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O'Leary Sixth in First Race of New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup

11th September 2019
Anthony O'Leary's Royal Cork Yacht Club in action in the new County Wicklow designed IC37 Anthony O'Leary's Royal Cork Yacht Club in action in the new County Wicklow designed IC37 Credit: Daniel Forster

Anthony O'Leary's Royal Cork Yacht Club team were sixth in the first race of the Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup yesterday at Newport, Rhode Island. O'Leary leads a sole Irish crew that is competing for the first time in Irish designed IC37 yachts at the prestigious Cup.

How to balance risk against reward is always a key decision early in a regatta. That applies double for the invitational Cup where the unique nature of the event means there's no reliable pre-regatta form guide. In a few days, we'll know which teams came prepared to win and which are a little off the pace. But for the start of Race 1 earlier today, there were 20 contenders of unknown calibre attacking the starting line.

A good start was important. But the risk of a bad start outweighed getting too aggressive. Three teams pushed too hard, starting a few seconds before the gun and then having to turn around and re-start, a painful process in the light winds. The Japan Sailing Federation (JSF) picked an uncrowded part of the line, timed it perfectly and leapt into the race with good pace and a large lane. That often translates into a great race, and that's exactly what happened. The JSF led at every mark and took a 1-minute win over San Diego Yacht Club, with the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and Yacht Club Italiano rounding out the top four.

OLeary in New YorkRoyal Cork's Anthony O'Leary (second from right) in New York at the opening ceremony of the Invitational Cup Photo: Daniel Forster

The Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup is a biennial regatta hosted by the New York Yacht Club Harbour Court in Newport, R.I. Since the event was first run in 2009, it has attracted top amateur sailors from 43 of the world’s most prestigious yacht clubs from 21 countries. After five editions in the Swan 42 class, the 2019 event will be sailed in the IC37, designed by Mark Mills and built by Westerly Marine in Santa Ana, Calif., and FIBRE Mechanics in the United Kingdom. The strict one-design nature of this new, purpose-built class combined with the fact that all 20 boats are owned and maintained by the New York Yacht Club, will ensure a level playing field never before seen in amateur big-boat sailing. The regatta will run through September 14. A broadcast on Facebook Live and YouTube will allow fellow club members, friends, family and sailing fans from around the world follow the action as it happens. Twenty teams from 14 countries and five continents will compete in the 2019 Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup.

The first day of racing got off to a slow start as the breeze refused to fill until nearly 3 pm and even then it was just into the range of sailable conditions. In those conditions, getting off the starting line cleanly, and with some space in which to manoeuvre, are paramount. Eiichiro Hamazaki, the skipper for the Japan Sailing Federation, decided to avoid the ends of the starting line and find some space in the middle.

"We didn't want to take risks in the beginning of the series," he said, "so I tried not to start based on the conditions, we tried to start in the middle. We knew the wind would shift to the right from yesterday's experience. We tried to tack in the beginning in front of the boat that started from the pin end. We got a good right shift and then came [out] ahead."

The JSF team led around each of the three marks today, but with the wind dipping as low as 4 knots at times, there was no such thing as a comfortable lead.

"The biggest point that I was worried was in the second windward leg," Hamazaki said. "We covered the second- and third-place boats, which was Italy and Canada, on the left side, but some other boats behind went to the right side and came out ahead and gained bit. Finally we covered San Diego and we maintained top position [on the second downwind leg]."

After rounding the leeward mark in seventh place, San Diego pushed hard to the right side on the second beat and vaulted into second, with the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, from Sardinia, finishing third.

Illaria Paternoster, the event's youngest skipper, finished fourth at the helm of the Yacht Club Italiano entry.

"It was really good for us because we've never sailed this boat before and we are a new team," she said. "We have a lot of speed during the race. Fortunately, we had a good position and were never covered by other boats, so we sailed in clear air. We had the possibility to choose where we wanted to go and sail our own race. It was shifty, so it was important to have clear space near to us to decide where to go."

Today is expected to be a significant departure from today's light air, with the forecast calling for strong southwesterly breezes all day.

Racing is scheduled to start at 11 am each day.

Day 1 Results

1. Japan Sailing Federation, 1; 2. San Diego Yacht Club, 2; 3. Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, 3; 4. Yacht Club Italiano, 4; 5. Royal Thames Yacht Club, 5; 6. Royal Cork Yacht Club, 6; 7. Royal Canadian Yacht Club, 7; 8. New York Yacht Club, 8; 9. Royal Swedish Yacht Club, 9; 10. Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, 10; 11. Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, 11; 12. Royal New Zealand Yacht Club, 12; 13. Yacht Club Argentino, 13; 14. Southern Yacht Club, 14; 15. Real Club Náutico de Barcelona, 15; 16. Itchenor Sailing Club, 16; 17. Royal Yacht Squadron, 17; 18. Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, 18; 19. Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, 19; 20. Yacht Club de France, 20.

Published in Royal Cork YC
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Royal Cork Yacht Club

Royal Cork Yacht Club lays claim to the title of the world's oldest yacht club, founded in 1720. 

It is currently located in Crosshaven, Co. Cork, Ireland and is Cork Harbour’s largest yacht club and the biggest sailing club on the south coast of Ireland.

The club has an international reputation for the staging of sailing events most notable the biennial world famous Cork Week Regatta.

In 2020 RCYC celebrated its tricentenary under its Admiral Colin Morehead.

Royal Cork Yacht Club FAQs

The Royal Cork Yacht Club is the oldest yacht club in the world, and celebrated its 300th anniversary in 2020. It is one of the World’s leading yacht clubs, and is in the forefront of all branches of sailing activity. It is the organiser of the biennial Cork Week, widely regarded as Europe’s premier sailing event. It has hosted many National, European and World Championships. Its members compete at the highest level in all branches of sailing, and the club has a number of World, Olympic, continental and national sailors among its membership.

The Royal Cork Yacht club is in Crosshaven, Co Cork, a village on lower Cork Harbour some 20km south-east of Cork city centre and on the Owenabue river that flows into Cork Harbour.

The club was founded as The Water Club of the Harbour of Cork in 1720, in recognition of the growing popularity of private sailing following the Restoration of King Charles II. The monarch had been known to sail a yacht on the Thames for pleasure, and his interest is said to have inspired Murrough O’Brien, the 6th Lord Inchiquin — who attended his court in the 1660s and whose grandson, William O’Brien, the 9th Lord Inchiquin, founded the club with five friends.Originally based on Haulbowline Island in inner Cork Harbour, the club moved to nearby Cobh (then Cove) in 1806, and took on its current name in 1831. In 1966 the club merged with the Royal Munster Yacht Club and moved to its current premises in Crosshaven.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club today encompasses a wide variety of sailing activities, from young kids in their Optimist dinghies sailing right through the winter months to the not-so-young kids racing National 18s and 1720s during the remaining nine months. There is also enthusiastic sailing in Toppers, Lasers, RS Fevas and other dinghies. The larger keelboats race on various courses set in and around the Cork Harbour area for club competitions. They also take part in events such as the Round Ireland Race, Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race. In many far off waters, right across the globe, overseas club members proudly sail under the Royal Cork burger. The club has a significant number of cruising members, many of whom are content to sail our magnificent south and west coasts. Others head north for the Scottish islands and Scandinavia. Some go south to France, Spain, Portugal and the Mediterranean. The more adventurous have crossed the Atlantic, explored little known places in the Pacific and Indian Oceans while others have circumnavigated the globe.

As of November 2020, the Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club is Colin Morehead, with Kieran O’Connell as Vice-Admiral. The club has three Rear-Admirals: Annamarie Fegan for Dinghies, Daragh Connolly for Keelboats and Mark Rider for Cruising.

As of November 2020, the Royal Cork Yacht Club has approximately 1,800 members.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club’s burgee is a red pennant with the heraldic badge of Ireland (a stylised harp topped with a crown) at its centre. The club’s ensign has a navy blue field with the Irish tricolour in its top left corner and the heraldic badge centred on its right half.

Yes, the Royal Cork Yacht 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. The club also hosts many National, European and World Championships, as well as its biennial Cork Week regatta — widely regarded as Europe’s premier sailing event.

Yes, the Royal Cork Yacht Club has an active junior section with sailing in Optimists, Toppers and other dinghies.

Charles Yes, the Royal Cork Yacht Club regularly runs junior sailing courses covering basic skills, certified by Irish Sailing.

 

The Royal Cork hosts both keelboats and dinghies, with the 1720 Sportsboat — the club’s own design — and National 18 among its most popular. Optimists and Toppers are sailed by juniors, and the club regularly sees action in Lasers, RS Fevas, 29ers and other dinghy classes.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club has a small fleet of 1720 Sportsboats available for ordinary members to charter.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club’s Club House office can provide phone, fax, email, internet and mail holding facilities for a small charge. Club merchandise and postcards may be purchased. Showers and toilet facilities are available 24 hours a day, free of charge. Parking is plentiful and free of charge. Diesel and petrol are available on site. Marina berths are generally available for a fee payable in advance; arrangements must be made before arrival.

Yes, the Royal Cork Yacht Club’s Club House has all of the usual facilities, including bars and restaurant, which are open during normal licensing hours. The restaurant provides a full range of meals, and sandwiches, snacks etc, are available on request.

Normal working hours during the sailing season at the Royal Cork Yacht Club are 9am to 9pm daily. For enquiries contact the RCYC office on 021 483 1023 or email [email protected]

Yes, the Royal Cork Yacht Club caters for all types of events rom weddings, anniversaries, christenings and birthday celebrations to corporate meetings, breakfast meetings, luncheons, private dinners and more. For enquiries contact the Royal Cork Yacht Club office on 021 483 1023 or email [email protected]

New members are invited to apply for membership of the Royal Cork Yacht Club by completing the Nomination Form (available from www.royalcork.com/membership) and returning it to The Secretary, Royal Cork Yacht Club, Crosshaven Co Cork. Nominations are first approved by the Executive Committee at its next meeting, and following a period on display for the members, and are reviewed again at the following meeting at which any objections are considered.

No; while ordinary members of the Royal Cork Yacht Club are usually boat owners, there is no requirement to own a boat when submitting an application for membership.

The annual feel for ordinary members (aged 30+) of the Royal Cork Yacht Club is €645. Family membership (two full members and all children aged 29 and under) is €975, while individuals youth (ages 19-29) and cadet (18 and under) memberships are €205. Other rates are available for seniors, associates and more. All fees quoted are as of the 2020 annual subscription rates.

Memberships of the Royal Cork Yacht Club are renewed annually, usually within 60 days of the club’s Annual General Meeting.
For enquiries contact the Royal Cork Yacht Club office on 021 483 1023 or email [email protected]

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