Irish Squib Inland Championships 2023
Lough Derg Yacht Club in Tipperary hosted this year’s Inland championship on the weekend of 14-15 October.
Three visiting UK boats were made most welcome and we hope to attract even more overseas Squib sailors next year. In all, there were 35 Squibs, with all the Irish Squib fleets represented, which easily surpassed the attendance at this year’s Irish Squib Championship in August.
Four races were held in the open waters north of the Corrikeen Islands with a windward/leeward course of two laps. As might be expected on a lake, the wind was shifting unpredictably by up to 30 degrees and the wind strength averaged about 12 knots, but varied from about six knots to over sixteen knots ahead of any rain showers.
Inevitably the anxious competitors pushed the line too hard at the first race and created a general recall. After the restart race one was won by No. 24 ‘Femme Fatale’ sailed by Vincent Delany and Joe O’Byrne who jumped on the opportunity when the four leading Squibs headed to the wrong offset mark on the first lap. Emmet Dalton and Neal Merry in No. 37 ‘Kerfuffle’ took second place and Ian Travers and Keith O’Riordan in No. 785 ‘Outlaw’ third.
The wind dropped a little for the second race which was won by Gordon Patterson and Ross Nolan in No. 820 ‘Quickstep III’ with Cliodhna Ni Shuilleabhain in No. 51 ‘Mucky Duck’ and the immaculately prepared No. 241 ‘Durt’ sailed by Fergus O’Kelly and Rob Stanley in third. It was apparent at this stage that consistency of results in this competitive fleet was a commodity hard to achieve, but one which would produce results later. Race three was held as a rainsquall crossed the Lough and again it was won by ‘Quickstep’ ahead of ‘Durt’ and ‘Outlaw’.
A forecast of little or no wind on Sunday peruaded the race committee to hold with a fourth race, this time in generally in lighter winds. It was convincingly won by ‘Outlaw’ from last year’s bridesmaids David Stewart and Brian Hare in No. 871 ‘Granat’ and No. 100 ‘Fagan’ sailed by James and Harvey Matthews. Commodore of LDYC, Declan Mulcahy invited all the competitors and their friends back for the Irish Inland Championships next year on 12 and 13 October 2024.