Alliance (L-R) Emmet Dalton, Declan Foley, Aideen O' Kelly, Terry
Phillips and Vince Gaffney
Howth boats have won three of the eight national titles at last weekend's Saab-sponsored Irish Cruiser Racing Association National Championships hosted by the Royal Irish YC on Dublin Bay, with Kinetic winning Class 2 on IRC, Alliance taking the honours in Class 3 on IRC and Wild Mustard heading Class 3 on ECHO.
Kinetic Richard Colwell, Neil Spain, Craig Jeffares, Gary Cullen, Daire O’Reilly, Laura Houlihan
Kinetic (Colwell/Murphy), a Corby 25, sailed consistently well and counted top five finishes in six of the seven races (including a first and two 2nds) to head off two Dun Laoghaire rivals by 2 points. Three other HYC boats, Dux (Anthony Gore-Grimes), Aloha (Conor Nolan) and Sunburn (Ian Byrne) finished 4th, 5th and 7th overall respectively.
In Class 3, Vince Gaffney's Alliance, a 24-year old Albin Express, vied with Dave Cullen's Impala Wild Mustard throughout the 3-day event, with Hydrogin (Colbert/Davis) from Malahide trying to upset the balance.
In the end, they both emerged with the spoils of victory, with Alliance recording an impressive score of 1,2,1,2,2 and 3 to win the IRC division from Wild Mustard by 2 points, while the positions were reversed on ECHO, with Mustard winning on a better discard.
So while the papers heralded Royal Cork entries winning 4 of the eight titles with just nine boats travelling up for the event, HYC won three of the other four with about the same number of boats in two divisions!
In addition to the three national titles, two other Howth boats performed with distinction in the two bigger divisions. Stealth, the J35 campaigned by the McMullen/McCaughey/Shanahan syndicate, finished a highly creditable 3rd overall on ECHO from 29 entries in Class 1 while Alan Chambers Infinity did well in the highly competitive Class Zero fleet by also finishing 3rd overall on ECHO.