Because, as sure as eggs ‘is eggs, the Gods will start a passenger liner sinking at the mouth of your harbour writes Dave O'Sullivan.
Our sport is littered with, fingers crossed, piseogs. And in this light, many sailors treat RNLI fundraisers as a kind of cosmic insurance. The more I pay, the less chance I will get to meet these people in their full professional capacity. Or, God forbid, if I do need them then I will get special attention.
So Kinsale Yacht Club came out in force last night to have a great race, a great party and pay an instalment on the cosmic insurance.
Twenty yachts turned up on the start line to join race officers Ruth Ennis and Donal Hayes. It is always difficult to set a course that will satisfy both an Xp50 and a squib but the winds were kind and the seas were flat and the race officers set a testing course that got the fleet home before dark. Freya led from the start and the main nip and tuck battles happened mid-fleet. Y Dream, Artful Dodger and Siboney were all biting at each other. No Notions, Runaway Bus and Shillelagh had another battle royale in the middle and, in the end, it was always going to be difficult to guess how the handicaps would impact.
Continuing the good karma of the evening the results were well deserved and popular. Freya was unbeatable, followed by John Stallard’s Siboney and Patrick Beckett’s Miss Charlie.
The main ‘finances’ of the evening followed, and a tough crowd was well managed by an ‘on form’ Commodore for the annual auction. He entertained, barracked and cajoled an increasingly willing audience to part with the maximum amount of cash. There were great bargains to be had although there will be some sore heads this morning wondering why they have a discount voucher for ballroom dancing in their blazer pocket. The club Treasurer was particularly generous and will cut quite a dash in his new Fascinator Hat.
When the accountants finished their bean counting this morning it was revealed that the event raised more than €8,000! A number of people put in huge work but this amount exceeded the most optimistic estimates.
The event is known as the Spalpeen Trophy and is run in memory of Billy Draper, a long-time member and friend of Kinsale Yacht Club. Billy would have approved of last night, a night to be proud.