Weather helps winter sailing back on track
The calmer weather of November 26th provided a welcome boost for both Howth Yacht Club’s Dinghy Frostbite and Bright Motors Brass Monkey event for keelboats. After the two events fell behind schedule due to the weather challenges of their first few weeks, the competitors in both enjoyed an extra race on Sunday, the keelboats finishing two and the dinghies managing to squeeze in three.
With four races now completed, the twenty-one boats competing in the Brass Monkeys have enjoyed close racing and none of the current leaders can relax in the comfort of a big points margin. In the two Non-Spinnaker classes, Tiger (S Harris and F Hughes) has a two point lead over Arcturus (P & D McCabe) in Class 1. In Class 3, Timballoo (Lundy and Dunne) leads the ever-competitive Demelza (Ennis & Laudan) by just a single point. Class 2 is where those wishing to use spinnakers are gathered and two J80s are also separated by a single point, Edging (Technological University Dublin) currently holding the lead from Baboom (Beggan, Bourke, Byrne and Cullen).
In the dinghy event, forty-three boats are afloat with racing provided for ILCA 4, 6 and 7 rigs as well as a PY Class. Daragh Sheridan, sailing an Aero 6, is the sailor to beat in the PY Class, with four wins and a second place from the five races sailed to date giving him a three point lead over Michael Evans, who is enjoying getting to grips with the subtleties of a Melges 15, one of the two boats from this newcomer fleet to HYC that are competing in the series. In the Slow PY Class, Charlie Robertson and crew Elliott Bourke (HYC) hold the lead in their Feva.
In the ILCA fleet, the 4s are being led by Ukrainian visitor Oleksandr Bezpalyi (Obolon SC), who has sailed a very consistent series to hold the lead from current Optimist National Champion Harry Dunne (HYC). Harry has now graduated from his Optimist and is quickly getting to grips with the challenges posed by the much more powerful ILCA rig. Peter Hassett leads the 6s with Glenda Gallagher (Malahide YC) and Viktor Samoilov (Malahide & HYC) sharing second place, just a single point off the lead. Rory Lynch (Baltimore SC) leads the 7s with a seven-point margin in hand over second placed Dave Kirwan (Malahide YC).
There are two more days of racing scheduled for the Brass Monkeys while the dinghies have three more – plenty of opportunity still for places to be gained and lost in both events and all the classes before the curtain is drawn on the 2023 season.