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RYA Northern Ireland has issued the Notice of Race and opened entries for the 2023 edition of the RYANI F10 Marine Youth Championships, which will take place on the weekend of 9-10 September.

Following the cancellation of last year’s championships due to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, RYANI welcomes back the prestigious event to uncover the Northern Ireland champions across junior and youth sailing classes that include Toppers, Optimists, Fevas and 29ers, ILCA 4 and 6 and a regatta fleet.

Andrew Baker, performance manager at RYANI said: “Our annual Youth Championships is a major event in the youth sailing calendar and for many their first experience of a larger event. Whether a sailor turns up as the favourite to win or it’s their first time on a racecourse, the event really delivers something for all young sailors in NI.

“It is probably the biggest event we run alongside our clubs, at times it can be logistically challenging and demanding on volunteer resources but ultimately demonstrates what can be achieved when everyone plays their part and gets involved.”

RYANI is also excited to announce a new headline sponsor for the event in F10 Marine, an online boat shop that offers a wide range of products for boating enthusiasts and provides quality items to enhance the boating experience and cater to diverse needs.

Damian Goodman from F10 Marine said: “F10 Marine is proud to announce its sponsorship of the RYA Northern Ireland Youth Championships, scheduled to take place in September. This significant partnership reflects F10 Marine’s commitment to supporting youth development in the field of sailing and its dedication to promoting water sports in the region.

“By supporting this event, F10 Marine is actively contributing to the growth of the sailing community and empowering young sailors to pursue their passion for the sport.”

On the announcement of the sponsorship, RYANI chief executive Greg Yarnall said: “It is fantastic to have a company like F10 Marine on board to support the RYANI Youth Championships, we would like to thank F10 Marine for their support, and we hope it will be the start of a long lasting partnership between the two organisations that can enable us to further develop sailing and boating in Northern Ireland.”

Published in RYA Northern Ireland

It was a challenging, very windy two days at Ballyholme on Belfast Lough for the ILCA Ulster Championships last weekend.

The big fleet in three divisions, ILCA 4, 6 and 7, attracted 47 competitors from as far away as Glandore in Co. Cork, Dublin Bay, Tralee, Cork, Wexford and Wicklow, and they joined the northern contingent for what proved to be an energetic weekend of Laser competition.

Busy Ewan McMahon of Howth Yacht Club was the ILCA7 Ulster Championships winner is pictured with Commodore Rob Milligan. Prior to the Ulsters event, McMahon competed at a windless Moth Worlds in the UK and the 1720 Euros at Kinsale. His big target this season is the first Olympic qualification opportunity for Paris 2024 at the World Sailing Championships in The Netherlands in AugustBusy Ewan McMahon of Howth Yacht Club was the ILCA7 Ulster Championships winner is pictured with Commodore Rob Milligan. Prior to the Ulsters event, McMahon competed at a windless Moth Worlds in the UK and the 1720 Euros at Kinsale. His big target this season is the first Olympic qualification opportunity for Paris 2024 at the World Sailing Championships in The Netherlands in August Photo: Jess Mackey

Between them, brother and sister Eve and Ewan McMahon took home two trophies to Howth Yacht Club, both proving invincible, counting a clean sheet each, Eve in the 19-strong ILCA 6 fleet and Ewan first of 20 in the ILCA 7.

ILCA 4 runner up Eolann Miles from Glandore Harbour Photo: Tim McCarthyILCA 4 runner up Eolann Miles from Glandore Harbour Photo: Tim McCarthy

In the ILCA 4, Viktor Samoilovs (Malahide YC) counted three seconds and a first to finish clear ahead of the far-travelled runner up Eolann Miles of Glandore Harbour. Third was Eve McCarthy of Royal Cork who along with Miles, managed to discard an NSC in the first race but, despite having to count an OCS, totalled three good results of two firsts and a third.

ILCA 4 Winner Viktor Samoilovs of Malahide YC with Commodore Rob Milligan Photo: Jess MackeyILCA 4 Winner Viktor Samoilovs of Malahide YC with Commodore Rob Milligan Photo: Jess Mackey

 The Ballyholme YC team for the Ulster ILCA championships staged in Belfast Lough The Ballyholme YC team for the Ulster ILCA championships staged in Belfast Lough

The best local result in ILCA 6 came from Bobby Driscoll from Royal North of Ireland YC, just six miles west of Ballyholme. He discarded a DNF but counted otherwise three seconds and a third to claim runner-up. In third was Patrick Hamilton from East Down YC on Strangford Lough.

Bobby Driscoll from Royal North of Ireland YC runner up in the ILCA6 Photo: Jess MackeyBobby Driscoll from Royal North of Ireland YC runner up in the ILCA6 Photo: Jess Mackey

And in ILCA 7, the best host club performance came from runner-up Colin Leonard, who proving consistency pays, put together a string of seconds to finish in runner-up slot. Conor Byrne from Royal St George was fortunate to be able to discard a UFD for a premature start in the first race to count three thirds and a fourth.

An ILCA 7 nearly airborne - James Murphy from Wexford Harbour finished eighth overall Photo: Rob MilliganAn ILCA 7 nearly airborne - James Murphy from Wexford Harbour finished eighth overall Photo: Rob Milligan

The next big event for Ballyholme is the Irish Topper Championships’ nine-race three-day event starting 7th July.

Commodore Rob Milligan was delighted that racing was so good; “Despite very challenging conditions over the weekend, the racing went well without incident. The volunteers worked hard to keep the sailors safe on the water and the onshore team proved a well-practised group”.

Published in Laser
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After a hugely successful ILCA/Laser sprint event in 2022 that was held across three clubs, the series has expanded to five locations, with a five-race sprint regatta to be held at each club from June to September.

What better way to see some of County Cork's finest sailing harbours in fun but competitive events?

Four qualifying sprint events will be held with a minimum of two qualifier event entries to allow you to win the overall series.

Starting off at Glandore Harbour Sailing Club on June 24th, then Kinsale Yacht Club on July 23rd, Bantry Bay Sailing Club on August 6th, Inniscarra Sailing & Kayaking Club on Sept 3rd and the final event will be at Royal Cork Yacht Club on Sept 17th. The clubs will individually host the sprint regattas for ILCA4, ILCA6, and ILCA7, with prizes awarded on the day for each regatta.

The series winner will be decided after the final sprint event at RCYC on Sept 17th.

All details, NOR and entry can be found here. This is an open event, so sailors from across the country are welcome.

Published in Laser
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The overnight leader Marco Sorgassi of the host club, emerged as the overall winner after six races sailed in the 6-rig at the Irish  ILCA Masters' Championships sailed under the burgee of the Royal St. George Yacht Club.

The consistent Italian scored two wins and all results in the top five [(5) 2 5 1 1 2] to be three points clear at the head of the scoreboard on 11.

The 53-boat regatta opened in light easterly winds and bright sunshine on Dublin Bay, but Sunday presented a different weather scenario at Dun Laoghaire with a much stiffer breeze up to 17 knots and a Bay chop for the dinghy sailors to negotiate.

Dublin Bay delivered on weather and wind with conditions varying from 7-10 knots on Saturday to 17 and champagne conditions on Sunday.  Harry Gallagher, PRO assisted by 3 additional National Race Officers made the most of conditions and delivered six races thus ensuring the champions had to perform in a variety of conditions, a true test.Dublin Bay delivered on weather and wind with conditions varying from 7-10 knots on Saturday to 17 and champagne conditions on Sunday. ILCA Masters Championships Race Officer Harry Gallagher, assisted by three additional National Race Officers made the most of conditions and delivered six races thus ensuring the champions had to perform in a variety of conditions, a true test. Photo: Afloat

In second overall, by a single point, was the Australian Great Grand Master Robert Jeffreys from Royal Cork Yacht Club on 14. In third place was Malahide Apprentice Darren Griffin with 15. 

Twenty-seven competed. 

ILCA 6 Irish Masters Champion (and Grand Master Masters Champion) Shirley Gilmore of the RstGYC and ILCA 6 Masters Champion Marco Sorgassi of the RstGYCILCA 6 Irish Masters Champion (and Grand Master Masters Champion) Shirley Gilmore of the RstGYC and ILCA 6 Masters Champion Marco Sorgassi of the RstGYC

Byrne wins in ILCA 7s

In the ILCA 7 rig, overnight leader, Ballyholme Yacht Club's Great Grand Master Gareth Flannigan from Belfast Lough was overhauled by local Apprentice Conor Byrne of the host club after the Northern Ireland ace had a costly retiral from race four.

Byrne, who was four points adrift on Saturday evening, took a 3, 3, 2 in the breezier conditions on Sunday to finish on 11 nett points to edge out Flannigan on 13. 

Carrickfergus's Stephen McLernon was third on 20. 

Twenty-three competed.

National ILCA 6 Female Masters Title for Shirley Gilmore

Shirley Gilmore of RstGYC, who opened up a considerable lead on day one and maintained it in the breezier conditions, claimed her first National Title ahead of club mates Ali Robinson and Mary Chambers.

Irish  ILCA Masters' Championships 2023 Results

ILCA 7

  1. Conor Byrne RstGYC and 1st Apprentice
  2. Gareth Flannigan BYC and 1st Master
  3. Stephen McLernon Carrickfergus SBC

1st Grand Master Theo Lyttle RstGYC

1st Great Grand Master Chris Arrowsmith RstGYC

ILCA 6

  1. Marco Sorgassi RstGYC and 1st Master
  2. Robert Jeffreys RCYC and 1st Great Grand Master
  3. Darren Griffin Malahide YC and 1st Apprentice

1st Grand Master Marc Coakley RstGYC

ILCA 6 Female

  1. Shirley Gilmore RstGYC and 1st Grand Master
  2. Ali Robinson RstGYC and 1st Master
  3. Mary Chambers RstGYC and 1st Great Grand Master
Published in Laser
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Marco Sorgassi of the host club leads after three races sailed in the ILCA 6 rig at the Masters' Championships sailing under the burgee of the Royal St. George Yacht Club.

The regatta opened in light easterly winds and bright sunshine on Dublin Bay.

The Italian Master on 12 has a one-point lead over Australian Great Grand Master Robert Jeffreys. In third place is Irish Grand Master Shirley Gilmore with 15 points.

Twenty-seven are competing. 

Flannigan from Belfast Lough leads in ILCA 7s

In the ILCA 7 rig, Ballyholme Yacht Club Great Grand Master Gareth Flannigan from Belfast Lough leads overall by four points from Apprentice Conor Byrne of the host club. Queen Mary SC's Rupert Bedell lies third on 14 points.

Twenty-three are competing. 

Racing continues on Sunday. 

Published in Laser
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Eight ILCAs from the Royal St George YC competed in the EurILCA Master Series Spain 2023 in Calella de Palafrugell on May 5, 6 & 7.

The PRO managed to get three races in each day in very shifty conditions varying from 5 to 20 knots.

In the ILCA 7, Conor Byrne, warmly welcomed back to the Irish fleet from a period working in the USA, was 3rd in the Apprentice Master Category, a hugely competitive fleet peppered with Olympians.

In the ILCA 6 Mens, Sean Craig maintained his form from Barcelona the previous week and, with a bullet in the last race, won the Grand Master category and moved to 4th overall.

In the ladies' ILCA 6, Shirley Gilmore won the Grand Master category and was 4th lady overall.

It is worth noting that 1st and 2nd prizes in the ILCA 6 fleet overall were won by Spanish female sailors Monica Azon and Miriam Carles Tolra Sallent, with very dominant performances.

Others competing in what was a very challenging regatta were Chris Arrowsmith, Theo Lyttle and Conor O’Leary in the ILCA 7. Ali Robinson and John Curran ILCA 6. 

This regatta is highly recommended, and a larger group will return to Calella next year. Calella is a beautiful seaside village, launching off the beach with a very short sail to the race area. There was also a large support crew accompanying the sailors with plenty of beautiful walks, spots to swim, restaurants and bars to keep everyone entertained.

ILCA 6 results here and ILCA7 here

Focus now turns to the Irish Master National Championships hosted by the RstGYC on May 27 & 28. Thanks to a recent international rule change, entry is open to all 30 years of age and over on May 27th.

Published in Laser
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Rocco Wright won a home waters victory at the Investwise Youth Sailing National Championships in Howth on Sunday.

Wright took the ILCA 6 Youth National Champion title by a clear margin of ten nett points after ten races sailed across a range of conditions that concluded in light winds.

The Howth Yacht Club sailor was followed by his clubmate Luke Turvey on 25 points. One-time series leader Tom Coulter of (East Antrim Boat Club) was third on 29 points in the 33-boat fleet.

Wright, of Howth Yacht Club, adds the domestic title to his recently won bronze in the ILCA 6 Men’s class at the ILCA European Championships in Andora, Italy, as Afloat reported here.

ILCA 4 Title for Pierse

The ILCA 4 title was won by Royal Cork’s Oisin Pierse, with Krzysztof Ciborowski (Royal St George YC) and Cillian Twomey (Howth YC) in second and third place.

Results are below

Published in Laser

It’s over 300 miles from Belfast to Baltimore in County Cork, and for many Northern Ireland Laser enthusiasts, it was a worthwhile trip last weekend for the ILCA Munster Championships.

Twelve sailors from East Antrim, Portrush and Coleraine in Co.Antrim, and Ballyholme, Strangford Lough YC and East Down in Co. Down competed across ILCA 4, ILCA 6 and ILCA 7 in a gathering of just over 100 in the Munster Championships hosted by Baltimore Sailing Club.

Tom Coulter from East Antrim BC and Portrush YC produced the best result with a win in the ILCA 6 fleet, and it was in this 36-strong division that creditable scorings were achieved by Ballyholme’s Daniel Palmer, who came 5th, and Lewis Thompson, who finished 7th with Charlotte Eadie also BYC at 9th. 17th was Callum Jackson of Coleraine and Portrush, with Sam Kelly from East Down 23rd. Jenna Reid (County Antrim YC/East Antrim BC came 30th.

Tom Coulter of EABC was the winner of the 2023 ILCA 6 Munster Championships in Baltimore, West Cork Tom Coulter of EABC was the winner of the 2023 ILCA 6 Munster Championships in Baltimore, West Cork 

And even Performance Committee Member Colin Leonard BYC/SLYC showed he can still compete in the ILCA 7 Class with a 4th overall and a race win.

Lucy Ives from Carlingford SC finished a close second in the ILCA 4, losing out on the win by just one point, and Autumn Halliday finished 29th in the 42-strong fleet.

RYA Northern Ireland said this was “a well-organised event both on and off the water with first-class hospitality”.

Published in Laser
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After six races, host club sailors won two of three divisions of the 2023 Munster ILCA/Laser Championship honours in Baltimore, West Cork.

Both Fionn Lydon in the ILCA 7 division and youth sailor Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin in the ILCA 4s, held on to their overnight leads on Saturday to claim the titles after two final races on Sunday.

In a change to the schedule in a successful bid to complete the minimum races for a championship, the three races on Saturday and three on Sunday format was changed by Principal Race Officer Ciaran MacSweeney to four races on Saturday and two on Sunday before forecasted strong winds blew in Sunday lunchtime.

As Afloat reported previously, to the surprise of some seasoned observers, the first ILCA championship of 2023 produced an extensive fleet in West Cork.

The Standard fleet was noticeably strong with 25 entries, but 44 are also competing in the ILCA4s (formerly 4.7s), and the ILCA 6s (Radials) are solid with 39 boats.

A mixture of courses was used, but mainly trapezoid, to avoid the three fleets meeting with a single jury boat in operation.

Southerly winds ranged in strength from 10 to 20 knots in the gusts. The race area saw the upwind leg run from the sound at Sherkin Island to a buoy under the land at Baltimore Harbour.

West Cork Sailors are 1,2,3 in ILCA 7

Lydon, a former Olympic Finn dinghy campaigner, took the title but only after the tie-break rule was applied in his favour. Sharing the same 11 points, rival West Cork sailor Michael O'Súilleabháin from Kinsale took second place. Ballyholme Yacht Club Master Colin Leonard from Belfast Lough, who was lying third in the 25-boat fleet overnight, was overtaken on Sunday for the bronze medal position by local Rory Lynch.

East Antrim's Coulter Keeps the Cool for ILCA 6 Crown

There was no change to the overall position overnight in the Radial/ILCA6 class. Counting two wins win and three second places, consistent East Antrim Boat Club ace Tom Coulter is the ILCA 6 division champion. The Larne youth had a margin of three points over RStGYC's Fiachra McDonnell on 11 points. Third was McDonnell's clubmate, Sam Ledoux on 15 points.

The 108-boat fleet rig up for what is expected to be a blustery Sunday of the Laser Munster Championships at Baltimore Sailing Club in West CorkThe 108-boat fleet rig up for what is expected to be a blustery Sunday of the Laser Munster Championships at Baltimore Sailing Club in West Cork

Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin Tops ILCA 4s on Home Waters

Baltimore Sailing Club youth Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin maintained her one point lead at the top of the ILCA 4.7s, but Carlingford Sailing Club's Lucy Ives overtook Howth Yacht Club's Cillian Twomey for silver on 22 points thanks to a final race win. Twomey took third on 25 points after counting 8,3 on the final day.

The results are below.

Published in Laser
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After four races, host club sailors lead two divisions competing for 2023 Munster ILCA/Laser Championship honours in Balimore, West Cork.

Fionn Lydon tops the ILCA 7 division with youth sailor Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin in charge of the ILCA 4s.

The threat of a Sunday gale prompted Principal Race Officer Ciaran MacSweeney to get ahead of the original schedule and stage four races on Saturday to complete the required number of races to constitute a Championship.

The breeze is set to build all day on Sunday, but the timing of the increase, which could threaten further racing, is still unclear.

The 108-boat fleet rig up for what is expected to be a blustery Sunday of the Laser Munster Championships at Baltimore Sailing Club in West CorkThe 108-boat fleet rig up for what is expected to be a blustery Sunday of the Laser Munster Championships at Baltimore Sailing Club in West Cork

108-boat fleet

To the surprise of some seasoned observers, the first ILCA championship of 2023 has produced an extensive fleet in West Cork, especially for so early in the year. 

The Standard fleet is noticeably strong with 25 entries, but 44 are also competing in the ILCA4s (formerly 4.7s), and the ILCA 6s (Radials) are solid with 39 boats.

A mixture of courses was used, but mainly trapezoid, to avoid the three fleets meeting with a single jury boat in operation.

Lydon, a former Olympic Finn dinghy campaigner, is on five points, with rival West Cork sailor Michael O'Súilleabháin from Kinsale two points behind in second place. Ballyholme Yacht Club Master Colin Leonard from Belfast Lough lies third in the 25-boat fleet on ten.

Southerly winds ranged in strength from 10 to 20 knots in the gusts. The race area saw the upwind leg run from the sound at Sherkin Island to a buoy under the land at Baltimore Harbour.

ILCA 6 lead for Coulter

Counting a first-race win and two second places, consistent East Antrim Boat Club ace Tom Coulter is the leader of the ILCA 6 division. The Larne youth has a margin of two points over RStGYC's Fiachra McDonnell, who has already had international racing experience this month at the ILCA Euros in Italy. Third is McDonnell's clubmate, Sam Ledoux.

Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin Tops of ILCA 4s

Baltimore Sailing Club, youth Sorcha Ní Súilleabháin has a one point lead over Howth Yacht Club's Cillian Twomey in ILCA 4s, the biggest fleet of the weekend. Howth's Cillian Twomey lies second, with RSGYC's Kate Flood lying third.

The results are below.

Published in Laser
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Safehaven Marine are designers and builders of FRP Pilot boats, Patrol boats, Crew transfer vessels, Hydrographic survey catamarans, Naval & Military craft and unique custom private motor yachts. All our vessels are built to the highest standards of strength & engineering and are renowned worldwide for their exceptional sea-keeping abilities, we set a new World long-range speed record in 2017 with our own vessel and crew. Established in 1996 we have built over 138 vessels supplied to 27 countries worldwide with over 40 pilot vessels in operation globally, and have become leaders in our field.

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