Three Howth SB3's made the trip to Dun Laoghaire last weekend (15th & 16th May) to compete in the Royal Alfred Yacht Clubs annual Baily Bowl Regatta.
Dave Barrys 'Lia', with Daniel O'Connell and Breffni Jones onboard was joined by Eoin Quinlans 'Shockwave' ably crewed by Dominik Meissner and Jimmy Freighn. Brian Moran and Ben Duncans 'Sharkbait' along with Ric Morris were out to defend the title they won in blustery conditions in 2009.
After the expected recall for the first 2 starts due to a strong flood tide pushing the fleet well over the line, racing eventually got underway in very patchy and shifty conditions straight off the shore in Dublin Bay. Playing the big shifts upwind and staying in pressure downwind were the biggest factors to keeping pace, and the Sharkbait lads managed to keep in phase to record a 3, 1, 1 for the day in the 22 strong fleet. Sharing the race area with the DBSC cruiser fleet there were inevitably a couple of close calls with the 'big boats', but with a fleet of SB3's rounding their top mark most of the saw sense and gave the SB3's a little room to squeeze past.
'Lia' found themselves on the wrong side of the line for the start of Race 2 and carried an OCS but an otherwise consistent 6th and 8th on Saturday saw them still in contention when a discard was to be applied on Sunday. 'Shockwave' sailed an excellent second race to finish in 3rd place, even after Dominik did his best to fall out of the boat on a downwind leg, blaming his near-swim firmly on gear failure (still to be confirmed!). Languishing near at back of the fleet midway through race 3, the Shockwave lads also staged a remarkable comeback for a mid-fleet finish, showing the 'never-say-die' attitude is even more important when sailing in very shifty conditions.
Day 2 saw a couple of sore heads onto the racecourse following a 'quiet' night ashore, but the racing continued on another very shifty Dublin Bay. Lia and Shockwave unfortunately lost a little momentum and finished the regatta in 9th and 11th places respectively. Sharkbait however sealed their overall Baily Bowl victory for the second year in a row with a 3rd placing after a very shaky start to the fourth race, but knuckled down to pull themselves back into the head of the fleet. Second overall was Dave Cheyne's crew from the RNIYC, whilst local DL boat 'Seriously Bonkers' with Marty Cuppage and crew sailed an excellent second day to finish in 3rd overall.
More info, reports and full results are available at:
Afloat website >> | www.rayc.ie/ >>