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Alex Jones 5.3 Topper Champ 2023

Britain’s Alex Jones Crowned Topper 5.3 World Champion with Rory Whyte of WHSC & RCYC Crowned Topper 4.2 Champion

Sailors from all over the world converged on the Royal Cork Yacht Club for a full week of World Championship Racing that was Topper Worlds 2023.

The hard work and dedication of the Royal Cork Topper Worlds committee resulted in a week that won’t be soon forgotten, 260 competitors over two courses on Curlane Bank and Cuskinny provided challenging racing as the weather continued to try to be disruptive. Our race teams led by IRO Con Murphy watched over two days of qualifying followed by three days of championship racing.

On the final day, Alex Jones was crowned the 2023 Topper 5.3 World Champion after a testing day on the water in Cork Harbour. The forecast was for a SW breeze, building to a fruity 22 knots by mid-afternoon, Con Murphy launched the Toppers early, for an 11.00 start.

The overnight leader wearing the yellow leader’s Rooster vest was Alex Jones, (GBR 114) of Parkstone SC with a healthy 8 point lead over his nearest rival, China’s Ruoque Su. Alex opened the scoring with a third, behind both Su and Rory Clow but suffered a blip in form on the eighth race – a 9th and his worst result of the Finals series. He recovered his composure to claim third in the final race, enough to win the World Championships by an impressive 10 point margin and tellingly with every one of his 9 races within the top ten – a great feat of consistency not bettered by any of the 198 5.3 competitors.

The 4.2 title was taken by Rory Whyte from Waterford Harbour and Royal Cork Yacht Club, with Andrew O’Neill, (IRL) Royal Cork YC in Silver and Che Liu (CHN), Beijing Sailing Centre in Bronze position.

A fantastic week was had both on and off the water which saw parents and sailors from as far afield as Australia, China, Hong Kong, Brazil, Belgium, Spain, Malta, Switzerland, UK and a healthy contingent from Ireland; taking advantage of all that the Royal Cork has to offer.

A massive thank you to all 120 volunteers that gave up their time to make this such a memorable event from registration to prizegiving none of this would be possible without such a dedicated group of people.

Finally, the Club and ITCA would like to thank the sponsors Topper Technologies, Cork County Council, Jones Engineering, Ronstan, Rooster & Topper for their generous support. 

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