International One Metre
Irish National Class Association
2013 IOM Ulster Regatta
28th July - Lough Money, Downpatrick

Forecast for the day was for dry weather but with some light drizzle in late afternoon. With winds starting 5-7 knots increasing to 14-17 knots were forecasted and that is pretty much what we got.

Lough Money is a lovely private lough that was historically providing clear water to the local hospital in Downpatrick. It has superb surroundings in the middle of the countryside with a little car park and quick access to numerous fisherman little pontoons. And it is from one of them that we launched and retrieved.

Brian came up with his little dinghy and laid a great windward/leeward course with the start/finish in the middle of the course in line with the launching pontoon.

To start we all rigged up with our top rig. Brian used his usual rig, Des picked his not new but relatively unused power top rig and Gilbert was using his new top rig which the biggest difference is the mast ; a 11mm groovy instead of a 12.7mm groovy.

The diet program I implemented on my V6 seems to work. (Reducing the overall weight by 70gr that I was over by). From the moment I put the boat on the water I had a good pace and it showed with me winning the first few races. Behind Des also had a good pace sailing with his power sails, while Brian was fast catching up by tuning his boat better for the conditions.

As the morning went the wind picked up and after race 7 we decided to call a break  as we wind reached the top of the A rig range and we started to struggle to tack and go fast downwind. Which was just as well for Gilbert as his sheeting system on deck broke and though it was quickly fixed had an O ring designed to break just for this case.

Brian and Des had prepared some lovely sandwiches and after a well deserved break we were back on the water for 17 more races but this time with the B rig.

Once again Gilbert dominated the early races and both Brian and Des did catch up on Gilbert’s pace bringing some of the closest racing in a while.

The wind continued to increase and even with the B rig we had some great speed downwind, often surfing on the small waves. Both Brian and Des managed to wind some races too towards the end but overall Gilbert had bagged up 16 bullets out of 24 races and that was enough for him to take the top place for the regatta.

Definitely one of the best sailing day this year yet, Thank you Brian for organising this day and bringing your rib to lay the course.


PS Sorry no pictures for this regatta as I forgot the camera at home. NNNOOOOOO !