This morning (Sat) the competitors in La Coupe des TROIS Phares headed for Brest. They crossed the start line at the mouth of the harbour between the committee boat and the E4 mark under National Race Officer Richard Leonard assisted by RCYC Admiral Paddy McGlade.
With a northerly wind and an ebbing tide the sailors were wise in being a little bit shy of the line but with spinnakers hoisted off they went and made a pretty sight as they headed out into the open sea watched by spectator boats. They were accompanied by their mother ship Notre Dame des Slots and other vessels. The Crosshaven Lifeboat was also standing by as five of the volunteer crew are taking part in the race. The Irish entry is a Bounty ll An tSiocháin owned by Patsy Fagan.There was a very nice gesture from the competitors as each yacht greeted and thanked the Race Officer as they passed the committee boat.
No doubt many of the boats had stories attaching to them but none more so than the yacht Pen Duick ll formerly owned by the late Éric Tabarly and now in the ownership of the École Nationale de Voile. Monsieur Tabarly, a former French Naval Officer was often known as the father of French sailing.
It has been a very enjoyable week for both the Competitors and the Royal Cork Yacht Club concluding with a dinner in their honour last evening (Fri) complete with traditional Irish entertainment consisting of music and dancing with the French visitors joining in with gusto. The partying went on until the early hours of the moning.. Many friends were made and there is expectation they will return again to the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 2012.
Le Royal Cork Yacht Club souhaite les concurrents dans la Coupe des TROIS Phares bonne chance et Bon Voyage qu’ils laissent Cork aujourd’hui dans leur course à Brest d’où ils procédera à La Rochelle pour la finition..