The annual Naval Race was again augmented by the addition of the junior club sailors helming and crewing the fleet of 8 ISA J80’s. These provided a fantastic opportunity for the young sailors to showcase their sailing skills that have been acquired throughout the many hours they have sailed already in their sailing careers. Indeed the adults that accompanied each boat were universal in their praise for the capabilities of our junior sailors and the promise they provide for the future of the club.
Barry Rose kindly started the fleet after the cruisers and set a great course that tested the crews in the fairly windy conditions. The J80’s were soon past the White sail fleet in spite of their larger size even though it had been decided to leave the chutes below. The junior sailors didn’t hold back when it came to claiming water from some of the senior members of he club.
In the event extremely close racing was had by the top four boats particularly with the outcome in doubt to the end. The race was won by Seafra Guilfoyle and Peter McCann who shared the helming duties. Darren O’Keeffe was the responsible adult and the other crew members were Barry Shanahan, Conor O’Keeffe and John Keating. Second was the very unlucky Richie Harrington, Dermot Lyden, James McCann, Richard McGinley with Anthony Keating as the adult. They had led for most of the race until gear failure stopped them in their tracks. However, Anthony confirmed the adage about apples and trees (his grandfather ran a boatyard in Crosshaven) and jury rigged the jib to complete the race. John Durcan steered his crew of Graham Smith, Criofan Guilfolye, Johnny Durcan and Tony Donworth(adult) to third place.
Thanks to the other adults who helped out on he day as follows: John Cudmore, Ronan Lyden, Grattan Roberts and Larrie Martin who sailed on the boats and the Tingle and Guilfoylem families who brought ribs.
Our thanks are also due to the coaches (David Kenefick, Judy Costigan, Ryan O’Keeffe and Niamh Lane) of the Optimist beginners and improvers who brought them to the Naval Base after sailing.
As usual we received a great welcome from the Navy who even indulged the kids by allowing a fairly serious game of full contact rugby on their pristine lawn as well as the customary meal and tour of a naval ship. We are very grateful to the officers and ratings of the base for their forbearance and hospitality.
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