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Henri-Lloyd - For the Obsessed

Flying Fifteen Thursday evening racing at Dublin Bay Sailing Club - Race 9

by Cormac Bradley 25 Aug 2021 10:53 BST 19 August 2021

The penultimate and ninth round of the Thursday Series for Flying Fifteens was sailed in a light breeze that came from an easterly direction. A windward-leeward course was set, using Molly as the windward mark and an inflatable as the leeward mark, set off the East Pier in the approximate location of Bay.

From my vantage point on the East Pier, I counted a thirteen-boat fleet and for the first start the fleet was grouped from the mid-point of the line towards the pin. Two boats tried a port-hand start, identified later as Messrs Miller & Colin, but the nett effect of the fleet's efforts at starting was a General Recall, unusually so as the incoming tide should have been pushing them behind the line.

The start line was too far away to read numbers but for the second start the fleet again congregated towards the outer half of the line, with one boat again trying for a port-tack start. They were successful in starting on port but took quite a few transoms to get to where they wanted to be! Four boats went left initially, with two of these breaking away to go right relatively early on. A number of boats worked the middle initially before migrating rightwards where another group of about 4/5 boats had made a commitment to that side from the "get go".

It appeared that the right-hand side was the paying side as those boats seemed to get to Molly first. The downwind leg saw a similar spread of options with the leaders going to the left of the run, while those who chose to go right didn't seem to enjoy quite the same breeze. From a combination of spinnaker colours, attempted reading of sail numbers at the leeward mark and post-race information, the leading bunch consisted of Tom Galvin (3757), Niall Coleman (4008), Alan Green (4026), Peter Murphy (3774), Tom Murphy (4057) and Neil Colin (4028).

For the second beat, from the leeward mark, the leaders went right initially before setting off on a long starboard tack to Molly. Neil Colin advised, post-race, that he had gone left quite early, and enjoying free and better wind closed some distance on the leaders. Again, from my vantage point, the right-hand side seemed to be the way to go.

The spread of boats on the second run pretty much mirrored the first run with more boats hanging left. Spinnaker colours were the same as before with Tom Galvin, Niall Coleman, Alan Green, 2 x Murphys and Neil Colin prominent.

Again, the leaders went right after the leeward mark, but others tacked and made their way to a finish. Those that had sailed hard right clearly missed any signals suggesting a shortened course as they sailed off to the seaward side of the committee boat. WhatsApp was buzzing with commentary on what may or should have happened on the water.

The results as posted last night gave a finishing order of Galvin (3757), Dumpleton (3955), Murphy (P) (3774), Colin (4028) and John O'Sullivan (3672).

With one race to go, the overall points situation has changed again; Colin drops two points to find himself tied with Ken Dumpleton (3955) in first place overall. Peter Murphy has leap-frogged Shane McCarthy & Ben Mulligan into third (45pts) while the former two are separated by two points in McCarthy's favour, 46pts to 48pts. A point astern is David Mulvin (4068), while Frank Miller (3845) is a point further behind (50pts)

With respect to the Championship of Ireland, to be held over the Bank Holiday weekend in the UK, 27th - 29th August, Friday to Sunday, hosted by Strangford Lough Yacht Club in Whiterock, the link below is for the Entry Form - extracted from the WhatsApp Group established for the event.

form.jotform.com/200547034189959

Peter Chamberlain reports that entries to date have been very slow in arriving so you are encouraged to put (virtual) pen to paper as soon as possible.

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