RIYC Regatta Race report - Saturday 29 June

The third of the waterfront club regattas took place on Saturday 30th with the Royal Irish Yacht Club being the host. Unfortunately, summer weather had deserted us and, while winds were favourable for racing, all who participated were drenched by the incessant rain for the whole period on the water. However, the rain did not dampen the enthusiasm or competitive nature of the intrepid crews and the two races were keenly contested by all four Twentyones who swapped pole position at various times through the event proving once again the true one design nature of the fleet.

With low water scheduled for 12.00 and warning signal at 12.15 a flood tide was in place for the regatta duration. Heading off the mooring the wind was in the SE - 140deg however soon swung north to settle at 30deg at about 10kts which allowed the OOD to set the windward leeward course after a short postponement.  

As the earlier fleets went off the Twentyones were keenly watching their tactics to refine their own race strategies taking wind, tide and perceived line bias into account. At the start countdown Estelle and Geraldine were early enough to sail down the line while Naneen and Garavogue chose to come in a little later tight on committee boat end. Garavogue unfortunately has the door closed on her by Naneen and was forced to tack around before starting after the others. Estelle and Geraldine continued on starboard tack followed by Garavogue while Naneen quickly tacked to port to avail of the lifting tide. At the windward mark for the first of the 3 rounds, Estelle led followed by Heralding then Naneen with Garavogue bringing up the rear. On the down wind leg Naneen made up some ground and reached the gate ahead of Geraldine but taking the port hand side to again head up the beat on port tack while the other chose the starboard side. Back at the windward mark Estelle still held the lead with Naneen in second place and Geraldine and Garavogue very close behind. On the down wind leg Naneen was in attacking mode and  managed to get ahead of Estelle at the gate again taking the port side. Estelle and Geraldine took the starboard side as previous, which paid off for them as they got to the windward mark just ahead of Naneen with Garavogue now some distance behind. On the final down wind leg all three leaders were close together but giving no quarter and all crossed the finishing line with no change in position

Result Race 1

  1.      Estelle
  2.      Geraldine
  3.      Naneen
  4.      Garavogue

The rain was steadily pouring down and lunch had to be quickly taken with the OOD confirming a 2nd race and quickly proceeding to sound the first warning signal therefore, with hardly any time to digest lunch, the fleet was soon preparing for the second start. Estelle and Geraldine were ahead of Naneen on the line with Garavogue just behind. Naneen again elected to tack to port and had to bear away heavily to cross Garavogue ‘s stern and then a Glen immediately after. The wind had shifted a little more north which favoured the boats who remained on starboard and when they tacked, they were on the lay line. This time Garavogue was the leader at the windward mark with Estelle immediately behind and Naneen nipping in to round in third place just ahead of Geraldine. On the run down Garavogue went low while Estelle and Naneen took a higher line and slowly passed Garavogue. Naneen was constantly trying to overtake Estelle however they very successfully held their position to reach the by now favoured starboard gate first. Naneen momentarily had an opportunity to gybe to follow but Geraldine was immediately behind and on a higher line closer to the mark, as a result Naneen instead headed over to the port gate ceding some distance and time on the others. Garavogue was also close to Geraldine by this stage and the two had a close encounter for which Geraldine took responsibility taking her penalty on the final beat.  On the beat Naneen continued to hold the port hand beat which was by now less favoured and upon reaching the windward mark for the 2nd and last time had lost a little distance to Estelle and Garavogue with Geraldine some way behind. The final run to the finish was a close battle with the three leaders’ boats pulling out all the stops to at least hold their position and if possible, overtake the one ahead. By this stage the course was quite crowded with other fleets converging for the finish line and there were lots of “water” cries at the gates as boats jockeyed for optimum positioning to improve their finishing place. Estelle held on to claim cross the line in first place with Garavogue holding off Naneen to secure second.  Naneen was again in third place and Geraldine took up the rear having lost some time in completing her penalty turns en-route.

Final Regatta result

Race 1      Race 2        Overall
1. Estelle     1. Estelle     1. Estelle
2. Geraldine    2. Garavogue   2. Garavogue
3. Naneen    3. Naneen      3. Naneen
4. Garavogue     4. Geraldine      4. Geraldine

Ashore most crews were by now quite wet and earlier intention to repair to the RIYC were disrupted by the desire to just get home. Therefore, a very small contingent travelled to the RIYC where Fionan proudly accepted the very well deserved first Prize on behalf of Estelle’s crew. Prizes were also very generously awarded for 2nd and 3rd place with Garavogue and Naneen respectively being the recipients for same

Following some concerns about Naneen’s speed she proved that she is well able to keep up with the fleet. It had been discovered that the hull was very fouled and as a result she was power washed the day before the regatta and that made a significant difference.

The last regatta is next Saturday with the Royal St George as host where no doubt close competition will prevail one more.