A Club Champion of Champions event was held in the Royal Cork Yacht Club on Saturday the 14th of June. The 16 crews were split into 2 groups and each sailed a 3 race series in the ISA owned J80s. A short windward-leeward course was set by PRO Peter Crowley just to the northeast of Spike Island in a light southerly breeze.
The group 1 results saw Ronan Collins from the SB3 Class sailing Smart Telecom get through to the final along with Kieran O’Connell from the National 18 Class on Smyth’s Toys and Barry Rose helming the Irish Examiner boat representing the Whitesail Class. They were joined by Jack Costigan and his young crew from the 420 Class sailing Dun Laoghaire Marina.
Once group 2 had been transferred from the waiting spectator boats, the breeze died and the Race Officer was forced to delay the start of the racing for the second group. When racing did get underway the wind had veered around to the northwest and the on water umpires, Ed Alcock and Michael O’Connor were kept busy during the tight competitive race.
A shifting breeze meant further delays and after a decision to shift the entire course about a mile south, 2 more races were started in the by now westerly wind. Jimmy Nyhan from Class 3 sailed O’Leary Insurances consistently well to make it to the final along with Billy Duane and his Whitesail crew on KPMG. They were joined in the final by Rob Howe on Smart Telecom from the SB3 Class and the McCann Fitzgerald boat sailed by Wan Waterman, and crew, from Class 1.
The action heated up for the 2 race final series as the wind picked up to a steady 12 knots and the competitors got more used to the J80s. The umpires were very busy and in the short races, penalties and over-eagerness on the start line put a number of boats out of contention.
The only sponsor’s boat not to get through to the final from either group was the Dyno Rod boat, which proved that the boat wasn’t to blame as it was sailed to overall victory by the crew from the National 18 Class: Kieran O’Connell, Tim Sullivan, Stephen O’Shaughnessy and Angus Grant.
The dark horses from the Whitesail Class took the race victory in race 1 of the final, which saw the crew of Billy Duane, Colin Morehead, Mick McKenna and Shea Roche sail KPMG into second overall.
Third place overall went to O’Leary Insurances, being sailed by Jimmy Nyhan, Maritta Buwalda, Jamie O’Connor and Kevin Boyd from Class 3.