Great Performances at Optimist Ulster Championships 11th & 12th June
  Author: Des Flood      Posted on: 16/6/11

Photos by Thomas Anderson

Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club
Following on from the Optimist Leinster Championships the travellers headed north to the Ulster Championships at the Royal North Ireland Yacht Club on the south side of Belfast Lough. 13 HYC sailors made the short trip with several travelling on the morning of the event.

HYC sailors again did particularly well in both main fleets. In the Senior Gold fleet Richard Hogan sailed consistently well to secure 3rd overall. Fergus Flood was 7th with Sean Waddilove (8th), Robert Dickson (11th) and Aoife Hopkins (15th).

In the Senior Silver fleet Nicole Hemeryck was 5th with Erica Markey and Alex Kavanagh just outside the prizes. It is only a matter of time and perseverance before they stand on the podium. Peter McCann from RCYC was the overall winner of the Senior Championship.

In the Junior Gold fleet Issy Delamer was 3rd overall which included a race win, with Ewan McMahon 5th. Daniel Hopkins was 10th in the Silver fleet. Max Kavanagh, one of the youngest sailors in the Junior fleet at 10 years, was unfortunate to be timed out in the 2nd race and was overpowered on the Sunday. Ronan Cournane (RCYC/KYC ) was the overall winner of the Junior Championship taking the title in the last race by beating Niamh Henry from the RsTGYC by a point. The results of the HYC sailors are a testament to the training put in over the winter and demonstrates how well this group of sailors have progressed since last year.

A Senior Fleet start
19 sailors participated in the Regatta fleet under the watch of Katie Malcolm and Katie White. Jamie McMahon and Ella Hemeryck took part in the coaching and racing provided and by all accounts had a fun time.

The event was in a sense a game of two halves with the wind on Saturday struggling to get above 5 knots making life very tough against the tide. 3 races were started for both fleets but the 3rd races for each were abandoned as the wind died away. In the Junior fleet many in the 2nd race were also timed out in the very tricky conditions. Sunday however delivered on the forecasted wind with gusts of over 22 knots and 3 races were completed.

Full results can be found at

Excellent photos by Thomas Anderson can be seen at

On the Saturday evening IODAI President, Fred Campbell presented Green life jackets and team gear to those who had qualified at the trials to go to the World and European championships and to those on the International Development Team. 5 Howth sailors qualified for the latter team namely Robert Dickson, Fergus Flood, Richard Hogan, Aoife Hopkins and Sean Waddilove who will travel to Kiel in August to the German Open Championships.

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