Ireland has two teams competing at this event being sailed at Marseille, France, defending champions Cork Institute of Technology skippered by George Kenefick and University of Limerick skippered by Katie Tingle.
As the teams headed out into the bay of Marseille yesterday morning (Mon), they were greeted with a lovely solid 10 knots of breeze rather than the 2 to 5 knots that were expected.
The first race of the day was an amazing costal race showing all the beautiful scenery and the island of Iles du Frioul. The race committee sent the fleet on a small upwind leg before having them head downwind to the famous cardinals Pte d’Endoume. CIT, defenders of the title, were 6th at the first windward mark and rounded the famous Cardinals in 3rd before broad reaching across to the shore of the island. CIT went on to finish 4th in Race 1.
Race 2, was a two lap windward leeward course in the slightly increasing breeze. CIT, skippered by George Kenefick, came off the line in some dirty air and rounded the windward mark in 8th but went on to pick off the Swiss and English on the downwind leg. CIT continued their fight and picked off the Czech Republic in the final sprint to the finish and went on to finish in fourth place.
Race 3, was again a windward leeward with the breeze holding nicely for the teams. With the confidence growing among many of the teams, some seemed too sure of themselves and the start of race there were many great games being played. However CIT were trying to sail their own race when FRA (Audencia, France) decided to intervene, which ended in a slight collision with 5 seconds to the gun. This led to a protest, which has now resulted in the French being disqualified.
While Italy would appear to have a strong lead at this stage, the next four teams, including CIT, have only four points separating them. UL suffered from the loss of their skipper Katie Tingle due to illness but she is due back on board today. They also suffered from some tactical decisions resulting in what they described as “a painful day” for them. However, they hope to be back in top form for today’s racing.
Racing continues to-day (Tues) with two races followed immediately by the night race, weather permitting, and competitors will certainly face a gruelling period of competition.
Monday provisional overall rankings after one discard.
1 -Italy 11 pts
2 – Switzerland 18 pts
3– USA – 19pts
4– Ireland (Cork) 21 pts
5 – Czech Republic 22
6 –France(Aud) 25pts
7 –England 27 pts
8 – Scotland 30 pts
9 – Ireland (Limerick) 34 pts
10 – France (Ecole Polytechnique ) 45 pts
11 – Wales 46pts
12 – Japan 49 pts