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Ireland’s biggest youth sailing regatta will see numbers back up to pre-COVID highs with over 200 young sailors taking part in the 2022 Irish Sailing Youth National Championships this week.

This year the event is hosted by Ballyholme Yacht Club in Bangor, Northern Ireland from Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 April.

Ballyholme is the biggest club in Northern Ireland and has a reputation of producing world-class sailors representing Ireland at international and Olympic level, including Liam Glynn and 49er Olympians Matt McGovern and Ryan Seaton.

Strategically, it also allows for a wide variety of race courses, with the whole of Belfast Lough to play with. Boys and girls under 18 will compete against each other on the water, with a rough 60:40 male/female split.

Irish Sailing Youth Nationals 2022 banner

Irish Sailing says the Youth Nationals are unique in not only being the biggest youth sailing event held in Ireland, but also the only time that different youth classes come together to compete, gain valuable experience on the water, and learn more about advancing to the high-performance ranks directly from the coaches.

Young sailors from across Ireland will compete across six different classes of boat, identified as the best to facilitate progression through the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway: 420, Topper, ILCA 4 (Laser 4.7), ILCA 6 (Laser Radial), 29ers and Optimists — the latter of which are fully integrated for the first time.

And Irish sailing’s younger prospects will have to brace themselves for a cold four days as water temperatures in Ballyholme at this time of the year are still chilly, with average temperatures of 4-12 degrees Celsius and reliably windy conditions.

Published in Youth Sailing

Irish Sailing and Howth Yacht Club have decided that it will not be possible to hold the Youth Sailing Nationals in compliance with current advice issued from HSE over Coronavirus spread.

It is not possible to run an event of this size and comply with separation protocols on the shore, and although these are currently in place until 29th March, HYC and Irish Sailing have taken the decision now to postpone the event, giving everyone as much notice as possible.

Details of the rescheduled event now planned sometime in the Autumn will follow.

Published in ISA

Royal Cork's Seafra Guilfoyle consolidated his position at the top of the Laser 4.7 fleet with a second and sixth placing in  day Two of the Mitsubishi Youth Nationals.

Dublin Bay presented more challenging conditions for the 300 sailors than yesterday. (Scroll down for Gareth Craig's photos). The day started with a 12-14 knot north easterly breeze with a big swell. Big wind shifts and dropping to 2-3 knots meant that not all fleets completed all races scheduled for the day. On the yellow course the Laser Radials, Laser 4.7s and the 420s only completed two races.

On the orange course the Topper fleet only had two races whilst the Fevas completed three races. The Optimist trials on the Blue course completed all three races.

In really challenging conditions, sailors that were consistent did remarkably well such as Sophie Murphy who is the leading girl in the Laser Radial class and Christopher Eames also in the Laser Radial class who had a first and a third. It was a good day for the brother and sister crews in the 420 fleet. The Crosbies from Royal Cork YC won both races and the Dalys from Tralee Bay SC were second in the first race.

Provisional results as follows:

Yellow Course (Laser Radial, Laser 4.7, 420)
Laser Radial : (5 races completed) 1. Philip Doran Courtown SC  2. Eoin Keller, Lough Derg YC  3. Robbie Gilmore, Strangford Lough YC

Laser 4.7: (5 races completed) 1. Seafra Guilfoyle, RCYC,  2. Darragh O'Sullivan Kinsale YC,  3. Fin Lynch, Blessington SC
420: (5 races completed) 1. Emma Geary & Niamh Connolly (RCYC & Baltimore SC),  2. Patrick Crosbie & Chloe Crosbie, (RCYC) 3. Tara Flood & Lucy Bolger (Howth YC & RSGYC)

Blue Course (Optimist National Trials, First leg completed in Kinsale )
Optimist (11races completed) 1. Sean Donnelly, National YC, 2. Sophie Browne, Tralee Bay SC, 3. Harry Whitaker, Royal Cork YC.

Orange Course (Topper & Optimist & Feva)

Feva: (3 races completed) 1. D Johnston & L Flynn Byrne, Howth YC. 2. C Totterdell & S Craig, National YC/Royal St George YC, 3. C Mollard & J Harris, Howth YC

Topper: (5 races completed) 1. T Brow, Ballyholme YC, 2. Laura Gilmore, Strangford Lough YC, 3. Lucy Burrows Donaghdee SC,
Optimist: (Championship fleet, 1 race completed) 1. R Quirke, National YC, 2. C O'Sullivan, Malahide YC, 3. Jacob Martensson, Royal Irish YC,
For the sailors, this event is the most important in the annual calendar as it is the decider for the youth national titles and for sailors to compete internationally during 2011 and is the pathway for future Olympic sailors.

More photos on the gallery here

Published in Youth Sailing