Overall title for Argie Bargie
Dave Kelly, tactician on Argie Bargie describes the tense finale to the big boat class; “Going into the last race, there were four boats that were still in with a shout and we had a poor start to the race, probably last on handicap but we remained steady. The breeze on the other hand did not, it was all over the place and the top mark was right near the shore, making it difficult to judge the best approach. Some boats hit a hard left and made some big gains, it was tense out there but we kept going and the team effort today was superb, especially changing gears as the wind veered and accelerated around the bay.”
Allan Hogg’s Mills 40 Argie Bargie based at the Royal Western Yacht Club, Plymouth, was awarded best visiting boat and the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta.
In IRC Class One, DMYC’s Barry Cunningham, racing Contango won the last race of the day in sparkling conditions in Killiney Bay. Make sure of third place overall in Class but Paul O’Higggins Rockerbill V was the overall winner of class IRC One, with Steven Northmore’s Plymouth-based A35, Waterjet in second.
In IRC Two, Anthony Gore-Grimes' Dux went out with a bang, winning the last race and securing second overall but John Murphy’s Corby 26 had already won this class yesterday and were spotted in the Royal StGeorge YC last night, making use of the splendid facilities. Dave Cullen’s Half Tonner King One with Jenny Howells calling strategy, has had a consistent regatta ensuring them of third place overall
In IRC Three, Flor O’Driscoll’s J/24 Hard on Port finished off the regatta in style, scoring their fourth bullet of the regatta. In a class of 29 boats there worst result was a fourth and Flor O’Driscoll’s J/24 Hard on Port was rightly crowned best boat at the Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta Overall in IRC. O’Driscoll is originally from Cork but sails under the burgee of the Royal St.George YC. “This has been an extremely well run regatta and I congratulate all of the Clubs on a tremendous effort,” he commented. “Thanks also to my crew, having a consistent team is so important and one of the main reasons for our success.”
Bow on Hard on Port was Grainne Murtagh who added: “It was just superb sailing conditions today, 15 to 20 knots in the puffs and flat water, it really doesn’t get better than that. From Sutton we could see hundreds of boats in the sunshine, an amazing sight. Flor O’Driscoll is a great guy and I am really happy that we have won at such a high profile event.”
Only one boat in the entire 460-boat fleet managed to keep a clean sheet for the entire event. David Gorman of the National Yacht Club took the Flying Fifteen title and the overall one-design trophy with his string of six consecutive victories, not dropping a single race all weekend.
In the one-design keelboats, top marks went to Laser SB3 skipper Ben Duncan, adding another event win to his incredible winning streak for 2009. Duncan and crew slipped on the last day to win the event on countback from local sailor Sean Craig, with Sligo skipper Brian Reilly putting in two wins on the final day to finish third.
In the J/109 fleet, Tino Hyland & Nigel Biggs’ Christie Cancer Care put opening day jitters behind them to open up a commanding lead at the top, with a string of firsts and seconds putting them six points clear in the end.
The fireball title was one of many that went to visitors from overseas. Andy Pearce and crew Adam Broughton were the first of a pair of English entries heading the 25-boat fleet. "It's been great racing here," said Pearce, "fantastic conditions, and nice to get 25 Fireballs out."
As the fleets returned to the harbour at the end of racing, they formed a supporter flotilla for the returning Green Dragon, Ireland's entry in the Volvo Ocean Race. Skipper Ian Walker, along with bowman Justin Slattery and James Carroll from the Green Dragon crew, who were welcomed ashore by thousands of well-wishers gathered on Dun Laoghaire pier.
"It's just fabulous to see Dublin like this," said Slattery, "all the boats out and beautiful weather in Dublin Bay with nearly 500 boats out there - what a spectacular way to come into the bay." Gaelgóir celebrity Hector Ó hEochagáin was on hand to compere proceedings and put the Green Dragon's achievements among Ireland's sporting highlights from 2009.
Full results here