Sunday 25 February 2018

O'Leary and Ireland wait on wind after races abandoned


Team Ireland was on course to deliver a resounding result in yesterday's long inshore race of the Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup at Cowes before the race was abandoned.

After an earlier start due to concerns about wind following days of near calm conditions, the fleet of 27 boats got away.

But a breakaway group of eight soon surged ahead and once past Portsmouth, got out of the strong tide and into better breeze.

The race was led on the water by American yacht Catapult with a mostly Irish crew.

Close behind in fifth place, team captain Anthony O'Leary was in line to pick up first or second place on handicap time, while team-mate Quokka was in seventh place.

A top three result on handicap time was on the cards for the Irish boats. But the split became too great. Had the race continued, the leaders would have finished, but the time limit would have excluded most of the fleet.

Race officials decided to abandon the race and set a new shorter-course race.

Again, after a promising start, the wind shifted by a massive 100 degrees and died shortly after so that race was abandoned.

Ireland still lead overall with just one race needed before the event ends on Saturday.

Irish Independent

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