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Irish RS200, RS400 & RS Feva Northern Championships at County Antrim Yacht Club

by Barry McCartin, Jocelyn Hill, Peter Darragh 19 Apr 09:42 BST 7-8 April 2018
Irish RS Northern Championships at County Antrim © Simon McIlwaine / www.wavelengthimage.com

The 2018 RS season of 2018 kicked off with County Antrim Yacht Club (CAYC) hosting the (Irish) Northern Championships for RS400s/200s/Fevas.

In total there was 35 boats entered and 70 sailors for the event from all corners of Ireland with numerous people from as far as Cork, so the anticipation for first event of year was high after the RS off-season.

Conditions for the weekend was to prove a mixed bag of glass like conditions so postponements onshore allowing time for extra boat tinkering and good craic among sailors. Soon enough the wind filled in to send fleet out and after a bit more waiting around a cold breeze came in from the sea around 3.30pm allowing for 3 races to happen for all fleets.

In the 400s fleet king Al-Bar proved he hadn't slowed over the winter with an emphatic first race win over the fleet. The second race was won right at the finish by Flipper overhauling the other Barry (this time Mac) and the third race won by the runaway off the pin end at start by Alan Ruigrok. Scores were very tight with a point to separate the top three overnight and just 5 points separating 4th-10th proved how close the racing was in this fleet.

In the 200s the home team Jocelyn Hill/Katie Kane stole the show with 3 bullets, and in the Fevas another CAYC Boat - the Corbett brothers - lead overnight.

A long day on water ended coming ashore at 6.45pm from racing, and for those interested even sacrificing majority of the Manchester derby. All more than enjoyed the soups on offer and the fleet enjoyed a great dinner spread and evening entertainment with music and much cheaper than over the border drink on offer until the early hours.

Day 2 lead to another postponement while wind decided to dance around in the sky, but the fleet launched bar a few of the top half of the 400 fleet staying ashore watching from 100m off the shore. However the wind gods did play ball around 2pm just as patience was running out allowing time for two races to decide the championship. Most of those boats onshore made it out including Alex Barry who after picking a few off added another first to his card to put himself in the driving seat ahead of Barry McC in second, Alan Ruigrok third.

The last race with the championship still open saw Alex Barry get better off Barry McC off the start to be in control to win it, while Gareth Flanagan got away best of all to win the final race and in the end pip second place overall. Third then was Barry McC, fourth Paul McL putting in consistent results ahead of Alan Ruigrok in fifth.

The 200s again saw Jocelyn/Katie add two more wins to make a perfect scorecard and take a triumphant win for the home club. The Fevas had every boat at least once win a race but in end Elysia O'leary/Lily Dwyer won.

A great credit to County Antrim Yacht Club for hosting an excellent event, including PRO Sheela Lewis and all her team on the water to complete 5 races in some very trying conditions; and to the event organisers, shore teams, and catering and hospitality teams. Also a big thanks to the photographers for some great footage of the weekend.

The next RS event coming up is in North Dublin, where Rush SC will be playing host to the RS Easterns for the 200s and 400s (and an open event for Fevas). Once again a lot of planning is already in place for this, and it should prove another great event not to be missed.

The full results are photographed here: www.rsireland.com/results/rs-northerns-2018

More photos can be seen - day 1 and day 2 - thanks to Simon McIlwaine, and more video footage is at www.facebook.com/groups/412080215518344/permalink/1714593781933641

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