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Displaying items by tag: ILCA

Royal Cork ILCA (Lasers) hosted the grand finale of the ILCA summer sprint series on Sunday 17th. The series, including ILCA racing across five venues throughout the summer, saw twenty-seven ILCAs compete in three different classes from five clubs on the Curlane Bank in Cork Harbour.

The favourable weather throughout the day from the east held well, allowing the sailors to complete four races on the day. There was some very tight racing in a strong ILCA 4 fleet, making for an exciting competition.

In the ILCA 6 class, three sailors finished on the same points tally, making it even more exciting to decide the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place. The tri-series trophies were presented based on the best three results from the five regattas.

ILCA Summer Sprint Series racingILCA Summer Sprint Series racing

The series started in June at Glandore Harbour Sailing Club and was followed by Kinsale Yacht Club in July, Bantry Bay Sailing Club in August, Iniscarra Sailing and Kayaking Club, and the finale in Royal Cork. It allowed local sailors to explore some of Cork's great sailing venues throughout the summer.

Each regatta used the sprint format with five quick 20-25-minute races with a single discard on the day. A social barbeque was then hosted at each club for sailors, parents, and helpers. Over fifty ILCA sailors raced in at least one of the regattas throughout the summer.

Special appreciation was given to Harriet Emerson in Glandore, John O'Sullivan in Kinsale, Kathryn Kingston in Bantry, and Aoife O'Herlihy in Iniscarra for hosting the previous events in the series. 

Royal Cork's Rear Admiral Dinghies, Maurice Collins expressed his joy for the successful conclusion of the series, as he was pictured with tri-series winners Eolann Miles (ILCA 4), Jonathan O'Shaughnessy (ILCA 7), Andrew Kingston (ILCA 6), and class captain Eddie Kingston at the Triseries prizegivingRoyal Cork's Rear Admiral Dinghies, Maurice Collins expressed his joy for the successful conclusion of the series, as he was pictured with tri-series winners Eolann Miles (ILCA 4), Jonathan O'Shaughnessy (ILCA 7), Andrew Kingston (ILCA 6), and class captain Eddie Kingston at the Triseries prizegiving

For those who missed the summer sprint series, more ILCA sailing is coming up at the RCYC Frostbite League in November.

Published in Laser
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Three sailors from the Dun Laoghaire Harbour ILCA fleet recently competed in Douarnenez, France, showcasing their skills against a formidable field of over 270 competitors across 31 countries at the 2023 ILCA European Championships, with all three Irish sailors achieving at least one top-20 result.

Despite the Breton coast typically experiencing a steady 15-17kts sea breeze, the sailors faced challenging conditions due to the unprecedented hot and humid weather, which produced a combination of light and shifty conditions along with heavier sea breezes and 1.5m swells.

Hugh Delap, Brendan Hughes, and Ali Robinson began their campaign last October at the start of the local DMYC Frostbite series. They competed in provincial events and ultimately ended up in Howth at the end of August, where they raced in 30 knots of wind. 

This proved hugely beneficial to all three in terms of strength and conditioning ahead of the Europeans.

Brendan Hughes rounding the windward mark at the ILCA European Championships in FrancBrendan Hughes rounding the windward mark at the ILCA European Championships in France

The Irish sailors competed in the Apprentice and Masters fleet, which included John Emett, coach of Lijia Xu, the 2012 Olympic gold medalist. Also in this fleet were the current female European champion, a number of previous Olympic sailors, and national and ex-world champion ILCA sailors.

Ali Robinson defending on the downwind at the ILCA European Championships in FranceAli Robinson defending on the downwind at the ILCA European Championships in France

All three sailors spoke about their incredible learnings from the event and emphasised the intense but physically and mentally enhancing experience of having six days of racing in a row. The sailors plan to build on their learnings and continue to develop physically, technically, and mentally, with their sights set on the 2024 Europeans in Portugal and the 2025 Worlds to be held in Hayling Island, UK.

The beauty of the ILCA Masters sailing format is that anyone over the age of 35 can compete against gold medallists, and World and European champions, and continue to compete for as long as they can get into the boat.

Published in Laser
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The Royal Cork Yacht Club (RCYC) won the team trophy at last month's ILCA National Championships for the third year running, held at Howth Yacht Club, as Afloat reported here.

Although the championship had to be limited to two days of racing due to storm Betty, 14 sailors from RCYC competed in the three ILCA fleets under the guidance of coach André Granadeiro.

RCYC successfully beat off competitors Howth Yacht Club and the Royal St. George Yacht Club to claim the trophy with the best result across the three fleets. This year, Liam Duggan finished second in ILCA4, Michael Crosbie came third in ILCA6, and Jonathan O Shaughnessy came third in ILCA7, and their names will be inscribed onto the trophy.

The RCYC ILCA team The RCYC ILCA team 

The Irish Laser Association (now ILCA Ireland) team championship trophy was first awarded in 1977 to Susan Gray, Ruth Barrington, and Tansey Millerick.

ILCA Sprint Series

On September 17th, the Royal Cork Yacht Club will host the final round of the ILCA Cork Summer Sprint Series, where boats throughout Munster will compete for the title. The sprint series events were held in Glandore, Kinsale, Bantry, and Iniscarra throughout the summer. Interested participants may still enter the single-day sprint event, which is open for entry on the RCYC website under the ILCA Summer Sprint Series.

Published in Laser

Wexford Harbour Boat and Tennis Club played host to the ILCA Connaught Championships last weekend, with a healthy turnout of 60 ILCAs descending on the location for what was a spectacular weekend on and off the water. Although entries were down somewhat with theICRA Champs running in parallel in Howth, organisers managed to provide a perfect trapezoid course under the expert eye of Race Officer Captain Michael Doyle and his team.

Due to the light wind forecasted, the launch on Saturday was delayed until a steady 8-knot sea breeze filled in from the southeast in a gradually warming day. In the ILCA 7s, Sam Ledoux from RStGYC showed a clean pair of heels, only to discover an OCS was waiting for him at the finish. Clubmate, Oisin Hughes took advantage, with another newly converted ILCA 6 squad member, Jonathan O’Shaughnessy, in second, followed by Conor Byrne in third. 

In the twenty-two boat ILCA 6 fleet, Irish Sailing squad member, Sophie Kilmartin from RSGYC & MYC was lying just one point ahead of Charlie Keating from HYC after two races. Andrew Kingston of RCYC showed some great boat speed with a well-earned win in the second race of the day, which left him just one point behind Daniel O’Connor and Keating after two races.

In the twenty-nine-strong ILCA 4 fleet, Thea Daly from RSGYC was the overnight leader, with recent Optimist Class converts and clubmates Caoilinn McDonnell and Marcus Shelley on joint points in second and third respectively.

Due to a continued dying breeze, sailors were ushered ashore after race two of the day to be greeted by a warm welcome, cold drinks, and rugby in the bar. 

On Sunday, organisers were keen to get sailors on the water early for a 10:25 am start. In an overcast and thunder-threatening sky, the breeze was slow to build, but finally settled in a 5-knot north-easterly for the first race of the day. In the ILCA 7 fleet, Sam Ledoux yet again took advantage of the light winds with two first-place finishes, with clubmate Oisin Hughes finishing with two-second places. Jonathan O’Shaughnessy held onto his overnight third place, but not without drama, as Conor Byrne was pipped in separate match-racing duels with Ledoux and Hughes, forcing him into a third-place finish and fourth overall.

In the ILCA 6 fleet, Charlie Keating came out of the blocks like a bullet with two first-place finishes on Sunday, pipping Sophie Kilmartin by just one point, with Daniel O’Connor in third place overall. In the ILCA 4 fleet, Thea Daly held onto her overnight lead to finish first overall and one point ahead of Caoileann McDonnell in second and Lucy Ives in third.

The event was sponsored by Rooster and Viking Marine, who provided prize-giving prizes that were thankfully received by all winners on the day. It was a challenging weather condition, but the organisers, Don Ryan, Joe Corrigan and Eoin Thompson, along with Race Officer, Captain Doyle, and his extended team, managed to get a full race series completed. It was a successful weekend, and the participants had a great time both on and off the water.

Published in Laser
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Of the 15 Northern Ireland competitors in the ILCA Nationals at Howth Yacht Club recently, the best showing was that of Tom Coulter from East Antrim BC and Portrush YC in Co Antrim, who topped the 23-strong ILCA 6 fleet with a string of first and second places and a discarded third. He managed to beat last year’s winner, Fiachra McDonnell of Royal St. George, by one point. 

This seems to be the first time in at least 14 years that the trophy for this class has come north. Lucy Whitford, Commodore of East Antrim BC, was delighted with her club’s results; “Tom sailed brilliantly, and it was fantastic to see him win the super competitive ILCA 6 fleet and become Irish champion.

Also, in the same fleet, it was a tight battle between Gavin Doig and Zoe Whitford, with Zoe finishing 13th and Gavin one place behind. And Gavin’s son Freddie competed in his first Nationals, the ILCA 4 class”. She continued, “Everyone at EABC was delighted for Tom, especially as he missed the Worlds and Europeans this season through injury”.

Another NI sailor, Bobby Driscoll from Royal North on Belfast Lough, the 2022 Topper World 5.3 runner-up on countback, performed well to finish sixth in Tom's class.

ILCA 7 national championship racing at Howth Yacht. Club Photo: Annraoi BlaneyILCA 7 national championship racing at Howth Yacht. Club Photo: Annraoi Blaney

In the ILCA 4 fleet, Ciara McMahon from Ballyholme YC on Belfast Lough finished in the top third of the 31-boat fleet at 10th, counting as best results two eighth places. Another BYC competitor, Colin Leonard was never out of the top six and finished in fifth place in ILCA 7.

The Northern clubs that were represented were East Antrim, Portrush, Strangford Lough, Ballyholme, Holywood, Carrickfergus, Royal North and East Down.

Published in Laser
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The Howth Yacht Club (HYC) hosted International Laser Class Association (ILCA) National Championships and saw sailors from three different clubs take the top spots across the three fleets.

Despite losing a day of racing due to strong winds and rough seas, the remaining two days provided plenty of action.

On Saturday, the start of the races was delayed due to the remnants of Friday's storm, but the wind eventually moderated to 15-23 knots, allowing the ILCA 7s to complete four races and the ILCA 6 and 4 fleets to complete three races each. The choppy conditions from the south-easterly breeze made it a challenging race course.

Sunday saw more manageable conditions, with a 12-20 knot breeze welcoming the sailors to the race course. Scorie Walls and her team completed four races for each of the fleets.

Local sailor Jamie McMahon, who had just returned from a summer in the USA, took the crown in the ILCA 7s, narrowly beating Australian Isaac Schotte by one point.

Jonathan O'Shaughnessy from the Royal Cork Yacht Club (RCYC) had remarkably consistent results and came in third, while Ballyholme's Colin Leonard was the first master and came in fourth.

In the ILCA 6s, East Antrim's Tom Coulter won by one point from RStGYC's Fiachra McDonnell, despite McDonnell's storming day two with three of four race wins. HYC's Sienna Wright was first lady and secured her spot to represent Ireland at the World Sailing Youth Championships.

Carlingford Sailing Club's Lucy Ives showed the rest how it's done in the ILCA 4s, winning the fleet, followed by Liam Duggan (RCYC) and Patrick Foley (RStGYC).

The team trophy was awarded to the club with the best result across the three fleets, which went to RCYC for the second year in a row. HYC and RStGYC were also contenders, but RCYC was the strongest across the fleets.

The event was sponsored by Rooster, who provided prizes for the event, as well as bibs for competitors. HYC played host well, providing food and entertainment ashore for all sailors, with photos from the day's racing displayed on a big screen and music playing, creating a great atmosphere for all involved.

Results here

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Hungary's Maria Erdi won the final gold medal at the 2023 Allianz Sailing World Championships in The Hague in a tight medal race.

The 25-year-old moved up from third place to claim her first world title in the ILCA 6 medal race.

Australian sailor Matt Wearn confirmed his own world title in the ILCA 7, adding to his Olympic gold won in Tokyo 2020.

The Netherlands finished as the most successful nation, with gold medals for Luuc van Opzeeland in the iQFOiL and Bart Lambriex and Floris van de Werken in the 49er, retaining the IOC President's Trophy for the best nation.

Australian sailor Matt Wearn is carried ashore after winning the ILCA 7 division at the Allianz Sailing World Championships in The Hague Photo: Sailing EnergyAustralian sailor Matt Wearn is carried ashore after winning the ILCA 7 division at the Allianz Sailing World Championships in The Hague Photo: Sailing Energy

As Afloat readers know, Ireland's Finn Lynch from the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire won Ireland a place at the Paris 2024 Games at The Hague in the ILCA 7 class.  

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International economists and financial journalists trying to analyse just how and why the Irish economy is doing so well these days might learn something from studying the mutations of the annual sailing programme. National events that in times past might have taken a leisurely week or so are now being compressed to minimize interruption of the countrywide work mania, and the latest to leap on the short-break bandwaggon is the upcoming Rooster-sponsored ILCA ILCA Nats, at Howth from Friday 18th August through to Sunday, August 20th.

That’s right. Just three days for the Irish Open Nationals of the only Olympic class which can be said to have a truly global popularity at every level, from ordinary club pottering around, going the whole way up to the super-sharp heights of the Five Ring Circus.

And all this is coming down the line at a club which, next year, will be celebrating the Golden Jubilee of the Boat, Formerly Known As The Laser being a core element of its continuous sailing programme.

But that’s the way we sail now, folks. And Championship Organisers Conor Murphy and Darren Wright and their Senior Racer Officer Scorie Walls - with their team of all the talents - know it can be done, simply because it has to be done.


They’ll be dealing with a large and varied fleet with differing levels of familiarity with the venue. Last year at Tralee Bay SC, the ILCA 7s 2022 were won by Dan O’Connell of Cove, who is a regular on the Howth ILCA Winter Series,

The ILCA 6s at Tralee went to Fiachra McDonnell of Royal St George YC, while the ILCA 4s were topped by Hannah Dudley Young of Ballyholme.

This year’s fleet will include the home club’s super-siblings Sienna and Rocco Wright, while Howth’s awards-garlanded international veteran and mentor Aoife Hopkins will be shepherding her team of promising talent into the ILCA 4 section.

Entries for an already healthy list close tomorrow evening (Tuesday, 15th August). And those whose concern is the weather can be reassured that at present, there seems little chance of those character-forming northeasterlies which Howth sailors expect to provide them with ocean sailing skills.


Then too – as last weekend showed - the benefits of the “East Coast Effect” should never be underestimated. In other words, any Atlantic rain determined to dump on Howth finds itself being absorbed by the muddy midlands before it reaches the Irish Sea, leaving Howth and the many ILCAs in a world of their own, with a mind-blowing evening entertainment programme added in to maximise time-use even further.

Details including entry here

Published in Howth YC
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The U21 ILCA ILCA Europeans sailing competition has kicked off in Stavanger, Norway, with 230 sailors from over 36 nations competing for top honours.

155 ILCA 7 sailors and 75 ILCA 6 female sailors will participate in the event, with 59 of them vying for U21 and U19 prizes.

Irish youth sailors Sophie Kilmartin, Oisin Hughes from the Royal St. George Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire and Royal Cork's Jonathan O'Shaughnessy represent their country in the competition, having recently completed their state exams.

The event, which began last week, is scheduled to run until August 13th, and strong winds are expected to give way to more moderate conditions as the week progresses.

Results can be found here

Published in Laser
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This year has already seen a plethora of successes for Howth Yacht Club in the ILCA division, including a one-two brother-sister punch from Ewan and Eve McMahon — who won the ILCA 7 and ILCA 6 fleets respectively in the ILCA Ulster Championships last month — and a double-silver for Sienna Wright in the ILCA 6 Youth Worlds and Europeans.

Now, Laser-heads set their sights on HYC for the ILCA National Championships over the weekend of 18-20 August, which the club says will be one for the books.

Entry forms and the Notice of Race are available on the ILCA Ireland website, while will have more details on race specifics and onshore entertainment throughout the weekend in the coming weeks.

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L.O.A. (Length overall) 13.2m

L.W.L. (Length along waterline) 11.5m

Length moulded (GRP hull only) 12.7

Beam Moulded (GRP only ex fender) 4.0m

Beam overall (Including fenders) 4.4m

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